MSc ICTs for Development will train you to become an information-and-communications-technology-for-development (ICT4D) champion who possesses the necessary technical and contextual skills to lead ICT4D projects such as telecentres, ICT-enabled microenterprise, public service kiosks and e-government initiatives to completion.
This course satisfies the pressing need for ICT4D champions; in recent years there has been - and continues to be - a massive expansion in the number of ICT4D projects in developing and transitional economies, with a skills shortage resulting in a high project failure rate.
By taking this course, you will benefit from The University of Manchester's world-leading Centre for Development Informatics and gain:
A range of optional modules provides an opportunity to satisfy specialist ICT4D champion knowledge and skill requirements, while the overseas field visits that we offer will enable you to build up your real-world experience at no additional cost.
Informal enquiries, prior to applications, are welcomed. Please contact our programme director, Prof Richard Heeks ( [email protected] )
An overseas field visit is an integral part of the programme. The cost of the visit is included in the programme fee. In addition, participants may undertake research visits to organisations applying information systems in practice in the UK. Fieldcourses may be scheduled at any point during the twelve-month period of the degree programme and this may include during University vacations. Successful applicants are expected to be available to attend.
Countries to be visited may change their immigration and visa regulations at short notice. The Global Development Institute (GDI) cannot guarantee that where visas are required for the field course, they will be granted. GDI will ensure that, in the unlikely event this occurs, affected students are not academically disadvantaged.
Part-time students complete the full-time programme over 27 months. There are NO evening or weekend course units available on the part-time programme, therefore if you are considering taking a programme on a part-time basis, you should discuss the requirements with the Programme Director and seek approval from your employer to have the relevant time off. Timetabling information is normally available from late August from the Programme Administrator and you will have the opportunity to discuss course unit choices during induction week with the Programme Director.
The taught elements of the programme, carrying 120 credits overall is continuously assessed by a variety of methods (project based reports, essays), involving largely individual submissions, but also elements of group work.
Participants must also complete a 12,000-15,000 word dissertation on a topic of their choice approved by the Programme Directors. Students are encouraged to base their dissertations on topics of direct professional concern to themselves.
The Arthur Lewis Building provides excellent resources including analytical laboratories, studio facilities, workshops, seminar rooms, an on-site cafe and dedicated computer clusters including GIS facilities.
Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: [email protected]
The programme is designed for those applying, or seeking to apply, information and communication technologies in pursuit of socio-economic development goals. It will include those who have, or plan to have:
Typical participants include:
The programme is relevant to those with career trajectories in the NGO and public sectors, and in the private sector given the private sector's increasing involvement with ICT4D projects. It is particularly intended for those who will be working in or with transitional and developing economies.
Managing information is a competitive necessity for organisations worldwide. New information communication technologies have led to growth, opportunity and disruption for businesses, and the skills to drive opportunity through information management are in high demand.
This Masters gives you the skills and knowledge to engage with the information society as a leader, innovator and entrepreneurial manager.
You’ll learn to understand and integrate contemporary theory while exploring the latest trends. Taught by our leading academics and business practitioners, you’ll be shown how to select and use cutting-edge tools and techniques to solve complex business challenges, with opportunities to gain hands-on experience through live case studies and projects.
You’ll benefit from interaction with leading UK and European businesses through panel discussions, mentoring sessions and workshops, all of which help you prepare for the challenges of a fast-changing sector.
This Masters is supported by an advisory board, with representatives from leading UK and international businesses including IBM, Ericsson, Lloyds Banking Group and Thales Group. They advise on content, deliver guest lectures, provide dissertation projects and offer site visits. You’ll benefit from a curriculum developed in collaboration with these partners, which allows us to focus our teaching on the skills most relevant to the workplace.
Teaching on the MSc is informed by leading scholars from the AIMTech Research Centre at Leeds University Business School, one of Europe’s most influential research centres in Information Systems and Information Management.
The centre has a tradition of cutting-edge research subjects, including how ICT drives organisations, information sharing in disasters, ICT in developing countries (ICT4D) and the design and evaluation of mobile information systems.
Core modules will develop your understanding of research design and introduce you to systems thinking. This will prepare you to study the concepts and perspectives of the design and build of information systems, and you’ll also learn more about entrepreneurship.
You’ll explore approaches and techniques in strategic management, as well as applying your knowledge to real-life scenarios to develop professional skills. At the same time you’ll examine the importance of information management as a core business activity and how it is put to use in different organisations.
You’ll also examine the ways in which businesses use information in analytics and decision science, and broaden your knowledge by studying innovation in the context of operations management and information systems.
By the end of the course, you’ll submit a dissertation on a topic of your choice to focus on a specific question in-depth. You may be able to choose a topic set by one of our industry partners, demonstrating your knowledge and skills in an area of clear interest to organisations.
You’ll take 11 compulsory modules including your dissertation.
We use a variety of teaching methods such as lectures, seminars, tutorials, practicals, fieldwork, workshops, group learning or computer classes. You’ll also have chances to enhance your learning through panel discussions, mentoring sessions and workshops with our industry partners and guest speakers.
Independent study is also vital to this course, allowing you to develop your skills and prepare for taught sessions and assessments.
Assessment methods emphasise not just knowledge, but essential skills development too.
You’ll be assessed using a range of techniques including exams, group projects, written assignments and essays, in-course assessment, group and individual presentations and reports.
This Masters prepares you for a range of careers related to information management. Graduates can consider a management position in information systems, information management, senior IT or business analysis roles, or may pursue a dynamic career as a technology innovator or leader.
The emergence of social media, wireless communications, the cloud, big data and mobile technologies are all creating challenges for managers and organisations. Alongside accelerating information flows, complexity and volume, the skills to manage and drive opportunity through this information are now vital for most organisations.
The skills to meet this need are scarce, particularly amongst managers. As a result, many organisations struggle with this area of business and demand for professionals with these skills is strong as a result. This course is designed to meet the expectations of both leading organisations and individuals who wish to pursue a career in information systems and information management.
Links with industry
Students have the opportunity to develop leadership skills as part of our Leaders in Residence initiative, which gives management students the opportunity to engage with senior figures from the world of business. This is a rare opportunity where successful and established business people will help you connect the theory of your course to real world practice, and offer their advice for career success.
We help you to achieve your career ambitions by providing professional development support as part of the course. You benefit from our Professional Development Tutor, who will help you to develop the academic skills to successfully progress through the course, and also the professional skills you will need to start a successful career.
Read more about our careers and professional development support.