School of Social and Political Science

MSc Research in Science and Technology Studies

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The deadline to apply for September 2024 entry is Monday 1 July 2024.

We warmly invite candidates to apply for a MSc by Research in Science and Technology Studies

The University of Edinburgh has an international reputation as a leading centre of research in Science and Technology Studies.

Edinburgh scholars work around the globe on the social and historical aspects of developments in science and technology. Particular strengths in research include:

  • the history and philosophy of science
  • the social shaping of technology
  • the history and sociology of medicine
  • the politics of controversies and public engagement with science and technology
  • science, technology and gender
  • the sociology of financial markets and emissions trading scheme
  • innovation in biotechnology and the life sciences
  • the development and use of information and communication technologies
  • innovation for sustainability
  • science and technology in developing countries
Programme overview

The MSc by Research in Science and Technology Studies is for students who are looking to gain research skills in the social sciences, with a specific focus on Science and Technology Studies. Most students who are considering a PhD in Science and Technology Studies are strongly advised to first complete this MSc by Research, as an introductory year to get familiar with research skills and hone their doctoral research proposal.

Students take a programme of coursework combining training in social science research methods with specialist courses that are specific to their interests and needs. The dissertation at the end of the MSc(R) normally takes one of two forms:

  • A research proposal including a small pilot study as a standalone piece of work
  • A research proposal that can form the basis of the board paper if the student continues on with a doctoral study

A normal programme involves successful completion of research training courses in the Graduate School at SPS and a selection of courses from those offered by the STIS subject group appropriate to the student's topic, background and needs.


Research library and archive facilities in Edinburgh are outstanding. All research students are members of the Graduate School of Social & Political Science, with full access to the Graduate School’s facilities in the Chrystal Macmillan Building.

Other library and archive facilities include the University’s Main Library, the National Library of Scotland and the Scottish Records Office. Proximity to the Scottish Parliament and other institutions of national government provides further research opportunities.


Applying for this PhD

  1. Identify potential supervisors suited to your research interests
  2. Write a draft research proposal
  3. Contact the Postgraduate Advisor with your research proposal and list of potential supervisors
  4. Once discussed with the Postgraduate Advisor, formally submit your application on EUCLID

Postgraduate Advisor

Programme advisor: Dr James Mittra