Tourism Studies - master

Varighet: 2 Years

Foto: MostPhotos
Foto: MostPhotos

Tourism Studies - master

Varighet: 2 Years

Application deadline
Nordic applicants: 15 April
International applicants: 1 December
How to apply?

Are you passionate about making tourism better?

This study program seeks to provide students with thorough knowledge about how to balance environmental, economic, and socio-cultural benefits and concerns in tourism.

Spørsmål om studiet
John Ivar Nilsen
Nilsen, John-Ivar


Tourism is an increasingly important global phenomenon, which involves social, cultural, economic, political, and environmental opportunities and challenges. Expanding economies enable more people to travel frequently and over longer distances to experience landscapes, townscapes, cultures, and peoples. Globalization and technological developments enable increased mobilities, and thus tourism activities. Tourism development and growth also challenges the sustainability of ecologies in the era of climate change.

This study program seeks to provide students with thorough knowledge about how to balance environmental, economic, and socio-cultural benefits ans concerns in tourism. In particular, students will adress how to meet tourist markets' demands for nature and heritage experiences, without compromising future generations' access to these. Throughout the program, students will obtain specialized insights into the complexities of tourism in relation to experiences, in how tourism is performed and marketed, and how it shapes - and is shaped by - cultural, social, economic, temporal and spatial power relations. The specialized insights should enable students to analyze tourism in ways that give nuanced understandings of sustainable tourism in a variety of settings. By the end of the program, students should be able to employ such scholarly understandings in a Master's thesis, based on social-scientific and humanities-oriented theoretical approaches.

Upon successful completion of the program, students should have obtained the following:


The student should have

  • a thorough knowledge of seminal and contemporary theories within the field of tourism studies
  • an in-depth knowledge of research processes and methods adapted to issues within the field of tourism studies
  • advanced knowledge of sustainability and responsibility in tourism, in particular as relevant to nature and heritage tourism
  • the ability to apply theoretical and methodological knowledge of new areas within tourism studies
  • the ability to analyze professional issues based on the history, tradition, specialization, and role of tourism in society



The student should be able to

  • critically consider the solidity of information on and descriptions of tourism gained from various sources
  • demonstrate analytical capacity by structuring and formulating professional arguments that contribute to innovative solutions in sustainable and responsible tourism
  • analyze and relate critically to existing theories, methods and intrepretations within tourism studies, as well as apply tourism perspectives in practical and theoretical problem solving
  • make use of relevant research in an independent manner, to contribute to the development of strategies and new opportunities in nature and heritage tourism
  • develop research questions and make use of relevant research methods to collect and analyze data concerning tourism objectives
  • carry out an independent research project in the field of tourism, under supervision and in accordance with current norms for research ethics.


General competence:

The student should be able to

  • design, plan, develop and carry out tourism research projects
  • critically analyze the tourism industry, tourists' practices and tourism relevant policies as well as consider the ethical concerns and potential dilemmas they imply
  • apply reflexive thinking to contribute to innovative processes in heritage and nature tourism development
  • contribute to a sustainable and responsible tourism industry and governance of tourism development
  • apply knowledge and skills independently and innovatively through cooperation in research, government and industry contexts

The Master of Tourism Studies forms the basis for a range of fields of work associated with:

  • Development of sustainable tourism and adventure products
  • Marketing and communication of tourism and adventure products
  • Establishment of culture-based and nature-based enterprises
  • Travel Life's organizational unit (Norwegian Hospitality, Innovation Norway, etc.)
  • International organizations (NGOs)
  • Public affairs and regulatory frameworks for tourism
  • Consultancy work for the tourism industry
  • Investigative work
  • Research and development
  • Teaching

Term 10 ects 10 ects 10 ects
1st Term (Fall)
2nd Term (Spring)
3rd Term (Fall)
4rt Term (Spring)
Master Thesis
*Master thesis seminars will start in the first semester and continue in the second and third semester. The Master thesis seminar prepares the students for their Master thesis

Applicants must have a bachelor's degree (180 ECTS), or an equivalent qualification, with a minimum of 80 ECTS within tourism, out-door recreation, event studies, marketing and communication, social sciences, humanities or education. Applicants must have a minimum of 5 ECTS in research methods to fulfil the admission requirements.

Applicants who hold a bachelor's degree or equivalent issued in Nordic countries, Europe, Canada, USA, Australia and New Zealand: An average grade strong C as a minimum requirement,

Applicants who hold a bachelor's degree or equivalent issued in countries other than the above mentioned region/countries: An average grade B as a minimum requirement in addition to fulfilling formal admission requirements for Master's level entry.

The average grade is calculated from the entire bachelor´s degree.

Non-EU applicants need to have a Higher Education Entrance Qualification from their home countries and certified fulfilment of

English language requirements

For more details on admission requirements (GSU-list etc.):

Formal admission requirements - Master's level

Please visit the website of The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration for information regarding Norwegian residence permits.
Study permit

The maximum number of students accepted per year is 15.

The course activities consist of different teaching methods. Research-based teaching takes place in seminars with lectures in classroom and fieldwork, and further relies on students' participation in group work, discussions, and presentations. The courses, Philosophy of Social Sciences, Qualitative and Quantitative methods contribute to the students' development of theoretical understanding and reflection, which students will continue to develop throughout the program.

Students will analyze, discuss, and position their knowledge in light of relevant contexts. Through group work, students will be able to discuss subjects to gain deeper understanding. In individual tasks, students will use theoretical literature and examples from the tourism industry. Students will receive supervision and individual guidance in writing papers and assignments. Students are expected to study independently, including curriculum not specified in the scheduled teaching. Canvas is used for the online learning platform and Wiseflow for the examination platform.

Examination methods will vary from course to course, and will generally ble written home exams and school exams as well as oral exams.

A good student environment is achieved through academic and social activities, close contact between lecturer and students during teaching weeks ans skype meetings with remote students.

To achieve the learning outcomes, students must expect to work 40 hours a week in their studies, including lectures, seminars and self-study.

An individual Master's thesis will consist of approximately 30000 words. The exam will consist of a written Master's thesis and an oral exam.


With a Master's degree in Tourism Studies, students can apply for admission to a PhD program at UiT - The Arctic University of Norway, or PhD programs at other national and international institutions.

UiT - The Arctic University of Norway cooperates with international universities regarding student exchange at the Master's level in line with NOKUT's requirements. Student exchange is possible in Semester 3.