Course Overview

UK Fees £9,500 *
International Fees £13,000 *
Alumni Discount See details
Duration 1 year

* Price per academic year

Course summary

With momentum around the United Nation’s (UN) sustainable development goals and the rise of a collaborative effort to reduce or eliminate poverty in developing countries, never has there been a more exciting time to get involved with international development. Our course prepares you to make a positive impact on the world and offers the chance to gain two qualifications – a Master’s degree and PRINCE2® certification.

Whether your future lies in practical aid, emergency response, fundraising, research, education or policy development, this Master’s degree will build your knowledge and expertise in a range of development disciplines. It will give you a firm understanding of development theory in an international context, with a particular focus on how to bring theory into practice deriving solutions to issues or problems for developing nations. That’s one of many reasons why we attract students from countries around the world including Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Brazil, Columbia and the Philippines. 

Experienced field practitioners working in international development organisations and NGOs contribute regularly to course content. You will learn from examples across the globe, studying real-life case studies, using official project materials and survey data from the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and other development agencies. You also have a unique opportunity to participate in a study visit to the United Nations (UN) in Geneva, where you will hear from experts and discuss topics, such as international trade policy, migration and poverty reduction.

Throughout the course, we aim to build your management skills, for example, you’ll develop valuable project management techniques and have the option to gain formal PRINCE2® certification. Additionally, you can choose to develop your skills and knowledge further by embarking on a field-based work placement programme with an NGO during the holiday period. 

You’ll enhance your ability to critically evaluate the economic, political and social factors that affect the development policy environment on a national and international level, anything from the financial crisis and its repercussions to the impact of a global pandemic like COVID-19, for instance. We’ll also examine ways to appraise development interventions, increasing your technical and practical capability to put forward workable and sustainable solutions.

The course is designed to prepare you for a career in development management with an international organisation, a non-governmental body or a government development agency. Our graduates have gone on to work as NGO programme officers, trade advisors, project managers, microfinance specialists and development consultants. 

Top reasons to study with us

  • Study in central London, one of the world’s major cities and international business hubs
  • Become business-ready through intensive practical experiences and practitioner input which has previously included the United Nations (UN), Tuberculosis Foundation and NGOs like the Red Cross
  • Opportunity to obtain a PRINCE2® Foundation certification in project management paid for by us (if you meet the assessment requirements)
  • Wide range of topics covered will greatly enhance your employment opportunities in the global job market
  • Field trips and social events provide an opportunity for networking and extending learning in new environments
  • Engaging delivery methods, including action-based practical activities and challenges, which may be set by businesses and enterprises, a community or other appropriate partner

Once you begin this course, we will encourage you to register as a member of the Development Studies Association (DSA) and Devex, the world's largest community of international development experts and professionals. Although these organisations do not provide professional accreditation, they offer platforms for networking and the sharing of research, which will assist your postgraduate learning experience and greatly benefit your future career development.

Course structure

The course is designed to give you the theory and practical tools to design, implement and deliver self-sustaining and collaborative development interventions at an international level, looking at past initiatives to gain a better understanding as to why some succeed while others fail. During the course, you will take eight core modules and one option module. If you're interested in learning a new language or developing one of your current languages, our Polylang programme offers eight major languages to choose from.

Semester 1

You will examine a wide range of public policy issues in the context of socioeconomic development, for example, in the areas of finance, trade, investment, human resources development, environment, sustainable development, and urban and regional development. You will also consider the role and influence of global development stakeholders and how to engage constructively and best access their regional and global expertise at various stages and levels of a development intervention, building outcomes that are inclusive and deliverable. With a focus on practical development, you will learn how to put together compelling funding proposals, a skill that will be required throughout your career.

Semester 2

Since we attract students from a range of different backgrounds and disciplines, such as law, accountancy, business and economics, the project enables you to develop specialist expertise in a particular aspect of international development management and focus on a subject that interests you. Conducting research and analysis, you will explore a practical development issue focused on a region (or regions) of your choice. For example, past themes included disaster risk management in the Philippines, a maternal health programme in Columbia and rural finance in Ghana.

