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The University of Southampton
Ageing & GerontologyPart of Economic, Social & Political Science

Distance learning

Distance learning offers flexible learning with high quality teaching
Distance learning offers flexible learning with high quality teaching

Distance Learning programmes offer you the opportunity to study the subject of your choice from anywhere in the world.

Getting Here


All you need is internet access and a computer. Rather than sitting in a lecture theatre, you will be listening to lectures in front of your computer in your own home or workplace. The lectures are delivered via a Virtual Learning Environment called Blackboard, which you can log on to from wherever you are. All of the reading materials for your programme will be accessible to you either in the form of key textbooks sent to you at the start of the programme or in electronic form via the University’s Library website or via the internet, or a combination of the two. Software packages for specialised modules (eg. research methods) are provided to you by the University at no extra charge.


You are free to determine the pace at which you study. You can choose to study by day or by night - whenever suits you. You may prefer to study in concentrated bursts, covering several sessions in a few days, or you may prefer to cover one session per week. The only fixed deadlines are for coursework assignments.


You will have regular meetings via Skype with your personal academic tutor to discuss your studies. Your tutor will advise you on your progress and how you can develop throughout the programme. You will receive detailed feedback on your assignments to help you build your academic skills. In addition, if you are enrolled on a Masters programme, you will be allocated a dissertation supervisor who will work with you to develop a dissertation topic and complete a research project as part of your programme.


You will interact with your fellow students through online Discussion Boards, email and Skype. You may also be invited to a residential course taking place at the University of Southampton. You will interact with lecturers through group Skype tutorials, by email, by listening to audio-recorded lectures on Blackboard, and responding to trigger questions within lectures.

High quality

We strive to provide you with a world class education informed by cutting-edge research in your chosen subject, and to deliver this education to you in a varied, stimulating and well-supported way. The Distance Learning programme is regulated and externally-examined in the same robust way as our face-to-face programmes. Our academic staff were ranked in the top 5 in the country for research outputs in the Research Excellence Framework 2014. Our distance learning programmes are recognised by the UK’s Economic and Social Research Council as providing high quality research training, suitable for preparation for a PhD.

Our distance learning programmes

PG Dip Gerontology

This programme allows you to complete six modules in the area of ageing as well as specialise in topics relating to your own research interests.

PG Cert Gerontology

On this programme you can study three modules in the area of ageing as well as specialising in topics such as health and wellbeing and mental health.

MSc Gerontology

The programme equips you with academic knowledge in Gerontology and offers a range of training opportunities in research methods, both quantitative and qualitative.

PG Dip Global Ageing and Policy

This programme is designed to provide students with an introduction to the larger issues that ageing poses to our society and how we treat the elderly.

MSc Global Ageing and Policy

This programme introduces you to the study of ageing at a global level, and equips you with critical skills in conducting the evaluation of policies relating to older people's wellbeing.

Short courses in Gerontology

Stand-alone short courses taken over a period of 12 weeks, which can also be taken as part of continuing professional development (CPD).

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