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Postgraduate Study

Course closed:

Sociology (The Sociology of Media and Culture) is no longer accepting new applications.


The course offers seminar-style teaching on core topic areas and additional research methods courses.

Students are expected to write two 3,000 word essays in the Michaelmas term. These are formative essays which are not assessed, giving students the opportunity to receive feedback on their writing and research before submitting any assessed work. 

During Lent term (Easter term of first year for part-time students), building on readings, lectures and supervisions, students submit a 4,500 to 5,000 word Field Review Essay, which offers a comprehensive review of research related to one of their core lectures.  

Students work towards a written dissertation supported by supervisions and a dissertation workshop. 

One to one supervision

Students will typically receive approximately eight hours of supervision on their dissertation, spread across the three terms (across six terms part-time). Additional supervisions are provided for the research essays and the assessed Field Review Essay. 

The University of Cambridge publishes an annual Code of Practice which sets out the University’s expectations regarding supervision.

Seminars & classes

Core course: 12 hours (six two-hour sessions) in the Michaelmas term and two one-hour sessions in the Lent term (Michaelmas and Lent of the first year for part-time students).

Research methods: seminars:  twelve hours of optional seminars (first or second year for part-time students).

4 to 5 hours of optional seminars specific to the Media and Culture Pathway during Lent term (first or second year for part-time students). 

In addition, students are welcome to attend any other relevant lectures offered by the Department or across the University, including any specialist research methods courses run by the Social Science Research Methods Programme.


Six 2-hour core course lectures in Michaelmas and two lectures in Lent. In addition, students are welcome to attend any other relevant lectures offered by the Department or across the university.


Dissertation workshop: ten hours.

Journal clubs

Within the Department, various reading groups and clusters are offered.

Literature Reviews

Written assignments require students to conduct extensive literature reviews in their chosen areas of research.

Posters and Presentations

Students present their dissertation proposals in a workshop usually held during the Lent term. (first or second year for part-time students).


Students receive written feedback on each essay and the dissertation. Feedback is also given during the dissertation workshop on the direction and progress of the dissertation research.


Thesis / Dissertation

Students write a dissertation of not less than 10,000 and not more than 15,000 words on a subject approved by the Sociology Postgraduate Education Committee, falling within the field of the pathway chosen at the beginning of the course. The dissertation counts for 70 per cent of the final mark.


Students write one Field Review Essay of between 4,500 and 5,000 words  on topics approved by the Sociology Postgraduate Education Committee. This essay counts for 30 per cent of the final mark.

Key Information

9 months full-time

21 months part-time

Study Mode : Taught

Master of Philosophy

Department of Sociology

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Applications open
Sept. 4, 2023
Application deadline
April 24, 2024
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2024

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Course Funding Deadline
Dec. 5, 2023
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 11, 2023

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2024, Lent 2025 and Easter 2025.

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