Postgraduate study

Scottish Culture and Heritage (Online Learning) Under review

Awards: Under review

Online learning

Funding opportunities

This distance learning programme, offered in partnership with Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, a Skye-based college of the University of the Highlands and Islands, presents a unique and innovative opportunity to engage with the culture of Scotland through its wealth of popular and creative arts, and to contribute to international debates concerning the role of tradition and heritage in the 21st century.

You will engage with a newly available range of digitised archival resources, including Tobar an Dualchais – Kist o Riches, a major online collection of audio recordings relating to all aspects of Scotland’s oral heritage. You will study the principles of folklore and ethnology and take courses that open your eyes and ears to song, storytelling, custom, tradition and heritage.

All of your learning and engagement with tutors and fellow students will take place in a high quality virtual learning environment (VLE), designed and led by top scholars from both institutions.

You will become part of a virtual community of students, accessing a full range of teaching resources and participative sessions through the VLE.

Teaching and learning takes the form of video presentations, audio podcasts, guided reading and research, discussion board threads and participation in a virtual classroom setting in real time.

Studying online at Edinburgh

Find out more about the benefits and practicalities of studying for an online degree:

This programme has been designed to deal with both the theory and practice of the cultural traditions and heritage of Scotland, but is set in an international comparative context.

You will take a compulsory course in Resources and Research Methods, as well as two shorter thematic courses in semester 1 and two more in semester 2:

  • Resources and Research Methods (taken over two semesters)
  • Tobar an Dualchais / Kist o Riches: Analytical Case Study
  • The Traditional Arts in Scotland: History and Context
  • Tradition and Modernity
  • Understanding Heritage

Successful completion of this programme will prepare you for a variety of career opportunities including in broadcasting and other media, heritage and conservation organisations, publishing, arts development, tourism, local or national government, research, management or education.

Having an enhanced knowledge of Scottish culture is relevant to employers both in a national context and overseas, given Scotland’s links to many countries around the world. The ability to undertake original research through cultural fieldwork as well as professional media editing, emphasised in several of the courses on this programme, is a key skill within many modern professions.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent.

If you intend to undertake aspects of the programme in Scottish Gaelic, you must be able to prove your proficiency in the language.

We may also consider your application if you have other qualifications or experience; please contact us to check before you apply.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS: total 7.0 (at least 6.5 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 100 (at least 23 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 67 (at least 61 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 176 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.*

(*Revised 8/11/2018 to provide more accurate information on English language qualifications expiry dates. Revised 22/03/2019 to provide more accurate/comprehensive information.)

Find out more about our language requirements:

Read our general information on tuition fees and studying costs:

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Programme Director, Professor Gary West
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 4167
  • Contact:
  • Graduate School
  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • Room 1.13, 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH

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

Further information

  • Programme Director, Professor Gary West
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 650 4167
  • Contact:
  • Graduate School
  • School of Literatures, Languages & Cultures
  • Room 1.13, 50 George Square
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9LH