Triangle

Course overview

As an operations manager, you will have highly developed strategic abilities that ensure your business runs smoothly and maintains a competitive advantage. Our MSc will give you the broad skillset you need to excel in global operations management positions.

You will study modules that develop essential management techniques including supply chain planning, decision making, operations management and quality control. You'll also be able to tailor your degree to match your individual career goals, and specialise in areas relevant to your chosen field.

You have the option to take industry-recognised digital qualifications by Microsoft and SAP alongside your course, which will develop your digital skills and help you stand out to future employers.

You will graduate with a clear understanding of the methods, models and techniques that are used to resolve organisational difficulties. You'll be equipped with the analytical skills to understand the complexity of operational management challenges in business, combined with creative thinking to generate potential solutions.

Why choose this course?

Top 100

in the world and top 20 in the UK

Triple accredited

Part of an elite group of business schools worldwide to gain ‘triple crown’ accreditation

EQUIS, AMBA and AACSB accredited

More than 19,000

Business School alumni connect you to a powerful global network of business contacts

Gain digital skills

We offer the opportunity to take industry-recognised Microsoft and SAP certifications at significant discounts from the open market rate

83% of our research

ranked as world-leading or internationally excellent

Course content

Across the autumn and spring semesters, you will take 120 credits of taught modules. Each module typically consists of 10 two to three hour sessions.

You will complete a 60-credit dissertation over the summer, and will be allocated an appropriate dissertation supervisor who will oversee your progress.

Modules

Semester one

Core modules

Management Science for Decision Support

The emphasis in this module is on formulating (modelling) and solving models with spreadsheets. The topics covered include:

  • modelling principles
  • optimisation and linear programming
  • network models
  • introduction to integer programming
  • key concepts of probability and uncertainty
  • decision theory
  • queuing systems
  • simulation
Managing Contemporary Operations: Fundamentals and Challenges 10 credits

This module provides a general introduction to the management of operations. This includes an introduction to the core concepts and theory within operations management with many examples of good practice. These examples take the form of short videos in class, a number of cases, and visits to three different operations. Students will be working in teams for assessed coursework, with a final exam.

Core concepts and theory include:

  • The transformation module, and an introduction to competitive priorities, and structural/infrastructural requirements
  • Operations for products and services, and how they differ
  • Understanding processes; Little's Law
  • Introduction to lean theory 
  • Introduction to quality and services management
  • Introduction to supply chain management 
  • Challenges in contemporary operations management

This material will be developed and expanded on in modules covering more specialist areas.

Project Management

The module covers:

  • definitions and classifications of projects
  • objectives in project management - time, costs, quality
  • activity identification
  • resources and resource management
  • critical path method, programme evaluation and review technique, and resource scheduling
  • performance measurement and costs
  • project lifecycles and models
  • project teams and leadership in project management
  • managing risk in projects
  • critical chain planning method
  • analysis of project success and failure
  • Monte Carlo Simulation
  • project management software
Supply Chain Planning and Management 20 credits

The module takes a dual approach covering both the business processes and the quantitative models and techniques necessary for supply chain planning and management. It is divided into three major parts.

  1. Supply chain concepts and definitions:
    • Fundamental planning and control concepts for supply chain and operations planning: classification of operational and supply systems
    • Inventory - forms, functions, decisions, models
    • Capacity - definitions and planning
  2. Forecasting for supply chain and production management:
    • Planning, scheduling and control approaches: aggregate planning, hierarchical planning and control
    • MRP-based planning and control
    • JIT principles, kanban systems
    • Theory of Constraints (TOC)
    • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems
  3. Supply chain collaboration:
    • Planning and control across the supply chain
    • The bullwhip effect
    • Supply chain collaboration approaches – continuous replenishment
    • Vendor-Managed Inventory (VMI)
    • Collaborative Planning Forecasting and Replenishment (CPFR)

Semester two

Core modules

Advanced Operations Analysis

Module content is organised around four themes:

  1. More ‘advanced’ forecasting techniques (including more advanced time series and causal models)
  2. Inventory modelling (quantity discount models; joint replenishment; reorder point – lot size systems; periodic review models; news vendor model; (S-1, S) model; multi-warehouse situations)
  3. Shop floor control: WIP and Little’s law; introduction to operations scheduling and sequencing
  4. Introduction to distribution logistics modelling, reverse logistics and closed-loop supply chains
Design of Operations Facilities and Systems

The module covers the following: 

  • Strategic issues in the location of businesses in a global context
  • Location modelling and the analysis of factors influencing the optimum selection of country, region and location
  • The facilities planning process and the optimum design of layouts
  • Quantitative approaches to location and layout modelling
  • Types of manufacturing layouts including cell manufacturing and layouts to support lean operations
  • Material handling and packaging solutions
  • Warehousing, storage, cross docking and order picking approaches
  • Logistics challenges and solutions for next generation manufacturing and service operations, including omni-channel retailing
Quality Management and Quality Techniques

There are two main divisions of the material:

Quality management

  • Historical introduction to the development of quality management thinking
  • The need for quality, definitions, ideas and concepts of quality
  • Quality gurus: Deming, Juran, Crosby, Taguchi, etc
  • Variation and quality improvement, problem-solving tools, Kaizen, Six Sigma
  • Culture change for Total Quality Management (TQM); empowerment, team-building, motivation
  • Business excellence awards (MBNQA, EFQM)
  • Quality Management Systems (ISO 9000); auditing and certification
  • Quality economics, quality performance measures, benchmarking
  • Supply chain quality
  • Service quality

Quality techniques

  • Process capability: Variation risk management, loss functions, capability assessment
  • PCIs, non-normality, Six Sigma approaches
  • SPC charts: Shewhart charts for attributes and variables
  • CUSUM, EWMA
  • Acceptance sampling for attributes and variables
  • Advanced quality planning - QFD and FMEA
  • Quality data management
  • Taguchi statistical robust design
  • Total preventative maintenance

Summer

Dissertation

The module aims to allow you to synthesise, apply and extend the knowledge you have gained in the taught component of the programme. The investigation of a current research topic will help to develop your theoretical and practical understanding of current problems in your area, as well as your research and communication skills.

