MSc Multichannel Retail Marketing

Graduate with excellent career prospects, equipped with an in-depth knowledge of different dimensions of retail marketing and a range of practical and analytical skills.

Multichannel Retail Marketing

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, Campus based


Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM)

CIM accredited degree logo


The MSc Multichannel Retail Marketing will provide you with a comprehensive knowledge of core marketing principles, along with an additional focus on multichannel retailing, that will prepare you for a career in retailing and marketing management. The course has been designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of multichannel practices and their strategic importance to businesses as varied as retailers, manufacturers, or brand owners, as they consider the many routes by which they interact with customers.

The MSc Multichannel Retail Marketing 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.

Many of the modules that make up the MSc Multichannel Retail Marketing are taught by staff from the University of Stirling’s Institute for Retail Studies. Not only are teachers on the course research active but, drawing on the Institute’s thirty-five years of work within the retail sector, they also have a deep understanding of the practical issues involved in multichannel retailing. Our research-led teaching approach is a key strength of this course. In addition to consistently engaging in academic literature through weekly readings and module assessments, the course gives you a number of opportunities to apply concepts, theories and frameworks to practical aspects.

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. Find out more about Flying Start.

Top reasons to study with us

Course objectives

The MSc Multichannel Retail Marketing will provide you with a comprehensive knowledge of core marketing principles, along with an additional focus on the channel issues in retailing and marketing, that will prepare you for a career in retailing or retail marketing.   The course has been designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of the strategic importance of developing and managing retail channels at both national and international levels. At the end of the course you will  be able to:

  • explain the multiple routes or channels by which customers and retailers interact with each other and with the marketing activities of other businesses such as manufacturers and product brand owners
  • analyse the market competitiveness of a range of multichannel approaches used by retailers
  • understand the range of problems multichannel retailers face including brand consistency, matching prices across channels, the ‘last mile’ of a supply chain, and product returns
  • consider the social, political and cultural context of retailing and the impact that this has on channel choice in different international markets
  • explore the ethical issues that arise from retail marketing activities and to understand the impact retail 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 retailing and 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.

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

The Stirling Management School is one of the UK’s top 25 institutions for business and management research (out of 101 business schools) in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) exercise, and 64% of our research outputs were classified as world-leading and internationally excellent in terms of their originality, significance and rigour. We were ranked 14th in the UK in terms of research impact with over 60% of our research impact judged to have outstanding reach and wide-ranging impact on the policies of public, private and governmental organisations.

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 retailing or multichannel marketing 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.

English language requirements

Due to disruption in English Language testing caused by COVID-19, we are accepting alternative English Language tests (including online English Language Tests).

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

  • IELTS Indicator 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: 20 December 2021

If you are from India, Bangladesh, Ghana or Nigeria please also check your country/region specific page for any additional, or changes to, English language requirements.

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 multichannel retail marketing, such as showrooming, managing market positioning across channels, and the ‘last mile’ problem in e-commerce. You will also choose one elective module; the pool of elective subjects is refreshed on a regular basis. Over the summer, you will then complete the MSc by showcasing your learning through a business consultancy project in the area of retail marketing.



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


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.

For example, during the Strategic Marketing Practice module, you will have access to the Markstrat simulation platform, a web-based approach to developing marketing strategy and planning practice in a competitive environment. By means of various performance standards and protocols, you will get to 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!”

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.”

Be a successful team member

There is a significant amount of required group and teamwork 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’ll write reflective statements that consider why and how you made certain decisions and how they relate to the concepts you have been learning.


  • 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).


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 normally begins in October and January.

Course director

Key staff

Professor Steve Burt

Professor Steve Burt is the Associate Dean of Research at the University of Stirling and is involved in teaching on the course. His research interests lie in the field of retailing. Specific interests include the patterns and processes of retail internationalisation; the implications of international retailing for structural change; the role of branding within the internationalisation process; and failure and divestment in international retailing. His research pursued with colleagues at Stirling and in Europe has been funded by a range of commercial and public agencies including the ESRC, European Commission and retail industry associations. He is a regular contributor to the British press on retail issues.

