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Managing your career destination.


This master's programme has been designed to meet the needs of those who aspire to management in tourism. It is aimed to help you develop a detailed knowledge and understanding of tourism and of the tourist industry. It is designed to give you the associated management skills and abilities necessary for management in the world’s largest and fastest growing industry to meet the needs of an ever more sophisticated international traveller.

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About this course

In this section


The MSc in International Tourism Management is intended for those with a passion for the wider tourism industry. It is designed for tourism managers and those who would see their career in tourism. The International Tourism Industry is one of the world’s major growth areas. The industry is vast and covers a diverse range of activities from Tourism Planning and Development at local and national level, creating and marketing tourist packages and the operation hotels and restaurants. The qualification is recognised worldwide for International Employment.

The course examines tourism management from the point of view of both the commercial private sector business and the public non-business perspective (tourism products and experiences), and is underpinned by understanding key principles of tourism. It will equip you for working at the level of individual enterprises, across the different sectors of the tourism industry, including its public sector in tourism development and promotion to managers within tour operations and destination management. The programme is vocationally relevant and academically challenging, this course is for current employees seeking to up-skill and move into management positions across the tourism sector, as well as providing graduates with all the competencies and qualities needed for employment and career growth as tourism managers.


Commencing in early September, the course starts with an induction period of three days duration. As a part-time student you complete a maximum of two modules per semester and it will take six semesters 2 to 2½ years.

A key strength of the MSc is that it is modular in structure and delivered in blended learning mode, with all modules being taught in 3 day intensive blocks.

Our novel delivery is designed to fit around your home and work life as a mature student. We recognise that being able to schedule study around your life-needs is of vital importance for academic success. Accordingly we have designed our master’s programmes to be delivered in compact and intensive three day immersive learning experiences.

The block delivered modules are supported with online discussion groups and three half day learning sets (tutorial learning support) per module. These days are set to meet with your tutors and student groups to develop your assessed work.

Semester three includes the three day learning block on research methods followed by a series of support meetings with your dissertation or business project supervisor between June and September.

The calendar of scheduled teaching blocks and learning sets is available to you prior to commencement on the programme.

Start dates

  • September 2018
  • January 2019
How to apply


Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.

Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.

In this section

Year one

Tourism and Hospitality Principles and Practice

Year: 1

The module provides students with an understanding of key principles of tourism (mobility, motivation, experience economy, satisfaction, destinations, change and futures) and hospitality (consumer behaviour, quality, satisfaction, localism, experience economy, and futures). and how they have been operationalized across the sector over time. It also assesses their relevance for the sectors in the future.

Niche Tourism Development

Year: 1

This module provides students with an overview of the several forms of niche tourism, discussing benefits to tourists and destinations. As tourism continues to develop and evolve through time, it is essential for Destination Management Organisations (DMOs) not only to be familiar with current types of tourism but to anticipate new and emergent niches.

Managing and Leading People

Year: 1

The module provides students with an understanding of the significance of management and leadership to organisational success. It examines the key concepts of management and leadership with specific reference to those concerned with best practice human resource management within the international service industries. In addition, it allows students to reflect on their individual management and leadership skills and identify areas for development.

Year two

Business Performance

Year: 2

Computer gaming or case studies coupled with computer model building are used as vehicles to develop higher-level financial management skills for understanding the dynamics of a business system, budgeting, predictive planning and financial model building to enhance strategic management and decision making in the hospitality, event and tourism sectors.

Strategic Marketing

Year: 2

The module examines and applies the principles, concepts and theories of strategic marketing management including managing the marketing mix, strategy formulation, strategic decision making and evaluation of marketing performance. Moreover, the module provides students with an understanding and knowledge of a range of analytical models and tools which can be applied to marketing planning, implementation and control.

Culture, Tourism and Creativity

Year: 2

This module is optional

The module provides students with an understanding of the significance of the relationship between, culture, tourism and creativity and the role and importance of culture, creativity and the creative economy in international tourism development.

Bidding for Success

Year: 2

This module is optional

This module provides students with the necessary skills and understanding of what a successful bid entails, including evaluating the appropriateness of potential tenders, essential management skills required and fulfilling relationship objectives.

Year three

Research Methods & Dissertation

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module will develop, enhance and assess the student's ability to carry out appropriate research, gather and process primary data and utilise analytical thinking to produce an independent research-based project at postgraduate level, in a key area of relevance to their course and chosen field of study.

Research Methods and Business Project

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module will develop, enhance and assess the student's ability to carry out appropriate research on an existing or potential new business, and to present their findings and recommendations to a panel of business experts.

Entry conditions

We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.

In this section

Entry Requirements

Applicants must normally have gained:

A second class honours degree or better from a recognised university of the UK, Republic of Ireland, from the Council for National Academic Awards, the National Council for Educational Awards, the Higher Education and Training Awards Council, or from an institution of another country which has been recognised as being of an equivalent standard; or

An equivalent standard (normally 50%) in a Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma or an approved professional qualification or other qualification; and

Provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English to GCSE grade C or equivalent. Non-English speakers must demonstrate that English ability is appropriate for studying at this level and provide evidence of English competence to IELTs 6.0.

Applicants do not have to hold their primary degree in a cognate area, but prior knowledge of studying tourism at an undergraduate level or relevant work experience may be beneficial.

In exceptional circumstances, where an individual has substantial and significant experiential learning, a portfolio of written evidence demonstrating the meeting of graduate qualities (including subject-specific outcomes, as determined by the Course Committee) may be considered as an alternative entrance route. Evidence used to demonstrate graduate qualities may not be used for exemption against modules within the programme.

An interview may form part of the selection process.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.

Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.

Teaching and learning assessment

A range of teaching and learning methods will be employed to develop learning through block delivery with the use of On-Line Learning for dissemination of teaching and learning materials. A range of teaching methods will be employed, including traditional lectures, case studies, business simulation gaming, one-to-one tutor sessions, videos,

We also arrange a number of field trips to hospitality and tourism venues and have a number of guest speakers from Industry

Assessment includes written essays, short synopsis, reviews and peer reviews, case studies, objective tests, business reports, computer modelling, individual and group presentations. There are no formal examinations.

Exemptions and transferability

If you have another qualification awarded by Ulster University or by another university or other educational institution, or have evidence of accreditation of prior learning this may be considered for exemption from part of the programme, provided that you register as a student at Ulster University for modules amounting to at least the final third of the credit value of the award at the highest level.

Exemption is not permitted from the dissertation or business project.

What exemptions can I get?
The Course Director can advise candidates as to the eligibility of their accredited course.

How do I apply for exemptions?
When accepted on the Course you are asked to complete an exemptions form, which is reviewed by the Course Director and exemptions are then agreed during the Induction process.

Careers & opportunities

In this section

Career options

This qualification offers a world of opportunities in terms of career options in one of the world’s largest and fastest growing industries. The tourism industry is composed of a diverse range of sectors and employers including national tourist organisations, airlines, visitor attractions (theme/amusement parks, natural landscape sites, castles, museums), tour operators, event venues, ferry/cruise companies, airport operations and management. You also have the opportunity to pursue avenues such as teaching, lecturing, training, research and consultancy in relation to tourism.

Professional recognition

Institute of Hospitality (IoH)

Accredited by the Institute of Hospitality that academic, vocational and professional standards achieved are appropriate and programme content and delivery meet international Institute of Hospitality benchmark standards.


How to apply Request a prospectus

Applications to our postgraduate courses are made through the University’s online application system.

Please email me (Lyn Fawcett) on if you have any questions about applying or your eligibility for the course.

Start dates

  • September 2018
  • January 2019

Fees and funding

In this section

Fees (total cost)

Important notice - fees information Fees illustrated are based on 18/19 entry and are subject to an annual increase. Correct at the time of publishing. Terms and conditions apply. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages for full details of fees

Northern Ireland & EU:

£13,680.00  Scholarships available

Scholarships, awards and prizes

An opportunity is available for the Highest performer in the Dissertation or Business Project to receive the Cross Keys Master’s Award presented by Mr Vincent Hurl, Managing Director, of the Cross Keys Inn.

Additional mandatory costs

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.

We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.

There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.

Please contact the course team for more information.


Ulster Business School Office

T: +44 (0)28 9036 6351


Course Director:Mrs Frances Devine

T: +44 (0)28 9536 7393


For more information visit

Ulster University Business School

Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management


Rachel Cooke

Sales Consultant at The Travel Corporation Canada

Well I studied for 4 years at Ulster, Coleraine and did my Bachelors in International Travel & Tourism Management with my placement year in Belfast International Airport. I then moved to Belfast to do my Masters in International Tourism Development. Those were definitely the best 5 years of my life without a doubt. I fell in love with all the new friends I made who are still in my life and had some of the best lecturers anyone could want. Professor Stephen Boyd was a fantastic role model for me and I learnt a lot from him!

I decided to move to Canada after I completed my master's in Belfast so see if there would be more job prospects there. I worked in a job outside my field for the first 8 months until I was able to land a job with The Travel Corporation. The Travel Corporation is a highly successful international travel group with 24 award-winning brands. More specifically I work for one of these brands Insight Vacations:

For over 35 years Insight Vacations has been designing the world’s finest escorted touring itineraries. We are experts in touring Europe where we visit 43 European countries, the most of any operator. We are the leading escorted tour operator in the Eastern Mediterranean and offer the same legendary high standards and perfectly planned touring itineraries to guests travelling to North America, India and Nepal.

I love coming to work everyday and being given the opportunity to work in my field with a lot of opportunity to grow. I have been the top seller for 2 years in a row, received Employee of the Month and several different acknowledgements for high customer service - I guess people love the accent. I also love being able to promote Ireland - Belfast in particular. I am looking forward to see how I can grow from here and I am excited to see where this company takes me. None of this would have been possible without my 5 year journey with Ulster!