Study Marketing and graduate with a university degree

MSc, Postgraduate Diploma

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  • Type Full-time
  • Duration 12 months
  • Start date September

Lynne McCulloch
Postgraduate Secretary
Stirling Management School
University of Stirling
Stirling FK9 4LA
Scotland UK
+44 (0) 1786 467381

Marketing is about creating and maintaining exchanges of value between an organisation and its customers that are both satisfying to the customer and help achieve organisational objectives. The course offers participants from different cultural and educational backgrounds the opportunity to develop their marketing potential.


CIM Dual Award

It is now possible to gain the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) Professional Diploma in Marketing through undertaking two modules as opposed to the usual four as the MSc Marketing course at the University of Stirling was one of the first in the country to be accredited for the CIMs Dual Award Scheme. This exciting opportunity will provide you with the competitive edge you are looking for to embark on a successful career. 

Course objectives

The MSc provides you with an understanding of the concepts and systems underlying marketing practice and to develop your skills of diagnosis and implementation in marketing management and research processes. On completion you will be able to:

  • Nurture and consolidate a customer-focused management approach in a variety of different market settings, organisation types and policy situations
  • Design, plan and implement research-based marketing strategies
  • Plan, implement and evaluate specific marketing programmes and activities
  • Conduct research into contemporary marketing practice

Entrance requirements

A minimum of a second class honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent.  Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence of your proficiency such as a minimum IELTS score of 6.0 (5.5 in all bands).

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard.

Our range of pre-sessional courses.

Modes of study

Full-time: MSc: one year; Diploma: nine months

Course start date


Structure and content

Preparing and supporting students through their postgraduate studies

September 2014 will see the introduction of an intensive and invigorating period of ‘learning to learn’ for Stirling Management School’s postgraduate students. Activities, workshops and information sessions held during this period will help students better prepare for the year ahead in order to ensure that they make the most of their time at Stirling. Students will be provided with an opportunity to develop the necessary skills required to ensure that they can interact and engage with others and fully explore the subjects and themes covered by their course.

Providing students with the very best start to their studies, these activities will support students to:

  • discover more about the exciting period of learning ahead;
  • develop an understanding of the course expectations;
  • get to know the teaching team and support staff;
  • learn more about a diverse range of approaches to learning;
  • understand what it takes to work as part of a successful team;
  • develop presentation skills and build confidence in public speaking;
  • learn about cultural and individual differences;
  • discover all that the University campus and the vibrant city of Stirling has to offer;
  • maximise their time studying at Stirling;
  • have fun and make new friends.

By the end of this period, students will be fully prepared to embark upon the formal teaching course invigorated and committed to the journey ahead with newly developed skills.

The Course

Eight taught modules over two 15-week semesters, plus either an individual project and or a group project (Knowledge Management and Transfer module) which is undertaken over the summer period. Core modules are:

  • Professional Skills: Emphasises the importance of individual, team skills and leadership in bringing about market-led strategic change in organisations. Includes a team-building weekend
  • Reflective Practice and Learning: Focuses on forming successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors to marketing
  • Marketing Research Techniques and Applications: Focuses on doing client-based market research and covers the basic research methods and techniques
  • Marketing Management Applications: Entails doing research for a real client, normally external to the University. It demonstrates the practical application of marketing techniques
  • Critical Thinking: Concentrates on academic scholarly research. It involves critiquing published research and a poster session in which you present ideas for your project

As part of the Marketing Management Applications module, one group of students participated in a project for EASA Training Ltd.  Their objective was to refine their market strategy for China and Taiwan and to provide recommendations.

On behalf of EASA Training Ltd I would like to confirm that we were extremely impressed with the entire project completed last year by the Stirling University MSC MMA students. The project was defined clearly, then conducted with our regular participation throughout. The team was diligent, disciplined, and a pleasure to work with. They produced the resulting report and presentation to a very professional standard.

Their work has helped us to refine our market entry strategy for China and Taiwan and provided us with practical recommendations on how to approach these massively important markets with our tailored English Language Training “Experiences”.

From the students’ perspective I believe their engagement with us helped them appreciate the challenges facing a relatively young company trying to penetrate international markets. They were dealing with a real market entry problem and had to communicate regularly with us to understand what we are offering. The methodology they developed and employed will certainly come in useful again during their careers.

We at EASA hope we can work with the university again sometime in the future.

Lauren McQuade, Managing Director

The option modules, from which you select three, currently include:

  • Retail Marketing: Investigates the nature of the retail ‘product’, segmentation and positioning, consumer behaviour and retailing, marketing communication in a retail context, retail branding, store formats and customer service
  • Sports Marketing: Investigates the application of marketing techniques to the sport industry and whether sport is any different from other sectors
  • Small Business Marketing: Designed to put into practice marketing theory at the level of the smaller firm
  • International Marketing: Considers the process of internationalisation for all sizes of firm
  • Retail Buying and Merchandising: Explains the context of buying operations, the issues facing retail buyers in different types of retail organisations and their interaction with other functional areas
  • Social Marketing: Marketing techniques can be used to influence health and social behaviour. The module reviews theoretical foundations, planning, research and communication and looks at international and ethical issues
  • Logistics and Channel Management: Relates logistics to the economy and to business and develops an understanding of channel management
  • Marketing Communications: Helps you to critique the diversity of theories that underpin marketing communications activities and to provide a semiotic analysis of marketing communications content

Other options are available including Consumer-Behaviour, Services Marketing and Retail Buying. 

View full module descriptions

Delivery and assessment

The taught modules of the MSc course are delivered using a variety of methods, for example, lectures, tutorials, case studies, role playing, computer simulations, fieldwork exercises, site visits, guest speakers and company projects. Much of the assessment is continuous and may include research reports, essays, briefings, management reports, case analyses and presentations. Assessed work is often conducted in groups, as developing teamwork and communication skills are seen as important.

Recommended reading

  • Baines, P., Fill, C., Page, K. (2011)  Marketing Oxford.
  • Jobber, D. (2012) Principles and Practice of Marketing 7th Edition McGraw-Hill.
  • Kotler, P., Armstrong, G., Wong, V. and Saunders J. (2008) Principles of Marketing 5th Edition Financial Times/Prentice Hall.
  • Dibb, S., Simkin, L., Pride, W.K. and Ferrell, O.C. (2012) Marketing: Concepts and Strategies 6th Edition Houghton Mifflin.

Why study Marketing at Stirling?

Course Director

Professor Douglas Brownlie

RAE rating

Marketing is part of the Stirling Management School. The School is committed to a research-led approach in all of its activities. This was recognised in the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), which rated 85 percent of our research activity to be of ‘International Significance’.


Blue Sky PicParticipating in the Markstrat Simulation, a web-based platform for developing marketing strategy and planning practice in a competitive environment.  By means of various dashboards and protocols, in teams students get to test and improve skills in market analytics, decision-making, budgeting, planning and performance assessment.

Students from the MSc Marketing course participate in two training events aimed at building professional skills in marketing: the first focuses on teambuilding and leadership; the second on personal effectiveness. The Stirling MSc was the first in Scotland to integrate such professional inputs into the learning environment; and recently it was the first to introduce training in personal effectiveness in working relationships into the course.

Working with our team of consultants, students receive their own Insights Discovery personal profile which offers an engaging, reinforcing and transformational insight into themselves and others.  Based on the model of personality developed by Carl Jung, the Insights Discovery profile offers our students a framework for self-understanding and personal development. Profiles help the individual learn about their approach to decision-making; their key strengths and weaknesses in working relationships; their value to the team, as well as their communication style and possible blind spots.

This memorable, fun and fascinating day allows our students to explore adapting and connecting techniques. In addition they learn about areas for self-development and career planning, as well as how to be a more effective communicator and team member in a professional business environment.

Poster Session - All students on our MSc course present their evolving ideas for their dissertations/group projects in visual form as a ‘scientific’ poster with an accompanying presentation. This event is held in the Atrium each year and it is a very successful event attended by both staff and students. 

Our students

I feel very honoured to be a student on the MSc Marketing programme at Stirling University. I have learnt a lot and changed a lot during the study, MSc Marketing is quite a interesting major and help me to develop my ways of thinking issues and dealing the problems as well. So many trips and outdoor activities have enhanced our vision and resilience, which is very important to my future career development. After the programme, I plan to find a job in China, and my career direction would be an international company, so I really believe that the experience in Stirling University can be my most valuable competitive weapon when I am finding a job.

