MSc / PG Dip Housing Studies (with internship)

Thinking about a career in housing? Our PgDip and MSc Housing Studies (with Internship) offers a unique combination of academic study and professional work experience.

Housing Studies (with internship)

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma
  • Start date September 2024
  • Duration MSc/PG Diploma full-time: 12 months, MSc part-time: 36 months, PG Diploma part-time 24 months
  • Mode of study full time, part time
  • Delivery blended


Chartered Institute of Housing

Chartered Institute of Housing logo


This MSc/PgDip Housing Studies (with internship) course fully integrates all of the academic and practice components of the professional qualification of the Chartered Institute of Housing. This includes a structured, assessed work experience internship, spanning 50 days over the academic year, and which sets up graduates for a ‘fast track’ into a career with housing organisations in the social, voluntary and private sectors. This internship is not eligible for sponsorship to study in the UK.

Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Housing, the course provides you with a comprehensive academic and professional qualification with structured work experience and, upon completion, offers you a direct route into employment in the housing sector.  The Diploma internship can also form the output necessary to achieve a Masters qualification. You’ll be introduced to the most up-to-date ideas and debates in housing and offered the opportunity to learn about the cutting edge of housing practice.

This route blends occasional teaching sessions on campus with a significant element of online study giving you the ideal learning experience in a format which is accessible and engaging.

You’ll be taught by a team of academics who comprehensively cover the multi-disciplinary nature of housing, research, policy and practice. Our research-led teaching draws on our specialist expertise in policy analysis, homelessness and housing rights, social theory, housing and land market analysis.


Top reasons to study with us

Professional accreditation

The course covers all of the academic and practice components of the professional qualification of the Chartered Institute of Housing. Upon successful completion of the Diploma, you’ll be eligible for corporate membership of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

Work placements

Work placements are an integral part of this course, culminating in a 50-day structured, assessed work experience internship, spanning over the academic year, where you can learn your chosen specialism.

Financial Support with costs of work placements is available through the Marion Gibbs Housing Studies Internship Support Fund.

Flexible learning

Our course is designed with busy professionals in mind. Our blended delivery means most sessions are delivered online giving you flexibility to choose where and when you study.

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 overview

All core teaching staff on the Housing Studies course are active in housing research. Underpinning the expertise of our staff, the University of Stirling scored highly in the most recent Research Excellence Framework 2021 – a UK-wide assessment of universities’ research output. In the Social Work and Social Policy unit of assessment, we ranked 3rd in Scotland and top 25 in the UK – with 100% of our research environment and 88% of our research deemed world leading or internationally excellent.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

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

Potential applicants who are already working in housing can apply for the Postgraduate Diploma course on a part-time basis over two years, or at Masters level over three years, without having to do an internship.

As attendance on campus is required sporadically across the year this study route is not eligible for sponsorship to study in the UK.

International entry requirements

View the entry requirements for your country.

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 Academic or UKVI 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each sub-skill.
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 62 overall with 60 in each sub-skill.
  • IBT TOEFL 80 overall with 18 in reading, 23 in writing, 19 in listening and 21 in speaking.

See our information on English language requirements for more details on the language tests we accept and options to waive these requirements.

Pre-sessional English language courses

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this course, our partner INTO University of Stirling offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for entry to this degree.

Find out more about our pre-sessional English language courses.

Course details

This MSc/PgDip Housing Studies (with internship) course will introduce you to the most up-to-date ideas and debates in housing and offered the opportunity to learn about the cutting edge of housing practice, including:

  • Providing housing services - housing intervention across tenure, accessing housing, rent arrears, welfare reform, homelessness, ethics and resilience.
  • Sustainable communities - sustainable homes, development, fuel poverty, housing and inequality, place-making, community-led regeneration.
  • Organisational behaviour – leadership, management, team work, organisational learning, cultural change, overcoming conflict.
  • Finance and strategy – strategic planning, housing aspirations, needs and choices, housing finance, delivering affordable housing supply.
  • Housing governance - housing policy analysis, legal framework for housing law, governance of housing.
  • Healthy housing – homelessness, ageing, health and wellbeing, social care.

The Postgraduate Diploma is taught over one year full-time or 24 months part-time and you’ll study six academic modules.

