MSc in the Clinical Management of Pain

Is online learning for you?

Watch a video describing online learning at the University of Edinburgh.

Online learning is a way of studying for an internationally-recognised University of Edinburgh postgraduate qualification without needing to visit the campus. Online Learning at the University of Edinburgh enables you to obtain a high quality degree, identical to our on-campus qualifications, delivered flexibly and fully online. This means wherever you are in the world, you can achieve a University of Edinburgh degree without ever needing to come on campus.


In order to study online, you will need the commitment to independent study and regular and reliable access to a computer and the internet.  Successful online learners have a few characteristics in common.  Compare yourself to the following list to determine whether or not online learning is a good fit for your personality and habits.


    1. Successful online learners do just as well, if not better, without people looking over their shoulders. Online learners are able to motivate themselves to keep their own learning on track and on-task. Students on the pain management programme will need to commit at least 15 hours per week to their studies and this means that to be successful, students need to be self-motivated and set their own goals.


    2. Successful online learners never (or at least rarely) procrastinate. You’ll rarely find them putting off assignments or waiting until the last moment to write their essays. These students enjoy the freedom of working at their own pace and appreciate the ability to complete their work in their own time, whilst keeping to strict assignment deadlines. 


    3. Successful online learners have strong reading comprehension and writing skills.  While many people learn by listening to lectures and taking notes, many online learners are expected to master material through reading alone. Whilst our pain programmes offer video recordings, audio clips and face-to-face sessions, large amounts of information is provided, produced and disseminated as written text.  Assignments for many online learning students are based on the written word, so strong writing skills are essential.


    4. Successful online learners can resist constant distractions. Whether it’s the phone ringing, the dog barking, or the allure of the television, everyone faces distractions. Successful online learners know how to filter out the constant disturbances that threaten their progress. They feel comfortable turning down an invitation to a party or letting the answering machine pick up the phone when they know there is work to be done.


    5. Successful online learners are comfortable about missing some of the social elements of traditional on-campus programmes, such as meeting peers after class or perhaps walking through the University campus. However, the independence is worth it.  In place of classroom discussion, students explore, debate and discuss with their peers through email, message boards or video conferencing and discuss what they are learning with family, friends and co-workers.  But, if you would like a tour of Edinburgh, we can arrange a virtual one for you The City of Edinburgh

If you are unsure whether you should study online or not, please visit the following website for more information:


Online learning