Course overview

Delivered by the triple-accredited Aston Business School, our MSc Strategic Marketing Management programme equips you with the tools and knowledge needed to thrive in today's dynamic business environment. It is now a CIM (The Chartered Institute of Marketing) accredited degree, meaning that you will be able to gain CIM exemptions and gain industry-recognised qualifications at an accelerated pace. With our strong links to CIM, the teaching content has been developed alongside CIM’s learning outcomes to ensure that our course content is aligned to industry requirements. This dedication is reflected in our rankings; Aston University is ranked among the top 50 universities globally for 'Master’s in Marketing' (QS World University Rankings, 2024), reflecting our commitment to excellence in education.

Designed for students from diverse backgrounds, including those without prior marketing experience, our course covers essential areas such as digital marketing, brand management and strategic planning. Through engaging lectures, seminars, simulations and case studies, you will gain insights from industry experts and experienced academics.

At Aston Business School, we foster a collaborative learning environment where you develop critical thinking, analytical skills and creativity. As a graduate, you will be well-equipped to pursue exciting career opportunities in marketing roles across various industries.

Alex Chantrell Strategic Marketing Management graduate

“The course was varied, technical and in-depth, but still perfect for someone without a business or marketing background. I was made to feel very welcome, and the high standard of both the teaching and the students really pushed me to work hard and eventually graduate with a high distinction.”

Read more

Alex Chantrell
MSc Strategic Marketing Management
Marketing management trainee, L'Oréal Groupe

Why Strategic Marketing Management at Aston University?

CIM Accredited Degree
CIM Accredited Degree
Accredited by The Chartered Institute of Marketing, the world's leading professional body for marketing.
QS World University Rankings logo
Global top 50
Aston University was ranked among the top 50 universities worldwide (Masters in Marketing; QS World University Rankings, 2024)
Triple accredited icon
Recognised for quality
Aston Business School is proud to be among 1% of business schools worldwide with triple accreditation
1st in the uk
Excellent prospects
Ranked first in the UK for ‘career prospects’ (Marketing and Public Relations; Complete University Guide, 2024)
eduniversal ranking logo
2nd in the UK
We have been ranked 2nd in the UK (Marketing; Eduniversal Best Masters Rankings, 2024)
Complete University Guide logo
Safe in our hands
Ranked second in the UK for ‘graduate prospects – on track’ (Marketing; Complete University Guide, 2024)

Course description

MSc Strategic Marketing Management

Our MSc Strategic Marketing Management programme integrates theory with practical skills, equipping you for impactful marketing roles across diverse industries.

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What we will provide
First-class teaching in the UK’s second-largest city, delivered by a diverse array of staff who will inspire and excite you. Benefit from applied learning, research-informed teaching and constructive assessment. The Aston Global Advantage module enhances employability through industry connections and key placement opportunities, ensuring hands-on learning with practical insights into strategic marketing management.

We are also an Adobe Creative Campus meaning you will have access to top-notch software licenses, including Adobe and Solidworks, commonly used in industry.

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What you will provide
It is important you learn how to adapt a growth mindset to your studies – understanding that intelligence and success come from applying yourself, a willingness to learn and an ambition and drive to excel.

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What skills we teach
The MSc Strategic Marketing Management programme develops your expertise in strategic thinking, brand management and digital marketing techniques. You will master analytical skills for market research, customer insights and data-driven decision-making, preparing you for leadership roles in the fast-evolving marketing landscape.

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Career prospects
As an Aston University Strategic Marketing Management graduate, you will be equipped to lead strategic marketing initiatives, drive brand growth and capitalise on emerging market trends. With skills in research, analysis and communication, you will navigate diverse industries and contribute effectively to business success in the competitive marketplace.

How you will learn

On the MSc Strategic Marketing Management programme at Aston University, you will engage in a dynamic learning environment, blending traditional academic rigor with practical, hands-on experiences. Through lectures, case studies and guest speakers, you will explore key marketing theories and their real-world applications. This applied approach ensures you develop practical skills essential for success in marketing roles.

At the start of your course, you will be allocated a personal tutor who can offer individual study advice and guidance. You will also benefit from access to the University Library's extensive collection of over 25,000 books and electronic journals. Aston University's virtual learning environment supports your journey, providing resources like lecture slides, e-books and online journals.

