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MSc Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing (Online)

Study our course from anywhere in the world and earn a Masters from one of the UK’s top 15 universities for health research (REF2014).

Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing (Online)

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc, Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate
  • Start date September
  • Duration MSc part-time: 36 months
  • Mode of study Online, Part-time, Stand-alone modules

How can more than a billion people age well across the world? Globally, the number of older persons is growing faster than the number of people in any other age group, putting pressure on all sectors of society.

This course cuts across two key scientific areas.

  • We challenge you to consider how the process of ageing happens across an individual’s life course, not just in later years.
  • We teach a multidisciplinary approach to gerontology that considers the social impact of ageing. 

You'll explore a range of health, social care and policy contexts from around the world that you can apply to a local context.

Core modules have been developed for students who would like to specialise in this fast-growing sector with a focus on the oldest-old, who are the fastest growing group and the most likely to experience frailty, people living with dementia in a range of settings, and the impact of multi-morbidity on an ageing population.

Our Masters in Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing can be studied entirely online and on a part-time basis, giving you the opportunity to benefit from our expertise in the subject from anywhere in the world, at times that suit your schedule. You will also have opportunities to collaborate and study with other students from around the world.


  • Top reasons to study with us
  • Course objectives

    We strive for excellence in online teaching equipping you with the expertise you need to support ageing populations. Our objectives for this course include helping you to:

    • develop an advanced understanding of theory and multidisciplinary perspectives in social gerontology and approaches to ageing
    • critically analyse research and policy on key social gerontological and ageing issues
    • demonstrate critical awareness of international best practice and interventions that facilitate positive ageing with complex co-morbidities, frailty or dementia
    • become a critical thinker who can reflect on the experiences of older persons globally and apply to your local context
    • develop knowledge and skills in digital learning and online collaboration

    The University of Stirling is recognised as a leader in the area of health research, and the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport has been successful in securing a large number of research grants from sources such as the National Institute for Health Research, the Medical Research Council, the Scottish Government and the Chief Scientists Office.

    The University campus is also home to the state-of-the-art Dementia Services Development Centre – a key hub for dementia research and education. The centre’s international reputation and interdisciplinary approach to dementia research helps to underscore the University of Stirling’s role as a thought-leader in gerontology.

  • Flexible learning

    Four core modules from our MSc Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing are available to study individually as part of your Continuing Professional Development:

    If you’re interested in studying a module from this course, the Postgraduate Certificate or the Postgraduate Diploma then please email Graduate Admissions to discuss your course of study.

  • Research

    The Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport was ranked 1st in Scotland for Health Sciences in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (2014) – showcasing our commitment to producing world-leading or internationally excellent research that improves health and reduces health inequalities.

  • Academic 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.

    Having experience of supporting older people in a health, social care, social work or third sector/Non-Governmental Organisation is recommended.

  • English language requirements

    If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

    • IELTS 6.5 with 6.0 minimum in each sub-skill
    • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) 176 overall with a minimum of 169 in each sub-skill
    • Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) 180 overall with a minimum of 169 in each sub-skill
    • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 60 overall with 56 in each sub-skill
    • IBT TOEFL 80 overall with 18 in reading, 23 in writing, 19 in listening and 21 in speaking
    • Trinity ISE II Pass overall and Merit in all sub-skills, ISE III Pass overall and in all sub-skills, ISE IV Pass overall and in all sub-skills

    Last updated: 5 December 2019

    For more information on ways that you can meet our English language requirements, including options to waive the requirement, please read our information on English language requirements.

Build your expertise in social gerontology and ageing with this unique online Masters course, and fit your studies around your busy schedule.

To earn your MSc you’ll complete four core modules, two research-based modules and a dissertation over three years of study.


The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery in the next academic intake of this course. These may be subject to change as the University regularly revises and refreshes the curriculum of our taught programmes.

Course Details

  • Teaching

    All teaching is online and uses web-based distance-learning and interactive materials. Our teaching staff have national and international profiles in research and education related to gerontology and ageing, and their research activities are incorporated into your teaching and learning.

    Flexibility is offered through regular provision of online one-to-one and group tutorials, recognising that some students work shifts or are in different time zones.

