Jump to accessibility statement Skip to content
ReciteMe accessibility toolbar button

Case Study

Claire Clifford

Sunderland, UK

BSc (Hons) Sociology


During her placement at ReportOut, Claire Clifford conducted two Nation-State reports of her two chosen countries, researching social attitudes, history, religion, policy and legislation, key organisations, and legal protection for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) people associated with each country. The placement did not only sharpen Claire's research skills but also massively prepared her for her dissertation.

My chosen placement organisation, ReportOut, is a global Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI) human rights charity. It aims to report human rights abuse of SOGI people in every nation-state using a human rights survey, working alongside mentors worldwide and mapping SOGI abuse around the world. 

During my time on placement, I conducted two Nation-State reports of my two chosen countries, researching social attitudes, history, religion, policy and legislation, key organisations, and legal protection for SOGI people associated with each country. I enjoyed every minute of researching such an interesting topic and even found it difficult to know where to draw the line when conducting my research, due to the fact there is such a vast amount of information out there.

We had many options for how our research could be carried out, including an option to conduct face to face semi-structured interviews with mentors from all around the world on SOGI people. You can't get any more real-life than that! This, in turn, allows students to really get involved with the placement and feel their work is bringing change to society.

Working alongside my mentor and gaining a greater understanding of such an under-researched topic and a minority of people were the best aspects of the placement. This massively widened my knowledge on an area of interest I had only scratched the surface of in previous modules, which as a result, enabled me to carry out further detailed research, expanding my literature on a topic I'm very interested in.

Relevant reading material for the placement is immensely interesting and keeps you hooked from day one. It's extremely sad at times, however, the more the area is researched, the more global change we can bring and this is what keeps me wanting to learn even more about the organisations involved and eventually make social change happen!

Placement enables students to have a taste of using their social research skills in the ‘real world’, using research skills and techniques learned during all years of university. Student support is first class, as always, and allows students to enjoy their placement from day one, reducing any anxieties students may feel towards placement or assignments.

I recommend a placement to not only sharpen your research skills, but to set yourself up for organising your dissertation. Not only are you researching an area of interest through placement, you're also getting a taster for your final year dissertation.

Additionally, the placement also aided my social research skills through building my self confidence and preparing me for the world of work. Together with feedback, this progression proves vital during university and my future, something that will support me massively when applying for further education and roles within equality and diversity.

It has been an emotional time, but in all honesty, I have loved every minute of it and will really miss it come graduation day. Especially the lecturers! The University has changed me as a person academically and personally, and you really do see the world from a different view after studying here. Thank you University of Sunderland!"

Please note, this course is not recruiting for 2023/24.

Published 25 July 2019

More case studies