Postgraduate study

Sport Policy, Management and International Development MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Part-time Intermittent Study, Full-time

Funding opportunities

I was attracted to the programme because of its nature in both sport and recreation. My past experiences working for non-profits and the parks and recreation field aligned well to the programme objectives and I wanted to increase my marketability in the workforce.

Joseph Cooper MSc Sport Policy, Management and International Development 2013

This Masters degree critically examines the commercialised and media-orientated world of professional sport and the increasingly important realm of community sport, recreation and physical activity. Students gain an understanding of key concepts invaluable for employment and critical engagement across all sport sectors.

Recognising that sport managers operate in a highly politicised environment, the programme reviews the role of government policy in shaping sporting opportunities and sport's contribution to social policy agendas.

The programme critically assesses sport's contribution to government social policy concerns (such as crime prevention, health improvement, education attainment, community building), and its role in conflict resolution, gender empowerment, disease prevention and poverty reduction in different parts of the world. It critically analyses a wide range of sport policy and sport management issues in the UK and compares these with experiences across a wide range of countries.

You will focus on management issues in contemporary sport organisations, the media's role in sport management debates, and sport marketing and communications concepts.

The programme also explores fundamental aspects of research methods and links these to sport management concerns. Your understanding is enhanced through the extensive involvement of local and national sport organisations.

Your classes will consist of a combination of lectures, seminars, case studies, industry visits and discussions.

Compulsory Courses:

  • Sport and the Media
  • Sport Marketing and Communications
  • Sport Policy
  • Sport Resource Management
  • Sport, Society and International Development
  • Conceptualising research: Foundations, Assumptions and Praxis
  • Sources of knowledge: Understanding and analysing research literature

To graduate with the MSc degree, you will also produce an independently researched dissertation.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScSport Policy, Management and International DevelopmentUp to 6 YearsPart-time Intermittent StudyProgramme structure 2019/20
MScSport Policy, Management and International Development1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2019/20

On successful completion of this programme you will:

  • Gain a critical appreciation of key factors influencing sport participation levels in different countries and the role of sport policy and management in improving these.
  • Gain a critical understanding of the role of sport in alleviating social and economic problems at the local, national and international level.
  • Foster a theoretically informed appreciation of the role and impact of local, national and transnational government on sport policy.
  • Have considered the contribution of management theory to efficient and effective sport management practice.
  • Gain a theoretical understanding of the role of the mass media in framing contemporary sport policy and sport management.
  • Attain the skills and knowledge necessary to identify and meet your career goals.

The programme provides the higher-order knowledge required for early-career graduates to enter employment in the sport industries, and for current sport practitioners to advance their careers.

The qualification can lead to rewarding careers in areas such as sport marketing, sport sponsorship, sport events, sport development, sport social enterprises, sport facility management, and sport and international development.

The Master's degree can also lead to PhD study.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent, in a relevant discipline in sport such as sport and exercise, sport management, or social sciences such as marketing and management, public policy and administration, media and communication, politics and international relations.

Work experience (paid or voluntary) in sport management or sport industry is desirable, but not essential.

We may also consider applicants who do not hold a degree in a relevant subject but have had substantial relevant employment or experience within the sport industry; 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 6.5 (at least 6.0 in each module)

  • TOEFL-iBT: total 92 (at least 20 in each module)

  • PTE Academic: total 61 (at least 56 in each of the "Communicative Skills" sections)

  • CAE and CPE: total 176 (at least 169 in each module)

  • Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction 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.

Find out more about our language requirements:

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MScSport Policy, Management and International DevelopmentUp to 6 YearsPart-time Intermittent StudyTuition fees
MScSport Policy, Management and International Development1 YearFull-timeTuition fees

UK government postgraduate loans

If you live in the UK, you may be able to apply for a postgraduate loan from one of the UK's governments. The type and amount of financial support you are eligible for will depend on your programme, the duration of your studies, and your residency status. (Programmes studied on a part-time intermittent basis are not eligible.)

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • Programme Director, Dr Jung-Woo (Jay) Lee
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 4120
  • Contact: sportpolicy@ed.ac.uk
  • Moray House School of Education and Sport
  • Old Moray House
  • Holyrood Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 8AQ

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

  • Programme Director, Dr Jung-Woo (Jay) Lee
  • Phone: +44 (0)131 651 4120
  • Contact: sportpolicy@ed.ac.uk
  • Moray House School of Education and Sport
  • Old Moray House
  • Holyrood Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 8AQ