Information regarding our 2022/23 admissions cycle

Our updated course listings for the 2022/23 postgraduate admissions cycle will be published at the beginning of October. Applications for 2022 entry will be available shortly after this. Check our how to apply pages for updates.

MSc Management and Information Systems: Change and Development (Distance Learning)

Year of entry: 2021

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Degree awarded
Master of Science (MSc)
24 Months (fixed); 18-60 Months (flexible)
Entry requirements

You should have a good bachelor's degree (minimum Upper Second (2:1) or international equivalent).

Full entry requirements

How to apply
  • The next start date for our 18-60 month (flexible) route is January 2022.
  • The next intake for our 24 month (fixed) route is August 2021.

Apply online

Course options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning

Course overview

  • Gain new skills in the effective planning, development implementation and management of information systems.
  • Understand the role of management of information, of information technology and of information systems in organisations.
  • Acquire the knowledge and skills to help in the effective management and change of organisations.
Interested in MSc Management and Information Systems: Change and Development by Distance Learning?

Open days

The University holds regular open days, where you will have the opportunity to tour the campus and find out more about our facilities and courses.

On this day, you will find out more about the School of Environment, Education and Development and our resources, and meet academic and admissions staff who will be able to answer any questions you have.

For more information, see  Open days


For entry in the academic year beginning September 2021, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (part-time distance learning)
    UK students (per annum): £833 per 15 credits £3,334 dissertation
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £1,292 per 15 credits £5,167 dissertation

Further information for EU students can be found on our dedicated EU page.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).


UK/EU students joining the August entry route, which has a fixed two-year structure, may be eligible for the Postgraduate Master's loan. 

We offer a number of postgraduate taught scholarships and merit awards to outstanding applicants and international students. For January 2022 entry, there are ten fully-funded scholarships available for candidates from low-/middle-income Commonwealth countries with an application deadline of 26 April 2021. 

For more information, see Fees and funding or search the University's postgraduate funding database .

Contact details

School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
School of Environment, Education and Development + 44 (0) 161 275 2814
See: The School .

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

You should have a good bachelor's degree (minimum Upper Second (2:1) or international equivalent).

English language

Applicants whose first language is not English must meet the following language requirements:

  • IELTS Test score of 6.5 or more overall, with a minimum score of 6.5 in writing and a minimum score of 6.0 in the other subsections, or
  • TOEFL internet-based test score of 90 or more overall, with a minimum writing score of 22 and no other subsection below 20, or
  • Pearson Test of English score of 62 or more overall, with a minimum score of 62 in writing and a minimum score of 59 in the other subsections, or
  • Grade C in the Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English, or
  • Grade A in the Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English.

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see Accepted entry qualifications from your country

Relevant work experience

You are expected to have one year's full-time or two years' part-time work experience.

Professional entry qualification

If you do not meet our academic entry qualification criterion, your admission may still be approved if satisfactory evidence of postgraduate study, research or professional experience can be provided.

Application and selection

How to apply

  • The next start date for our 18-60 month (flexible) route is January 2022.
  • The next intake for our 24 month (fixed) route is August 2021.

Apply online

Advice to applicants

Please submit the following documents with your completed application form:
  • copies of official degree certificates and transcripts of your previous study, showing the subjects taken and grades obtained. If these documents are in languages other than English please provide official translations;
  • Two written academic references on official institution letterhead, signed, dated, stamped and containing the official university email address of your referees. Alternatively, your referees can send us the reference letters directly from their official university email address. If you have had a substantial period away from any formal learning, professional references may be considered. Professional references should be written on official company letterhead, signed, dated, stamped and containing the professional email address of your referees. Alternatively, your referees can send us the reference letters directly from their professional email address.
  • a personal statement (maximum 500 words) detailing why you wish to study the course, your experiences, what you can bring to the course and any other information that you see as relevant to your application;
  • your CV;
  • copies of English Language Certification, eg IELTS, TOEFL or Pearson test score report.

Ensure that you enclose all the necessary documents, as the delay caused in having to seek any missing documents from you might adversely prejudice your application.

