Award Type and NFQ level : UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE (8)

CAO/PAC code : MH107

CAO Points : 346

Closing Date : 01 July 2021

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MU Ask a Student | Chat now with Emma | MH107 Student

Social Science studies how human societies are organised, analysing the social forces that govern the world we live in and their impact on individuals, families, communities and countries. Choose this degree you are interested in class, gender, religion, race, ethnicity, sexuality, age and disability and other contemporary issues in society such as drugs, criminal justice, ageing and inequality.
Students learn about social professions such as social work, community work and youth work and analyse contemporary issues in society, especially Irish society - such as drugs, criminal justice, migration, ageing and inequality. The Social Science programme emphasises the study of applied social science through the subject Social Policy. This subject, which can only be taken through the BSocSc degree, is concerned with critical analysis of policies and practices in relation to human welfare and well-being.
  • Study Social Policy - this subject is only available in the Bachelor of Social Science degree. This focuses on government and institutional policies in relation to human welfare and how human societies are organised.
  • If you are considering a career as a professional social worker, you will build on this degree by completing the National Qualification in Social Work. Most social workers qualify by completing a BSocSc and then a Masters in Social Work.
A year of study is 60 credits.
The core subject is Social Policy – only available in the BSocSc degree.
  • Social Policy
  • Sociology
  • Critical Skills for Social Sciences
  • 1 of the following subjects: Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History or Philosophy 
  • Continue with Social Policy and 1 of your 1st year subjects as a Double Major Bachelor of Social Science degree
  • Optional 10 credit Electives 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)

Jane Gray


Department of Sociology

Department of Social Sciences Institute (MUSSI)

Department of IQDA

Sociology - Paul Ryan - Maynooth University


Department of Sociology

Social Science provides a valuable academic foundation for many vocations and occupations. It is particularly associated with careers in policy analysis, applied social research and the social professions of social work, community work and youth work. Our graduates can also be found in a wide range of other careers including management and public administration, the Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) sector, journalism, the media and social research.
If you wish to become a professional social worker, you must undertake the National Qualification in Social Work (the accrediting body is CORÚ; visit their website at Most social workers qualify by completing a Bachelor of Social Science first and then a Masters in Social Work. Many of our graduates follow that route.
A Social Science degree in which Social Policy is the core subject is a pre-requisite for a professional Masters in Social Work. Some graduates choose to proceed into postgraduate study in fields of interest such as:
  • Master of Social Science (Social Work)
  •  MSocSc Social Science (Rights and Social Policy)

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

A mature student is 23 years or older by 1st January in the year of entry to the University. For part-time degrees the mature age is 21. Admission is based on your application. Candidates are shortlisted for interview on the basis of a written assessment.
Apply to the CAO by February 1st 2021. Late applications from mature students may be accepted after this date - consult the Undergraduate Studies website for updates. Application may not be made to the CAO after May 1st 2021.
Mature students must complete the CAO section for mature applicants fully, indicating clearly past or current studies, and outlining educational goals and objectives. Applicants are assessed on the basis of the information provided on their CAO application form. All questions should be answered in full.

Mature student applicants who have a disability 

If you have a disability or specific learning difficulty (e.g. dyslexia), and require examination support for the written tests, please submit supporting documentation by 15 March 2021 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 2021

Additional Information

Leaving Certificate applicants are required to present (as a minimum): 2H5 & 4O6/H7 and O6/H7 in Irish, English, 3rd language.
The Maynooth Education
Click here for details about 1st year optional Critical Skills courses and 2nd year optional Electives and degree pathways. 
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.

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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