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Operational Research and Management Science

Course Description

This MSc programme gives you the analytical skills essential to support data analysis, decision making and planning. Founded over 40 years ago, it is regarded by many employers as the UK’s premier degree in the field. This programme is ideal if you wish to work in business analytics, decision support, industrial engineering, operational research and management science.

Our strong connections to industry and government ensure that what you learn on this MSc has a highly practical focus, both in teaching and in the three-month MSc summer projects. Graduates from the programme are in high demand, and recruited to organisations in many sectors, including roles in financial institutions, insurance, industry, retail, government, and consultancies.

• Applying Statistical Models in Business
• Computer Simulation
• Forecasting
• Introduction to Operational Research and Management Science
• Optimisation and Heuristics
• Problem Solving Skills for Consultants
• Problem Structuring
• Stochastic Modelling
• Spreadsheet Modelling

Visit the Operational Research and Management Science page on the Lancaster University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Shirley Lau

2639.jpeg I particularly liked the fact that there was a real emphasis on being able to apply these analytical skills to the ‘real world’ through a client project. I like the fact that this degree teaches you how to apply what you see on paper to the ‘real world’ and this is obviously a skill that is valued highly by employers. We also learnt a wide range of software such as excel VBA, SPSS, Eviews, etc, which makes us extremely employable.

My favourite modules were Pricing Analytics, Marketing Analytics and Forecasting because of all the modelling techniques learnt. It’s really fascinating to see the useful insights you can gain from vast amounts of data when applying the mathematical modelling techniques learnt at Lancaster. Another aspect of LUMS that I really liked is that you can really sense the genuine passion every lecturer has for their subject, and that enthusiasm translates across to the students!

My main focus at Lancaster was to study so I didn’t participate in many clubs/societies (although I was very tempted to join the baking society!). However I did nominate myself for course representative which was a great experience in terms of developing my leadership skills and I also organised Secret Santa for the Management Science department.

During my course I completed a three-month student project with British Gas in Cardiff, looking at improving their short-term forecasting within their call centres. From this I further developed my software skills, technical skills and communication skills. I also improved upon my presentation skills as the project required giving a final presentation to the clients – which was extremely nerve-wracking but definitely a rewarding experience!

I would sum up my experience at Lancaster as tough but rewarding. The knowledge you gain at Lancaster is really immense and valuable but it requires hard work and dedication.

Going to Lancaster University has really been key to the start of a successful career because without the MSc OR I don’t think I would have been lucky enough to work at MediaCom as a Graduate Econometrician – LUMS really has provided me with so many skills. The software skills such as Excel, SPSS and Eviews have really helped me in my role alongside the more technical knowledge learnt at Lancaster such as the mathematical/statistical modelling techniques, which is what my role is all about.

(Student Profile)

Himanish Praharaj

2643.jpg LUMS is highly ranked in the UK and the MSc Operational Research & Management Science programme was highly rated, and supported by a very strong faculty. I found that the degree modules were aligned with what I wanted to pursue and had a very practical approach in terms of problem-solving and decision science.

The collegiate system at Lancaster gave campus a very friendly feel, which was another major factor in my decision-making.

The practical approach of the programme, with its emphasis on problem-solving and its relationship to real-world issues were some of the major plus points. The theory was not the main focus of learning and the quantitative nature of the work and study was a major attraction. Certain modules such as Stochastic Modelling and Spreadsheet Modelling were really good because to their relevance to industry.

Another element I enjoyed was my dissertation which gave me the opportunity and experience of trying to solve a real-world issue, bringing about a positive change and adding value. I also got to build a model from scratch and work with real data which provided a deeper understanding and insight into the industry.

Whilst at Lancaster I was an active part of the graduate football team and was also a member of the Indian Society.
My time at Lancaster was a perfect mix of fun and learning. The campus life and student atmosphere, along with the sports facilities, really complemented my time at Lancaster. It made pursuing a technical degree all the more enjoyable. The opportunity to explore Scotland and the Lake District was also a huge plus!

Both the faculty and the careers team are extremely supportive. The LUMS Careers Team helped me when creating my CV and tailoring it to the industry I applied to. They also supported me in terms of applications and prepping for assessment centres and mock interviews.

Since graduating I am working for Ernst & Young as an Operations Research Consultant within the Business Modelling team. My degree and the skills I have learnt whilst at university are invaluable at my place of work and help me on a daily basis.

