BA in Social Science

An understanding of our social conditions for both critical analyses and transformative action.


The four-year BA Social Science major at Azim Premji University offers students a broad-based, multi-disciplinary immersion in the study of Indian society — its structures, institutions, and lived realities. 

The vision for the major is grounded in the conviction that at a time when our society appears to be increasingly fragmented and fractured, higher education in the social sciences, especially at the undergraduate level, ought to approach the social’ in an integrated fashion. 

This requires putting theoretical and methodological practices of the traditional social science disciplines like sociology, anthropology, history, political science, etc., into conversation with each other, such that they best illuminate our social condition for both critical analyses and transformative action.

Accordingly, the BA Social Science curriculum provides students with a wide-angle exposure to the fundamental theories, concepts, and methodologies in the social sciences, cutting across disciplinary boundaries. It trains them to bring this learning to bear on specific objects of social scientific enquiry, especially in the Indian context, through hands-on fieldwork experience. And, in conjunction with the other facets of the undergraduate programme, it develops in them the technical skills necessary for collating and analysing empirical data of both qualitative and quantitative kinds.

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Career path and Academic avenues

Students graduating from the programme will have a solid academic foundation in the social scientific modes of enquiry and knowledge, which they can further hone through higher studies in related disciplines.

On the other hand, they will also possess technical skills, analytical capacities, and an expansive understanding of Indian society, which would position them advantageously to explore a range of employment opportunities, especially in public services and the larger social development sector. Click here to know more.


Our degree encourages you to explore and follow your interests. We design our courses to ensure that you can specialise in a subject of your choice while learning a variety of subjects across disciplines.


You will meet all your classmates at the beginning of your degree to build all the tools you need for your three years of study. This includes foundational courses, an understanding of India, interdisciplinary studies, and a workshop in creative expressions.


We provide active academic assistance and ensure that you are able to meet the requirements of the academic programme to fulfil your aspirations.


We ensure that no student has to drop out of university because of financial trouble or social disadvantage. We provide financial assistance to deserving students.

Living on campus

We believe that learning happens both inside and outside the classroom. In living together, you can meet and encounter diverse people from different social and cultural backgrounds and experiences. Our campus has a range of activities from discussion groups to sports and clubs for our students and faculty to interact with each other and build meaningful relationships over their years of study.

Know more about the Bengaluru campus, here.

Know more about Azim Premji University at Bhopal, here.

The BA Social Science degree programme requires the completion of a set of compulsory Core courses — a total of 160 credits for graduation, spread over 8 semesters and 4 years of full-time study. 

The curriculum is designed with the following structure:

(1) Major: Social Science Courses (option to pursue research)

(2) Common Curriculum:
The Common Curriculum will introduce students to the study of the themes and areas that emphasise and build critical and analytical abilities, and sensibilities for dialogue, reflection and cooperative learning.

(3) Occupational Track:
The Occupational track of the programme requires students to opt for an Interdisciplinary Minor and is aimed to provide both conceptual understanding and skills and tools that will allow students to contribute through work and further study. The Occupational track has two components.

-Interdisciplinary Minor

(4) Flexible and Supportive Courses: All students will have a number of courses that they can opt for, enabling them to craft their own educational experience.

Visit this page to learn more about our 4‑year Undergraduate Programmes.

Course structure

Courses in the Social Science major curriculum, rather than conveying singular disciplinary perspectives, instead cohere around

  • Certain key objects of social scientific enquiry that comprise its Core; and
  • Thematic clusters under which Elective courses are offered.

In total, a student has to complete 15 courses in the major — 12 compulsory Core courses and 3 optional Elective courses.

The Common Curriculum will introduce students to the study of the themes and areas that emphasise and build critical and analytical abilities, and sensibilities for dialogue, reflection and cooperative learning. The Common Curriculum has three sub-components organised as below:

Foundations: Build capacity for critical thinking, reasoning and communication.

Understanding India: India’s history, society and possible futures

Creative Expressions: Explore music, visual art, theatre, dance, martial arts, yoga, pottery, sport, and other creative areas.

Core Courses (All courses compulsory)

  1. Seeing Like a Social Scientist
  2. Statistics for Social Science
  3. Key Concepts in Social Sciences
  4. The Caste Question
  5. Religion and the Social Sciences
  6. Contemporary Issues in Gender and Sexuality
  7. Quantitative and Qualitative Methods in Social Sciences
  8. Understanding Agrarian India
  9. Indigeneity and Belonging in Contemporary India
  10. Power and Politics in Contemporary India
  11. GIS for the Social Sciences
  12. Modernity and the Discourse of the Social Sciences

Elective Courses (Student can choose any three)

  1. Law and the State
  2. Labour and Livelihoods
  3. Landscapes and Habitats
  4. Science, Medicine, and Society

Students must be prepared for the world of work at the end of the programme should they choose to enter it. We aim to provide the required skills and competencies for this through a Minor featuring courses in an Occupational or Interdisciplinary theme. These sets of courses are aimed to provide both conceptual understanding and skills and tools that will allow students to contribute through work and further study.

Students can opt for a minor in any one of the indicative areas listed below:

  • Education
  • Media and Journalism
  • Data and Democracy
  • Sports and Fitness
  • Climate Studies
  • Arts

The selection of these indicative areas is based on the availability of courses and our evaluation of the student’s interests and academic needs. For each cohort, a final list of available courses will be announced at the end of their second semester.

Students can craft their own educational experience by selecting courses in the following ways:

  • Students will have the option to take additional courses in their Disciplinary major
  • Interdisciplinary minor that will enable them for their further higher studies or career pathways.

These courses could also be selected to enhance and broaden their

  • Language skills and Quantitative reasoning capacities/​programming skills
  • Understanding of themes outside their Major subject