MSc / PgDip / PgCert Blended and Online Education

Postgraduate, Distance learning

Blended and Online Education MSc / PgDip / PgCert

The MSc BOE is designed for education professionals seeking to enhance their knowledge and practice in digital teaching and learning.


The Blended and Online Education is a part-time, fully online programme that provides participants with practical opportunities to develop, implement and critically evaluate the use of technology for open and inclusive learning and teaching practices. Students may be lecturers, course developers, or other professionals who work in a teaching or teaching and learning related role in FE, HE or staff development.


Applicants may be completely new using digital technologies for teaching, or may want to extend their digital education skills. The programme allows students to develop a personal, evidence-based approach to the use of digital technologies for teaching and learning, and consider the implications for educators, students, colleagues, training departments and educational institutions.

  • Study within a highly supportive online environment, working alongside tutors and fellow participants in the programme’s virtual learning environment
  • Collaborate across a range of other online spaces and tools
  • Draw from your own professional working environment
  • Study alongside your peers and tutors online, as well as learning from guest experts

New for September 2020: an academic skills and scholarship in digital education strand to support your development as a digital scholar through your studies and beyond. This comprises flexible 10-credit modules which run alongside the main modules, providing just-in-time learning to develop your academic writing and research skills at master's level.

The programme is designed to complement a work-based role in education and students can choose to exit with a PgCert (60 credits), PgDip (120 credits) or MSc (180 credits) in Blended and Online Education.

MSc Blended and Online Education

Mode of Study:

Distance learning

(available ONLY as Part-time)


3 years

Start date:


About you
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Course details

Year 1 

EDU11100 Introduction to Blended and Online Education (*Keystone module)
EDU11111 Supporting the Blended and Online Student Experience (*Keystone module)

EDU11119 Academic Skills for Digital Education

EDU11120 Scholarship in Digital Education

Year 2

EDU11108 Curriculum Design and Development for Blended and Online Learning (*Keystone module)

**Introduction to Coding and Software

**Researching a Digital Education (10 credit)

**Being a Digital Scholar (10 credit)

Year 3

EDU11115 Dissertation - Research in Blended and Online Education

*Keystone modules are compulsory and are required for exiting with PgCert in Blended and Online Education.

**Subject to approval.

  • calendar How you’ll be taught The academic team, consisting of subject area specialists, will guide you through the course topics while recognising the unique experiences and perspectives each student brings with them. As adult learners, you will be encouraged to work collaboratively with your peers and draw on your own professional contexts. This course is fully online and utilises a variety of digital tools and media to provide spaces for communication and collaboration between tutors and students. You will be assigned a personal development tutor who will help you settle into life as an online learner at the university and will be your first point of contact for any academic or personal issues you may experience.
  • note and pen Assessments Opportunities to pursue your own interests will be facilitated within the assessment processes. You will be supported and encouraged to explore a variety of digital tools as a medium for demonstrating your learning. You will be assessed on your development as a reflective practitioner, drawing upon your professional context and demonstration of your critical engagement with the concepts and theories underpinning teaching and learning, and digital technologies.
  • library Facilities

    Your studies will be supported through Edinburgh Napier University’s extensive suite of learning technologies, including our virtual learning environment, online webinars, online assessment and feedback tools, ePortfolio, digital voting system, classroom recording and digital networking spaces. As an Edinburgh Napier Student, you will have access to our study support services  and a wealth of digital resources including eJournals and eBooks from the library.


Modules that you will study* as part of this course

Curriculum Design and Development for Blended and Online Learning ( EDU11108 )

In this module you will be exploring aspects of blended and online curriculum design. Based very much on your own context, you will be drawing on relevant technical, student support and administrative systems within your own institution and considering learning, teaching and assessment strategies, and institutional quality processes and procedures. The wider context of national legislation standards and frameworks will also inform your learning. In considering selecting and integrating technologies in curriculum design, issues such as ethics and the use of personal data will present opportunities for you to draw on contemporary debates and current issues. Developing areas which you have already touched on in previous modules, such as accessibility and usability, intellectual property, open access and copyright, you can pursue your own interests within the module activities and assessments. You will develop hands-on experience of evaluation of online CPD provision such as virtual communities of practice, social networks and open courses, leading to professional development and cross-institutional collaboration and networking. This module can provide the platform for the foundation for building your own personal learning network and the development of your online professional identity.

