MSc/PgDip/PgCert Business Analysis & Consulting

Key facts

  • Start date: September
  • Accreditation: triple-accredited business school AACSB, EQUIS & AMBA
  • Study mode and duration: MSc: 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time
    PgDip: 9 months full-time, 21 months part-time
    Distance learning is available
  • Industrial placement: 3-week placement in a private or public sector organisation (this is not generally offered to part-time students)

Study with us

  • gain practical, evaluative and analytical skills
  • learn how to use business models to develop strategy for organisations
  • opportunity to undertake a three-week work placement 
  • work on a project for a leader organisation

 

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Why this course?

The MSc in Business Analysis & Consulting has been developed to equip you with the practical, evaluative and analytical skills to allow you, as a future manager or consultant, to influence and develop strategy and performance within organisations. 

You'll learn the key quantitative business analysis methods necessary to evaluate performance. 

Industry involvement is at the heart of the course. You'll spend three weeks in January on a work placement, and have the opportunity to undertake your summer project in collaboration with an external organisation. 

In addition, you'll learn how to use business models to support the development of strategy for organisations and to help them to monitor and measure strategic processes. 

By the end of the programme, you'll have developed the key skills of business consulting, which are applicable to any organisation.

Course video

Find out more about studying Business Analysis & Consulting in our video.

 

What you'll study

The core Becoming an Effective Business Analysis class runs over both semesters and provides you with a practical environment to apply business analysis and consulting tools from other classes into challenging real problems offered by industrial clients. 

Semester 1 is designed to provide you with the fundamental technical and soft knowledge required for a business analyst/consultant. This includes key skills to structure client problems, analyse hard/soft data, build forecasting models and managing the operations. 

Semester 2 is designed to extend your core skills and provide you with opportunities through a broad range of electives to help you to have specialised knowledge in areas such as risk analysis, strategy modelling, big data analytics and business simulation. You also have the opportunity to study a business class offered by other departments in Strathclyde Business School during the Spring School.

Work placement

The apprenticeship scheme forms a vital component of this course for full-time students. Many of our students spend an invaluable three weeks in January embedded in the analytical function of their host organisation. Last year, more than 35 selected students worked with over 25 different organisations based all over the UK, including Capita, Department of Health, Tesco Bank, Royce Rolls, Weir Group, Scottish Government, SYSTRA. The scheme has a highly competitive selection process, where the students with the strongest generic skills and academic capabilities are chosen for external placements.

Becoming an Effective Business Analyst

This class takes place over both semesters and also involves the ‘apprenticeship scheme’. Every year, case studies and challenging projects are presented to you by organisations such as Accenture, British Airways, RBS and Simul8, NHS, Diageo, Valentia Partners.

Summer project

Many MSc projects are carried out for an external organisation. You'll spend three months from June to September working on a project of importance to their clients. The aim is to gain direct experience in applying the concepts and theories studied on the course. Project clients include many major companies, in fields ranging from aerospace to whisky distilling. These projects will usually be unpaid, however, all costs such as travel and accommodation will normally be covered by the host organisation if out of town.

Distance learning

We also offer the course via online distance learning so you can study when it suits you. This is a flexible degree and duration can vary. For further information, see Business Analysis & Consulting (distance learning).

Part-time study

You should expect to attend classes at least two days a week, but this can vary from semester to semester or week to week. For those in full-time employment, it may be possible to take the course over three years and spread the workload after discussions with the course director. 

Year 1

  • Foundations of Operational Research & Business Analysis (semester 1)
  • Quantitative Business Analysis (semester 1)
  • Strategy Modelling and Management (semester 2)
  • One elective class (semester 2) 

Year 2

  • Managing Business Operations (semester 1)
  • Spreadsheet Modelling & Demand Forecasting (semester 1)
  • Becoming an Effective Business Analyst (semesters 1 and 2)*
  • Two elective classes (semester 2)
  • Dissertation (MSc only)

*part-time students are required to discuss this class with the course director as attendance is not required if they can fit this into their current job role.

Triple-accredited business school

AACSB accreditation logo
EQUIS accreditation logo
AMBA accreditation logo
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Course content

Becoming an Effective Business Analyst

The class will consist of three key elements:

1. A series of semi- or unstructured business problems, typically introduced by a manager from an outside organisation. The business problems will typically relate to a topic/technique recently covered in one of the other modules.

2. Experience is augmented, and integrated with, the rest of the course by a series of workshops on directly related topics that will provide guidance on key skills development.

