Worldwide Higher Education
Delivering UK Higher Education to the World
Part-time Learning
Flexibility around life commitments
High Quality Programmes
Content provided by leading industry experts
Flexible Payment Options
Several payment options available to suit your needs
Fully Tutor Supported
Help, guidance and advice when needed

Key Programme Information

  • Degree MSc Global Sustainable Development
  • Language English
  • Awarding Body University of Plymouth
  • Start January, May and September Next start date is 9th September 2024
  • Cost £9,750
  • Duration 12 months
  • Apply now

Welcome Aboard

A welcome to your course from Alex Mejia, Director, Division for People and Social Inclusion Head, United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR).

UNITAR provides innovative learning solutions to individuals, organizations and institutions to enhance global decision-making and support country-level action for shaping a better future.

Course Description

If you have a background in sustainability already, or already hold a degree, the MSc in Global Sustainable Development is the ideal course to take advantage of that experience and higher-level learning.

The course aims to:

  • Provide a sound, and critical, understanding of sustainable development, particularly with reference to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • Show how sustainability is conceived and practiced differently across the globe.
  • Show how sustainability is conceived and practiced differently across different sectors, and to critically evaluate how the UN SDGs interact with these sectors.
  • Enable students to evaluate the role of individuals, communities, and institutions in delivering sustainable development.
  • Foster debate and enable students to express reasoned, evidence-based arguments.

The Programme starts with a period of gaining a shared vocabulary and set of ideas around sustainability, as well as investigating the various ways in which we might interrogate and analyse sustainability projects through a range of research methodologies and their associated techniques.

Options focus upon sectors, so, the MSc examines, in greater detail, the sectoral responses to the sustainability challenge. It shows that SDGs interact with a range of social and economic activities in a number of complicated and interconnected ways. This will allow you to evaluate projects and progress against sustainability goals more critically.

The Programme finishes with a significant piece of individual research, on a topic of your choice.

This programme has been jointly developed and implemented with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR). On successful completion of the programme, in addition to your degree certificate, graduates will be awarded a UNITAR certificate of completion.

Programme Modules

Click on a module for more information.

Application Information

  • A copy of your CV
  • A suitable English language certificate, for example an IELTS. A full list of certificates accepted can be found here. (For International students only)
  • Copies of academic certificates and/or transcripts
  • A copy of your passport (photo page only)
  • A 200-300 word personal statement explaining your motivation for wanting to join this programme. You may find our Guidance document helpful.

Entry Requirements

Applicants must meet one of the below criteria:

  • Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent, in a related subject area


  • Relevant work or life experience in a relevant subject area


Applications for this programme can be made up of the following:

  • Qualifications from a recognised education provider, or professional bodies.
  • Prior work experience relevant to the programme.
  • A mix of both qualifications and relevant work experience.

As part of the evaluation of your application you may be asked to provide further information about your work experience by completing a Mapping Matrix. 

Further information about the Admissions Process and Mapping Matrix read our Admissions Statement here.

Suggested Pre-Reading List

Lewis, S. and Maslin, M. 2018. The Human Planet: How we created the Anthropocene. Pelican: London

Cottrell, S. 2019. The Study Skills Handbook. Bloomsbury: London

MLA College and the University of Plymouth use Harvard style referencing and it is advisable to pre-study on the importance of referencing on all academic coursework and how to do it, which is available here.

University Degrees validated by the University of Plymouth


Graduate testimonials

Start quotation.

I would recommend MLA College to future students, especially within the maritime industry and the oil and gas industry

BSc Sustainable Maritime Operations Student
End quotation.
View More

Newsletter Signup

Receive course information, offers, news and general infromation about MLA, sign up today

Associated with

Part of
Partner College of
A Strategic Partner of
Official Education Partner of
A Member of
A Member of
Registered with the
A Signatory of