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The MSc in Gerontology with Dementia Care has been created in response to the demographic evolution and the difficulties faced by those living with dementia, their carers and their families.

Dementia affects almost 50 million people worldwide, with a new case of dementia occurring somewhere in the world every 3 seconds. It is estimated that 131.5 million people will be living with dementia by 2050 and this unprecedented rise will create a number of issues affecting health and social care delivery.

The MSc aims to develop the knowledge, skills and confidence of all its participants by introducing debate around our understanding of ageing, the impact of shifting demographics and the integration and globalisation of health and social care with particular focus on the care of people living with dementia, and their current and future care priorities.


* Delivered online but there are optional face-to-face support sessions will be available at our Lanarkshire campus.

More information

It has been designed to have particular appeal to health and social care professionals and also those professionals who are working in the third sector (i.e. for charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises) with older people living with dementia.

Successful completion of this programme will present opportunities to access employment as advanced practitioners, researchers, lecturers and practice development professionals. It is intended for an internationally diverse audience of health, allied health, and social care professionals particularly those who have experience in caring for older people living with dementia.

Teaching Expertise

The teaching staff work within the Alzheimer Scotland Centre for Policy and Practice within the University of the West of Scotland. The Centre and its staff have led a number of national and international projects including being responsible for delivery of the NHS Education Scotland / Scottish Social Service Council's National Dementia Champions teaching.


Top 20

in UK for Teaching Quality in Subjects Allied to Medicine

(The Times / The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019)


Overall student satisfaction amongst UWS postgraduate students (iGraduate Student Barometer 2017-18)


of UWS postgraduate students would recommend UWS to a friend (iGraduate Student Barometer 2017-18)

The Future of Dementia Care

Here at UWS our nursing students and staff are playing a key role in developing the future of dementia care.

There are currently 850,000 people in the UK living with dementia and this figure is expected to rise to over 1 million by 2025.

By focusing on experimental learning, we make sure that you will be rights focused, confident and compassionate when dealing with this condition.

Entry requirements

What qualifications do you need?

We welcome Scottish, UK and international students and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Don’t worry if your qualifications are not listed here, we take a range of factors into account when assessing your application and are happy to consider other alternative combinations of qualifications and experience

If you are applying with an EU or non-EU qualification, please check our Postgraduate & Post-experience Entry Requirements page which gives more information about country-specific entry requirements.

Academic Requirements

Normally, you are expected to hold a first degree in a relevant subject.

Applications are welcomed from graduates from all relevant disciplines with experience and/or an interest in older people and their health and social care provision.

Applicants who have completed the UWS Graduate Certificate in Working with Older People will also be considered on an individual basis.

Students who have already gained credit at Level 11 may transfer this in certain circumstances; this will be considered on an individual basis.

Applicants may be considered through assessment of prior learning and prior experiential learning, again, on an individual basis.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for most courses

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level. The qualifications below must have been gained within two years of the start of your course.

General English language requirements at UWS: International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.0
  • no sub-test less than 5.5

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII with the minimum of a Pass in all sub-tests
  • PTE Pearson Academic English: An overall score of 54 with no element below 51 (for programmes that require IELTS 6.0 with no element below 5.5). An overall score 61 with no element below 51 (for programmes that require IELTS 6.5 with no element below 6.0)


IELTS Score Exceptions (DBA, Certificate of Higher Education, PhD, etc.)

For our research degrees (MRes, MPhil, PhD, DBA, DProf), applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0

For Health, Nursing & Midwifery courses that lead to professional registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 7.0
  • no sub-test less than 7.0

For our Certificate of Higher Education courses, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 5.0
  • no sub-test less than 4.5



TOEFL IBT*: 78; no sub-test less than:

  • Reading: 17;
  • Listening: 17;
  • Speaking: 17;
  • Writing: 17

* Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.
For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.


West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE)

West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE) including acceptance of WAEC Scratchcard*

  • C6 or above in English

*UWS will accept a WAEC scratchcard confirming that an applicant has achieved C6 or above as evidence of meeting English language requirement from Nigeria if the student graduated within the last 5 years. After 5 years applicants would be required to provide the WAEC Certificate.


Pre-sessional courses

Applicants who do not meet the minimum English language requirements have the option to study one of our preparatory and pre-sessional English courses. The UWS courses available are:

  • 10 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.0 with no element below 4.5.
  • 5 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.5 with no element below 5.5.
  • English Language for University Study - entry criteria UKVI IELTS with score of 4.0 in all elements (10 month course), or 4.5 with no score below 4.0 (7 month course).

Course details

Both the MSc in Gerontology with Dementia Care and the related MSc in Gerontology comprise of three stages:

  • Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) - involves three, 20-credit modules (total 60 credits)
  • Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip) - a further three, 20-credit (total 120 credits)
  • MSc Dissertation 60-credit module. This takes the form of a rigorous research proposal on a topic of the your choice. This allows you to develop essential skills for research, practice and career enhancement (total 180 credits)

The MSc can typically take between three and five years to complete on a part-time basis.

