MSc Marketing and Brand Management

The MSc Marketing and Brand Management provides you with a thorough knowledge of current marketing theories and practices with a specialist focus on brand management in a variety of national and international contexts.

We are no longer accepting applications for September 2022 entry from students who require a visa to study in the UK.

Marketing and Brand Management

Key facts

  • Award Masters / MSc, Postgraduate Diploma, Postgraduate Certificate
  • Start date September 2022
  • Duration MSc full-time 12 months, MSc part-time 24 months
  • Mode of study part time, full time
  • Delivery on campus

Accreditations

Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM)

CIM accredited degree logo

Overview

With the rise of new communication channels, predominantly online, and the ability of consumers to impact on brand perception, more businesses than ever are identifying value in effective brand management strategies to protect and enhance their brand reputation. It’s reported that job opportunities in brand management were expected to grow by 14% in 2020 as a result (fastcompany.com).

The MSc Marketing and Brand Management course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM). CIM accreditation means that when you successfully complete the course, it's easier to gain a Professional Diploma in Marketing. Two of the Diploma modules will be waived and to gain the CIM Professional Diploma you will only need to undertake two CIM modules rather than the usual four, giving you a competitive edge in your career.

Our Masters in Marketing and Brand Management gives you a thorough and in-depth understanding of marketing and brand management within commercial and non-commercial organisations. You will learn about the practice and theory of sustainable marketing, strategic brand management and digital marketing and advertising. Our course also gives the choice to further explore the role of brands and branding in specialist marketing areas such as supply chain marketing, retailing, or social marketing.

Our research-led teaching combined with a focus on practical applications is a key strength of this course and you will be taught by top researchers. In addition to consistently engaging in academic literature through weekly readings and module assessments, the course gives you opportunities to apply concepts, theories and frameworks to practical aspects. You will collaborate during your studies with a wide variety of organisations including not-for-profit, third sector and small and medium sized enterprises.

Preparing business leaders of the future

Postgraduate education at the University of Stirling Management School goes beyond textbooks and lecture rooms, we also focus on your personal and professional development.

Our unique Flying Start Leadership programme equips you with the awareness, knowledge and techniques essential for building a successful career. These range from practical skills, such as effective public speaking, to developing ways to work under pressure in difficult situations and manage conflict.

Top reasons to study with us

Course objectives

The MSc Marketing and Brand Management will provide you with a comprehensive knowledge of core marketing principles, along with an additional focus on brands and branding, that will prepare you for a career in marketing and brand management. The course has been designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of the strategic importance of branding at both national and international levels. At the end of the course you will be able to:

  • assess and develop brands in  a variety of different market settings, organisation types and policy situations
  • analyse and apply marketing and brand communication theories
  • consider the social, political and cultural context of brands and the role that they can play in areas such retail, social marketing, and marketing ethics
  • recognise the ethical issues that arise from marketing activities and to understand the impact marketing has on society in general

Industry connections

The University of Stirling Management School has excellent links with local and national organisations. Guest speakers from across the private, public and third sectors regularly engage with our Masters students, providing a practical perspective on contemporary marketing topics through a series of guest lectures and workshops.

Students have recently worked on projects with representatives from the National Wallace Monument, Strathearn Strategic Consulting, Stirling Albion Football, EASA Training Ltd, Snowsports Scotland, Scottish Biomedical, Stirling Art and Waterski Scotland.

Our students have also benefitted from recent site visits to external organisations such as ASDA, Blue Sky Experience (specialist team building and team development company) and New Lanark Visitor Centre.

You will also participate in our core Consultancy Project module, with the aim to provide you with an experience similar to an industry placement, to help you prepare for a future career in marketing. You’ll gain knowledge and increase your confidence working on a ‘live’ marketing topic, operating within the management boundaries and budget of an external client organisation. 

Developing your brand

You will be encouraged to reflect on your overall strengths, identify weaknesses, and explore the directions in which you want to develop. You will learn about:

  • your approach to decision-making
  • your key strengths and weaknesses in working relationships
  • your value to the team
  • your communication style
  • You will then develop your personal brand to be marketed to future employers. 

Professional accreditation

Our Masters course is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), the world’s leading professional marketing body, and counts towards the CIM Professional Diploma in Marketing. Graduates of the course gain exemption from half of the CIM Professional Diploma modules.

Work placements

You will work on real-world projects with key organisations who are using marketing for strategic development. Our extensive network of external organisations across all sectors provides opportunities to build your knowledge, skills and experience for a successful career in marketing analytics roles.

