We regard professional experience very highly. Our entry requirements stipulate that potential students must have EITHER an appropriate first degree (with a 2:I or equivalent internationally) OR some related GIS experience. Thus, if you do not have a degree but have been working within a GIS environment for a number of years, then we will certainly consider your application. All applications are considered on an individual basis. Please to discuss your situation. It would be useful if you could provide some information on your working history and a copy of your CV.
Our three programmes are very competitively priced and reflect the level of choice and availability of modules open to you as a student.
Our 2016/17 prices are as follows:
Postgraduate Certificate in GIS - £3,200
Postgraduate Diploma in GIS - £6,400
Masters in GIS - £8,000
If you are a self-financing student, they you will normally pay your fees by a debit/credit card. The first installment may be paid by a cheque or bank transfer but subsequent payments must then be paid by debit/credit card online. You can pay us on an annual basis at the beginning of the year or on a six-monthly basis.
If you are a sponsored student, then you may have your fees paid for by your organisation, in which case you must provide a sponsor letter on Headed paper clearly stating how much the organisation is paying, for how long, your full name and more importantly who to invoice.
For full details on course fees, please see our Fees page.
We have four intakes per academic year in July, October, January and April.
The October intake will begin on 3rd October 2016
The January intake will begin on 3rd January 2017
The April intake will begin on 3rd April 2017
The July intake will begin on 3rd July 2017
The closing dates for applications in the 2016/17 academic year are as follows:
The October application deadline is 19th September 2016
The January application deadline is 12th December 2016
The April application deadline is 20th March 2017
The July application deadline is 19th 19th June 2017
Please ensure that your application and supporting documents reach us by the specified deadline to avoid disappointment.
Yes, you may take breaks between modules or spend longer than the specified time periods studying certain modules if your schedule or needs dictate this. One attraction of the course is its flexibility. We appreciate that you are likely to be balancing study with other commitments such as employment and family and so we will do our best to accommodate any requests you make.
There is currently no online PhD programme. However, if you live in the UK or the EU, then you might wish to consider a part-time PhD. A former distance learning student recently completed a part-time PhD with us, which they studied remotely from Cyprus. Please if you would like more details. Also, please take a look at our PhD webpage for further information.
Depending on the programme you are enrolled upon, the duration is as follows:
|Postgraduate Certificate in GIS||12 months|
|Postgraduate Diploma in GIS||24 months|
|MSc GIS||36 months|
You will study one module per three month period and complete four modules per year. This results in the Certificate (4 modules) taking twelve months and the Diploma (a further four modules) taking a total of 24 months. If continuing onto the MSc, you are then free to complete your final dissertation project in the remaining twelve months.
Further details are available from the Structure page of our website.
If completing the Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma you are assessed on an ongoing basis through coursework.
If completing the MSc programme, the final assessment consists of a dissertation completed in year 3 (or equivalent). This is an independent research project enabling you to focus on an area which has attracted your attention whilst completing the Certificate/Diploma modules or this can be something totally new. You will devise a topic with your tutor and receive ongoing support and guidance through to completion.
Absolutely! All materials are made available online as you progress through the course. You will be given access to our online learning environment enabling you to view video content, download files, and interact with fellow students and tutors via discussion boards. Everything to do with this course is conducted online.
We do not have any specific periods where you must be online as study is conducted at times suited to you. This therefore enables 24/7 learning. It is also possible to download materials and work offline if you know access to an internet point is going to be difficult at certain times (e.g. whilst traveling).
In order to join any of our programmes, we stipulate that potential students must have either an appropriate first degree (of upper second class standing) OR some related GIS employment. If the latter, students must convince the university of their ability (See FAQ 1).
It is possible, however, to study single modules or short-courses (see FAQ 14). These courses do not require any prerequisites and are a nice way to get started if you are unsure about committing to a more formal qualification. Satisfactory achievement in one of these courses can often be enough to grant you admission onto one of our more recognised courses (Certificate, Diploma, or MSc). Our most popular short-course is GEOG5021M: Using Databases and GIS (WUN).
Course tutors will always be happy to assist you through a variety of communication methods. Typically, email and discussion boards are the predominant mode of interaction. You can expect to receive a prompt response to your emails, i.e. within 48 hours on working days. Online discussion boards enable you to interact with fellow students on your module, ask questions, answer questions, and raise concerns. These boards are regularly visited by course tutors who also contribute to the discussions.
Further methods include telephone or Skype conversations and we also make use of Adobe Connect and GoTo Meeting software to host tutorials.
We do have processes in place to apply for module exemption. This process involves making a strong case to the University. This case can be based on work experience, prior education or a combination of the two, but needs to provide evidence that your previous experience equates to the academic learning outcomes and standards of our modules.
Exemptions are only available on the following Year 1 modules and apply only to those students looking to study the full MSc programme:
Students wishing to be considered for module exemptions should to discuss this further and request a Module Exemption Form. Please note that exemption is not guaranteed.
Students living in countries where the home language is NOT English will more than likely be required to take an IELTS or TOEFL test. If you are unsure as to your eligibility then please to discuss this further.
