Postgraduate study

Advanced Nursing (Online Learning) MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Part-time

Online learning

Our innovative part-time programme offers advanced study for nurses working within an international and UK health care context. We offer the flexibility for you to choose either a broad programme of study by drawing on international expertise across the breadth of the university, or to focus on a more specialised area of nursing care.

We recognise that mental health and trauma-informed care is an under-developed area in advanced practice for Adult nurses and so we are delighted to offer you the opportunity to choose option courses in these areas, as well as our core courses in nursing and global health policy, political leadership and research. You can choose a range of option courses within Nursing Studies including leadership, public health, policy, person-centred care and clinical decision making. Health and social care research underpin the whole programme.

The programme is suitable for nurses who are registered to practise in their own country and want to critically examine the ways that evidence-based research, theory and knowledge can advance nursing in the global context. The degree also provides an excellent foundation for postgraduate research e.g. a doctoral degree, or to advance their professional career.

All of the teaching on the MSc is delivered entirely online, allowing for flexible and responsive approaches to learning, assessment and support of our students and to reach a wide range of graduates and professionals from all over the world.

The online teaching methods include:

  • video lectures
  • online tutorials
  • discussion boards
  • online conferences
  • films and videos
  • independent study and research

The University's full range of online learning resources will be available to students; for example, web conferencing software, e-books and online academic journals.

Please note that students enrolled on this programme would not be eligible to apply for a Tier 4 visa.

This programme offers a flexible online postgraduate degree designed for graduate nurses who are interested in studying at an advanced level.

The programme is designed to be completed part-time. The minimum period the programme can be completed is two years, with a maximum completion time of three years.

Students must take two core courses (40 credits) and then can choose from a wide range of option courses offered in semesters 1 and 2 (80 credits). Supervised Reading is also offered in the summer semester (20 credits). In addition, students must complete a dissertation following completion of their taught courses (60 credits). There is a choice of one of two different dissertations – research proposal or e-portfolio.

For students undertaking the 2 year programme, they will usually take one or two 20 credit courses each semester, so that a minimum of 60 credits are completed in year one and the remainder in year 2. Their dissertation will be completed towards the end of their second year.

For students undertaking the 3 year programme, they will usually take one or two 20 credit courses each semester, so that a minimum of 40 credits are completed in year one and the reminder in year 2 and/or year 3. Their dissertation will be completed in year 3.

The compulsory courses form the core part of the MSc are:

  • Nursing and Global Health Policy: developing your political leadership
  • Research Methods in Health

Optional courses can be chosen from those on offer within the School of Health in Social Science or across the wider university. These vary across years depending on the specific courses on offer, but some of the current nursing online optional courses include:

  • Leadership – exploring your potential
  • Global Public Health: a critical approach to health improvement
  • Person Centred Care in Practice: relationships and emotion
  • Supervised Reading

We are also delighted to offer a range of option courses with our colleagues in Clinical Psychology and Counselling and Psychological Therapies. This enables you to learn from our team of international experts to inform advanced nursing practice in relation to mental health and trauma-focused health care.

These option courses include:

  • Online Counselling Practice and Process
  • Developmental Wellbeing
  • Social Inequality and Child and Adolescent Mental Health
  • Applied Developmental Psychology
  • Trauma and Resilience in a Developmental Context

For the latest information available, please see the DRPS.

  • develop advanced specialist knowledge and skills to be able to interrogate nursing, health and social care research, scholarship and practice within the context of a globalising world
  • develop knowledge and understanding of nursing leadership policy and research-informed leadership practice
  • enhance skills to be a professional and critically reflective practitioner able to provide evidence-based practice in both a local and international context
  • develop advanced research skills for working in an evolving landscape of nursing, health and social care

The programme has been designed to enhance the career development of graduate nurses: the employment prospects for our postgraduate nurses are excellent and opportunities are wide-ranging.

The majority of students who complete a postgraduate taught degree at the University of Edinburgh go on to practise in their own country as senior nurses, choosing to work in a range of different settings, including education, advanced clinical practice or clinical research.

The postgraduate degree equips students for leadership role or for further study, towards a Doctorate Programme to extend subject specialisms and/or research competency.

In addition, the integration of the health and social care field also offers a range of opportunities for an international career. Several postgraduate students go on to develop their career in global public health, working in health education, patient advocacy, health promotion in the UK and around the world. Some of our postgraduate students have gone on to work for the World Health Organisation and other global governance organisations in policy and advisory roles.

These entry requirements are for the 2022/23 academic year and requirements for future academic years may differ. Entry requirements for the 2023/24 academic year will be published on 3 October 2022.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, and a nursing qualification.

We may also consider your application if you have considerable nursing experience and non-graduate level professional qualifications; please contact us to check before you apply.

Students from China

This degree is Band C.

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 Academic: total 7.0 with at least 6.5 in each component.
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Home Edition): total 100 with at least 23 in each component. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 with at least 176 in each component.
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components.
  • PTE Academic: 70 overall with at least 62 in each component.

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, Trinity ISE or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

(*Revised 17 November 2021 to add accepted PTE Academic qualifications.)

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.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees
MSc3 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • The School of Health in Social Sciences
  • Edinburgh
Programme start date Application deadline
12 September 2022 31 July 2022

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.

You must submit one reference with your application.

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

Further information

  • The School of Health in Social Sciences
  • Edinburgh