Research overview

80% of our research impact in Business and Management Studies is classed as world leading or internationally excellent (REF 2021). 

Members of our academic staff regularly publish in journals such as:

  • British Journal of Management
  • Journal of Marketing Management
  • European Journal of Marketing
  • Journal of Business Ethics
  • Journal of Advertising
  • Industrial Marketing Management
  • Marketing Intelligence and Planning
  • Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services

Our staff consistently serve as conference and track chairs at international marketing conferences and hold editorial posts across a wide variety of academic journals. Members of staff regularly provide consultation to industry in high-profile issues such as the horse meat scandal, the role of marketing towards children, and the issues facing the high street retailers across the UK.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class honours degree or equivalent. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply. No background in business is required but you will need to have a strong interest in marketing and brand management to get the most from the course.

Other routes of entry

If you don’t currently meet the academic requirements for this course, INTO University of Stirling offers a variety of preparation programmes that can earn you the qualifications and skills you need for direct entry.

Explore INTO Stirling programmes to see the pathway and pre-masters routes available for this course and others at the University of Stirling.

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 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each sub-skill 
  • Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) 169 overall with a minimum of 162 in each sub-skill
  • Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE) 180 overall with a minimum of 162 in each sub-skill
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) 60 overall with a minimum of 59 in each sub-skill
  • IBT TOEFL 78 overall with a minimum of 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing
  • IBT TOEFL Special Home Edition Test 78 overall with a minimum of 17 in listening, 18 in reading, 20 in speaking and 17 in writing
  • Trinity ISE II Pass overall with a Pass in each sub-skill, ISE III Pass overall and in all sub-skills, ISE IV Pass overall and in all sub-skills
  • Aptis (4 skills) CEFR B2 overall and B2 in all sub-skills
  • Duolingo 95 overall with a minimum of 90 in all sub-skills
  • LanguageCert International ESOL B2 Communicator - High Pass overall with minimum 25 in each sub-skill

Last updated: 24 March 2022

You must also check the specific English language requirements for your country.

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.

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

There are four core modules of study in Semester 1, three 20 credit and one 10 credit, which will provide you with a depth of relevant and up-to-date knowledge. In Semester 2 you will take four compulsory modules that will provide you with an appreciation of contemporary issues in brand marketing, such as youth marketing, country marketing, and the marketing of sport. You will also choose one elective module; the pool of elective subjects is refreshed on a regular basis. Over the summer, you’ll then complete the MSc by showcasing your learning through a business consultancy project in the area of branding and marketing.

 

Modules

The module information below provides an example of the types of course module you may study. The details listed are for the current academic year (September 2021). Modules and start dates are regularly reviewed and may be subject to change in future years.

Course Details

Teaching

The taught modules of the course are delivered using a variety of methods such as lectures, tutorials, case studies, role playing, computer simulations, fieldwork exercises, site visits, guest speakers and company projects. There is a good balance between theory and practice.

You will have access to the Markstrat simulation platform, a web-based approach to developing marketing strategy and planning practice in a competitive environment. You’ll test and improve your skills in market analytics, decision-making, budgeting, planning and performance assessment.

Consultancy style project

You will have the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience by working on consultancy style projects with external clients over the summer. The Marketing and Retail Consultancy Module core module aims to provide you with an equivalent experience to an industry placement. It gives you the opportunity to gain knowledge and increase your confidence working on a ‘live’ marketing topic as you operate within the management boundaries and budget of an external client organisation.

Each group has a client organisation that sets a real-world task, and asks the group to explore that topic before presenting solutions. We work with a range of private, public and Third Sector organisations, such as charities and social enterprises. The projects cover a host of subjects, from identifying potential customers through to the opportunities for international expansion. It will be up to you, working with an academic supervisor, to set up the study, to investigate the issues that arise and to present your findings back to the client.

The combination of academic frameworks and theories within the constraints of what can feasibly be done by the organisation within its own resources, will prepare you for similar tasks that will be required of you in your future career. In some cases, a student conducting a project has been employed subsequently by the organisation with which they partnered during the module.

Malcolm McGregor, Director, Broadbreach provided the following feedback after completion of a student project with his company:

“I can honestly say that I found the whole experience to be extremely useful. The students were highly intelligent and really switched on. The most useful aspect was their knowledge on how to use social media technology effectively, where to go to get essential knowledge, how to access analytics on traffic coming and leaving your website etc. The students were not afraid to provide a brutally honest appraisal of the business' marketing, how it compared to competitors and provide useful, simple and fast solutions. It’s very easy to become blind to all of the elements the students highlighted. The potential to make simple changes to create commercial returns is clearly very high. Altogether fantastic value for money. Thank you very much for permitting us to benefit!”

