MRS Advanced Certificate course

The MRS Advanced Certificate in Market and Social Research Practice is a great choice if you’ve got up to three years of experience in social or market research. If you’re just starting a career in research, or already work in a junior role, it’ll help you grow your career whether you work client-side or for an agency. The MRS Advanced Certificate is so well-regarded that leading agencies like Ipsos MORI, GfK and TNS help their staff gain it.

Our undergrad-level course will give you a solid grounding in research methods, along with practical skills you can put to use right away.

MRS Advanced Certificate course Research Academy

Essential facts

Level: Early-career (up to 3 years experience)
Length: Just over five months, part-time
Format: Online with live group tutorials
Next start date: 27 August 2024; January 2025
Tutorials: Wednesdays 1100-1200 or 1800-1900
Cost: £1,775 ex VAT for UK students

Course features

Eight live tutorials plus a live mock exam
Small tutorial groups capped at 20 students
One-to-one support from your personal tutor
Full access to our interactive digital resources
Friendly and supportive atmosphere
Accredited by the Market Research Society (MRS)

Course benefits

Put our practical tips to work right away
Feel more confident and empowered at work
Execute projects to the highest standards
Write client briefs and proposals with confidence
Grow your company’s profits and reputation
Demonstrate a focus on quality research

What you’ll learn

How to dissect the business case
How to write briefs and proposals
Research design & sampling
Qualitative data collection & analysis
Quantitative data collection & analysis
How to report findings & insights

Course format

Our MRS Advanced Certificate course is delivered online using Google Classroom. You can participate from any location, at any time. All you need is a computer, laptop, or tablet with an internet connection. You’ll find lots of resources on Classroom! Once you’re logged in, you can watch our popular bite-sized video lessons, check deadlines, upload work, and chat with other students.

All you need to buy is the textbook, which is McGivern’s The Practice of Market
Research: From Data to Insight
, 5th edition. We supply other materials.

The course runs for 18 weeks, and you’ll attend live online group tutorials in eight of them, plus a live mock exam. Tutorials take place on Wednesdays, with study weeks in between. You can choose from two convenient tutorial times: 1100-1200 or 1800-1900 (BST/GMT). Recordings are available in case you miss a class.

We offer the MRS Advanced Certificate twice a year. You can study from August to January (with assessment in January) or January to June (assessment in June).


The MRS Advanced Certificate is assessed via a coursework paper and an online exam. We want you to do well, so we’ll give you lots of support with both.

You’ll have a named personal tutor who will support you throughout the course. Our tutors are experienced, and they’re nice too!

You’ll start on your coursework right away, which means you write it in tandem with what you’re learning in class. Your personal tutor will give you two rounds of written feedback, each followed by a one-to-one call. It’s easy to upload your coursework drafts and your final paper, and there’s no need to print anything out.

To prepare you for the exam, we offer a live mock exam followed by a debrief tutorial, as well as a large selection of self-serve mock exam tasks. All of them come with answer guides and many come with sample answers. You’ll also get feedback on two mock exam questions associated with important exam topics.

Eligibility criteria and language requirements

To take the MRS Advanced Certificate, you need to meet only one of these criteria:

  • More than three months of market or social research experience, ideally with involvement in all aspects of research projects and/or some training in research methods
  • MRS Certificate in Market & Social Research or other training in research methods at college or university
  • Satisfactory nomination by your employer
  • Satisfactory nomination by your course tutor, if you aim to take the course alongside an undergraduate degree
  • Demonstrable academic achievement at A Level or higher
  • Interview with the Research Academy admissions team

To take any of our courses, you’ll need to meet only one of the following language criteria:

  • You’re a native English speaker
  • You can prove that you’ve worked or studied in an English-language environment for 3+ years (e.g. your CV)
  • Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency with an overall score of 175 and no less than 162 in each component (or equivalent)
  • IELTS 6.0 or above
  • TOEIC 880 or above

To take any of our courses, you’ll need all of these:

  • PC or laptop*
  • Headset with mic and speakers
  • Webcam
  • Chrome browser (recommended)
  • Good internet connection e.g. download speeds of 5 Mbps, upload speeds of 1 Mbps

*You can access the course using a mobile phone or tablet, but we think you’ll want the big screen size.

Costs and payment options

UK-based students

Tuition fee£1,535.00
MRS registration fee£240.00
Total ex VAT£1,775.00
The above does not include the cost of the recommended course textbook. 20% VAT applies to all invoices.

Overseas students

Tuition fee£1,535.00
MRS registration fee£288.00
Total ex VAT£1,823.00
The above does not include the cost of the recommended course textbook. VAT may apply.

Payment options

Payment can be made by BACS/electronic transfer. Self-funding students can pay in three equal direct debit instalments. This incurs a £16 processing fee.

Additional charges will apply in certain circumstances, e.g. deferral.

Financial assistance is available – learn more.

What people say about our MRS Advanced Certificate course

Awards programme

If you do well, you may win the MRS Advanced Certificate in Market and Social Research Practice Award. The MRS gives this to the best Advanced Certificate candidate in each assessment round.

Two of our graduates have won this award, so you’re definitely in with a chance!

MRS Advanced Certificate course Research Academy
2020 award winner Rhys Jones
MRS Advanced Certificate course Research Academy
2021 award winner Melody Forth
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