Graduate level programmes at the University of Aberdeen and other British universities are known as “Postgraduate” degrees and are offered at Masters and Doctoral level.

Master's Programmes

Most Master's programmes at Aberdeen and other UK universities are 12 months in duration, usually consisting of 9 months of coursework, followed by a 3-month research project and dissertation.

Unlike undergraduate study, teaching is not carried out through an intensive class schedule, but tends instead towards directed reading, with the focal point of each course being periodic seminars and/or lectures. Teaching methods combine lectures, seminars, project work, and independent reading.



While in countries such as the USA, graduate students are often encouraged to pursue an individualised, broader based course of study, in the UK Master’s students pursue a more specialised course of study, with fewer elective options outside of the main subject area to choose from. One advantage of this more specialised approach is that most taught Master’s programmes can be completed in 1 year (12 months).

The aim of a Master’s programme is to build on your undergraduate studies to develop further expertise in a particular subject as well as developing your research skills. They are therefore seen as an ideal springboard to Doctoral studies or for entry to a profession. Certain programmes in areas like Business, Finance, Education or Health Science may also satisfy certain professional requirements.

Entry Requirements

Postgraduate programmes at the University of Aberdeen and other UK universities do not generally require standardised tests such as the GRE, GMAT, LSAT, MCAT etc. Instead, applicants are assessed on the merit and relevance of their undergraduate studies, as well as references and personal statement.

For further information on entry requirements, please refer to International Entry Requirements page or contact the Student Recruitment and Admissions Service.

How to Apply

All our postgraduate taught and research programmes, with the exception of PGDE and In-Service Programmes, can be applied for online directly to the University through the Postgraduate Applicant Portal.

Find out more about How to Apply

PhD and Reseach Masters

Research Programmes are offered at Masters (MPhil) and Doctoral (PhD) level. Research programmes are, as the name implies, intensely research focused and involve a candidate undertaking research alone or as part of a research group under faculty supervision and the writing of a thesis. Research programmes can vary in length, but Masters programmes usually take two years while PhD programmes normally take a minimum of 3 years.

Entry Requirements

Research programmes also require a Research Proposal as part of the application. For further information on entry requirements, please refer to International Entry Requirements page or contact the relevant School. Students wishing to apply for a research programme are advised to contact the relevant School office of the university in the first instance, to enquire about current opportunities and to discuss a research proposal with a potential supervisor.

How to Apply

All our postgraduate taught and research programmes, with the exception of PGDE and In-Service Programmes, can be applied for online directly to the University through the Postgraduate Applicant Portal.

Find out more about How to Apply