Award Type and NFQ level : UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE (8)

CAO/PAC code : MH107

CAO Points : 320

Closing Date : 01 July 2024

View QQI details

The Bachelor of Social Science degree (BSocSc) studies how human societies are organised, the social forces, institutions and ideologies that shape society, and the factors that influence the wellbeing of individuals, families, communities, and countries.

You will learn to analyse contemporary social problems, issues and policy responses, related to poverty and social exclusion, drugs, criminal justice, housing, migration, ethnicity, disability ageing and gender. A key focus is on how to address inequality and promote rights and entitlements to services for all. You will also learn about social professions such as social work, community work and youth work, and may pursue postgraduate opportunities in these fields at Maynooth after your undergraduate degree.

The degree is organised as a double major programme with the core subject of Social Policy and one of the following subjects: Sociology, Philosophy, History, Anthropology, Geography or Economics. The core subject of Social Policy focuses on government and institutional policies concerned with human needs and welfare in the broadest sense, and how these needs are addressed.

Why choose this degree?

  • Social Policy is available to study only in the Bachelor of Social Science degree.
  • This subject is the basis for careers in policy research and policy analysis.
  • This degree is prescribed as the basis for undertaking a Master’s in Social Work.
  • The scope of the course includes key topics like class, gender, religion, race, ethnicity, sexuality, disability and ageing, It also covers policy issues such as poverty, child and family policy, housing, criminal justice and drugs.

Duration: 3 years or 4 years (with Erasmus/study abroad option)

The core subject is Social Policy – only available in the BSocSc degree.

1st year

  • Social Policy
  • Sociology
  • Critical Skills for Social Sciences
  • 1 of the following subjects: Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History or Philosophy 

2nd & 3rd year

  • Continue with Social Policy and 1 of your 1st year subjects as a Double Major Bachelor of Social Science degree
  • Optional 10 credit Elective in second year

Students may apply to study overseas after 2nd year (on Erasmus or Study Abroad) and graduate with a BA (International) after 4 years. See the International Studies website for details.

Course Duration: 3 years (BSocSc) or 4 years (BSocSc International)

Applied Social Studies - Seamus Taylor - Maynooth University

Head of Department

Department of Applied Social Studies

Department of ALL Institute


Department of Sociology

Department of Faculty of Social Sciences

Department of ALL Institute

Jane Gray


Department of Sociology

Department of Social Sciences Institute (MUSSI)

Department of IQDA

Paul Ryan photo


Department of Sociology

Options after graduation?

  • Graduates pursue careers in policy analysis, social research and social professions (social work, community work and youth work).
  • Our graduates are also found in management and public administration, the NGO sector, journalism, the media and social research.
  • Graduates can take the National Qualification in Social Work at master’s level (for more information visit

Postgraduate study options also include the MSocSc Social Science (Rights and Social Policy), MSocSc (Community and Youth Work) and MSocSc (Social Work).

Visit the Graduate Studies website for more information about postgraduate options.

This table displays the requirements for Leaving Certificate applicants.
Subject Required Ordinary Level Grade Higher Level Grade
Irish Yes O6 H7
English Yes O6 H7
Language Yes O6 H7
Math No N/A N/A
Science No N/A N/A

International & EU/EFTA Entry Requirements

Mature Students

Mature Applicants

Mature applicants are assessed separately to school-leavers. Mature applicants are 23 years or older by 1st January in the year of entry to the University. For part-time/flexible degrees the mature age is 21. 

Click here to be taken to our mature applicant information page - tab 3 on that page outlines application steps for this degree.

Mature applicants who have a disability 

If you have a disability or specific learning difficulty (e.g. dyslexia), and require examination support for any written tests that may be required, please submit supporting documentation by 15 March 2024 to the Access Office. 

Unfortunately we are unable to consider applications for alternative examination accommodation after this deadline. 

For further information on the supporting documentation required, as well as examination and other supports visit the Access Office website.

01 February 2024

Additional Information

Leaving Certificate Applicants 

Required to present (as a minimum): 2H5 & 4O6/H7 and O6/H7 in Irish, English, 3rd language. MH107 Round 1 Points 2023: 320


DARE: The Disability Access Route to Education is a third level alternative admissions scheme for school-leavers whose disabilities have had a negative impact on their second level education.

HEAR: The Higher Education Access Route is a third level admissions scheme for school leavers from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds.

Contact the Access Office for more information about these access routes.

The Maynooth Education

Click here for details about optional Critical Skills courses, Electives and degree pathways. 



The application process depends on the type of applicant you are. Click here for all information about how to apply.

Categories of applicant:

  • School-leavers (Leaving Certificate students)
  • Mature students (23 years or older by 1st January in the year of entry to the University/part-time degrees the mature age is 21)
  • EU/EFTA/UK students
  • International students (outside the EU)
  • QQI (Further Education) students
  • Transferring students
  • Deferring students
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