How your application is considered

Once your application has been received, our admissions team will contact you. We may ask you to submit additional information, if necessary.


If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry. 

In your new application, you should demonstrate how your application has improved. We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

Course details

Course description

MSc Management and Information Systems: Change and Development aims to train `hybrid managers' capable of understanding both the job of management in its organisational setting, and the role, management and jargon of information, information systems and information technology.

It intends to help close the gap of knowledge, skills, culture and language that exists between functional managers and information systems professionals - a gap that results in the majority of information systems, including e-government, e-commerce, and e-development systems, under-performing or becoming failures.

You'll therefore graduate in a strong position to lead the successful development and implementation of new information systems in a wide range of organisations. By the course's end, you will have been provided with:

  • conceptual frameworks to understand the role of management of information, of information technology and of information systems in organisations;
  • new knowledge and skills to help in the effective planning, development implementation and management of information systems;
  • new knowledge and skills to help in the effective management and change of organisations.

Special features

  • We're Europe's largest dedicated development research and teaching institute and have been at the forefront of development studies for over 60 years
  • We're ranked 7th in the UK and 11th in the world for development studies (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021).
  • Our research was ranked first in the UK for impact and second in the UK for quality in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014).
  • We bring cutting-edge insights from our research into all our postgraduate teaching.
  • After your course, you'll join our 10,000 strong alumni network . We'll keep you up to date with all the new insights and implications from our research.

The Global Development Institute has more than 20 years' experience of delivering high-quality postgraduate programmes via distance learning, and this master's degree offers you:

  • Competitive costs: participants remain at home and in work while they study, typically reducing the total net cost of study by two-thirds.
  • Career-relevant learning: we use cases and models from the real-world, enabling you to apply learning direct to your workplace and to build career-enhancing skills profiles.
  • Flexible learning: the pace of learning can be varied according to other commitments, and can also be combined with periods of on-campus learning in Manchester.

For employers, distance learning offers a lower-cost, lower-disruption, higher-flexibility route that is transportable to a multi-location workforce. Employees studying while working apply their knowledge directly to their work context, so employers see immediate benefits.

Teaching and learning

The distance learning course starts annually with two entry points: August and January. Participants study on the distance learning degree without leaving home or interrupting their careers. 

August entry involves a fixed two-year study period, completing five compulsory course units in the first year; and three compulsory course units plus a dissertation. Applicants following this route may be eligible for the UK Postgraduate Master's loan .

January entry allows greater flexibility.  A typical study route would involve completion of four compulsory course units in the first year of study, and completion of the remaining four course units in the second year. A dissertation is undertaken in the first half of the third year.  Using this route, participants complete the full Master's course in two-and-a-half years.

However, the January entry programme is flexible and can accommodate faster or slower study and completion speeds in order to take account of work, family or other personal commitments.

For example, after completing teaching period one, students can accelerate their study by spending a twelve-week semester in Manchester, studying alongside students on our face-to-face Master's courses.

Students can also slow down, perhaps taking only one course unit rather than two in a particular teaching period, or taking a complete break of a teaching period during which no course units are studied.

Different study plans are possible as long as students complete the course within four and a half years.

Study for both entry points is undertaken via the University's e-learning system, which provides study materials, online resources, and interactive online tutorial discussions with the module tutor and other course participants.

You benefit from access to the University's library, with more than 25,000 electronic journals and 400,000 electronic books.

Coursework and assessment

Each course unit generally requires one assignment of 3,500 words. Assignments for all course units typically relate to organisational application of management and information systems ideas.

You must also complete a 12,000-15,000 word dissertation on a topic of your choice approved by the Programme Directors. You are encouraged to base your dissertation on topics of direct professional concern.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit rating
Fundamentals of Information and Information Systems MGDI70001 15
Introducing Information Systems in Organisations MGDI70002 15
Issues in the Management of Information Systems MGDI70003 15
e-Business - Organisation and Strategy MGDI70004 15
Research Methods MGDI70005 15
Organisational Behaviour MGDI70040 15
Organisation Development and Change MGDI70050 15
Human Resource Practice MGDI70060 15
International Management MGDI71030 15

Scholarships and bursaries

There are many internal and external funding opportunities for postgraduate study.