The following modules are indicative of what you will study on this course. 

Core modules

This module will track and highlight current issues within the field of international development, and challenge you to engage in critical analysis of their socio-economic impact. It will also strengthen your ability to appraise their policy implications and sharpen your capacity to proffer effective and sustainable solutions in addressing such issues.

By exploring the concepts and theories that have been developed and applied by economists to the study of the problems of developing countries, this module explores the implications for the framing of development policy.

This module will introduce new concepts in development financing techniques. You will acquire the skills to understand modern project financing techniques, enhancing your ability to effectively manage and complete development projects in the face of the ongoing global financial austerity threats.

This module will give you the framework within which you will develop your full project from the Project Proposal submitted as coursework for the Research Methods module. The module will allow you to undertake an intensive study of a topic of your choice, which may be of practical relevance to your future work or study. The Project module is designed to develop your analytical skills, motivation, the ability to organise systematic study of a theme and will also help you gain time management and presentational skills.

This module will provide the necessary skills you will need to analyse and interpret development data, and to use those skills to enhance the decision-making process.

This module will provide the conceptual and practical skills you will need to evaluate various tools and techniques appropriate for managing development interventions at regional and global levels. Using appropriate case studies, it will also provide you with the skills to appraise and manage national and international NGO-sponsored, government-sponsored and privately sponsored projects.

You will acquire the skills necessary to complete your final year project. Essentially, this module will develop your competence in research design, information gathering and questionnaire structuring. It will also develop your understanding of quantitative and qualitative research methods, and how they can be applied.

The focus of this module is on energy economics and, in particular, on the role of markets in driving energy policy and strategy in both the short and long term. It covers a variety of theoretical and empirical topics related to energy demand, energy supply and energy prices, the influence of fiscal instruments on market operation and the importance of banks and financial institutions for the funding of energy projects. The first half of the module will explore a number of key themes and conceptual issues. These will include: an analysis of the structure and operation of oil, gas, coal, electricity and renewables markets and issues of price discovery, carbon trading, green taxes and subsidies; the role of banks and alternative sources of financing for oil and gas projects; an exploration of approaches to modelling and forecasting the supply, demand and price of energy and energy derivatives. The second half of the module will have a practical focus, with sessions led by guest speakers drawn from a range of energy companies, renewables firms or from policy ‘think-tanks’. These will take the form of short participative workshops exploring case studies on energy strategy and sustainability.

You can choose one option module from the University's postgraduate programme, subject to approval by the Course Leader. This gives the unique benefit of allowing you to choose according to your past academic studies, work experience or, perhaps, in line with your future career pathways or interests.

All students on our full-time business Masters courses can apply to undertake the PG/MBA Internship Programme Reflective Practitioner Module. This is an 8 week unpaid accredited internship, which can be taken in addition to option modules and will help students to gain invaluable work experience. The internships, which are with London-based organisations, take place during the summer period. To apply, students must submit a completed application form and a copy of their updated CV to the Business Experience Team; the team then shortlist from the applications and conduct group meetings with the applicants.

Ultimately it is up to our internship employers to decide whether they would like to interview the candidate(s) and offer him/her an internship. We have received very positive feedback from both postgraduate students and employers and expect that the internship programme will continue to remain popular amongst our students.

Programme Specification

For more details on course structure and modules, and how you will be taught and assessed, see the programme specification.

Careers

The course will particularly suit those seeking to work within NGOs and the international development community (including the World Bank, IMF, central and development banks, and government economic planning directorates), as self-employed development specialists, consultants or as a trade attaché in foreign diplomatic offices. Should you wish to complete the PRINCE2® project management qualification, this will also enable you to work with multinational corporations where, alongside good technical skills, an awareness of global development issues and challenges and the ability to think critically about the world are highly valued.