3. A period of 3 weeks spent as an apprentice business analyst in an organisation.

Foundations of Research & Business Analysis

This class will explore the generic problem solving process which underpins the provision of decision support. In particular, it'll consider the role of modelling in that process. The activities of problem structuring, data collection and analysis, identification and evaluation of options, communication and implementation of learning, findings and recommendations will each be discussed along with the issues pertaining to each of them.

Managing Business Operations
This class teaches essential principles, tools and techniques of Operations Management – both in general and as applied to specific manufacturing or service businesses. A section of the class focuses on service operations, where specific subjects and operational issues surrounding services will be discussed.
Quantitative Business Analysis

Quantitative Business Analysis runs over one semester but in two parts. The first part provides an introduction to the basic theory and application of statistical modelling. Topics covered included data analysis, probability theory, distributions and moments, estimation and hypothesis testing.

The second part focuses mainly on two areas - regression modelling and multivariate analysis. While key background theory will be presented, the emphasis is on the generation and interpretation of output from commercially available software.

Background reading for Quantitative Business Analysis

Spreadsheet Modelling & Demand Forecasting

This module will demonstrate how spreadsheets can be used to support the analytical techniques whose theory is taught on other modules. For example, forecasting, simulation, optimisation, data analysis, as well as being used to support technical report writing.

Most prominence is given to demand forecasting and you'll be introduced to different types of forecasting technique for short term smoothing through to decompositional analysis. These methods will be implemented using spreadsheet models.

Strategy Modelling & Management
This module builds on a number of earlier taught skills, in particular the problem structuring element covered in Foundations of Operational Research and Business Analysis as this provides a basis to qualitative modelling for managing uncertainty and multiple perspectives along with becoming an effective business analyst. This class aims to specific subjects and operational issues surrounding services will be discussed.

Choose three

Business Analytics

Every two days, we generate as much data as the data generated in all human history up to 2003. From online data on every click of the mouse on the internet through the huge upsurge in manufacturing companies’ use of sensors to sports organisations collecting in game data. With these increased quantities of data comes an increased need for tools to make sense of the main messages coming from these data.

The class will build on the fundamental multivariate statistics by developing both visualisation and advanced analysis techniques relevant in the area of big data. The focus will be on application and interpretation of techniques and there will be an investigation of what makes good data. The class will develop both new theoretical knowledge in the form of analytics techniques as well as new software skills in relevant analytics software.

Business Information Systems

The class adopts a process-based approach, ie all discussion follows the logic of the business processes. You'll be introduced to Business and Information Systems (BIS) as well as the various types of IS, including the databases, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, knowledge-based systems, corporate portals and collaboration support systems.

Lectures will provide you with the conceptual knowledge, and in tutorials you'll gain hands-on experience of using packages of the various IS categories.

Business Simulation Methods

The module will focus on the main two forms of business simulation; discrete-event simulation (DES) and system dynamics (a continuous simulation technique). For DES, the class will start with an introduction, aiming to familiarise students with the concept and its use.

It continues with discussing a rational approach to simulation using a number of examples from manufacturing and service operations. For system dynamics the class will provide a background to system dynamics including its links to other modelling techniques being taught on the course, in particular, its links to problem structuring methods.

Performance Measurement & Management

The class focuses at the strategic, organisational level of PMM while providing the essential knowledge and skills at the technical level.

The module starts with presenting the background to performance measurement to provide you with an understanding of the roots of some of the common problems in measuring and managing performance in organisations. This will follow with discussing PMM from five different but highly inter-related perspectives, namely stakeholder, customer, comparative, operations and integrative perspectives.

Risk Analysis & Management

This module will explore the entire process of structuring a risk problem, from modelling it to communicating recommendations, both theoretically and in practice.

Risk management is linked with decision analysis in so far as we explore decision making under uncertainty and it has links with quantitative business analysis as we explore the use of statistics in understanding risk. However, the topic has some unique attributes such as risk communication and the role that experts play in risk assessment.

SBS Spring School Module

These are a selection of Strathclyde Business School classes that are on offer for the duration of Spring Break that students on the course can select to take.

Please note that classes may differ from year to year depending on what departments have on offer. Find out more about the Spring School here.

Project/Dissertation
The MSc project is the most substantial and independent piece of work you'll carry out during the course. You will contact your client and your supervisors and manage the whole relationship with them. The projects vary but they typically involve understanding the real-life problem through problem structuring, identifying the data requirements, review of the relevant domain literature, making methodological choices based on arguments from the methodology literature, data collection, appropriate data analysis and modelling, developing and presentation of findings and recommendations.

