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    School of Health in Social Science Logo
  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas

    Nursing & Health

  • Start Date

    September

  • Course Duration

    MSc: 1 year full-time or 2-3 years part-time; PgDip: 21 months; PgCert: 9 months

  • Course Type

    MSc, PgDip, PgCert

  • Course Fees

    Tuition fees vary between degree programmes. Find the specific fees for your chosen programme on our website.

  • Last Updated

    26 November 2018

Course content

Programme Description

This innovative programme offers advanced study for nurses working within a global context to enhance practice at the local level. Students can either choose a specific pathway: leadership, clinical research* or education, or follow a flexible generic programme with the opportunity to study a range of relevant courses from across the School of Health in Social Science and the wider university. Nursing, health and social care research underpins the whole programme.

Students will all begin the MSc at the same entry point, but depending on the pathway they would like to undertake, have the opportunity to exit with a range of different degree titles: MSc Advanced Nursing; MSc Advanced Nursing (leadership); MSc Advanced Nursing (education); or, MSc Advanced Nursing (clinical research).

The programme is suitable for nurses who are registered in any branch of the profession to practice in their own country and who want to critically examine the ways that evidence-based research, theory and knowledge can advance nursing in the global context. The degree also provides an excellent foundation for postgraduate research e.g. a doctoral degree, or to advance their professional career.

*The clinical research pathway is only available for students who are registered with the Nursing Midwifery Council in the UK to practice in a clinical setting.

Programme structure

Teaching is delivered in a range of engaging and interactive formats by academic and specialist staff working in the contemporary health care environment. Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, workshops and tutor-led online learning environments.

Full-time MSc students take two core courses and one option course each semester. There is a choice of one of three different dissertations – empirical, research proposal or e-portfolio - to be completed during the third semester.

Students can follow one of three different pathways: leadership, education or clinical research, or can take a generic pathway, depending on career aspirations and areas of interest.

Part-time students choose one or two courses each semester and have a choice of dissertation in their final year. They can also follow the three different pathways or take a generic pathway.

The compulsory courses form the core part of the MSc and are:

  • Global Leadership in Nursing: Policy, informatics and innovation
  • Designing Research in Nursing, Health and Social Care

Students can then choose 4 optional taught courses before they go on to undertake the dissertation. Optional courses can be chosen from those on offer within the School of Health in Social Science or across the wider university and are dependent on the pathway that the student chooses. Optional courses vary across years depending on the specific courses on offer, but may include:

  • Clinical decision making and professional judgement
  • Teaching practice attachment
  • Leadership – exploring your potential (distance)
  • Global public health: a critical approach to health improvement
  • Conducting research in nursing, health and social care
  • Health research methods workshops
  • Homeless and inclusion health
  • Cancer care
  • Transplant nursing
  • Care of the older people
  • Community nursing

Learning outcomes

The MSc Advanced Nursing enables students to:

  • develop advanced specialist knowledge and skills to be able to interrogate nursing, health and social care research, scholarship and practice within the context of a globalising world;
  • develop extensive, detailed and critical knowledge and understanding in either leadership, education or clinical research;
  • enhance skills to be a professional and critically reflective practitioner able to provide evidence-based practice in both a local and international context;
  • develop advanced skills in critical analysis for working in an evolving landscape of nursing, health and social care.

Career opportunities

This programme will facilitate career progression for those working in any branch of Nursing to develop advanced nursing knowledge, skills and understanding. All students will develop research skills to enable them to apply for progression to doctoral level study upon successful completion of the programme. In addition, students taking a specific pathway will develop specialist skills in leadership, education and clinical research to progress careers in these areas.


Visit the Advancing Nursing Practice (MSc/PgDip/PgCert) page on the University of Edinburgh website for more details!

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