Sustainable Rural Development MSc

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What is special about this course?

If you want to progress into a managerial role in rural development, this postgraduate course in Sustainable Rural Development is for you. 

You will study social, environmental, economic and professional development, and community engagement issues in the context of managing rural development.

The MSc Sustainable Rural Development can be studied online from anywhere in the world.

Special features

  • Gain practical experience in understanding current rural development issues and working with communities
  • Develop key research and policy skills
  • Study individual modules for personal or professional development, or work towards the PgCert, PgDip or full masters degree
  • Study online, full time or part time when and where it suits you, within the UK and internationally

Entry requirements

  • Honours degree or ordinary degree in a relevant subject
  • Postgraduate diploma or professional qualification in a relevant subject
  • Other qualifications will be considered if accompanied by a minimum of three years' relevant professional experience
  • A bridging module is available to people with substantial professional experience, but no undergraduate degree

 

*Funding support notice*

A limited number of funded places are available for full-time, Scottish or EU fee status students.

Postgraduate Loans (SAAS) (Scottish domiciled and EU students)

Loans for tuition fees are available from SAAS for eligible Scotland domiciled and EU students, and loans for living costs for eligible Scottish students.

(see fees/funding tab for more information)

Access routes

PgCert

Core modules are:

  • Local economic development
  • Developing communities
  • Communities and nature

PgDip

Option modules, from which you must choose three, include:

  • Biodiversity management
  • Developing potential through placement
  • Environmental and Social issues in mountain areas
  • Policy analysis
  • Research methods and techniques (strongly recommended if you intend to continue to MSc)
  • Sustainable tourism
  • Sustainable land use and renewable energy in rural Scotland
  • Sustainable development
  • An elective may also be taken from any of the university's masters programmes, e.g. other research skills, modules such as qualitative inquiry or quantitative research and data management

MSc

To achieve the award of MSc Sustainable Rural Development you must complete a research dissertation

How will I study my course?

  • You will study through supported online learning using the university's virtual learning environment (VLE)
  • Full time
  • Part time (structured)
  • Part time (unstructured)
  • A fully online induction web resource is available to all new students and you are encouraged to refer to this during your first term in particular. An optional two-day induction is also available each September in Inverness, Scotland.

How long will my course last?


  • Full time: 2 years @ 40 hours per week
  • Part time (structured): 2-3 years @ 12 hours per week per module
  • Part time (unstructured): 6 years (maximum) @ 6 hours per week per module

The number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in studying the learning resources provided and your own time spent on individual study and research.


Where can I study my course?

Start date

  • September
  • January

Fees

The following fees apply to this taught postgraduate course:

2018-19   
  Scottish
online
Rest of UK
(inc EU)
online
International
online
Per module (20 credits) £560 £650 £900
Postgraduate certificate (3 modules, 60 credits) £1,680 £1,950 £2,700
Postgraduate diploma (6 modules, 120 credits) £3,360 £3,900 £5,400
Masters degree (6 modules + dissertation) £5,000 £5,850 £8,120

 

2017-18   
  Scottish
online
Rest of UK
(inc EU)
online
International
online
Per module (20 credits) £520 £650 £852
Postgraduate certificate (3 modules, 60 credits) £1,560 £1,950 £2,556
Postgraduate diploma (6 modules, 120 credits) £3,120 £3,900 £5,112
Masters degree (6 modules + dissertation) £4,680 £5,850 £7,660

Fees are payable in advance each academic year unless otherwise agreed.

Enquiries from employers for multiple student registrations are welcome and special fee arrangements may apply.

Funding

The university is pleased to offer a limited numbers of places with full tuition fee support for Scottish/EU students, studying full time, on this course starting in September 2018 to help talented students join this key growth sector for the Scottish economy. Fees will be funded by the European Social Fund and Scottish Funding Council as part of Developing Scotland’s Workforce in the Scotland 2014-2020 European Structural and Investment Fund Programmes.

To be eligible for this funding students must meet the criteria for Scottish or EU fee status and be resident in the Highlands and Islands (including Moray) or Perth and Kinross for the duration of their studies. In accordance with funding regulations, tuition fee support will only be available to students who meet the funding eligibility criteria and are self-funding i.e. who are not in receipt of funding for tuition fees from other sources, including employers. Funded places will be allocated and successful applicants notified from May onwards, available places will continue to be allocated throughout the recruitment cycle. There is no separate application process, applicants holding an offer will be considered against the eligibility rules.

EU, Scottish Gov and SFC funding logos

Applications are welcome from all suitably qualified applicants. Students who do not meet the eligibility for the tuition fee support, or are not successful in being allocated one of the limited places, will be responsible for paying their own fees. However there are other potential sources of funding support available.

From 2017, eligible Scotland domiciled students studying full time can access loans up to 10,000 from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS). This comprises a tuition fee loan up to £5,500 and a non-income assessed living cost loan of £4,500. EU students studying full time can apply for a tuition fee loan up to £5500.

Part-time students undertaking any taught postgraduate course over two years up to Masters level who meet the residency eligibility can apply for a for a tuition fee loan up to £2,750 per year.

Full details can be found on the SAAS website. Applications for loans open in April.

Students from the rest of the UK who meet the eligibility requirements may be able to apply for a loan from the Student Loan Company

You may also be able to apply for a government Professional and Career Development Loan

What can I do on completion of my course?

On successful completion of the course, you will be equipped to take up management positions, both at home and abroad, in:

  • Public sector
  • Voluntary organisations
  • Non-governmental development agencies
  • Conservation bodies
  • Research opportunities

Is there more information available online?

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What our students, graduates and staff say

“I looked at several courses before deciding to undertake the MSc with the university. The course content has greatly increased my knowledge of sustainable economic development in rural areas. I was partly sponsored by my employer, HIE, and this allowed me to study and continue working at the same time. Gaining the MSc was a huge personal achievement and the structure of the course made it possible. It was hard work but a lot of fun!”

Rona Campbell, MSc Sustainable Rural Development graduate, Inverness

“For the last 25 years I have been involved with the development of rural communities from the agency and community perspective. Maintaining my involvement with the rural sector means I bring significant real-life experience and knowledge to the course.”

Dr Michael Smith SFHEA, FRGS, MSc Sustainable Rural Development course leader

“It is incredible to think that someone living in a rural community can access a world class Masters programme in another country, from their own home. I learned a huge amount about the design and implementation of rural development. One of the most rewarding aspects of the programme was the opportunity to discuss and debate issues relating to rural development with students from all over the world and to learn from the perspectives they brought of rural development in their countries.”

Seamus Doran, MSc Sustainable Rural Development graduate, County Wexford, Ireland

Apply for Sustainable Rural Development MSc

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI). UHI operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.

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