Malcolm McGregor, Director, Broadbreach

Ms. Katy McKay (MSc Marketing 2019) stated, about the valuable experienced she gained for European Turfgrass Laboratories for the Marketing and Retail Consultancy Project:

“The Consultancy Project module is like no other and was by far the best learning technique I experienced while studying my MSc. With the project having ‘purpose’, you are motivated to deliver the highest quality and best value of work to your real-life client. Personally, the practical experience I gained whilst working with my client organisation during the module, undoubtedly helped in preparing me to enter my current job. The fundamental basics that you are taught such as how to develop a professional relationship with a client and manage their expectations is essential in most places of work. Both of which I am regularly required to do in my position as Marketing Executive at The National Wallace Monument. As tour operators and agents look to bring their clients from around the world to visit the Monument, the establishment of a relationship between them and I is vital in securing their business. Once I’ve formed this relationship and understand their requirements, I’m able to manage their expectation of what we can offer as a visitor attraction to their clients. This scenario is one of many that is reflected in the Consultancy module and that you are likely to encounter in your future career. Experiencing how to manage and prepare for these situations in a safe environment is invaluable.”

Katy McKay (MSc Marketing 2019), Marketing Executive at The National Wallace Monument

Be a successful team member

There is a significant amount of required group and team work on the MSc. You will be encouraged to become more effective communicators and supportive team members in a professional business environment.  To help you, you receive feedback from other group members through formal peer assessment procedures and you will write reflective statements that consider why and how you made certain decisions and how they relate to the concepts you have been learning.

Fieldwork

  • For your consultancy project, market research needs to be conducted in order to provide client organisations with a sound diagnosis of their issue, and to develop for them useful strategies and recommendations. Both secondary and primary data collection (e.g. interviews, focus groups, participant observation, surveys, etc) must be conducted for the consultancy project.
  • Other courses might include fieldwork as part of the assignment (e.g. Social Marketing).

Assessment

Much of the assessment is continuous and may include individual or group essays, briefings, management reports, case analyses, debates, literature reviews, marketing communication plans, and presentations. Group work is considered important as it contributes in developing teamwork and communication skills. In your final semester, you will undertake a consultancy style project and submit a reflective learning piece of work that considers what you have learnt over the year and any areas where you still need to develop further skills or experience for your future career.

Classroom hours

You can expect to have around 20 contact hours per 10-credit module each semester and 40 contact hours per 20-credit module. This can add up to between 10 and 15 hours of classroom contact in any week. Remember though that you will be expected to work, either on your own or in a group, for at least another 20 hours a week to be able to complete all of the tasks expected of you. A timetable for all classes will be made available shortly before each semester begins.

Course director

Key staff

Professor Julie Tinson

Professor Tinson’s research interests focus on generating insight into youth consumer behaviour. This research is both international and national as evidenced in her published work and conference presentations. Wider dissemination of and interest in her research has also been demonstrated by invited presentations as well as media attention and exposure. For example, in addition to providing expert opinion to practitioner publications, she is often in the press e.g. The Times, The Scotsman, The Herald, Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday and on radio (e.g. BBC Business, You and Yours and BBC Radio Scotland, BBC News drive). She also appeared on Channel 4 SuperShoppers in May 2019. Her research is motivated by an interest in how transition impacts consumption and identity formation within families/groups. The contexts for this work have included rituals e.g. high school prom, as well as sport fandom and music. Her work often involves practitioners (e.g. The National Wallace Monument), and she has been successful in securing project funding from a range of organisations including Barclays, Associa, Tpoll and Channel 4.

Professor Iain Black

Professor Black is Professor of Sustainable Consumption at the University of Stirling and has held positions at the University of Edinburgh, University of Sydney and Heriot Watt University. 

His main teaching and research interests focus on sustainability and climate change, in particular why people choose not to consume (anti-consumption), deconsumerisation and responses to scarcity. On these and related topics he has published widely in top ranked academic journals including: Sustainable Development, Journal of Cleaner Production, Psychology & Marketing, the European Journal of Marketing, Marketing Letters, , Journal of Business Research, Journal of Marketing Management and Journal of Consumer Behaviour. He  is Sustainable Consumption theme leader for the International Sustainable Development Research Society and active with various policy forums including Commonweal where he is a Director and a co-author of their new report on a Green New Deal for Scotland.  Recent contributions to government policy include a report on climate change engagement strategy.