Professional Practice

The course also includes a module on reflective practice, preparation for professional practice and attachment to a social landlord to facilitate workplace learning. These precede an internship of 50 days carried out over the academic year, arranged to suit both the employer and student where possible, linked to practical requirements of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

You can build up to the full Masters of 180 credits in stages, or exit at any stage and receive an award:

  • Six modules plus a dissertation for 180 credits (SCQF Level 11) – you’ll be awarded a Masters and will meet the requirements for corporate membership of the Chartered Institute of Housing.
  • Six modules for 120 credits (SCQF Level 11) – you’ll be awarded Postgraduate Diploma and will meet the requirements for corporate membership of the Chartered Institute of Housing.
  • Three modules for 60 credits (SCQF Level 11) – you’ll be awarded a Postgraduate Certificate.


The module information below provides an example of the types of course module you may study. The details listed are for the academic year that starts in September 2024. Modules and start dates are regularly reviewed and may be subject to change in future years.

Course Details


You’ll attend a virtual induction in September to start the course. Academic learning is then undertaken through a blend of occasional teaching sessions on campus with a significant element of online study giving you the ideal learning experience in a format which is accessible and engaging. If you are unable to join us at these live online sessions they will be recorded for you to watch at a time convenient to you. You can also complete self-directed activities at a time that suits you.

Our blended model of delivery means you have flexibility about where and when you can study, and you do not need to travel to Stirling for online classes. Please ensure that your IT specification meets the requirements for the course. You can, however, access IT facilities on campus.

As attendance on campus is required sporadically across the year this study route is not eligible for sponsorship to study in the UK.


Assessment takes a variety of forms including essays, reports, online tests, group work and a seminar presentation. Each module has one or two assessments rather than end of semester examinations.

Internships are assessed through a series of practice reports and a reflective practice diary.

Anyone who completes the Postgraduate Diploma requirements may register for a further period of study towards a Masters. This would require completion of either a research-based dissertation or the demonstration of advanced level reflective skills.

The research-based dissertation can be based on work undertaken as part of the internship period, simplifying the process of achieving a Masters.

Classroom hours

Classes are held on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, with the rest of the week for private study. Studying full-time equates to approximately 35 hours on average which includes all structured learning, personal study and assessments.  Part-time study options are also available.

Key staff

At Stirling, staff in Housing Studies aim to:

  • provide effective professional housing education;
  • promote development of skills in the workplace;
  • promote and support equality and diversity in access to professional education;
  • exploit technology to make our course of study available to students, regardless of location or learning needs;
  • increase learning opportunities for students particularly from remote areas;
  • enhance course content from tutors’ research and expertise.

Fees and funding

Fees and costs

2023/24 fees
Study mode Year

UK and Republic of Ireland students

International (including EU) students


Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)




Masters Dissertation (60 credits)




Year 1 (60 credits)




Year 2 (60 credits)




Year 3 (60 credits)




2024-25 fees
Study mode Year

UK and Republic of Ireland students

International (including EU) students


Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)




Masters Dissertation (60 credits)




Year 1 (60 credits)




Year 2 (60 credits)




Year 3 (60 credits)



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

You can choose to study this course over a shorter period and the tuition fee will be adjusted accordingly. The fee for each year will be calculated based on the number of credits you enrol on each year. Your fees will be held at the same level throughout your course.

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

Postgraduate tuition fee loans

Some intakes of this course are eligible for a postgraduate tuition fee loan from one of the UK’s governments. See the section, below, for more details.

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


Eligible international students could receive a scholarship worth between £4,000-£7,000. See our range of generous scholarships for international postgraduate students.

University of Stirling alumni will automatically be awarded a fee waiver for the first year of Masters studies through our Stirling Alumni Scholarship.

Applicants from the UK or Republic of Ireland who hold a first-class honours degree or equivalent will automatically be awarded a £2,000 scholarship through our Postgraduate Merit Scholarship.

If you have the talent, ability and drive to study with us, we want to make sure you make the most of the opportunity – regardless of your financial circumstances.

Learn more about available funding opportunities or use our scholarship finder to explore our range of scholarships.