MSc Gerontology with Dementia Care

Postgraduate Certificate in Gerontology with Dementia Care

All students will undertake the following core modules:

  • Dementia Care Principles (core, 20 credits)
  • Contemporary Advanced Dementia Care (core, 20 credits)

Plus, a further one optional 20-credit module:

  • Complexities of Pain (optional, 20-credits)
  • Delivering Compassionate Care (optional, 20-credits)

Postgraduate Diploma in Gerontology with Dementia Care

All students will undertake the following three core modules:

  • Research for Health & Social Care (core, 20 credits)
  • Rights, Risks & Ethics in Advanced Dementia (core, 20 credits)
  • Achieving Change in Advanced Dementia Care (core, 20 credits)

MSc in Gerontology with Dementia Care

Successful completion of the MSc Research & Enquiry Dissertation module is required. In this, you will develop a rigorous research proposal with a high level of critical appraisal which demonstrates knowledge of research and enquiry in an area of relevance to Gerontology (60 credits).

Teaching & Assessment

The University's Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Moodle will be used for additional learning, teaching and assessment.

Online learning approaches include:

  • group discussion
  • seminars
  • lectures from experts in the field
  • videos
  • podcasts
  • enquiry based learning using studies of the older person’s experiences

Course Structure

Find out more about the structure, learning outcomes, compulsory and optional modules in this course.

MSc Gerontology with Dementia Care Course Structure

Career Prospects


Successful completion of this programme will present opportunities to access employment as senior healthcare professionals. We expect that participants will be promoted during and after their studies within their current workplaces, in a manner similar to that experienced by our other MSc in Gerontology students. There are opportunities to become advanced practitioners, researchers, lecturers and work as practice development professionals.

Further Study

MSc students have the opportunity to continue to doctoral level study if desired.

Postgraduate Tuition Fees

Health: PgCert/PgDip/MSc Online Study 2019/20

Scottish & EU

£790 per module (20 credits)

English, Northern Irish & Welsh

£790 per module (20 credits)

Channel Islands & Isle of Man

£790 per module (20 credits)

International (Non-EU)

£820 per module (20 credits)

More on current & future tuition fees

Additional Costs & Sources of Funding

The cost of attending university is an investment in your future career.

In addition to tuition fees and living expenses, some courses involve extra costs like study materials, field trips, equipment and uniforms.

Fortunately, there is a great deal of financial support available to help students meet the cost of their study. This ranges from:

  • statutory government loans to pay for tuition fees
  • scholarships for Scottish, EU and International (non-EU) students
  • bursaries to help towards living expenses

The sections below provide details of additional costs that your course may involve along with any financial support that may be available.

You can also find additional information in our Postgraduate Money, Fees & Funding section.

Additional Costs

Students on certain degrees will incur some additional costs not covered by their tuition fees. These could be for things like specialist equipment, study materials, work placements, graduation, membership of relevant organisations or costs related to carrying out fieldwork.

For students on course with an element of fieldwork, there may also be extra costs for travel and accommodation.

Please contact the course leader for details of the additional costs associated with this course.

Tuition Fees & Living Cost Support

Tuition Fees & Additional Costs

Tuition fees are calculated based on where you are from and what you are studying. Some courses also involve additional costs, such as mandatory field trips, equipment or studying abroad.

Find out how much it will cost you to study at UWS as a postgraduate student.

Funding for Scottish Students

Scottish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for English, Welsh & Norther Irish Students

English, Welsh and Northern Irish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for EU Students

EU students studying at postgraduate level of UWS may be eligible for SAAS funding, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find our more.

Funding for International Students

There are several scholarship and incentive schemes available to international students studying at postgraduate level at UWS, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find out more.

Other Financial Support

Discretionary & Childcare Funds

UWS administer a range of discretionary and childcare funds. These are designed to support students who are experiencing financial difficulty or struggling to meet the costs of childcare.

Find out more.

Benefits & Tax Credits

Becoming a student can have an impact on your entitlement to certain benefits. It may mean you are no longer eligible to claim a benefit you have been receiving, or your new income from student funding may affect the amount you are able to receive.

Find out more.

Additional Financial Support

If there isn’t a statutory source of funding for you or your course, or you are in need of additional financial support, you may wish to consider more alternative sources of funding such as trust funds and scholarships.

Find out more.

Money & Debt Advice

Choosing to become a student can have a big impact on your budget and you may need to reassess your spending to account for a reduced income. We’ve put together some guidance to help you manage your money and make the right financial choices for you and your family.

Find out more.

How to apply

Postgraduate courses (MA, MSc, MEd, MBA, DBA, PG Cert, PG Dip, etc.) & some Post-experience courses (CertHE, BA, Grad Cert, Grad Dip, etc.)

All students should apply directly to the University through our online application system. Before you apply, you should check that you meet our entry requirements and you should have all your supporting documents ready.

The first stage of the process is to create a profile; you don't have to complete the application in one session - you can complete it in stages by saving each section and return to complete it at a later date.

You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.

Most courses don't have a formal closing date, but they will close when they are full; apply early to avoid disappointment. There may also be funding deadlines that apply to you.

Before you begin your application, it is important to read the Postgraduate & Post-Experience application step-by-step guide for a smooth process.


An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

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Research at UWS

With cutting edge facilities, specialist knowledge and world-leading and internationally excellent expertise, we aim to develop research outputs that have a tangible, early and positive impact on society across the globe.


We will always try to make sure that we publish accurate course information but we do not accept responsibility for any mistakes or omissions. We will also try to make sure that we deliver our courses in line with our published information. However, we may not always be able to do so and you can find further information about this in our enrolment terms and conditions.