Graduates from this programme have worked as specialist advisers with top NGOs across the globe and as advisers with trade and economic departments in government offices. Others are currently working as development consultants, microfinance specialists and as advisors on UN-sponsored projects. Some have also set up their own development charities or proceeded to PhD research and teaching.

The University's Careers and Employability Service has built up a network of over 3,000 employers around the world, helping all our students explore and connect with exciting opportunities and careers.

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Build connections

Build connections with peers and future business leaders.

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Develop your CQ

Develop your cultural intelligence – or ‘CQ’ – studying alongside students and staff representing more than 100 nationalities.

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Kickstart your career

Learn how to use social media in your job hunt or LinkedIn to kickstart your career.

Industry links

Westminster Business School is one of London’s leading centres for business education based in the heart of London and its political, media and financial services scene. 

Job roles

This course will prepare you for roles such as:

  • Business advisor
  • Trade advisor
  • Development consultant
  • Programme analyst

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course have found employment at organisations including:

  • Survivors Fund (SURF), Rwanda
  • World Bank Group
  • The United Nations Organisation 
  • UN Volunteers
  • Save the Children (US)

Westminster Employability Award

Employers value graduates who have invested in their personal and professional development – and our Westminster Employability Award gives you the chance to formally document and demonstrate these activities and achievements.

The award is flexible and can be completed in your own time, comprising a set of core and optional extracurricular activities. 

Activities might include gaining experience through a part-time job or placement, signing up to a University-run scheme – such as mentoring or teaching in a school – or completing online exercises.

Westminster Employability Award

Teaching and assessment

Your learning experience is designed to provide both a practical and theoretical understanding of people management approaches and their impact on organisational behaviour. 

To assist the learning experience, we provide reading lists, lecture and seminar materials in advance via Blackboard, our virtual learning environment. Where possible, lectures are recorded using specialist software and similar tools to make sure you can really listen to what is said in class and don’t miss a thing.

How you’ll be taught

Through a variety of teaching methods – from traditional lectures and seminars to case study analysis, business simulations and projects – we encourage active, experiential and reflective learning. You will demonstrate independent learning, critical evaluation, reflection, discussion and debate, as well as the opportunity through the project to research, in significant depth, a relevant business issue.

The emphasis in the classroom is on problem-based learning approaches using complex, ‘real-life’ development problems. In the core module Current Issues in International Development, in small teams, you’ll investigate a contemporary development issue and present your findings, using a range of media. In the Managing Development Interventions module, you’ll analyse specific projects or development programmes or initiatives, using policy documents from the IMF, World Bank and other international agencies and organisations. In the past, for example, we have considered food security issues in the Maldives.

You’ll be encouraged to read widely and keep abreast of contemporary international development issues. You will develop practical knowledge, expertise and valuable insights from visiting professionals from a wide range of industries. For instance, we have had guest speakers from Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) who deliberated on food price speculation and its implications for developing countries. IDM students participated in our annual Westminster Development Studies Symposium, which involves speakers from around the globe. The keynote lecture last year was given by Professor Kunal Sen, Director of the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research. The symposium is organised by the Westminster Development Policy Research Network.

In the following graph you'll find examples of how study time has been distributed in the past (data from the academic year 2019/20). Changes to division of study time may be made in response to feedback and in accordance with our terms and conditions.

Year
1
15%85%
Scheduled hours Independent study

How you’ll be assessed

Using a wide range of techniques, you can expect to be assessed on the learning outcomes of your course in core modules through coursework in the form of essays, reports, presentations, case studies as well as time-constrained in-class tests and exams.

We try to make assessments as practical and relevant as possible, incorporating the type of work required by future employers, for example, preparing a funding proposal, outlining your case and justifying the investment you require.

In the following graph you'll find examples of how marks have been calculated in the past (data from the academic year 2019/20). Changes to assessment weights may be made in response to feedback and in accordance with our terms and conditions.

Year
1
19%12%69%
Written exams Practical Coursework

Why study this course?

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Combine theory and practice

Link theory to global practice through real-life case studies, problem-solving and live business projects. 

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Strengthen business insight

Strengthen business insight through interaction with businesses and discussions about current market challenges.

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A multicultural and international teaching staff

A multicultural and international teaching body, who come from professional practice and/or regularly publish in top international journals.

Online open evenings

Find out more about the University by visiting us at one of our open evenings.

 

Visit our open days page

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Entry Requirements

A minimum of a lower second class honours degree (2:2). Relevant degree disciplines include business studies, economics, geography, management, and operations research. However, students with qualifications in other disciplines such as engineering, environmental sciences, the humanities and languages are also encouraged to apply. Alternative professional qualifications with at least three years’ relevant professional experience will also be considered. Applicants from different academic backgrounds are welcome.

If your first language is not English you should have an IELTS 6.5 with at least 6.0 in writing.

Applicants are required to submit one reference.

View more information about our entry requirements and the application process

 

A minimum of a lower second class honours degree (2:2). Relevant degree disciplines include business studies, economics, geography, management, and operations research. However, students with qualifications in other disciplines such as engineering, environmental sciences, the humanities and languages are also encouraged to apply. Alternative professional qualifications with at least three years’ relevant professional experience will also be considered. Applicants from different academic backgrounds are welcome.

If your first language is not English you should have an IELTS 6.5 with at least 6.0 in writing.

Applicants are required to submit one reference.

More information

Student work

Students had the unique opportunity to spend a week at the United Nations (UN) headquarters in Geneva. We chose a theme for our discussions and the students heard from experienced practitioners. 

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Learn new skills

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Challenge yourself

On business challenges, you’ll experience cross-cultural communication, teamwork, creative and critical thinking, leadership and working under pressure.

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Learn to critically evaluate

Learn to critically evaluate the strategies that managers use to help organisations adapt in an uncertain or complex environment.

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Achieve ‘6Cs’

Achieve ‘6Cs’: cross-cultural competence, collaboration, communication, critical thinking, creativity, and compassion.

Fees and Funding

UK tuition fee: £9,500 (Price per academic year)

When you have enrolled with us, your annual tuition fees will remain the same throughout your studies with us. We do not increase your tuition fees each year.

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

As well as tuition fee loans, there is a range of funding available to help you fund your studies.

Find out about postgraduate student funding options.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible postgraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

International tuition fee: £13,000 (Price per academic year)

When you have enrolled with us, your annual tuition fees will remain the same throughout your studies with us. We do not increase your tuition fees each year.

Find out how we set our tuition fees.

Alumni discount

This course is eligible for an alumni discount. Find out if you are eligible and how to apply by visiting our Alumni discounts page.

Funding

Find out about funding for international students.

Scholarships

The University is dedicated to supporting ambitious and outstanding students and we offer a variety of scholarships to eligible postgraduate students, which cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Find out if you qualify for one of our scholarships.

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Read our blog and get an insight into life and studies at Westminster Business School.

Visit the WBS blog

Facilities

Supporting you

Our Student Hub is where you’ll find out about the services and support we offer, helping you get the best out of your time with us.

  • Study support — workshops, 1-2-1 support and online resources to help improve your academic and research skills
  • Personal tutors — support you in fulfilling your academic and personal potential
  • Student advice team — provide specialist advice on a range of issues including funding, benefits and visas
  • Extra-curricular activities — volunteering opportunities, sports and fitness activities, student events and more

visit our student hub

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Course Location

Our Marylebone Campus has benefitted from a multi-million-pound refurbishment resulting in new workshops, digital studios and development of the Marylebone Library. The campus is home to Westminster Business School and our award-winning Architecture, Planning and Tourism courses. For more details, visit our Marylebone Campus page.

Westminster Business School

Westminster Business School is one of London’s leading centres for business education based in the heart of London and its political, media and financial services scene.

We are recognised by professional bodies including the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM), Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and APMG International. 

Contact us

We have an FAQs page if you are applying this year.

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