The Master of Arts in Social and Development Studies (MASDS) is a graduate degree program utilizing approaches from the various social science disciplines to analyze the issues and problems of development. The assumption that development is a complex process that has ecological, cultural, moral, and other social dimensions, in addition to the economic, has found strong affirmation from the varied experiences of peoples in different countries around the world. The program of study follows the lead of scholars of development studies who harness social science theory together with empirical and policy analysis to provide a better understanding of the process of development.


  1. In Northern Luzon, there is a limited number of graduate programs in social sciences. 
  1. Regional offices, agencies, schools and communities need graduates of social sciences degrees to implement social and development programs, provide consultancy, and train personnel. 
  1. Technical thought must be guided by an understanding of the cultural and social context of development. The program stresses the paramount significance of the systematic study of sociocultural structures as opposed to the purely technical interpretation of development. 
  1. The response to the problems of particular communities in Northern Luzon requires a systematic social science approach to development issues rather than the approach of a narrow disciplinal specialization.


1. The student should possess an undergraduate degree with at least 12 units of social science courses. If necessary, the program may require the student to enroll in additional undergraduate social science subjects. The undergraduate cumulative average grade must be at least 2.5 or 80%.

2. The student should possess integrity of intellect. This is determined through:

          a) An examination of undergraduate credentials and a two to three page essay describing the applicant's academic background, current employment (if any), and reasons for applying to the program;

          b) A recommendation of three (3) former professors and/or supervisors;

          c) An interview with the applicant by the MASDS Commitee. (Applicants must pass the interview. Qualified applicants will be notified of the date of interview one week after the deadline for submission of all application requirements); and

          d) A diagnostic essay on a topic provided by the MASDS Committee, if necessary.

3. Proof of English proficiency is required for admission to graduate studies of students whose native language is not English, except those who have graduated from institutions where the medium of instruction is English. A score of at least 500 in the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or in exceptional cases, an equivalent certification from a duly authorized unit of the University should be presented.

4. No undergraduate units may be credited to graduated work. When remedials are recommended by the MASDS Committee, the applicant should pass them with at least a grade of 2.75. Remedial courses may be taken simultaneously with the first semester courses. Applicants who are taking remedial courses are not considered to be officially admitted to the program until after their performance for the first semester has been assessed.

5. A copy of the certificate of admission should be filed with the MASDS Committee.

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