Overall, I feel that if we are willing to take advantage of the resources available to us then there are a lot of opportunities at LUMS.

(Student Profile)

Vivian Segovia Barros

2644.jpg After almost five years of working in the public sector, I wanted to pursue my postgraduate studies in an industrial engineering related field. After searching, I chose to study at LUMS because of its reputation within the UK and Europe and also because of the excellent MSc Operational Research & Management Science programme profile. I chose Lancaster University because of its outstanding reputation, infrastructure and location.

The overall programme is really well-structured. The approach of the modules, combining theory and practical applications plus the experienced Lecturers and Professors, gave me all the analytical and practical tools and skills I needed to solve problems of any kind. I particularly enjoyed learning Spreadsheet Modelling, taking my expertise of Excel to the next level and making my work easier than ever. Finally, the Dissertation Project work has been one of the most rewarding experiences.

My time in Lancaster was one of the best in my life. I participated in several Graduate College activities, finding myself as part of an amazing community. I’ve made friends that are now an important part of my life.

I participated as Management Science Postgraduate Student Representative, working along with other Departments in two Accreditations processes of the Management School.

For my Dissertation Project, I developed a Simulation Modelling Project with BT Openreach, which consisted of a meticulous review of the current delivery processes based in large scale statistical analysis, modelling of the system in specialised software and using it to predict its behaviour under specific market scenarios. This Project allowed the company to have a pilot model, perfectible and user-friendly, as a milestone for future process improvements. It also allowed me to use most of the topics learnt in the programme, put them into real life business problems and gave me a tremendous opportunity of experiencing work life in a renowned telecommunications company.

At this moment, I am working as a Lecturer for the Industrial Engineering Programme at my previous University here in Chile (Universidad Arturo Prat), lecturing operational research techniques and simulation courses. Along with that, I am developing, jointly with the University, a Simulation Modelling Project for a Mining Company, whose objective is to minimise transportation times and maximise storage fields.

I can strongly state that everything I learnt on the programme has been of great help for me to complete all the duties I have now, working in the academic sector.


Programme Scholarships - No. of awards TBC

We know that undertaking Masters study can be a significant financial commitment and we therefore provide significant scholarship funding for applicants who have been offered a place on the programme and who meet our scholarship criteria. These generous scholarships are provided for self-funded and part-funded applicants. The scholarship amounts vary and can in exceptional cases be up to the full amount.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Academic Excellence Scholarships
These scholarships are available on a competitive basis to applicants with an outstanding academic profile - for example, an undergraduate degree equivalent to a UK first-class honours degree.UK/European Scholarships
Generous scholarships are available on a competitive basis to applicants with a strong academic and/or personal profile who are nationals of the UK or EU countries.International Scholarships
These scholarships are available on a competitive basis to applicants with a strong academic and/or personal profile who are nationals of non-EU countries.

Application Procedure

You will automatically be considered for these scholarships when we review your application and while funds are available. Because we allocate scholarships on a rolling basis, it's wise to make your application for the programme as early in the year as you can.
There is no need to complete any additional paperwork. However, you may be invited to participate in a short telephone interview as part of the selection process or asked to supply further supporting information. If we shortlist you for a scholarship, we will let you know what we need from you and the process involved.

Further Information



Alumni Loyalty Scholarship - No. of awards TBC

The Alumni Scholarship scheme is available to all Lancaster University graduates who meet our eligibility criteria. We offer a reduction in tuition fees to all taught Masters programmes for eligible applicants, determined by the level of undergraduate award achieved. The value of the scholarship is:
20% fee reduction for 1st Class Hons degree holders
10% fee reduction for 2:1 Hons degree holders

Value of Scholarship(s)

Up to 20% fee reduction


To be eligible for the Alumni Loyalty Scholarship you must either:Hold an undergraduate degree from Lancaster University (achieved at any time) or
Have graduated from one of our partner institutions (LU Ghana; Sunway University Malaysia; or Goenka Institution India) or
Have studied at Lancaster University via our Study Abroad programme

Application Procedure

The Scholarship is open to all Lancaster Alumni, regardless of nationality or year of graduation. You do not need to apply for this scholarship; you will qualify automatically if you meet the eligibility criteria and the programme entry requirements

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A degree in any discipline that includes some Mathematics and/or Statistics, including, for example, Science, Engineering, Business Studies, Economics and Computer Science.

Last Updated

25 October 2016

Course Fees

£11,000 per year (UK/EU), £17,500 per year (Overseas)

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