Postgraduate study

Informatics

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding available

Informatics is the study of how natural and artificial systems store, process and communicate information.

Edinburgh has a long-standing tradition of world-class research and teaching in informatics, a discipline central to a new enlightenment in scholarship and learning, and critical to the future development of science, technology and society.

This is our most sought-after taught MSc. We offer a wide choice of courses, spanning established disciplines such as cognitive and computer science as well as emerging areas such as bioinformatics.

The programme takes full advantage of our expertise in research and teaching, including specialisms unique to Edinburgh.

You follow two taught semesters of lectures, tutorials, project work and written assignments, after which you will learn research methods before individual supervision for your project and dissertation.

Compulsory courses:

  • Informatics Research Review
  • Informatics Research Proposal
  • Introduction to Java Programming (for students who do not already meet the programming requirements for the taught masters)
  • Dissertation

You will choose a ‘specialist area’ within the programme, which will determine the choice of your optional courses:

  • Analytical and Scientific Databases
  • Bioinformatics Systems and Synthetic Biology
  • Cognitive Science, Computer Systems, Software Engineering and High Performance Computing
  • Intelligent Robotics
  • Agents, Knowledge and Data
  • Machine Learning
  • Natural Language Understanding
  • Neural Computation and Neuroinformatics
  • Programming Languages
  • Theoretical Computer Science

There are 100 optional courses available to MSc Informatics students, including courses within specialist areas unique to the programme.

Our graduates are well regarded by potential employers worldwide. Many go on to work in the technology industry as software engineers, IT consultants, programmers and developers, and may work with the software and hardware giants that have become household names. Others go on to further study and research.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in informatics, artificial intelligence, cognitive science, computer science, electrical engineering, linguistics, mathematics, philosophy, physics or psychology, plus experience in computer programming.

You must have a sufficient mathematical and informatics background for your chosen area of study.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

All applicants must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of their English language ability:

  • an undergraduate or masters degree, that was taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country as defined by UK Visas and Immigration

  • IELTS Academic: total 6.5 with at least 6.0 in each component
  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 with at least 20 in each section
  • PTE(A): total 61 with at least 56 in each of the Communicative Skills scores
  • CAE and CPE: total 176 with at least 169 in each paper
  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with distinctions in all four components

Degrees taught and assessed in English must be no more than two and a half years old at the beginning of your degree programme. Language tests must be no more than two years old at the beginning of your degree programme.

Find out more about our language requirements:

For detailed information on fee status, policies and payment see:

Applicants receiving an offer of admission, either unconditional or conditional, will be asked to pay a tuition fee deposit of £1,500 to secure their place on the programme.

This has to be paid within 28 days for offers made before 30th June and 14 days for those offers made from 1st July onwards.

  • School of Informatics Teaching Organisation
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 5194
  • Email: ito@inf.ed.ac.uk
  • School of Informatics Teaching Organisation
  • 5 Forrest Hill
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH1 2QL

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible. We may consider late applications if we have places available, but you should contact the relevant Admissions Office for advice first.

You must submit a reference with your application.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of Informatics Teaching Organisation
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 5194
  • Email: ito@inf.ed.ac.uk
  • School of Informatics Teaching Organisation
  • 5 Forrest Hill
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH1 2QL