Amanda (Borui Cheng) 2011/2012

Back in 2010 I was a young ambitious graduate student from beautiful Greece. During my final year as an undergraduate student in a Greek University, I started my quest for the most suitable and interesting Master's Degree.  The University of Stirling was among my favourites; it was based in Scotland and was renowned for its marketing modules. I got a conditional offer (I still had to finish my previous degree), but the process was extremely fast and easy. Finally, I packed my bags and I moved to the adorable city of Stirling by September 2010.

I attended the University for my MSc for 1 academic year. So far, this has been my most memorable experience of my life. I was really amazed by the way our tutors held a lecture: very well prepared, with incredibly informed materials, interactive classes and team projects. I really felt my opinion was valued and all lectures had a conversational character; I was excited every day to come to class and attend a lecture! Even when it came to exams, the process was so smooth and I never felt nervous.    

I sincerely believe that this degree in particular really made a difference in building a strong CV; I could show proof of hard work and Marketing skills coming from a well-established Scottish Educational Institution. I would recommend this course with no hesitation to anyone! If only I could write more; I can only narrow down my experience in these few lines...

I now work at Google, in the EU HQ in Dublin, Ireland. I will always be grateful and cherish the moments the University of Stirling offered me! I wish the same luck to all graduate students!

Zinet-Sofia Chaidopoulou, 2010/2011

In November 2008 I graduated from Stirling University with MSc in Marketing with distinction. I have been missing all the exciting moments experienced there and all my friends met during that year. Now I know that I could name this experience as one of the best years in my life so far. The MSc Marketing course taught me not only to market the product or service, but also to apply marketing related experience while trying to sell myself in a current very competitive job market at the global economic downturn climate. I am extremely excited because I now have a great career ahead with Capital Group UK as a Marketing Executive!!!

Gintare Mozuraite, 2007 - 2008, MSc Marketing - Marketing Executive, Capital Group UK


Career opportunities

Where are our graduates now? 

MSc Marketing graduates are currently working around the world in countries such as Japan, China, Netherlands, Australia, South Africa, Switzerland, Germany, Mexico, India. They are currently contributing to the performance of the following organisations:

  • Yves Saint Laurent
  • Nokia
  • Unilever
  • eBay
  • Pepsico
  • Bloomberg
  • NCR Corporation
  • Intelligent Media Ltd
  • Nestle
  • Capital Group UK
  • Google

To provide you with an indication as to what you can do with your Master's degree, graduates in the past three years are currently employed as:

  • Marketing & Communications Officer, Stirling Council (UK)
  • Sales Consultant, Yves Saint Laurent (UK)
  • Marketing Communications Associate, Eugenides Foundation (Greece)
  • Global Sales, Karma Medical Products (Taiwan) 
  • Social Media Manager, Liquorice - Digital Innovation for Brands (Africa)

Building on that foundation, alumni of Stirling’s MSc Marketing degree who graduated between five and ten years ago have since advanced into some of the following positions:

  • Brand Manager, Unilever (Greece)
  • Senior PR Specialist, National Education Association (USA)
  • Sales & Marketing Executive, Alma Lasers (Japan)
  • Senior Marketing Specialist, Symantec (Mexico)
  • Account Manager, Cheil (Taiwan)
  • Account Executive, McCann Erickson (Greece) 
  • Senior Lecturer, University of Roehampton (UK)

Some of our more established alumni are currently leading and shaping marketing strategy across many different sectors – here is an example of how a few former Stirling MSc Marketing students have advanced in their careers:

  • Marketing Manager, Nestle (Greece)
  • Supply Chain Manager, Aibel Pte Ltd (Singapore)
  • Director of Marketing & E-Business, Elsevier (Hong Kong)
  • International Sales Manager, Importaco, S.A. (Spain)



You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.


Stirling Management School Postgraduate Scholarships

Stirling Management School is committed to investing in academically talented students, enabling them to further their education with a reputable qualification from one of the many postgraduate degree courses on offer at the University of Stirling. There are various categories of funding available to support the cost of your studies at Stirling Management School.

Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan

This course is currently approved for PTFL (Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan) funding from SAAS. More information

For further information on possible sources of funding, visit: