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With 21 years’ experience of distributing online-based distance education, this course is one of the longest established in the UK online sector and is delivered by a teaching team with many years of experience of online learning and teaching.

In terms of context, the world is currently facing the prospect of a climate emergency, with decision-makers grappling with how to understand and respond to the pressures on our environment and society.

Students on this course will learn the facts about climate change, explore the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and consider potential solutions such as the Green New Deals, the concept of ‘degrowth’ and the transition to well-being economies, leaving our graduates ideally placed to influence or indeed become one of these decision-makers.

This degree also focuses on how communities can shape this more sustainable form of development, particularly rural communities. Most of our teaching team are located in the Western Isles, where 75% of people live on community-owned land, which sets the context for us to study community-based development, land reform, community empowerment and community energy projects, which can all contribute to this more sustainable future.

To develop a critical understanding of the three pillars of sustainability (social, environmental, economic), students study modules drawn from a range of social science disciplines; geography, economics, politics, sociology, environmental studies, as well as developing practical skills in collecting and analysing data, research skills, and working with communities.

Delivered online and available to study from anywhere in the world, students will benefit from collaborative discussions and activities with colleagues from a range of diverse backgrounds and experiences, facilitated by tutors with many years of experience in delivering online education.

Special features

  • Online study: this course can be studied from anywhere in the world, full-time or part-time to suit your personal circumstances.
  • Personal tutor support: to ensure a high-quality student experience, numbers enrolled on the course are currently limited to a maximum of 25 students per year so you will receive a high level of support during your studies
  • No exams: all assessment on core modules is in the form of coursework
  • High employability of graduates: recent graduates have careers in community economic development, managing rural development initiatives, working for UN agencies, and working on international renewable energy projects
  • An optional residential weekend each year: usually taking place in the Highlands and Islands, our annual residential will give you the opportunity to meet practitioners, staff and other students in an informal setting
  • Continuing professional development (CPD): you may leave after 6/12 modules with a CertHE/DipHE, while individual modules and groups of modules are available to study as continuing professional development (CPD) awards

For more information on this BSc (Hons) course click here: or contact Programme Leader, Dr Eilidh MacPhail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

To apply for this course click here: