What you’ll study
How you’ll study
The course totals approximately 150 hours of study and assessment time. That’s around 10 – 15 hours per week.
This is an indicative guide to the time required for a typical student at this level to achieve the learning outcomes.
You can largely set your own study hours each week to cover the materials. MyAberdeen is available 24/7, so you can log in and study when it suits you.
Activities at fixed times
There may be some activities scheduled for fixed times. This could include coursework and assessments with deadlines, or online meetings with your tutor. Otherwise, you can access and work through the course at your convenience.
Our first-class support structure will ensure that you aren’t alone in your studies. You’ll have contact with your tutors via email and phone. You can use social media and discussion boards to chat with your fellow students too.
We provide a wide range of services to support you in your studies and beyond:
- Careers and Employability Service
- Disability support
- IT support
- Library support
- Student Support Service – help with finances, stress, wellbeing and non-academic issues
- Student Learning Service – study support, with advice sessions available via phone or Skype
- Aberdeen University Students’ Association (AUSA) – run by students for students
- Toolkit – clever apps and free training that can make your study life easier
Wherever you are in the world, you’ll feel part of our very special Aberdeen learning community.
When you study with us, you can expect a first-class support structure so that you’re never alone in your studies.
But learning online does mean you have to motivate yourself and manage your own time.
Your most important commitment to your course will be time – the time to work through, reflect on and understand your teaching materials.
Before you start a course that involves a high degree of independent study, we recommend looking at the time you will be able to devote to your course each week:
- Be realistic
- Create a weekly schedule as a guide
If you have any questions about studying online, get in touch with our friendly team. We’re here to help.
Your course coordinator
Where this will take you
We welcome students from all over the world. You do not need a visa to study online with us.
This course has no formal entry requirements, so you do not need to provide proof of your qualifications.
However, you should check the entry guidance above to understand the level of teaching delivered. If you do not have qualifications from the UK, check the equivalent teaching level for your country.
English language requirements
Teaching is delivered in English.
You do not have to provide proof of your English language skills to join this course. But we want to make sure that you can use English well enough to study successfully.
At this level of teaching, we recommend the following level of English language proficiency. These are minimum scores:
Duolingo English Test (taken from July 2019)
- 115 overall
- 90 in the sub-scores for literacy, conversation, comprehension and production
LanguageCert Level 1 Certificate in ESOL International (Listening, Reading, Writing) Communicator B2
- 33 for listening, reading, speaking and writing
IELTS Academic and IELTS Online
- 6.5 overall
- 5.5 for listening, reading and speaking
- 6.0 for writing
TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Home Edition
- 90 overall
- 17 for listening
- 18 for reading
- 20 for speaking
- 21 for writing
- TOEFL DI code is 0818
- 62 overall
- 59 for listening, reading, speaking and writing
Cambridge English: B2 First, C1 Advanced, C2 Proficiency
- 176 overall
- 162 for listening, reading and speaking
- 169 for writing
For full information about language requirements, see our English Language Requirements page.
Studying GIS involves storing and processing large datasets. In order to handle this, you need access to adequate computing power. You will need:
A computer (ideally a PC or laptop) or Mac operating on either
- Windows 10 or later
- macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or later (see note for Mac users* below).
*A note for Mac users
While you can use a Mac, this may limit running software used in GIS.
Most of the software you’ll use is best suited to a PC or laptop running MS Windows 10 or later. If you use a Mac, we recommend you partition your hard drive so that one partition runs macOS and the other MS Windows.
Alternatively, you can use our Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) to access and use the software required. Find out about our VDI.
If you’re unsure about the suitability of your hardware, please get in touch with us prior to enrolling so that we can offer guidance. Contact the Online Learning team.
Any desktop or laptop should be the highest spec you can afford, with:
- a minimum of 8 to 16GB RAM (ideally 32GB or more)
- plus graphics card/onboard RAM
- a fast processor
- a large hard drive or SSD (1TB or above).
External hard drive and memory stick
You’ll need some external storage for storing and backing up your data and coursework. We suggest:
- at least a 1TB external hard drive, and
- at least a 32GB memory stick.
Reliable internet access
- a wired connection
- a minimum download speed of 2 Mbps so you can take part fully in live sessions.
Speakers or headphones
- We recommend a headset with built-in microphone and earphones if you’re likely to study in an environment with background noise.
- A webcam is optional, but you may like to use one from some interactive sessions.
We’ll provide access to all the specialist software you require for this course.
We’ll also give you access to Office365 applications. This means you can use online versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and install these programs on up to five personal devices.
See our IT requirements article for more information on our IT services.
Your course fee needs to be paid in full before you start your course.
We accept payment via Visa Debit, Visa Credit and Mastercard.
Ways to save
You may be able to get help funding this course via:
- Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA)
- discounts – if any discounts are available for this course, they’ll appear in the section below
- employer sponsorship – we accept full and partial fee payments from sponsors.
All our students are entitled to a University of Aberdeen student card. This gives you access to a range of student discounts around the city and online.