The overall objective of this online distance learning programme is to provide knowledge and an understanding of animal welfare science, with a focus on the international issues arising from animal use in all its forms.
The programme is delivered by researchers and teachers from both the Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education (within the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies) and the Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) with a series of guest lecturers from around the world.
The programme offers courses in a variety of areas, including:
history, culture and concepts of animal welfare
animal welfare assessment
recommendations and policy
legislation, regulation and enforcement
applied animal welfare - production, companion and captive wild animals
This programme is affiliated with the University's Global Health Academy
Our online learning technology is fully interactive, award-winning and enables you to communicate with our highly qualified teaching staff from the comfort of your own home or workplace.
Our online students not only have access to Edinburgh’s excellent resources, but also become part of a supportive online community, bringing together students and tutors from around the world.
A blend of online learning methods are utilised, such as discussion forums, podcasts and live tutorials. The programme is modular, allowing us to offer a flexible student-centred approach to the choice of courses studied.
Students may choose to study to certificate, diploma or masters level.
The full MSc in International Animal Welfare, Ethics and Law programme can be completed within two years if students wish to study several courses at any one time so all taught courses are completed in one year and the second year is devoted to a dissertation project.
Alternatively students can take up to 6 years to complete the full MSc programme and there is also the option to graduate with either an International Animal Welfare, Ethics and Law postgraduate certificate or diploma.
Year 1: certificate
You will take two compulsory courses - International Animal Welfare Science and Animal Ethics, Policy and Law - plus an optional course.
Year 2: diploma
You can choose up to 60 credits of optional courses, which include:
•Production Animal Welfare
•Cat and Dog Welfare
•Captive and Free-ranging Wild Animal Welfare
•Animals in Research, Testing and Education
•Clinical Animal Behaviour
•Equine Behaviour and Welfare
•Anthrozoology (new for 2017)
Year 3: masters
You complete a dissertation of between 10,000-15,000 words which can be a research project or an extended systematic review of the literature in a topic of Animal Welfare Science, Ethics or Law.
Postgraduate Professional Development
If you are looking for a shorter course option, we offer online credit-bearing courses that run for 11 weeks at a time. These lead to a University of Edinburgh
postgraduate award of academic credit.
You may take a maximum of 50 credits worth of courses through our Postgraduate Professional Development scheme. These credits will be recognised in their own right at postgraduate level, or may be put towards gaining a higher award, such as a Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or MSc.
Graduates can use their qualification to enhance their career prospects in academia, research, governmental and non-governmental organisations and consultancies.
An undergraduate degree, with an excellent or very good classification (equivalent to first or upper second class honours in the UK), in animal science, biology, psychology, zoology or veterinary science.