In the Aston Global Advantage module, you will enhance your employability and global citizenship through experiential learning and reflective practice. Dedicated employability support, skill-building workshops and diverse learning streams will prepare you for both academic and professional success.

Student holding laptop in student study space

Gain the advantage

Our flagship professional development module provides a range of opportunities to apply your learning and increase your employability.

What you will learn

In our MSc Strategic Marketing Management programme at Aston University, you will gain comprehensive insights into strategic marketing. From crafting digital advertising strategies to integrating communication strategies within digital transformation initiatives, you will be prepared for dynamic marketing roles.

In the taught phase, you will practically apply knowledge, mastering strategic concepts and analytical techniques. You will explore marketing analyses using research and statistical techniques, while enhancing critical analysis, teamwork and communication skills.

In the dissertation phase, you will complete a research project on a strategic marketing topic of your choice, showcasing your ability to conduct independent research with a clear consideration of ethics, theory and methods.

This course offers an Exchange Partnership Second Degree Pathway, meaning you can spend an additional year at one of our international partner institutions. If successful, you will graduate with two masters degrees.

Exchange Partnership Second Degree Pathway

Lillian Psylla

The clear choice

When choosing a university, Lillian had criteria in mind for what she was looking for: best faculty, good accreditation, a vivid student life with a variety of clubs and societies available. The clear choice - Aston University.

Postgraduate courses

Learn business, do business

Our classroom goes beyond traditional lectures, focusing instead on real-life projects and hands-on experiences.

Course objectives

  1. Provides you with a programme of study that meets your needs, whether you are local, national, or international, enabling you to learn through the exchange of experience as well as formal academic study.
  2. Provides you with an excellent learning experience that draws on the research and consultancy of Aston University academic staff, utilising the University’s links with business, professional and public sector organisations.
  3. Provides you with opportunities to enhance your employability by developing lifelong learning and personal development skills.
  4. Produces well-qualified graduates who are equipped for and aspire to senior positions.
  5. Causes you to reflect upon and develop your own positions in relation to corporate responsibility, sustainability and ethics.
  6. Develops specialist skills and knowledge in marketing management to meet your needs as a recent graduate or someone already in employment, enabling you to embark or progress successfully in your chosen career.
  7. Develops your research skills to enable the completion of a masters dissertation on a topic associated with marketing.
  8. Enables you to critically examine theory, including tools and models used in marketing, in different business contexts.
  9. Enables you to understand the role and contribution of marketing to the achievement of organisational aims and objectives.
  10. Enables you to formulate, evaluate and select from alternative strategies, and develop associated strategic decision-making skills in a marketing context.


Modules and learning outcomes

Taught stage modules

In the taught stage you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Marketing Management
In this module you will gain a comprehensive understanding and critical evaluation of marketing management practices, underpinned by relevant theories and conceptual frameworks. These frameworks are applied to contemporary issues and organisational strategies within national and international contexts and culminating with the creation and the proposal of a professional marketing plan.
Integrated Marketing Communications
This module introduces you to the various elements of modern marketing communications to be applied to a specific initiative within an organisation. You will analyse current trends within marketing communications with the intention to apply theoretical concepts to a practitioner setting.
Marketing Strategy
On this module you will explore how to make best use of your market research to develop a clear marketing strategy and gain a competitive edge. You will examine the capabilities of organisations and learn how to segment markets, identify the most attractive target segments and develop differentiation strategies to achieve competitive advantage.
The Aston Global Advantage
The Aston Global Advantage is our professional development programme that runs throughout all MSc programmes at Aston Business School. Focusing on professional development and employability, this integrated module gives you the opportunity to identify, develop and apply the key transferrable skills you will gain throughout the year.
Ethics in Academic Practice
This module provides an introduction to the Academic Offence framework. By completing the resources you will understand the key principles underpinning the submission of academic assignments. These principles can then be applied to the rest of the modules studied at the university.