Further information

Customised Study for Blended and Online Education ( EDU11117 )

The content of this module is not pre-existing, but developed by you in consultation with the module team. You will develop effective professional principles and practice through active, experiential and deep learning. You will engage in independent study with subject related or allied cross disciplinary focus. You will define your targets with deliverable results using key indicators. You will engage with time and project management, with support from the module team, your Personal Development Tutor (PDT) by initial negotiation, resource guidance, strategy guidance, monitoring of research, motivation and dialogue.You will engage in consolidation, integration, interpretation application and research.

Further information

Educational Research Methods and Practice ( EDU11112 )

Philosophy and models of the research process
Quantitative and qualitative research methods
Research methods for blended and online teaching and learning
Sample surveys, sampling methods, design and use of questionnaires, interviews, fieldwork
Analysis methods, tools, frameworks and software
Logistics and practicalities of research and evaluation.
Literature searches including electronic media and the WWW
Constructing a research question and writing research reports
Ethical issues and codes of conduct, academic rigour in 'e-learning' research.

Further information

Introduction to Blended and Online Education ( EDU11100 )

In this module you will be exploring practical and theoretical understandings of the use of technology for learning and teaching. The module will give you an overview of teaching approaches and educational technologies, equipping you to evaluate their appropriateness for your context. Emphasising active learning approaches, you will gain an understanding of the use of technology for assessment and feedback. You will get the opportunity to critique learning, teaching and assessment practices using case studies. As part of a community of practice with your fellow learners, you will gain a first-hand knowledge of collaborative learning online and co-construct learning opportunities with your peers. While small blends and low-tech approaches to learning will be addressed, you can also pursue your own interests in this field, continuing these in greater depth in later modules in the programme. Contemporary debates around open education, global and cultural perspectives, accessibility and inclusivity will also form a key part of the development of your critical understanding of the use of technology for learning and teaching. Based on your own context, this module will enable you to develop your own practical teaching strategy, drawing on evidence from the literature and other sources.

Further information

Supporting the Blended and Online Student Experience ( EDU11111 )

Challenges of being a blended or online learner
Learning styles and approaches in blended and online courses
Cultural, interdisciplinary and technological diversity
Accessibility needs
Inclusive curriculum design for blended and online courses
Assessment and feedback
Institutional, technological and pedagogical models of support
Equivalence of support for on-campus and online learners
Plagiarism and the internet
Principles of facilitating online communication and collaboration
Tutor time-management, group conflict, and team teaching strategies
Supporting international online cohorts
Online peer support opportunities
Retention, articulation, and widening access

Further information

* These are indicative only and reflect the course structure in the current academic year. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.


Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Placement and study abroad opportunities are subject to UK and Scottish Government health and travel advice.

Full information is available in our disclaimer.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

The entry requirement for this course is work experience in a substantive teaching and learning, course development, consultancy or other appropriate role in school, tertiary or professional education.

International students

We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
Entry requirements by country

Please note that international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:
  • BN Nursing/MSc Nursing (Pre-registration) (Adult or Mental Health)
  • BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery

Admissions policies

We’re committed to admitting students who have the potential to succeed and benefit from our programmes of study. 

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures, and how we use the information you provide us in your application to inform the decisions we make.

Undergraduate admissions policies
Postgraduate admissions policies

Fees & funding

The course fees you'll pay and the funding available to you will depend on a number of factors including your nationality, location, personal circumstances and the course you are studying. We also have a number of bursaries and scholarships available to our students.

Tuition fees
Students from 2021/22 2022/23
All students - per 20 credits (taught & dissertation) *£725 *tba

Please note tuition fees are subject to an annual review and may increase from one year to the next.
For more information on this and other Tuition Fee matters please see Frequently Asked Questions about Fees

Click this link for Information of Bursaries and Scholarships

Fees for modules are calculated according to the number of credits (multiples of 20). The rate shown in the table is for 20 credits*.
The University offers a 20% discount on Postgraduate Taught Masters programmes to its alumni. The discount applies to all full-time, part-time and online programmes.


Learning technology, teaching online and student support.