Business Project

The Business Project requires students, working as groups, to undertake research in a topic which is relevant to business, management, marketing, finance, accounting, or information system. You must choose their research topic that is relevant to your named degree programme. The specific topic is subject to a formal approval process.

The module is intended for you to apply knowledge, concepts, skills, and techniques, acquired during the taught stage of your programme to real-world, business scenarios. You will be presented with real-word business problems for which you are required to review relevant literature, conduct research, analyse data, and formulate viable solutions.

Optional modules

One of:

Additive Manufacturing and 3D Printing

This module will cover design, processing and material aspects of additive manufacturing and 3D printing technologies, as well as the current and potential applications of the technology in a wide variety of sectors. Topics include commercial and experimental systems, material requirements, design for additive manufacturing, software and systems, as well as case studies in industry and society.

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Computing 1 week 1 week 2 hours
Lecture 9 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Lecture 1 week 1 week 1 hour
Workshop 2 weeks 1 week 2 hours


Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 30.00 Individual Assignment - maximum 4 page report
Exam 1 70.00 1.5 hour exam
Aerospace Manufacturing Technology (spring)

This module covers a range of topics relating to basic airframe structure. Airframe component manufacturing techniques, automated manufacture, geometry and material constraints will be covered. 

This module covers:

  • Basic airframe structure
  • Airframe component manufacturing techniques
  • Joining techniques
  • Assembly technology
  • Composite structures
  • Jigless assembly and automated manufacture
  • Basic aero-engine structure
  • Geometry and material constraints
  • Manufacturing processes: forging, casting, welding and joining techniques, special processes, small and non round hole manufacture
  • Certification, verification inspection and quality control

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Exam 1 100.00 Unseen 2 hours
Behavioural Economics and Decision Making

This module is aimed at giving you an understanding of behaviour in an economic context. You will learn the use of methods to measure economic preferences as: trust, risk, cooperation, social preferences and social identity. These measures are used in economics and finance to explain human behaviour and decision-making processes. In addition to this you will “play” games in the classroom to get a first hand impression of the structure and meaning of the games used in the lectures.

Together we will understand how rational behaviour predictions conflict with human “bounded rational” decision making. You will analyse studies of bounded rational behaviour, labour markets, asset markets, experimental behavioural finance, social dilemmas, preferences, public goods, reciprocity, bargaining and contests.

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 27 October 2022.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Digital professional skills certifications

We offer the opportunity for you to take industry-recognised Microsoft and SAP certifications alongside your degree programme at significant discounts from the open market rate. This will enhance your digital capability, differentiate your CV and help you stand out to future employers. Find out more on our digital professional skills website.

How you will be assessed

  • Dissertation
  • Examinations
  • Essay

Modules are assessed by a combination of exams and coursework at the end of the relevant semester.

Contact time and study hours

10-credit taught modules will consist of 100 student learning hours, of which around 22 hours are associated with lectures and seminars. The rest of the time will consist of assessment preparation, class preparation, and private study.

20-credit taught modules will consist of double this time.

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2023 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:1 (or international equivalent) in a business, engineering or science-related discipline

Applying

You are required to submit a personal statement and a list of modules being studied in the final year (for applicants who have not yet completed their undergraduate degree).

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

Qualification MSc
Home / UK £14,000
International £25,000

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you may be asked to complete a fee status questionnaire and your answers will be assessed using guidance issued by the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) .

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Additional costs

All students will need at least one device to approve security access requests via Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). We also recommend students have a suitable laptop to work both on and off-campus. For more information, please check the equipment advice.

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses.

You should be able to access most of the books you'll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies or more specific titles.

Funding

Business School MSc scholarships

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

Our in-house Postgraduate Careers Team provides expert advice and guidance so that you can make an informed decision about the right career path for you.

Prior to commencing your course you can take part in pre-entry careers discussions and once on programme our MSc Accelerated Career Leader Programme is complemented by one to one career coaching.

Increasingly, graduates are required to be cloud and data-ready for the workplace with 66% of employers wanting to see graduates achieve professional qualifications as well as their main degree (CMI 21st Century leaders report). The school works with some of the world’s leading business software providers including SAP and Microsoft, offering the option to take their globally recognised professional digital qualifications alongside your course. Our Digital Centre of Excellence will support you so that you can develop the digital skills necessary to pursue your chosen career and stand out to future employers.

Our support continues throughout your time at Nottingham and after you graduate. Business School postgraduates also have access to events and resources provided by the Careers and Employability Service.

Career destinations for our postgraduates include:

  • accountants
  • finance and investment analysts
  • higher education teaching professionals
  • investment bankers
  • IT business analysts
  • management consultants
  • marketing professionals
  • public relations professionals
  • university researchers

Some MSc graduates have gone on to doctoral studies, others have become entrepreneurs. Our Ingenuity Lab has supported a number of our MSc graduates in starting their own company.

Career progression

86.2% of all postgraduates from Nottingham University Business School secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £31,419.*

* HESA Graduate Outcomes 2019/20 data published in 2022. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates

Related courses

This content was last updated on Thursday 27 October 2022. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.