You will choose four of the following optional modules:*

Module TitleCredits
Intellectual Property Strategy and Management
This module will look at intellectual property, strategy and management exploring intellectual property rights relevant to an innovative business and will allow you to practice your understanding of the strategy, strategic management and valuation in commercialising these valuable rights.
Accounting for Non-Financial Managers
This module will give you a good grasp of key finance and accounting concepts. You will be competent interpreting financial information, such as company accounts and you to be able to communicate effectively using the terminology of finance and accounting. It will also enable you to use accounting to make informed management decisions.
Strategic Business Sustainability
The module looks at how sustainable development as a process can lead to a certain level of sustainability within an organisational context. It places sustainability within the strategic orientation of an organisation and as such as it takes a view of sustainability both in the short-term as well as in the long-term.
Consumer Behaviour
This module introduces key theories surrounding consumers and how they navigate through modern marketplaces considering the whole consumption cycle. You will not only evaluate how consumers make purchasing decisions, but also formulate a critical understanding of how they may use possessions or get rid of stuff (e.g., gift-giving) especially in the context of your own consumer behaviour.
Strategic Brand Management
Most branding modules focus on what brand perfection looks like. Most organisations do not want perfection they want to use their brand practically to support the delivery of the organisation’s objectives. This module focuses on the art of the practical not the art of the perfect.
International Marketing Management
This module evaluates how organisations operate in the global marketing environment. The module critically explores theories/concepts relating to the global marketing environment, international marketing activities and decisions. Implications for international marketing strategies and actions are also considered through several relevant case-studies and practical materials.
Digital Advertising
This module is about the theory and practice of advertising across various types of digital platforms. This includes websites, social media and mobile. You will not only learn about the nature of digital advertising but also how to improve the choice of digital channels and the effectiveness of the creative content.
Strategic Management
This module starts with the purpose of strategy including stakeholder and governance issues and introduces tools and techniques for analysing external environments and internal capabilities. You will learn theories and frameworks/ models for assessing and evaluating organisations’ strategic options which are then applied in analysing contemporary case studies and through engaging in a rich business strategy simulation that involves strategic decision-making.
Content Marketing for Digital Media
This module will explore the importance of content marketing for digital media. It is designed to help you develop an effective content marketing strategy across different digital platforms using an integrated approach. You will also learn how to develop creative and engaging content for different digital media.

*Availability of any optional modules will be subject to staff availability and a minimum number of students who express an interest in studying the optional modules.

Dissertation stage modules

In the dissertation stage you will study the following core modules:

Module TitleCredits
Analysis for Marketing Research Projects15
MSc Strategic Marketing Management Research Project
You will carry out an original piece of work applying material that you have learnt in the taught element of your degree. Specific requirements will be explained relating to different degree programmes but in summary you must demonstrate both theoretical and practical knowledge of your chosen area of specialism.

Programme outcomes

On successful completion of both the taught and dissertation stage, you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate understanding and application of core theories in strategic marketing management.
  • Make appropriate and strategic operational marketing decisions.
  • Undertake and apply marketing analyses using marketing research and statistical techniques.
  • Demonstrate the necessary skills in critical analysis and evaluation towards your own work and that of others.
  • Work effectively as an independent self-managed/self-regulated learner.
  • Work effectively as part of a team.
  • Communicate effectively, in a manner appropriate to the setting, task and/or audience.

We may update our courses to reflect best practices and academic developments. If we do, we’ll let you know of any changes at the earliest opportunity by updating our course webpages. If you have already received an offer, we’ll write to you directly to let you know of the changes.


Entry requirements

One of the following:

  • 2:2 (lower second-class honours) degree or equivalent
  • Equivalent overseas degree recognised by Aston University (see international students tab below for more information)

You will also need to provide:

  • A professional reference
    • If you are a current student or recent graduate (within the last 2-3 years), we will ask for an academic reference
    • If you are currently employed and not a recent graduate, we will ask for a professional reference
  • An official academic transcript of your university grades to date
  • A completed application form.

Aston University is a diverse, close community and welcomes international students on many of our postgraduate programmes. Students from over 120 countries choose to study with us every year. Based in the centre of Birmingham, Aston is not only a great place to study but also a great place to live.

Qualifications in your country

For details of equivalent qualifications in your country, use our area pages below:

English language requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of an English language qualification.

English language requirements

How to apply

Aston University provides a range of opportunities for international students to join our community and study on our campus. A key part of our strategy is our relationships with teaching partners, providing multiple pathways to Aston.

Aston’s professional work placements can improve your chance of securing a graduate job. Placements give you experience, confidence and opportunities and, as an Aston student, you’ll be better prepared for your future career. One of the great things about Aston is our focus on employability. Our close links with businesses, industries and professions make this possible.

Find out more about applying

Post-study work visa

Aston University welcomed the creation of a new Graduate Immigration Route which enables international students to remain in the UK for two years after you complete your studies to find work. This new post-study work visa applies to international students completing full-time undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Graduate Immigration Route

Pathway programmes

If you don’t meet our entry requirements, we have a range of pathway programmes offered by our partner, ONCAMPUS Aston, which you can complete to progress onto one of our degrees.

We recognise the value of extensive professional experience. If you do not have the academic qualifications but have extensive and relevant professional experience and a proven ability to succeed, we would welcome your application.

The information contained on this website details the typical entry requirements for this course for the most commonly offered qualifications.

Applicants with alternative qualifications may wish to enquire with the relevant admissions teams prior to application whether or not their qualifications are deemed acceptable. For less commonly encountered qualifications this will be judged on a case-by-case basis in consultation with the academic admissions tutor.


Speak to our Admissions Team

If you have any questions about the application process please get in touch with our postgraduate admissions team:


Call: 0121 204 3200 (Please note this line is open Monday-Friday between 09:30-16:30)

Rajinder Dool MSc Strategic Marketing Management PD

Meet your programme director

Rajinder Dool
Programme Director, MSc Strategic Marketing Management

If you have any questions about the course or modules you will be studying, you can get in touch via email and I will be happy to answer your queries.

Fees and scholarships

Course fees

UK students

Annual tuition fees:£12,000

International students

Annual tuition fees:£23,500

More information on fees

The United Kingdom government has confirmed that European Union (EU), other European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals commencing academic courses in England from August 2021 will no longer be charged the same tuition rates as UK students.

Tuition fees for students are reviewed annually and may increase in subsequent years in line with inflation linked to the Retail Price Index (RPI) to take account of the University’s increased costs of delivering the Programme. Any such increase shall always be in accordance with the law. When undertaking a placement year, a placement year fee applies.


At Aston University we are committed to supporting the most talented and hardworking students to achieve their potential by providing a range of scholarships to help lower tuition and living costs.


Throughout the course, you will be assessed in various ways, including exams, coursework, and presentations. Group work, an essential aspect of postgraduate study, will require collaboration with team members to develop valuable teamwork skills highly sought after by employers. Our teaching staff will support you and ensure thorough preparation for assessments.

For your research project, you will have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of interesting subject areas or even develop a strategic marketing plan for a company of your choice. Both options will allow you to apply the skills you have learned throughout the course. You will receive specialised support from an assigned supervisor who will provide guidance and expertise to help you navigate your studies effectively.

Career prospects

The transferable skills that our marketing programmes provide mean that our graduates are successful in finding employment in a wide range of roles such as:

  • Brand manager
  • Head of marketing
  • Marketing and sales manager
  • Business development manager
  • Business analyst
  • Market researcher
  • PR assistant
  • Social media manager

They have secured positions at companies such as Muller Dairy, Ralph Lauren, Merlin Entertainment Plc., Barclays Bank, KPMG, Nielsen, Tesco, Moncler, Mercedes Benz and Microsoft.

Pakhi Sharma MSc Strategic Marketing Management graduate

Highly ranked

Pakhi Sharma chose Strategic Marketing Management at Aston University for its high ranking and because she fell in love with the people and culture in the UK.

Our graduates achieve amazing things all over the world – whether it’s setting up their own businesses, landing jobs with high profile organisations, or making real differences within their communities.

Hear from our graduates


Be part of our community

Once you have joined us at Aston University, you’ll always be part of our community, even beyond graduation.

Frequently asked questions

Why study Strategic Marketing Management at Aston University?

Studying Strategic Marketing Management at Aston University offers unparalleled opportunities and global recognition. Aston Business School's triple accreditation, a distinction held by only 1% of business schools globally, ensures top-quality education.

Our curriculum emphasises real-world application, incorporating extensive use of real-life case studies to enrich your learning experience. This applied nature of the programme equips you with practical skills and insights highly valued by employers.

With 100% of our students confirming they had appropriate access to extensive library resources and facilities (PTES, 2023), and our reputation as a leading institution for graduate prospects (Guardian, 2024; Complete University Guide, 2024), your educational journey is fully supported. Aston University's global ranking among the top 50 universities worldwide (Masters in Marketing; QS World University Rankings, 2024) further solidifies its reputation.

How practical is the Strategic Marketing Management course?

The Strategic Marketing Management course at Aston University immerses you in practical, real-world scenarios right from the start. You will dive into hands-on activities, such as crafting your own marketing strategies and engaging in dynamic marketing strategy simulations. These experiences not only hone your analytical and strategic thinking but also deepen your understanding of market dynamics and competition.

