MSc International Disaster Management and Humanitarian Response: Online

Humanitarian and Conflict Response Institute, University of Manchester
United Kingdom
  • Duration
    3 semesters; Up to 36 months part-time
  • Type
    Online courses
  • Level






The MSc International Disaster Management and Humanitarian Response distance learning course will enable students to develop the skills and knowledge needed to respond to and help prevent disasters. When disasters strike suddenly, they require a quick response and create burdens for rescue and humanitarian workers. There is a great demand not only for preparing and equipping workers prior to the disaster event but also building knowledge and skills to prevent disasters from occurring. A community that has both a team with the capacity to prevent disasters and a ready-to-respond team can reduce disaster mortality and economic losses. This master's course is consistent with the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) 2015-2030, which emphasises disaster education, including for personnel who have difficulty in attending conventional face-to-face provisions.

This course has been designed to equip students with advanced knowledge and to continue their personal development in disaster risk management and humanitarianism. Students will learn to conduct theoretical and practical analysis, as well as evaluation to support disaster management and humanitarian action in global health contexts. This course offers a flexible online study that enables part-time students to obtain a master's degree without residency and boundary restrictions.


The programme aims to:

  • Provide students with critical insights into competing perspectives on how disaster management and humanitarian action can be understood, analysed and explained - from both a historiographic and contemporary viewpoint;
  • Develop students' analytical skills in critically evaluating the idea of disaster risk management and humanitarian action and the ways it has been organised, justified and implemented. This includes competency in developing a reasoned argument, critically considering data sources and defending different approaches;
  • Develop students' skills in gathering, organising and using evidence and information from a wide variety of sources. This will be complemented by guidance on how best to manage workloads and obtain research materials; enable MSc students to apply established techniques of research and enquiry to a relevant research area to create and/or interpret knowledge.


Course content for year 1

Indicative course units for Year 1 include:

  • Risk, Vulnerability and Resilience
  • Emergency Humanitarian Assistance
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Community Approaches to Health

Course content for year 2

Indicative course units for Year 2 include: 

  • Rethinking Recovery
  • Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Humanitarian Crises
  • Humanitarian and Conflict Response: Inquiries
  • Research Methods

Course content for year 3


Admission requirement

Academic entry qualification overview

A Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent in a relevant degree in any discipline from a recognised university or its equivalent.

English language

The programme requires an English Language requirement of:

An overall grade of 7.0 (with a minimum writing score of 7) in IELTS is required or 100+ in the iTOEFL with a minimum writing score of 25.

If the applicant has obtained a different qualification, please check our  English language requirements to ensure that it is accepted and equivalent to the above requirements.

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Relevant work experience

Students who do not clearly meet the academic requirements may be considered based on relevant professional experience. Applicants who fall into this category should contact the programme director for advice.





Application procedure

Advice to applicants

Please contact us if you have any questions before submitting your application for this course.

How your application is considered

We assess your previous academic performance, letters from referees and personal statement.


Each year the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures offer a number of School awards and Subject-specific bursaries (the values of which are usually set at Home/EU fees level), open to both Home/EU and international students. The deadline for these is early February each year. Details of all funding opportunities, including deadlines, eligibility and how to apply, can be found on the School's funding page where the applicant can also find details of the Government Postgraduate Loan Scheme.

See also the University's postgraduate funding database to see if the applicant is eligible for any other funding opportunities.

Tuition and cost

For updated tuition fees, please refer to the programme website.


This program is related to

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