Our University of Stirling Management School’s Marketing Division ranks among the top in the country. We're 2nd in Scotland and top 10 in the UK (Complete University Guide 2019).

Marketing is about creating, communicating and delivering exchanges of value between an organisation and its customers that satisfy the customer, the organisation and society at large. Our Masters in Marketing course gives you the opportunity to gain a theoretical and practical understanding of marketing, and its role within organisations.

You’ll learn about the practice and theory of modern marketing, as well as current business trends in the areas of brand identity creation, multi-channel marketing and sport marketing.

Our MSc Marketing course was one of the first in the country to be accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). Our CIM accreditation means that when you successfully complete the course, it's easier to gain a Professional Diploma in Marketing. Two of the Diploma modules will be waived, meaning you'll only need to complete the remaining two modules (versus completing all four), in order to gain a Professional Diploma in Marketing. This will give you a competitive edge when embarking on your career.

Our research-led teaching approach is a key strength of this course. In addition to consistently engaging in academic literature through weekly readings and module assessments, the course gives you a number of opportunities to apply concepts, theories and frameworks to practical aspects. You’re offered the opportunity to collaborate with organisations across a wide variety of organisations including non-profits, third-sector and small-medium enterprises (SMEs).

Degree pathways

This course is aimed primarily at students wishing to convert from other disciplines or those who wish to gain a qualification that will validate their work experiences. Additionally, you can gain recognition of your interest in a specific area of Marketing through our named pathways. You can work towards our core Masters degree, the MSc Marketing, or opt to specialise in one of the following pathways of study by the end of Semester 2:

MSc Marketing with Brand Management

This pathway offers you the opportunity to focus more on the specifics of developing and using brands.

MSc Marketing with Retail

You’ll have the opportunity to acquire and extend your knowledge in the area of retailing. The retail sector is a major employer throughout the world and one which requires a sound skill set in order to be able to manage profitable interactions with suppliers and consumers.

Both of our pathways are modular. If you take either pathway you'll take the same three core topics of study in Semester 1, to provide you with a depth of relevant and up-to-date marketing knowledge.

Then you can choose to specialise in either Brand Management or Retail, by taking related specialist modules. To complete your MSc, you're given the opportunity to showcase your learning through either an individual dissertation or a group research project in the area of branding or retail.

The University of Stirling Management School

At the University of Stirling Management School, the principle of responsible business, policy and practice is central to everything we do. This vision helps us to equip our students effectively with the skills to act as global citizens, capable of addressing the needs of society.

As a member of the Chartered Association for Business Schools, we have strong links with industry and were recently awarded the Small Business Charter for engagement with local and regional enterprise.

We’re in an elite group of business schools globally – and one of only 14 in the UK – to hold accreditation from the Association of MBAs (AMBA) for both our MBA and MSc Business and Management (MBM) courses.

Top reasons to study with us

#1 We’re ranked 2nd in Scotland and top 10 in the UK for Marketing (The Complete University Guide 2019)

#2 You’ll have an opportunity to work on a real-life consultancy-style project within a business

#3 Our Flying Start Leadership Programme helps you develop self-awareness about your strengths and acquire new skills in a supportive environment

Course objectives

The MSc Marketing provides you with an understanding of the concepts and systems underlying marketing practice and allows you to develop your skills of diagnosis and implementation in marketing management and research processes. At the end of the course you’ll be able to:

  • nurture and consolidate a customer-focused management approach in a variety of different market settings, organisation types and policy situations
  • design, plan, implement and evaluate research-based marketing strategies
  • gain exposure to ethical issues that arise from marketing activities and to understand the impact marketing has on society in general
  • conduct research into contemporary marketing practice

Industry connections

The University of Stirling Management School has excellent links with local and national organisations. Guest speakers from across the private, public and third sectors regularly engage with our MSc Marketing students, providing a practical perspective on contemporary marketing topics through a series of guest lectures and workshops. Speakers have included:

  • Garry Lace - Manchester University
  • Martin Raymond - Cloudline PR Agency
  • Ken Thompson – Breakthrough Business Research.

Students have recently worked on projects with representatives from EASA Training Ltd, Indigo Lighthouse, RD Support, Snowsports Scotland, Scottish Biomedical, Stirling Art and Waterski Scotland.

Our students have also benefitted from recent site visits to external organisations such as ASDA, Blue Sky Experience (specialist team building and team development company) and New Lanark Visitor Centre.

Preparing Business Leaders of the Future

Postgraduate education at the University of Stirling Management School goes beyond textbooks and lecture rooms, we also focus on your personal and professional development.

Our unique Flying Start Leadership programme equips you with the awareness, knowledge and techniques essential for building a successful career. These range from practical skills, like effective public speaking, to developing ways to work under pressure in difficult situations such as conflict management. Find out more about Flying Start.