It should be noted that overseas students who have studied for a degree at a British University will not be required to undertake proof of English Language testing.
If required to sit a test, our requirements for the 2016/17 academic year are as follows:
International English Language Testing System (IELTS)
An average score of 6.5. You must achieve a minimum of 6.0 or above in listening, speaking and reading and 6.5 or above in writing.
Teaching of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
94 on TOEFL IBT (internet-based), with minimum scores of 21 in listening, 23 in reading, 23 in speaking and 24 in writing.
Yes, all of the degree programmes at the University of Leeds are validated in this way, including our distance learning courses. Currently, one University of Leeds credit is equal to 0.5 credits on the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Therefore, the Postgraduate Certificate in GIS is equal to 30 ECTS, the Postgraduate Diploma in GIS is equal to 60 ECTS, and the full MSc in GIS totals 90 ECTS.
Yes, we offer various short-courses designed to introduce you to specific aspects of GIS. A full list of the courses available can be found here. All short-courses cost £850 and take around three months to complete on a part-time basis. There are no prerequisites for these courses so simply completing an application form is enough to confirm you a place.
Many students uses these short-courses as tasters to see what it would be like to complete a more formal qualification, such as the Certificate, Diploma or MSc. If you do this and then opt to upgrade to a full qualification later on, we will carry forward the marks obtained in the short-course.
Our most popular short-course is GEOG5021M: Using Databases and GIS (WUN). This module introduces students to ArcGIS, the world's leading GIS software package. It assumes no previous knowledge and is ideal if you need to learn the software on the go.
No, because all teaching, assessment and interaction are conducted online. However, we would welcome you to the School of Geography should you decide to pay us a visit. As a registered student you are given access to a multitude of learning facilities, and, although the online material is sufficient, this also includes our onsite library facilities which you are more than welcome to use.
At the completion of your studies, we offer you the chance to visit us to attend a formal graduation ceremony where you will receive your certificate. This is a further opportunity for you to visit Leeds but this is by no means compulsory.
The financial support we offer is open to both British and overseas students and comes in the form of a partial-fees scholarship (2015/16 scholarship is £1,400). Applications for this scholarship will only be considered from students registering for a place on the MSc in GIS programme. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer any support for students wishing to take the Certificate or Diploma courses.
The only condition associated with this funding is that anyone in receipt of payment must take a Leeds module stream in Year 2. Leeds streams include: Business, Developer, and Planning. Scholarship applications are considered towards the end of Year 1 and academic performance in the year 1 modules will be considered in the allocation of scholarship funding. For full details and a description of all modules, please visit our Modules webpage. For information on course structure (including module streams), please visit the Structure webpage.
Students receiving this scholarship will see the reduction in fees applied to Years 2 & 3 (or equivalent) and are normally allocated £800 reduction in fees in year 2 and £600 in year 3.
An application form is available to download here. Please ensure that you have submitted a course application form before submitting a scholarship form as we are unable to consider scholarship applications until a place on the programme has been formally applied for.
Scholarship funding is limited and in high demand, we therefore encourage students to approach their employers for support.
No, if you have been away from studying for several years and feel that it may be difficult to approach your previous institution for a reference then we would accept references relating to your current / previous employment.
You can attach referee statements to your online application once you have started an application with us, or alternatively you or your referee/s can email these directly to us and we will append these to your application. If you or your referees prefer, these may also be posted to our Postgraduate Admissions Officer(see FAQ 19).
We do not have a reference template. Instead, please ask your referees to write their comments on standard or letter-headed paper.
In the first instance, it is possible to upload supporting documents (degree certificates, transcripts, references, English language certificates etc) to your online application. However, if you are offered a place, you will be asked to provide original or certified documents. All such documents should be sent directly to the School of Geography and marked for the attention of our Postgraduate Admissions Officer:
Taught Postgraduate Admissions Officer
School of Geography
University of Leeds
Note that if it is difficult for you to obtain original documents beyond the copy you may have received in the past, you can send us these originals and we will ensure that they are returned to you.
Once you have created an online account with a username and password, login to your University of Leeds account and follow the instructions below:
MSC Geographical Information Systems DL (for the MSc)
PGD Geographical Information Systems DL (for the Diploma)
PGC Geographical Information Systems DL (for the Certificate)
Non-degree in GIS (short courses) DL (for short courses)
Please ensure that you choose the programme followed by the DL notation. DL denotes that the course is through Distance Learning.
For further details on the application procedure, please visit our How do I Apply? webpage.
In this situation, you should select the Non Degree in GIS (one-off distance learning module) option and make a note in the comments box stating which particular short course you are interested in. Remember, if you are applying from an English speaking country for a single module or short course, we do not require any supporting documents - simply completing the application form is sufficient. If you are from a non-English speaking country then you will need to submit a recent IELTS/TOEFL test result - please refer back to Q12..
If you wish to complete the certificate, you must complete the following four modules:
These modules have been selected to give you a broad but introductory start in GIS and therefore cannot be changed. Many of these modules also act as prerequisites for our Year 2 courses.
The distance learning MSc in GIS is completely equivalent to the full-time version.