Postgraduate tuition fee loans

Scottish students who study this course full-time (or part-time if they complete the course in 24 months or less) may be eligible to apply to the Students Award Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for loans of up to £11,500 to cover tuition fees and associated living costs.

English students can apply for a loan of up to £12,167 each year as part of the Postgraduate Masters Loan Scheme

Welsh students can apply for financial support of up to £18,770 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.

Students who pay their own fees may be entitled to claim tax relief on fees or receive support with fee payment from an Individual Training Account.

There are other categories of funding available to support the cost of your studies at the University of Stirling. You may qualify for University funding as well as funding from government bodies, the European Commission, funding trusts, research councils, industry and employers.

Cost of living

If you’re domiciled in the UK, you can typically apply to your relevant funding body for help with living costs. This usually takes the form of student loans, grants or bursaries, and the amount awarded depends upon your personal circumstances and household income.

International (including EU) students won’t normally be able to claim living support through SAAS or other UK public funding bodies. You should contact the relevant authority in your country to find out if you’re eligible to receive support.

Find out about the cost of living for students at Stirling

Marion Gibbs Housing Studies Internship Support Fund 

The Marion Gibbs Housing Studies Internship Support Fund has been established to provide financial support to students on MSc Housing Studies (with internship) course, specifically in relation to the Contemporary Housing Practice module, as a fund to help students with the costs of undertaking their work experience placements and events/visits associated with this module. Students are welcome to use the fund to avoid and alleviate hardship. Awards from the fund are in the form of grants and do not require to be repaid. Registered students can apply for awards ranging from £100 to £500.

Read more about Marion Gibbs and her contribution to housing and homelessness.

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

After you graduate

Stirling graduates have a strong track record of making rapid career progress on completion of the Masters or Postgraduate Diploma. Potential career opportunities include management in housing organisations, specialist research, policy and strategy work. Increasingly, there are opportunities linked to key government initiatives and policy areas.

Studying Housing Studies online at the University of Stirling enables you to:

  • carry out your current job with greater confidence and effectiveness;
  • have a comprehensive knowledge of how your job links to the rest of your organisation and the work of other agencies in Scotland;
  • be well prepared to take advantage of opportunities for promotion or new directions in your work;
  • gain a professional qualification in a crucial policy area;
  • build a network.

Testimonial quotes

I am now working on a six-month contract with Port of Leith Housing Association, without the course I would not have the knowledge and practical housing management experience achieved from my work place link and placement.

Housing studies graduate

Employability skills

A key part of the MSc/PgDip Housing Studies (with internship) is to help you develop transferable skills that employers are looking for, such as:

  • academic skills in analysis and writing;
  • technical skills in the appraisal and evaluation of housing development, design and construction in the built environment;
  • professional skills in housing;
  • communication skills, in report writing and group presentations;
  • self-management skills, in organising work, and meeting deadlines;
  • interpersonal skills, in group discussion and listening;
  • digital online skills for meetings and group engagement.

Companies we work with

A very substantial number of housing organisations support student internships and sponsor their staff to undertake the Housing Studies course at Stirling.

Teaching staff also work with organisations across the country in their research activities. Through student membership of the Chartered Institute of Housing, you’ll have access to information and news about housing organisations across Scotland as well as being able to attend major conferences in the sector.

What our students said

Laura Breeze
Laura Breeze
Postgraduate Diploma in Housing Studies
Studying part-time meant I could remain in my current role, while also pursuing a qualification which would help me develop my career, and hopefully move in to a management role. With the academic knowledge I’ve gained, I want to make real changes to the housing sector.
Read Laura's story
Doug Webster
Doug Webster
Postgraduate Diploma in Housing Studies with Distinction
I wanted to complement and enhance my understanding of housing to the betterment of myself and my organisation. The Postgraduate Diploma offers those of us working in this profession the opportunity to advance our skills and knowledge.
Read Doug's story
Ashley Duffy
Ashley Duffy
Postgraduate Diploma in Housing Studies
My six years at Stirling has shaped me into the young professional I am today and has also advanced my personal development. Balancing work, study, and life was challenging at times but the support and encouragement from staff was instrumental in helping me achieve my ambitions.
Read Ashley's story

Which course would you like to apply for?

MSc Housing Studies (with internship)

Search for another course