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.

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 organisations 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 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 you 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. Further, you will develop a critical and informed understanding of policy evaluation, an appreciation for the need for specific M&E skills, and the knowledge on how they might be best utilised across an array of work environments.

You can choose to complete a traditional dissertation for your final project or elect to work with a partner organisation to produce a real M&E project. Previous students have worked with the local government, a non-profit organisation, or within the University itself on their final project.

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

Programme Fees

Fee information
Fee category Cost
EU / International students £23,800
Tuition Fees for 2024/25 Academic Year
UK £11,100
Tuition Fees for 2024/25 Academic Year

We will endeavour to make all course options available. However, these may be subject to change - see our Student Terms and Conditions page.

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 Tuition Fees page.


Self-funded international students enrolling on postgraduate taught (PGT) programmes will receive one of our Aberdeen Global Scholarships, ranging from £3,000 to £8,000, depending on your domicile country. Learn more about the Aberdeen Global Scholarships here.

To see our full range of scholarships, visit our Funding Database.

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 School of Social Science boasts an excellent faculty with substantial experience in training social scientists in research methods.  The School’s methodological training has been recognised by the ESRC via the Masters in Research (MRes) Social Anthropology and MRes Social Science programmes for many years
  • The Department of Sociology at the University of Aberdeen enjoys a reputation as one of the leading centres for the study of sociology in the UK, being recognised nationally and internationally for the outstanding quality of teaching and research.  In the most recent Research Excellence Framework review, the research quality of the Department of Sociology within The School of Social Sciences was judged as 'Excellent’
  • The University of Aberdeen is home to several research centres and institutes, including the Centre for Global Development; the Centre for Global Security and Governance; the Institute for Conflict, Transition, and Peace Research; and more
  • Gain hands-on Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) experience with the opportunity to complete a project with a partner organisation, including the local government and NGOs, as part of your dissertation
  • Study at a nationally recognised university for sociology and policy.  The University of Aberdeen is ranked 3rd in Scotland for Sociology (Complete University Guide 2025) and 14th in the UK for Sociology and Social Policy (Guardian University Guide 2024)
  • The University of Aberdeen is ranked 2nd in Scotland for Overall Student Satisfaction in Sociology (National Student Survey 2023)

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 postgraduate 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.

Career Opportunities

  • Civil Servant
  • Government Officer
  • International Non-Governmental Officer
  • Policy Advisor
  • Policy Officer
  • Programme Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Public Advocacy

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.

Globally Renowned Sociology Research

The Sociology department at Aberdeen is internationally renowned for its research.

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. However, these may be subject to change - see our Student Terms and Conditions page.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

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