He is also highly active in the community where he is Chair of Friends of the Earth Scotland and founded SMAUG, a pressure group contributing to the moratorium on exploiting unconventional oil and gas in Scotland.

Dr Victoria Rodner

Dr Victoria Rodner is a Lecturer in Marketing and Head of PhD Programme for the Marketing and Retail Division at the University of Stirling. She teaches Brand Marketing & Consumer Behaviour at the University of Stirling and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Her research interests include branding narratives, Macromarketing, institutional change, value creation in the visual arts market, and consumer culture theory with a focus on religious and spiritual consumption.  She has a keen interest in emerging markets and much of her fieldwork is based in Latin America. She regularly publishes her work in quality international journals and has several publications focusing on country branding and branding and the arts.

Dr Dimitrios Kolyperas

Dr Dimitrios Kolyperas is a Lecturer in Marketing and the Programme Director of BA Sport Studies and Marketing in Stirling and Singapore. He has taught Sport Marketing at the University of Stirling at an undergraduate and postgraduate level over the past 8 years. His research interests revolve around sport marketing, corporate social responsibility, sport branding, sport governance, fan value co-creation and consumer culture theory with a focus on sports. He has published in a number of internationally recognised journals in the areas of sport management/marketing and general marketing and consumption, with several of his publications focusing on corporate social responsibility of sport organizations, and football clubs in particular. 

Dr Mona Moufahim

Dr Mona Moufahim is a Senior Lecturer and the course Director for the MSc Marketing and Brand Management. She is also involved in teaching on the course. She is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and has been teaching a range of marketing-related modules over the past 12 years. Her research interests include: religion, travel and consumption; cultural heritages sites and pilgrimage; identity (organisational, ethnic/racial, religious or political); immigration and extreme right politics. Her research has been published in top-rated international academic journals in marketing and Management. She has also contributed chapters to scholarly books on political marketing, critical marketing and Islamic marketing.

Fees and funding

Fees and costs

  2021/22 2022/23
Students from the UK£9,350£9,850
Students from the Republic of Ireland£9,350£9,850
Overseas (non-EU) students£18,645£19,145
European Union students£18,645£19,145

Students from the UK

Course fees

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

If you need to extend your period of study or repeat study, you will be liable for additional fees.

If you are studying part 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 set in your year of entry.

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

Students from the Republic of Ireland

Course fees

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

If you need to extend your period of study or repeat study, you will be liable for additional fees.

If you are studying part 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 set in your year of entry.

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

European Union students

EU Postgraduate Scholarship

Eligible EU students will automatically receive our EU Postgraduate Scholarship, which provides a 40% fee discount on full-time, on-campus postgraduate degrees at the University of Stirling.

Course fees

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

If you need to extend your period of study, you will be liable for additional fees.

If you are studying part 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 set in your year of entry.

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

Overseas students (non-EU)

We offer a range of funding options for overseas students.

Course fees

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 additional fees.

If you are studying part 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 set in your year of entry.

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

Postgraduate tuition fee loans

This course is 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

Postgraduate 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.

English students can apply for a loan of up to £11,570 each year as part of the Postgraduate Masters Loan Scheme.

Welsh students can apply for financial support of up to £18,025 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.

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.

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.

European Union and overseas 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

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

Brand Managers are central to brand protection in many organisations across a wide variety of industries and sectors, with glassdoor.com reporting the average Brand Manager salary in the UK as £42,704 in 2021.

Career opportunities exist not only in manufacturing and services but increasingly in public, social and non-profit sectors. There is high demand for marketing professionals with specialist qualifications throughout the world across virtually every sector of business. As a Stirling graduate in Marketing and Brand Management you have excellent career prospects.

Employability skills

You’ll have the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience by working on consultancy style projects with external clients. The University of Stirling Management School has a dedicated Employability Manager and from the very beginning of the course your career is our focus.

Companies we work with

Typical roles for graduates with this qualification include marketing manager, brand manager, brand marketing executive, product marketing manager or consultant.

Graduates from our existing MSc Marketing have gone on to work with well-known brands and with organisations in countries such as Japan, China, Netherlands, Australia, South Africa, Switzerland, Germany, Mexico, India.

MSc Marketing graduates in the past three years are currently employed as:

  • Marketing and 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 (South Africa)

Building on that foundation, alumni of the University 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 and 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:

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

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MSc Marketing and Brand Management

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