The University of Essex has an excellent reputation for social science — and with good reason! It ranks highly in the UK university league tables for many social science subjects, and it is in the world’s top 250 universities for Social Sciences and Management (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021).

Read on to discover more reasons why it’s a great university for social science.

What is social science?

Social science is a broad range of academic subjects that concern the study of society and human interaction. Here are just a few examples of social sciences:

  • Politics
  • Economics
  • History
  • Sociology
  • Psychology

What makes Essex a good university for social science?

The University of Essex is a leader in many social science areas, but it is particularly strong in the field of political science. So, what makes Essex stand out from the crowd?

1. Excellent rankings for Politics

The University of Essex’s reputation as a top university for politics is recognised around the world. In the UK, the University ranks in the top 20 for the subject (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022).

The University is also ranked in the world’s top 50 universities for Politics and International Studies by the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021 — an even more impressive achievement!

Essex even has the top-rated Politics and International Studies department in the UK, according to the Times Higher Education interpretation of the 2014 Research Excellence Framework. Whichever measure you use, it’s clear that the University of Essex is one of the best places you can study politics!

2. Close connections to government

The University of Essex department responsible for teaching this subject is the Department for Government. The Department brings together some of the biggest names in the field to give its students an incredible insight into modern politics.

Many of the University’s academics work closely in advisory roles with governments, political parties and NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisations). This means that, while studying at Essex, you’ll be taught by some of the best minds shaping real political policies and events today.

In fact, the current University of Essex Chancellor, Dr John Bercow, is a former student of politics at the University. He served as an MP (Member of Parliament) and the Speaker of the UK House of Commons until 2019 — one of the most important and influential positions in the British political system.

3. Global reputation for social science

The University of Essex also specialises in other areas of social sciences. For example, it’s ranked 20th in the UK for Criminology, and is in the top 25 for Linguistics and the top 25 for Sociology (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022).

The University is also ranked in the world’s top 50 institutions for Sociology (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021), making it a truly elite study destination for students of sociology.

One reason for this remarkable success in the social sciences is the University’s strength in research. Its commitment to research into politics and sociology help these respective departments to keep up with current trends and new ideas, and to shape the future too. 

Brilliant research also helps students, as teachers will typically be better informed and closer to the cutting edge of their fields.

Shape your future with a social science degree at Essex

Explore the links below to learn more about the University of Essex, or check the degree finder to see all of the University’s social science degrees.