Master of Arts in Social Policy
The Maldives National University
The Master of Arts in Social Policy (MASP) is designed to prepare professionals for policy leadership in national and local governments, non-government organizations, civil society organizations, research institutions and other similar settings, with a focus on the rights of the child.
The objective of the course is to provide current and future public leaders with the conceptual framework and practical skills necessary to succeed in designing and implementing effective social policy. It aims to strengthen the capacity of professionals engaged in policy work to shape and influence evidence-based policy making in the areas of health care, human services, justice, inequality and education.
The goal of the course is to develop a critical mass of technical people in government, civil society and non-government organizations that understand the issues, concepts, theoretical and operational processes involved in evidence-based policy design and implementation. A specific focus will be placed on policies for children, women, elders and vulnerable populations.
The course is targeted for early and mid-career professionals engaged in policy work in a wide variety of organizational settings as well as students with other advanced degrees related to Social Work, Public Administration, Public Health, Law and Economics.
The Master of Arts in Social Policy is organized in collaboration with UNICEF Maldives Country Office and the UNICEF Regional Office for South Asia.
2. Course method
The courses will be delivered through the executive education method by faculty, lecturers, and guest speakers who have firsthand knowledge and experience on the topics covered in the program. They will combine their real-world, practical expertise with the latest theory and research to provide course participants with new ways to analyze and find solutions to the policy challenges they face. The executive education method will also allow the course participants to actively engage in the course, share their own knowledge and experiences, and strengthen their network with other course participants. To facilitate the attendance of mid-career professionals and executives, some courses will be delivered through a combination of online and face-to-face lectures.
3. Course Content
Phase 1: Concepts, Principles and Analysis of Social Policy
The first phase will clarify the concepts and theories of social policy, introduce the institutional framework in the Maldives, and develop students’ analytical skills.
Phase 2: Practice, Management and Leadership of Social Policy
In collaboration with renowned scholar and practitioners involved in the real process of policy making, the second phase will enhance students’ capacity in the areas of analysis, management and leadership. Using the method of executive education based on real case scenarios and taught by active policy makers, the second phase will focus on the design, implementation and assessment of social policy in the Maldives.
Phase 3: Policy Analysis Exercise
The Policy Analysis Exercise (PAE) is the capstone project of the Master of Arts in Social Policy (MASP) curriculum. The purpose of the PAE is to allow students to apply the skills and knowledge they learned throughout the MASP curriculum to real case scenarios. At the beginning of the second year, students will identify a social policy issue presented by a public or non-profit organization as well as a faculty who will give supervision throughout the project. During the second year, students will work closely with the selected organization to examine the issue, analyse relevant data, identify and evaluate policy options, and finally make policy recommendations.
Note: If a student has completed any of the subjects taught in this course in a recognized institution elsewhere, then he/she can apply for advanced standing in those subjects.
4. Admission Requirements
Academic requirement: Applicants must hold a Bachelor’s degree in Economics, Business Administration, Law, Social Work, Public Administration, Public Health or Education.
Experience requirement: The applicant must have at least five years of working experience in a governmental, private, or international institution.
English language requirement: The applicant must have a certificate in English proficiency issued by an accredited English teaching institution or a satisfactory performance in a written test of English.