Policy Evaluation, MSc

Policy Evaluation, MSc


The MSc in Policy Evaluation provides you with the skills required to contribute to evidence-based policy formation and Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) processes across a range of fields in the public sector, voluntary organisations and private service providers.

This course has January and September start dates. Apply Now.

Eligible self-funded international Masters students will receive the Aberdeen Global Scholarship. Visit our Funding Database to find out more.

Study Information

Study Options

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
12 months or 24 months
Study Mode
Full Time or Part Time
Start Month
September or January
Location of Study

Institutions and organizations are increasingly demanding evidence-based policy formation. However, there are few graduates with the necessary training to engage in policy evaluation and Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) techniques to provide that “evidence”. As a result, there is a high demand for graduates with the specialist social research methods for M&E, who can critically understand and evaluate policies and social interventions in areas such as health and social care, criminal justice, international development, and inequality and poverty.

The MSc in Policy Evaluation meets this demand by equipping graduates with the skills necessary to provide effective policy evaluation and programme M&E for government and third sector organisations working in both domestic and international contexts.

You will acquire advanced skills in quantitative methods and analysis and research design, along with the theoretical and conceptual understanding of policymaking and programme implementation required to put M&E into practice across a wide array of contexts.

This programme will therefore provide you with a critical and informed understanding of policy evaluation to help you understand the need for specific M&E skills and how they might be best utilized across an array of work environments.

For the thesis component, instead of completing a traditional dissertation, students have the option to work with a partner organization to produce a real M&E project with local government, a non-profit organisation, or within the University itself.

The staff teaching on this programme are all research-active scholars with methodological expertise central to policy evaluation and M&E practice.

Available Programmes of Study


Policy Evaluation

Qualification Duration Learning Mode Study Mode Start Month Location  
MSc 12 months or 24 months On Campus Learning Full Time or Part Time September More
MSc 12 months or 24 months On Campus Learning Full Time or Part Time January Aberdeen More

Fees for individual programmes can be viewed in the Programme(s) above.

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Fee Information

Additional Fee Information

  • Fees for individual programmes can be viewed in the Programmes section above.
  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.


Eligible self-funded international Masters students will receive the Aberdeen Global Scholarship. Visit our Funding Database to find out more and see our full range of scholarships.

How You'll Study

The programme consists of 180 credit points taken over the duration of one year. A weekly timetable consists of an average of 6 teaching hours per week with some courses running over 3 week periods. Teaching includes a range of interactive methods and approaches to learning in order to enhance students’ critical thinking, presentation and interpersonal skills. Courses are assessed through essays, presentations, examinations, group and project work.

The variety of assessment in the programme ensures that students apply theory to practice and become expert communicators and team players. The programme is designed for full-time or part-time students.

Learning Methods

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials

Assessment Methods

Assessment is by a combination of essay work, class presentations, examination, and a hands-on M&E Project in collaboration with a partner organization.

Why Study Policy Evaluation?

  • The MSc in Policy Evaluation builds on the extensive methodological expertise of the School of Social Science and its history of providing excellent methodological training via the Master’s in Research programmes.
  • The programme takes advantage of the University’s relationships with government and non-governmental organizations to provide students with the option of a hands-on M&E experience with real-world organizations engaged in policy formation and programme implementation.
  • Graduates have unique academic and practical experiences which will help them compete successfully in the job market.
  • The School of Social Science has been providing excellent methodological training recognized by the ESRC via the Master’s in Research (MRes) programmes for many years. For this reason, across the disciplines of Sociology, Anthropology, Political Science and International Relations, the School boasts an excellent faculty with substantial experience in training social scientists in research methods.
  • As an ancient Scottish University with over 500 years of history, the University of Aberdeen has a long relationship and established connections to the city of Aberdeen and the region of Aberdeenshire. These relationships provide exceptional opportunities for post-graduate students in the MSc in Monitoring and Evaluation for Policy Impact to engage in active learning with governmental and non-governmental organizations via their final project.
  • You are taught by and you study with people from across the world at Aberdeen, which is a cosmopolitan city and centre of a global energy hub. We provide an excellent library on campus, and as much as possible digitally off campus, in a beautiful new building where you can view the beach and most of Aberdeen.

Entry Requirements


The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.

Applicants for admission will normally be expected to hold a relevant Honours degree with a 2:1 standard from a recognised university or body.

Applicants without this qualification may be admitted subject to having an alternative qualification, or an approved level of work experience appropriate to the field of study. Also taken into careful consideration is the trajectory of results, an applicant without an overall 2.1 but with 2.1 results in their final two years of study may be admitted.

Please enter your country to view country-specific entry requirements.

English Language Requirements

To study for a Postgraduate Taught degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.5 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0


OVERALL - 90 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 62 with: Listening - 59; Reading - 59; Speaking - 59; Writing - 59

Cambridge English B2 First, C1 Advanced, C2 Proficiency:

OVERALL - 176 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Document Requirements

You will be required to supply the following documentation with your application as proof you meet the entry requirements of this degree programme. If you have not yet completed your current programme of study, then you can still apply and you can provide your Degree Certificate at a later date.

Degree Certificate
a degree certificate showing your qualifications
Degree Transcript
a full transcript showing all the subjects you studied and the marks you have achieved in your degree(s) (original & official English translation)
Personal Statement
a detailed personal statement explaining your motivation for this particular programme
Reference x 2
two reference letters, one of which should be from your university discussing your academic ability. If you have been out of education for a long time you may wish to use your current or most recent employers, or other professional individuals

Aberdeen Global Scholarship

Eligible self-funded post graduate taught (PGT) students will receive the Aberdeen Global Scholarship. Explore our Global Scholarships, including eligibility details, on our dedicated page.

Aberdeen Global Scholarships


Policy evaluation is of growing importance for governments, NGOs, and international organisations involved in funding and delivering programmes in areas such as public health, education, transport, inequality, criminal justice, international development, humanitarian relief, post-conflict state-building, peace-building, and transitional justice.

This has led to a growth in the need for policy experts who can design, monitor and evaluate policies using the latest Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E) methods. This programme provides you with the practical skills and critical and informed understanding of this subject to prepare you for a career in any of these areas of policy formation, evaluation, or programme implementation.

Previous graduates of this programme have gone on roles in civil society, the Scottish government, and the UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office.

Professional Links

This MSc Programme builds on and further foster’s links with local governmental and non-governmental organizations in the vicinity of the University of Aberdeen, the city of Aberdeen, and Aberdeenshire.

Demand expanding in domestic & international field

While few graduates can claim valid qualifications, demand for Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) professionals is expanding in both domestic and international fields of practice.

What our Alumni Say

Harry Keightley

Harry Keightley

Harry Keightley

Graduated 2021

I would highly recommend the course as it allows you to develop many skills that are necessary for Policy related work. I have been able to utilise the skills that I have developed on the course in order to secure the graduate job that I wanted and I am confident that they will be very useful in my career going forward.

Our Experts

Other Experts
Dr Marta Trzebiatowska
Dr Christopher Kollmeyer
Dr Isabella Kasselstrand
Programme Coordinator
Professor Gearoid Millar

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Student Recruitment & Admissions
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
AB24 3FX