  • Assessment

    This course doesn’t include any exams, and all of your modules will be assessed based on your coursework.

  • Classroom hours

    The table below shows the structure of the MSc Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing.





    Postgraduate certificate

    Global Issues in Ageing Societies (NURP011)

    Health and Wellbeing of People with Dementia (NURP012)

    Skills for Knowledge Enquiry (Bridging module) (NURP002)

    Year 2

    Postgraduate diploma

    Multi-morbidity in the Older Adult (NURP013)

    An Integrated Approach to Frailty (NURP014)

    Qualitative Research and Analysis (bridging module) (NURP004) OR
    Quantitative Research and Analysis (bridging module) (NURP006)

    Year 3


    Dissertation 60 credits (part time) (NURP052)

  • Course director
  • Key staff
    Ask an expert

    Jayne Donaldson

    Professor Jayne Donaldson explains why Stirling is the ideal place to study health sciences and sport.

    Ask an expert in health sciences and sport

  • Fees and costs
    Home/EU Students £6,000
    Overseas (Non-EU) Students £15,250

    Scottish/EU Students

    Fees shown are for a full-time, one-year Masters course.

    If you need to extend your period of study, you may be liable for an additional fee.

    If you are not studying full time, the total course fee will be split over the years that you study. The total fee will remain the same and will be held at the rate it was set in your year of entry.

    For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

    Tuition fee loans

    Scottish students may be eligible to apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for loans of up to £10,000 to cover tuition fees and associated living costs. EU students can also apply for tuition fee support, but may not be eligible to receive funding for living costs.

    English students can apply for a loan of up to £10,906 per year as part of the Postgraduate Masters Loan Scheme.

    Welsh students can apply for financial support of up to £17,000 as a combination of grant and loan from Student Finance Wales.

    Northern Irish students can apply for a postgraduate tuition fee loan of up to £5,500 from Student Finance NI.

    Overseas (Non-EU) Students

    Fees shown are for a full-time, one-year Masters course.

    If you need to extend your period of study, you may be liable for an additional fee.

    If you are not studying full time, the total course fee will be split over the years that you study. The total fee will remain the same and will be held at the rate it was set in your year of entry.

    For more information on courses invoiced on an annual fee basis, please read our tuition fee policy.

    Additional costs

    There are some instances where additional fees may apply. Depending on your chosen course, you may need to pay additional costs, for example for field trips. Learn more about additional fees.

  • Scholarships and funding

    There are different funding options available depending on your location and route of entry into the course:

    • Self-funded or some competitive funding options are available, including postgraduate scholarship places which offer a flexible route of study.
    • The Scottish Funding Council is funding Home/EU tuition fees for a number of places on the MSc Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing. Funded places are open to applicants domiciled in Scotland and the EU.
    • Individual modules are available as part of Continuing Professional Development (CPD). Funding support for these may be available in Scotland, for example, through National Health Service (NHS) Boards.
    • Successful applicants may apply for a Saltire Scholarship if eligibility criteria is met.

    Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships

    Commonwealth Distance Learning Scholarships are available to candidates from developing Commonwealth countries to study this Masters in Global Issues in Gerontology and Ageing Online on a part-time by distance learning basis.

  • Payment options

    We aim to be as flexible as possible, and offer a wide range of payment methods - including the option to pay fees by instalments. Learn more about how to pay

This course supports the development of expert knowledge in care of the older person. If you’re a professional in health, allied health, social care and not-for-profit sectors, it prepares you to deliver the specialist knowledge and skills required to support your practice.

The course is ideal for graduates or experienced practitioners who want to make a difference in their practice and service delivery alongside older people in a range of health and social care settings.

  • Become a specialist in an area of integrated health and social care
  • Boost your career opportunities through Continuing Professional Development
  • 96% of our postgraduate leavers are in employment or further study within six months of graduating (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2016/17)
  • Employability skills

    You’ll develop an in-depth knowledge of critical and emerging health and social care needs of older people with strategies to enhance care and support. This course gives you the knowledge and skills you can use within practice and provides the opportunity to develop a range of transferable skills enhancing your professional development.

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