Professor Paul Freathy

Professor Paul Freathy is the Head of the Marketing and Retail Division and Director of the Institute for Retail Studies. He is also Head of International Partnerships for Stirling Management School. His research interests include rural retailing, the challenges involved in supplying island communities and the impact of technology upon patterns of shopping behaviour. Additional research interests include retail history and visual representations of the vendor in Early Modern European art.

Dr Keri Davies

Dr Keri Davies is a Senior Lecturer in Marketing and a member of the Institute for Retail Studies at the University of Stirling. He is currently the Programme Director for the MSc Marketing.  In addition to his academic credentials, Dr Davies has worked for the Town and Country Planning Association and he was elected to the Scottish Regional Board of the Cooperative Group in 2011-2012. His research interests include the retail change in Pacific Asia, and the development and role of community and food cooperatives in different regions of the world.

Dr George Maglaras

Dr George Maglaras is a Senior Lecturer in Marketing and Retail. His research interests focus on the areas of marketing channels, supplier-retailer relationships, food supply chains and consumer behaviour. His current research and consultancy projects include the examination of the concept of power in retailer-supplier relationships; supply chain performance & sustainability; consumer behaviour concerning food products; customer journeys & customer experience. His research has been published in top journals such as the Industrial Marketing Management and the International Journal of Production Economics. He has also developed partnerships and is a member of leading industry and academic bodies (i.e. Chartered Institute of Marketing; Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport; Marketing Society Scotland; Academy of Marketing; European Association of Education and Research in Commercial Distribution; Colloquium on European Research in Retailing).

Dr Lisa Siebers

Dr Lisa Qixun Siebers was born in the Northeast of China and educated in both China and the UK. Her first degree was BSc in Economics, completed in China (1995). Before coming to the UK, she worked as a marketing and sales manager in Northern China (1995-2001). She completed her MBA degree at Leeds University Business School, UK (2003). She obtained her PhD at the University of Brighton on Foreign Retailers' Expansion in China (2009). Prior to joining the University of Stirling (Aug. 2019), she worked at Nottingham Business School, Nottingham Trent University as Associate Professor of International Business (2011-2019). Before that, she worked at Birmingham City University Business School as a Senior Lecturer in International Business (2010-2011).

Mr Eric Calderwood

Eric Calderwood is a Lecturer in the Marketing and Retail division of the Stirling Management School and a member of the Institute for Retail Studies at the University of Stirling. He holds a MBA in Retailing and Wholesaling degree from the University of Stirling. Before joining the University, he had more than thirty years of experience in a variety of retailing roles before developing his own retail consultancy.  In addition, he was a Main Board Director and Chair of the Remuneration Committee of the Co-operative Group as well as Chair of the Manx Co-operative Society. His current research interests include rural retailing, community enterprises and online retailing.

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 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

We have been offering courses in retailing since the mid-1980s and now have several hundred alumni from our Undergraduate, MSc and MBA in Retail courses. Many of these alumni are now in senior managerial positions in retailers or supply chains in the UK, Europe and throughout Asia. This extensive network of alumni provides us with contacts and opportunities in businesses across the retail and marketing sectors around the world.

Typical roles for graduates with this qualification include retail manager, retail brand manager, retail marketing executive, product marketing manager or consultant. Career opportunities exist not only in the retail sector itself but increasingly in suppliers, digital service providers 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 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.


Before you start your course, you'll have the opportunity to take our unique . Throughout our two-week programme, we'll challenge your perspective of culture and develop your self-awareness, as well as team-working, problem-solving and presentation skills.

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

Marketing Graduates 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 from 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 (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)

Changes at Stirling

Find out about important changes including how you'll be taught, start dates and how we're making campus safer.

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