Sustainable Development, Culture and Heritage BA (Hons)

Course code D4CH

What is special about this course?

The world is facing the prospect of a climate emergency, with decision-makers grappling with how to understand and respond to the pressures on our environment and society. Sustainable Development, from the local to the global, is essential if society is to tackle the challenges faced. The necessary changes will impact on every facet of society, culture and the economy; this is a critical moment to study sustainability, culture and heritage. 

Our BA (Hons) Sustainable Development, Culture and Heritage considers these issues from a humanities and social science perspective, focusing on understanding the three pillars of sustainability (social, environmental, economic), in order to examine human relationships with the environment as well as the subjects of key cultural, literary, language, historical, musical and philosophical issues at a national and regional level.

This course will provide you with the knowledge and skills to understand many aspects of our rapidly changing world, equipping you to tackle real-world problems in a range of organisations and sectors, with the wide curriculum developing both specialist and transferable skills. You will also be able to immerse yourself in the wealth of fascinating culture and heritage that the Highlands and Islands of Scotland has to offer, and gain an understanding of its place in a global context.

Delivered online by blended learning and available to study from home, you will benefit from collaborative discussions and activities with colleagues from a range of diverse backgrounds and experiences, facilitated by tutors with many years of experience in delivering online education.

Please see our FAQ sheet for further information on this course.

Special features

  • This degree is delivered by tutors with years of experience of teaching at a distance, and can be studied from home, full or part-time to suit your circumstances.
  • Recent graduates have careers in community economic development, managing rural development initiatives, working for UN agencies, and working on international renewable energy projects 
  • An optional residential weekend each year: usually taking place in the Highlands and Islands, our annual residential will give you the opportunity to meet practitioners, staff and other students in an informal setting

Entry requirements

  • 3 Scottish Highers at grades BBC or above or
  • 2 A levels at grades BC or above
  • At least 2 should be from the list of required subjects
  • Additional qualifications and experiences will be considered on an individual basis

Advanced entry

  • HNC Social Science (12 SCQF credits) with 3 additional SCQF credits at level 7, which is equivalent to 120 degree credit points, and at least grade C in the Graded Unit, will be considered for direct entry to year two

Year 1 - CertHE

You will study the following modules:  

  • Understanding sustainable development (S1) 
  • Exploring economics in a changing world (S2) 
  • Scotland the brand OR What is culture? (S1)
  • Culture? Heritage? What? OR Scotland's music (S2)

Year 2 - DipHE

You will study the following modules:  

  • Approaches to economic development (S1) 
  • Empowering communities (S1) 
  • Folklore OR Tradition, custom and belief (S1)
  • Golden mead and burning hearts OR Languages on the edge OR Displaying the past: museum studies (S2)

 

Year 3 - BA

You will usually study the following modules:  

  • Globalisation and sustainable development (S1) 
  • Sustainable tourism and the environment (S2) 

You will also choose one of the following modules: 

  • Advanced social research methods (S1) OR Climate change (S1) 

Plus, two of the following modules:

  • Interdisciplinary project (S1)
  • Scotland in film (S1)
  • People and the natural environment* (S2)
  • Scottish enlightenment and Highland society* (S2)
  • Perceptions of heritage (S2)
  • Celtic and Celtic revival art in Scotland 600-2000 (S2)

* these modules rotate on an annual basis

Year 4 - BA (Hons)

You will complete a dissertation in either Sustainable Development or Culture and Heritage.

You will also study one option module from your chosen dissertation subject plus three option modules from the other subject.

Sustainable Development

Modules may include:

  • Geo-political development issues (S1) 
  • The consumerist society (S2) 
  • Sustainable agriculture systems (S2) 
  • Social enterprise and the social economy (S1) 

Culture and Heritage

Modules may include:

  • Scottish tradition in philosophy (S1)
  • Faeries and fables: the story of Gaelic literature (S1)
  • Highland journeys (S2)
  • Vikings and Valkyries (S2)

How will I study my course?

  • Full-time
  • Part-time (structured)
  • Part-time (unstructured)
  • You will learn through a combination of video-conference lectures and tutorials, and online study via the university's virtual learning environment (VLE), with support from your tutors.

How long will my course last?

  • Full-time: 4 years @ 40 hours per week
  • Part-time (structured): 8 years @ up to 20 hours per week
  • Part-time (unstructured): variable

Number of hours per week indicates the total number of hours you should dedicate to the course, which includes time spent in lectures and your own time spent on individual study and research.

Where can I study my course?

  • Argyll
  • North, West and Hebrides

Students based near to one of the listed campuses may choose to apply to, and be enrolled and supported by, their local campus. All other students should apply to, and will be enrolled and supported by, UHI North, West and Hebrides.

Start date

  • September

Fees

For students normally domiciled in Scotland, with a term-time address in Scotland, the following fees apply:

This includes

  • EU nationals with settled or pre-settled status in the UK,
  • EEA/Swiss nationals with settled status in the UK
  • EEA/Swiss nationals with pre-settled status who are self-employed or migrant workers in the UK.
  2023-24 2024-25
Full-time (120 credit modules) per year £1,820 £1,820
Part-time (structured) (3 x 20 credit modules) per year £915 £915
Part-time (unstructured per module) (per 20 credit module) £305 £305

Rest of the UK students

For students normally domiciled in the rest of the UK (England, Wales and N. Ireland) or assessed as rest of the UK for fee status the following fees apply:

  2023-24 2024-25
Full-time online per year (120 credit modules) £6,120 £6,120
Part-time online (per 20 credit module) £1,020 £1,020

International students

For students who do not normally reside in the UK studying online from their home country, or living in the UK but assessed as international for fee status, the following fees apply:

This includes EU/EEA and Swiss nationals without settled status in the UK and EEA and Swiss nationals with pre-settled status who are not self-employed or migrant workers in the UK.

  2023-24 2024-25
Full-time online per year (120 credit modules) £6,540 £6,960
Part-time online (per 20 credit module) £1,090 £1,160

A no fee increase guarantee is available for self-funding full-time and structured part-time rest of the UK and international undergraduate students for continuous study for the same award, up to the permitted standard time limit for the relevant award.

Funding

UHI has a number of scholarships, bursaries, awards, and discretionary fund opportunities available to new and current students. Please use the A-Z of funds or use the filter to see which ones may be relevant to you. All students are welcome to apply.

Further information on funding your studies is also available, please see the attached link or contact the relevant UHI partner.

Additional costs

If you wish to attend an optional residential weekend, or to join other field trips, contributions will be required towards the overall costs incurred. The cost will vary depending on the event, your location and the amount of other funding available towards the event (for example, HISA contributions to the Student Society Residential weekend may reduce costs for individual students). Attendance at these face to face events is optional and not essential for completion of the course.

What can I do on completion of my course?

Once you have successfully completed this BA (Hons) Sustainable Development, Culture and Heritage course, you might like to consider careers in: 

  • Government departments and development agencies 
  • Economic development departments of local authorities 
  • Community enterprises and community energy groups 
  • Community land initiatives 
  • Natural and rural heritage organisations 
  • Voluntary sector development posts 
  • International non-governmental organisations 
  • Independent consultancy on sustainability 
  • Teaching
  • Journalism and media

Apply for Sustainable Development, Culture and Heritage BA (Hons)

I want to start in Aug/Sep 2024

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at the University of the Highlands and Islands. We operate a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of gender, age, disability, ethnicity and socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.