Learning & teaching

Core and elective classes will be taught across two semesters running from September to December and January to March. Classes will be taught through a combination of lectures and hand-on software sessions, alongside online material, with a variety of group and individual study and assignments. The project/dissertation is undertaken during the summer months. 

Assessment

Classes are assessed by various methods, including written assignments, exams, practical team projects, presentations and individual projects. Exams will take place at the end of each semester in December and April/May.

Strathclyde Business School

Strathclyde Business School was founded in 1948 and is a pioneering, internationally renowned academic organisation with a reputation for research excellence.

One of four faculties forming the University of Strathclyde, SBS is a triple-accredited business school (AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA) and was the first business school in Scotland to achieve this accolade in 2004. The Business School is home to seven subject departments and a number of specialist centres, all of which collaborate to provide a dynamic, fully-rounded and varied programme of specialist and cross-disciplinary courses.

Strathclyde Business Network

As a postgraduate student at Strathclyde Business School, you may choose to join the Strathclyde Business Network, a student-led initiative that facilitates interaction with business and industry leaders.

The Network aims to foster knowledge sharing, facilitate discussion and enable networking opportunities with the very best business professional in industry. Every year the Network organises Glasgow Business Summit, which is the first-ever student-led business conference in Scotland and brings together students with leading businesses from across the UK.

QS logo 2019 - 5 stars
Financial Times European Business Schools Rankings logo 2019
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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

MSc: Minimum second-class Honours degree, or overseas equivalent (see our country pages for further information) in business, economics, engineering or the social sciences. Applications from those with other degrees are also encouraged.

PgDip: Minimum of a Pass degree, or equivalent, in an appropriate subject. Subject to performance, students may transfer from the Diploma course to the MSc.

Although some quantitative analytical tools are taught and used during the course, only basic mathematical knowledge is necessary before starting the course.

English language requirements

Students whose first language is not English must have a minimum of 6.5 IELTS score, with no individual score lower than 5.5. Get more information about the English language requirements for studying at Strathclyde.

Pre-Masters preparation course

The Pre-Masters Programme is a preparation course held at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre, for international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for a Masters degree at University of Strathclyde. The Pre-Masters programme provides progression to a number of degree options.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 100 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

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Fees & funding

2020/21

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU

£10,750

Rest of UK

£10,750

International

£20,350

Additional costs

iMPM students have the option of taking MBA elective classes overseas.  Students cover travel and accommodation themselves, but no costs associated with teaching. 

Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

Please note: the fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my course?

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Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students

Scottish and non-UK EU postgraduate students may be able to apply for support from the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS). The support is in the form of a tuition fee loan and for eligible students, a living cost loan. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Wales

Students ordinarily resident in Wales may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland may be able to apply for support from Student Finance Northern Ireland. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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International students

We've a large range of scholarships available to help you fund your studies. Check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based in the very heart of Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. National Geographic named Glasgow as one of its 'Best of the World' destinations, while Rough Guide readers have voted Glasgow the world’s friendliest city! And Time Out named Glasgow in the top ten best cities in the world - we couldn't agree more!

We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

Find out what some of our students think about studying in Glasgow!

Find out all about life in Glasgow

Our students

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Careers

The combination of the quantitative and qualitative skills learned, along with the real experience of working with various clients problems throughout the course, will make you attractive to employers. By the end of the programme you'll be well placed for a client focussed career by providing model-based decision support to management at a strategic and operational level. For the last decade our graduates have been able to find jobs across different sectors from oil and gas industry, hospitality to junior and senior consultancy roles.

Examples of graduate employers include:

  • NHS
  • PWC
  • SYSTRA
  • Scottish Enterprise
  • British Petroleum
  • Hilton Worldwide
  • Mabbett
  • Valentia Partners
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Apply

Business Analysis and Consulting

Qualification: PG Diploma
Start Date: Sep 2020
Mode of Delivery: part-time

Business Analysis and Consulting

Qualification: MSc
Start Date: Sep 2020
Mode of Delivery: part-time

Business Analysis and Consulting

Qualification: MSc
Start Date: Sep 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

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Contact us

SBS Postgraduate Admissions

Telephone: +44 (0)141 553 6105 / +44 (0)141 553 4590

Email: sbs.admissions@strath.ac.uk

Strathclyde Business School, University of Strathclyde
199 Cathedral Street
Glasgow
G4 0QU

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