We offer several postgraduate taught scholarships to outstanding applicants.

The Manchester Alumni Scholarship Scheme offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a first-class bachelor's degree and are progressing to a postgraduate taught master's course.

Many of our students have gained British Chevening, British Council or Commonwealth scholarships, as well as country-specific awards.

For more information, see  fees and funding  or  search the University's postgraduate funding database .

What our students say

'I chose The University of Manchester because it has a good, strong reputation. And it offered the particular programme that I wanted to do, in a way that suited the fact that I was working full time and couldn't really commit to full time study.

The course was something I could do outside of working hours, because it was all distance-based study, and primarily because there weren't any fixed tutorials or lectures. There were sessions that were organised but were fairly flexible, so it worked for me in terms of wanting to do the study and being able to fit it into my life. The tutors have been really good across the programme. Generally available, encouraging, engaging - and challenging sometimes!'

Saujanya Patel, MSc Management and Information Systems: Change and Development (distance learning)

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service.

For more information, email


Career opportunities

This course is designed to develop two groups of participants: functional managers who wish to take greater control over, and make a more direct contribution to, change in their organisations via the development and implementation of information systems; and information systems professionals who wish to improve the success rate of the information systems they develop or use, and who may also wish to upgrade their management skills and knowledge.

It will be relevant to those with career trajectories in the private, public, and NGO sectors, and it is particularly appropriate for those working in or with newly-developed, transitional and developing countries. Our graduates have an impressive career record in the UK and internationally. 

Careers support

The University has its own dedicated Careers Service that you would have full access to as a student and for two years after you graduate. At Manchester you will have access to a number of opportunities to help boost your employability .

Career trajectories

The MSc in Management and Information Systems can help you select and target jobs in any part of the hybrid triangle. It marks the overall set of typical jobs into which our you move, which are some mix of management role or subject specialism (such as services, production, logistics, marketing, etc); technology role; and information systems role.

See more examples and a diagram of typical jobs taken by our graduates .

Further studies

Each year, some students are bitten by the postgraduate bug and decide to continue their studies by undertaking a PhD. Those who take a PhD typically see themselves with a career trajectory into academia or into a research-intensive job role such as consultancy or policy advisory positions. Those from the MSc M&IS programme may study with the University's Centre for Development Informatics .

Career examples

Masuda Ahmad joined the MSc programme when working as a Business Analyst for software house Uraan Software in Lahore, Pakistan.  Her MSc studies facilitated her promotion within Uraan to take on a programme management role.  Subsequently she took a significant step up with a new job as General Manager for Business Development and Media - exactly the type of hybrid role the MSc seeks to develop, combining management and ICT expertise - for Qadir Enterprises; an engineering and construction company based in Peshawar working on civil and electrical engineering projects.  Masuda also started volunteering at a local school - Qadir Nagar High School - developing an education management information system, based on work undertaken for her MSc dissertation.

Eisah Mayanja joined the MSc programme when working as a Senior Applications Analyst for Grameen App Lab in Kampala, Uganda.  His MSc studies facilitated his promotion within Grameen to the role of Senior Technology Analyst, using some of the management content of the programme to help move from mainly technical development to a more project management role.  Following three years overseeing software quality assurance for MONUSCO, the UN peacekeeping mission, he is now Technical Director of New Wave Technologies, coordinating deployment of Internet-based applications for UN agencies and NGOs in Africa.

At the beginning of her studies, Emma Jackson was a web site editor for the Department of Telecommunications, Science and Technology within the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.  Her MSc studies facilitated her promotion to Deputy Director of the Public Sector Reform Unit, with a hybrid job profile of the type the MSc programme aims to develop.  Her role supports the government's public sector reform programme and requires systems analysis, change management and process re-engineering capabilities that various MSc modules helped Emma develop.