The Marketing Management Applications core module in the spring semester aims to provide you with an equivalent experience to an industry placement. It gives you the opportunity to gain knowledge and increase your confidence working on a ‘live’ marketing topic as you operate within the management boundaries and budget of an external client organisation.

The combination of academic frameworks and theories within the constraints of what can feasibly be done by the organisation within its own resources will prepare you for similar tasks that will be required of you in your future career.

Developing your brand

You’ll explore your personal brand and the directions in which you want to develop. Beginning with the creation of an Insights® Discovery Personal Profile, the aim is to encourage independent, creative thinkers who know how to communicate their views and values to others, including potential employers.

Working with our team of consultants, you’ll receive your own Insights® Discovery Personal Profile which offers an engaging, reinforcing and transformational insight into your personality and how you compare to others. Based on the model of personality developed by Carl Jung, the Insights® Discovery profile offers you a framework for self-understanding and personal development. The profile can help you to learn about your approach to:

  • decision-making
  • your key strengths and weaknesses in working relationships
  • your value to the team
  • your communication style
  • possible blind spots

Preparation for International students coming to study in the UK

Prepare for Success is an interactive web learning tool for international students who are coming to the UK to study. Take a look at the Prepare for Success website to get more information.

Professional accreditations

Our Master's course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the world’s leading professional marketing body, and counts towards the CIM Professional Diploma in Marketing. Upon successful completion, you’ll only need to complete two modules with CIM to gain the Diploma.

Course details

This is a one-year full-time course consisting of two semesters followed by a dissertation or a consultancy project over the summer months.

The course is modular. There’s three core topics of study in Semester 1 which will provide you with a depth of relevant and up-to-date knowledge. In the Semester 2 you’ll gain an appreciation of contemporary issues in marketing through your choice of four elective modules. The pool of elective subjects is refreshed on a regular basis. Over the summer, you’ll then complete the MSc by showcasing your learning through a research or business consultancy project in the area of marketing.Teaching

The taught modules of the MSc course are delivered using a variety of methods such as lectures, tutorials, case studies, role playing, computer simulations, fieldwork exercises, site visits, guest speakers and company projects. There’s a good balance between theory and practice.

You’ll have access to the Markstrat simulation platform, a web-based approach to developing marketing strategy and planning practice in a competitive environment. By means of various performance standards and protocols, you’ll get to test and improve your skills in market analytics, decision-making, budgeting, planning and performance assessment.

Research Methods Poster Session

All students on our MSc Marketing course present their evolving ideas for their individual dissertations or group projects in visual form as a ‘scientific’ poster with an accompanying presentation. You must defend the ideas presented in your poster to both staff and to the other MSc students. This has proved to be a very successful event, particularly for building your confidence in your own ideas.

Consultancy style project

You’ll have the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience by working on consultancy style projects with external clients. The Marketing Management Applications core module in Semester 2, aims to provide you with an equivalent experience to an industry placement. It gives you the opportunity to gain knowledge and increase your confidence working on a ‘live’ marketing topic as you operate within the management boundaries and budget of an external client organisation.

Each group has a client organisation that provides a real problem that matters to them and asks the group to explore that topic and to come back with various suggestions or solutions. The range of topics typically come from a mixture of private, public and Third Sector organisations, such as charities and social enterprises. The projects can cover anything from identifying potential customers through to the opportunities for international expansion. It will be up to you, working with an academic supervisor, to set up the study, to investigate the issues that arise and to present your findings back to the client.

The combination of academic frameworks and theories within the constraints of what can feasibly be done by the organisation within its own resources, will prepare you for similar tasks that will be required of you in your future career. In some cases, a student conducting a project has been employed subsequently by the organisation with which they partnered during the module.

Be a successful team member

There’s a significant amount of required group and teamwork on the MSc. You’ll be encouraged to become more effective communicators and supportive team members in a professional business environment. To help you, you receive feedback from other group members through formal peer assessment procedures and you’ll write reflective statements that consider why and how you made certain decisions and how they relate to the concepts you have been learning.


Much of the assessment is continuous and may include research reports, essays, briefings, management reports, case analyses, debates, literature reviews, marketing communication plans, poster sessions and presentations. Assessed work is often conducted in groups, as developing teamwork and communication skills are seen as important.

In your final semester, you have the choice of doing a dissertation or a consultancy style project.

Course director

Dr Keri Davies

+44 (0)1786 467381


Fees - 2018/2019

  • Home/EU: £7,900
  • Overseas: £15,250
Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated November 14, 2018
This course is Campus based
Start Date
12 - 24 months
7,900 GBP
Home/EU: £7,900 - Overseas: £15,250
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