Publishing MSc

Our intensive, industry-focused publishing programme is the ‘standard bearer for publishing education in the UK’ and will open doors for you
The Professional Publishers Association

We provide the specialist training and experience you need to succeed in the fast-paced, vibrant world of publishing.

Our focus is vocational and will provide you with industry-specific and research skills demanded by employers, invaluable contacts that will open doors, and a placement that will provide you with crucial experience.

MSc Publishing works closely with the Professional Publishers Association (PPA), and was recently awarded the prestigious Creative Skillset Tick.

Edinburgh Napier is the only University to have doubly-accredited postgraduate publishing provision.

Due to the competitive nature of this programme, we advise you submit your application as early as possible and before 28th July 2023.

Woman smiling behind stacks of books

Mode of Study:



1 year

Start date:




Course details

Our programme works with industry and will open doors for you. Our team has strong relationships with thought leaders across industry, commerce and academia which helps to ensure you are at the forefront of the latest thinking, processes and technology. The expansion of digital media has created a need for highly specialised skills in publishing. 

This course will give you the specialist training and experience demanded by publishing employers. You'l develop skills in critical thinking and problem solving, and will graduate with an excellent understanding of the industry in an international context.

You will become familiar with every aspect of the publishing process, meet industry professionals and attend prestigious events such as the London International Book Fair, the Edinburgh International Book Festival and Magfest. You'll have further opportunities to meet with industry professionals and make valuable contacts at UNESCO Literary Salons, book launches, author readings and literary events.

We are also linked with the internationally renowned Scottish Centre for the Book based at Edinburgh Napier University.

Please visit our Publishing By Degrees site for more information regarding our current students.

  • calendar How you’ll be taught

    This is a one year full-time course starting in September and is split up into three trimesters.

    You’ll learn by a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials and independent study.

  • briefcase Work placement

    A work placement module is offered on this course.

  • library Facilities

    Our Merchiston campus, situated in the heart of Edinburgh, is home to creative industries students along with engineering and computing. This mix of disciplines helps create an inspiring, innovative and collaborative atmosphere.

    Inside you’ll also find the 500-seat Jack Kilby Computing Centre (open 24 hours a day in Trimesters 1 and 2), the library and the Edinburgh Napier Students’ Association.


Modules that you will study* as part of this course

Dissertation ( JAC11106 )

The module comprises a taught programme in trimester 2, which covers advanced literature reviewing, framing and generating research questions, methodological issues (including reflexivity), qualitative research methods, critical analysis, scholarly writing and presentation. Students undertake independent study under supervision to produce a 15 000-word dissertation on a topic appropriate to the student's programme of study (Trimester 2).

Further information

Fiction and the Fiction Market ( CLP11133 )

You will develop an understanding of the creative and business aspects of the fiction market. The growth and current prominence of fiction publishing in the global publishing industry and the significance of copyright, rights sales and legal relationships will be explored. You will be taken through the different stages in the publishing process for fiction and analyse the principles and practices involved. Derivative works, for example, translations, will represent a key element in understanding the use of rights. You will critically examine the development of editorial policy, budgeting, marketing, author development, and design and illustration. You will undertake marketing research, publicity and promotional campaign appraisal and market analysis. You will explore commercial marketing strategies of modern fiction publishers. A unique focus of this module is its consideration of the ethical vis a vis the commercial realities of fiction publishing.

Further information

Publishing Placement and Professional Development ( CLP11103 )

Many companies expect students to have experience of working within the publishing industry before applying for their first position. The aim of this module therefore, is to enable students to consolidate and apply the academic study which they have undertaken in the first trimester of this programme and provide the opportunity to experience the commercial realities of industry. The module also aims to introduce and prepare students to experience some of those elements in professional life and employment which cannot be taught in an academic environment.

Further information

Publishing in Context ( CLP11100 )

You will critically explore the way in which publishing has developed as an industry from the time of the creation of the first printing press until the present day to contextualise the business and management structures of the industry. You will examine the size, structure, and organisation of different contemporary publishing sectors. You will learn about different publishing business models and other management theories to examine the internal structures of large and small publishing companies as well as their position in the wider media sector. Further, you will reflect on the impact of digitisation on the publishing industry and how these disruptions together with different business models affect the dynamics between publishers, authors, retailers, and various other stakeholders. Lastly, you will examine the broader societal, political, ethical, and regulatory contexts of the publishing industry and learn about the importance of intellectual property rights in an evolving multinational and multimedia context.

Further information

Publishing in Practice ( CLP11137 )

You will learn how to identify and evaluate markets, publishing priorities and resources; develop and maintain a publishing list; collaborate with authors, contributors, developers and providers of material for publication; manage editorial projects; control editorial quality; edit texts and images; proofread text and collate corrections; estimate and control production costs; assess the value of production and publication schedules. You will learn about page layout, typography, image reproduction, and saving and transferring documents according to a specified brief, ready for publication and presentation.

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.

Full information is available in our disclaimer.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

The entry requirement for this course is a Bachelor (Honours) Degree at 2:1 or above in any discipline.

We may also consider lesser qualifications if you have sufficient relevant work experience within the industry. 

English language requirements

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test.  The English Language requirements for this programme are an IELTS (Academic) overall band score of 6.5 with no individual component below 6.5. For guidance on the acceptability of other English Language tests please contact

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English, or your undergraduate degree was taught and examined in English (within two years of starting your postgraduate course). Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

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, Mental Health, Child, Learning Disabilities)
  • BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery
  • All Graduate Apprenticeship courses.

See who can apply for more information on Graduate Apprenticeship courses.

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 2023/24 2024/25
Scotland, England, Wales, Northern Ireland, and Republic of Ireland £6,930 tba
Overseas and EU £17,090 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

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.
Please note that the tuition fees liable to be paid by EU nationals commencing their studies from 1 August 2021 will be the Overseas fee rate. The University offers a range of attractive Tuition Fee bursaries to students resident in specific countries. More information on these can be found here.

  • Book, magazine or journal publishing (editing, design, production, sales or marketing)
  • Consumer and corporate publishing
  • Online and digital publishing
  • Publishing entrepreneur
Student using a computer