Social researchers inform public debate and political decision-making. This degree develops knowledge and skills in research and analysis to help you understand complex social, environmental and economic problems. Core courses cover social science, policy analysis and research methods.

Students can gain practical experience through real-world coursework activities, vocational placements (internships), overseas exchange programs or by getting involved in student organisations or volunteering.

You will also complete a major social research project that brings together the research and analytical skills necessary for research and policy-related work.

Program Code


UAC Code




Total units of credit (UOC)




Indicative Enrolments



  • Development Studies
  • Economics
  • Environmental Humanities
  • Human Resource Management
  • Indigenous Studies
  • International Business
  • International Relations
  • Marketing
  • Media, Culture and Technology
  • Politics
  • Politics and International Relations
  • Social Research and Policy
  • Sociology and Anthropology

Major Social Research Project

You will complete a major Social Research project that will bring together the research and analytical skills necessary for research and policy-related work.

This project will include preparation of a research proposal, literature review and the completion of a research project embodying the results of the research.

Past Social Research and Policy research topics have included:

  • Newstart – impact and perceptions
  • E-trafficking - using new technologies in the context of human trafficking
  • Degrees of difference? A preliminary study into the composition of criminology degrees at Australian universities

Degree Structure

Degree Handbook

Double degree options

Dual mode (120 UOC) made up of: 1. Core Social Research and Policy courses (54 UOC) 2. Prescribed Social Research and Policy elective (6 UOC) 3. One major stream (60 UOC) from the approved list Dual mode is available in 3937 Science/Social Research & Policy, 3938 Advanced Science/Social Research & Policy, 4044 Social Work (Honours)/Social Research & Policy, 4771 Social Research & Policy/Law, and 4815 Art Theory/Social Research & Policy.

Career Opportunities

  • Research officer
  • Policy analyst
  • Political adviser
  • Project officer
  • Research consultant
  • Social worker

Vocational placements

Third year students may be able to pursue a structured and supported vocational placement designed to provide an understanding of organisational contexts and the development of professional skills.

A range of placements will be offered to students including:

  • UNSW Research Centres
  • UNSW administrative branches and other relevant UNSW organisations
  • mentoring placement with UNSW academic staff members
  • organisations outside UNSW organised by the internship coordinator
  • organisations identified by the student and agreed upon by the Internship coordinator

Overseas exchange program

Why not spend a term overseas at a partner university and receive credit towards your Social Research and Policy degree at UNSW.

UNSW has over 200 partner universities in over 38 countries, giving you the opportunity to live, study and travel in a new country.


A fourth year honours program is available for high achieving students in the Bachelor of Social Research and Policy.

Honours is an intensive study program that provides the opportunity to engage in specialised and extended research, to further develop research and analytical skills and expand graduate options.

Internship program

As a student of Social Research and Policy you have the option to enrol in an additional degree credit Vocational Placement (Internship) Course to gain further professional experience.

Entry requirements

2020 Lowest Selection Rank 1


2021 Guaranteed Entry 2


2020 A levels 3


2020 IB Diploma 4


2020 Lowest ATAR 5


1. 2020 Lowest Selection Rank

The 2020 Lowest Selection Rank (LSR) is the adjusted rank (ATAR plus adjustment factors) you would have needed to gain entry to this degree in 2020.

2. 2021 Guaranteed Entry

Find more information on Guaranteed Entry here.

3. 2020 A levels

The 2020 A levels score is based on four Advanced Level (A2) subject. Entry scores are calculated from the best three or four A2 subjects (excluding repeated subjects) using the following values: A*=6, A=5, B=4, C=3, D=2, E=1. At most one Applied A Level subject may be included in the best four subjects used to calculate the aggregate.

4. 2020 IB Diploma

The 2020 IB Diploma is an indication of the IB you would have needed to gain entry to this degree in 2020. It is to be used as a guide only.

5. 2020 Lowest ATAR

The 2020 Lowest ATAR is the lowest ATAR (before adjustment factors were applied) to which an offer was made. Where <5 is listed, this indicates that less than 5 ATAR-based offers were made and so the score has not been published. N/A indicates no offers were made on the basis of ATAR.

How to apply

Applications for undergraduate study from domestic students (Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents, Australian permanent humanitarian visa holders and New Zealand citizens) are processed by the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC).

Visit the ‘Apply’ section of the UAC website and you can nominate up to five degrees in order of preference, with the first being your most desired degree and university.

On-time applications for admission usually close at the end of September each year for Term 1 admission. Late applications can be submitted, but a late fee will apply. For study starting in Term 1, the majority of offers are made in December and January.

Visit the UAC website for key dates for admission outside of Term 1.



2020 Indicative First Year Fee


Commonwealth Supported Place, Student Contribution Band 1

*The student contribution for a Commonwealth Supported Place is an indication only of the amount payable in Year 1 based on a standard full-time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). The actual student contribution you will be liable for depends on your individual program of study and the calendar year in which you enrol. Actual fees are calculated upon enrolment. Student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University and may increase each year during your studies (subject to caps determined by the Australian Government), effective at the start of each calendar year.

The indicative fees listed here are based on an estimated average and are for tuition only – other fees and charges are not included.

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