Student profile
Josh Best

Joshua Best

"My tutors have always been really supportive - I’ve always felt like my contributions have been valued in lectures."


Social Research Methods MSc

Entry year


Choosing Surrey

I studied for my BA (Hons) Media Studies degree at Surrey and fell in love with the Department of Sociology and the campus. I enjoyed my time at Surrey so much that I wanted to come back to study for my MSc degree.

My course

While doing research for my undergraduate degree, I realised just how much I enjoy talking to people and learning about their lives, experiences and opinions. I feel like Sociology changes how you view the world and you realise – if we really want to make the world a better place – just how important it is to try to understand and empathise with people.

I wanted to come back to Surrey because I knew how well regarded the MSc Social Research Methods course at Surrey was and I wanted to use it to properly start my career.

I like the range of research methods that you learn about, striking a good balance between the qualitative and quantitative.

"The course has also introduced me to complexity methods, which are being pioneered by Surrey, so the thought of being one of the first people to learn about them is exciting."

Academic staff 

The academics I got to know during my undergraduate degree were one of the reasons I chose to come back! They’re approachable and they always make time for you. Some of the work they do is really inspiring, especially when your research interests overlap. That formal barrier between students and academics really does fade away when you get to postgraduate level. My tutors have always been really supportive - I’ve always felt like my contributions have been valued in lectures.

Life at Surrey

I love the campus and chilling by the lake in the summer. Lakeside Café and Starbucks are also great, and there’s a spot by the observatory where you can see across all of Guildford. Even during term time, there are a lot of quiet places to relax, if you know where to look.

Career support

While studying for my undergraduate degree, I did my placement year with DTEL and DHE at Surrey, which gave me a real advantage when I took a year out to work, before returning for to study for my MSc degree. The MSc course is very well regarded and its connections to CECAN, for example, will hopefully give me a real boost.

Looking forward

Since the start of my undergraduate degree, I think I have changed massively. I think you change because of the people you meet, and I’ve met some incredible people during my time here, who I would now consider my best friends.

Following my postgraduate course, I plan to start a career in social research, ideally in the public or charity sector.

Discover more about our sociology courses, including our MSc Social Research Methods.

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