The Aston Global Advantage module is tailored to your career ambitions, offering a personalised learning experience that emphasises a ‘learning by doing’ approach. This module mimics professional environments to cultivate your skills in responsible management and sustainability.

You will participate in a variety of interactive classroom activities, including workshops, simulations, industry training and even virtual internships, all designed to replicate the challenges and opportunities you will face in the marketing field. In addition, you will have the opportunity to tackle real-world business challenges presented by external organisations. This hands-on experience allows you to apply your academic knowledge and problem-solving skills to practical situations, preparing you effectively for the complexities of the marketing profession.

What is the ‘Aston Global Advantage’?

Embedded in all our masters degrees, this assessed, year-long credit-bearing module aims to develop professional and personal transferrable skills relevant to any workplace and create a bridge between the degree and the world of work.

The Aston Global Advantage

Why should I study my postgraduate degree at Aston University?

There are lots of benefits of studying a postgraduate degree at Aston University.

Watch this video from MBA student, Monique, who talks about just a few of them:

Is Birmingham a good place to study?

Our campus is based in the centre of Birmingham, the youngest major city in Europe and a great place to live, work and study.

  • Great music and entertainment with a vibrant nightlife. Bars, clubs, pubs, live music, festivals, concerts. Whatever your tastes, there's something here for everyone.
  • Fantastic food. Birmingham's diverse community means you can try anything from the famous Balti triangle, the Chinese Quarter, high street chains, halal and vegan food, and Michelin-star dining.
  • World-class shopping. The Bullring and Grand Central is a shopper's paradise. From the world's biggest Primark to luxury brands at the Mailbox.
  • Arts and culture. Museums, galleries, theatres, concerts and Birmingham's art collection is as wide as it is impressive - not to be missed.
  • Green, open spaces. One of the greenest cities in Europe, Birmingham has hundreds of publicly accessible parks and green spaces across the city.
  • Sporting action. Birmingham has some of the most exciting venues for watching or participating in sport in the UK.

Discover Birmingham

What will my timetable look like?

We understand how important it is to know your timetable in advance for planning around work, childcare, or other responsibilities. Here's some basic guidance on what to expect regarding your student timetable.

Full-time programmes
As a rough estimate, full-time postgraduate students in the College of Business and Social Sciences should expect to spend about 12-15 hours per week in lectures and on-campus seminars. This is in addition to independent study, and there may be additional guided learning activities during certain weeks. The exact distribution of these hours will vary depending on your course and module choices.
Part-time programmes
Part-time students will have fewer weekly on-campus hours compared to full-time students. This reduction is proportional to the number of modules you're enrolled in.
Timetable availability
Complete timetables are usually released shortly before the start of your programme. This timing is necessary to ensure that we accommodate all course requirements and that rooms are allocated based on the number of students likely to enrol on each programme. We aim to provide these timetables as early as possible, to assist you in your planning.

As your induction week approaches, you will be sent more information about your timetable via email, and you will be able to access your timetable by logging into MyAstonPortal. For any further queries or information regarding your timetable, you can reach out to your programme director or the Student Support team.

Online/distance learning programmes
The above information also applies to students enrolled in online/distance learning programmes. Please note that both full-time and part-time distance learning students are still required to attend scheduled synchronous learning sessions.


What can I get involved in at Aston Business School?

At Aston Business School, you will dive into a dynamic blend of innovative learning and hands-on experiences. With our acclaimed triple-crown accreditation, we offer you academic excellence and a track record of producing successful graduates.

Located in Birmingham, the UK's vibrant second city, Aston Business School provides you with a culturally rich environment and superb connectivity. You will benefit from real-world business engagements, international study opportunities and entrepreneur support programmes like BSEEN and Pitchfest.

You can also engage in practical consultancy at the Aston Business Clinic and collaborate with global peers in events such as the Maastricht Case Competition or the Universities Business Challenge. Our partnership with The Prince’s Trust, alongside a range of student clubs including TEDx and Enactus further enriches your learning experience.

Discover more

Say Hello to students at Aston University

Hello, what would you like to ask us?

Hello! We are a team of current Aston University students from various parts of the world, studying a wide range of postgraduate subjects.

Feel free to ask us anything about studying at Aston University.

Chat to our students


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