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PG Certificate in Scottish Culture & Heritage

An opportunity to explore Scotland’s culture, past and present, from home, anywhere in the world 

A new postgraduate certificate programme in Scottish Culture and Heritage will be the first of its kind to be delivered entirely online. It offers a unique opportunity to engage with the culture of Scotland through its wealth of popular tradition in Scots, Gaelic and English, to study original sound archives that are available for the first time in digital format, and to engage with international debates concerning the role of tradition and heritage in the 21st Century. 

The programme is a collaboration between the Department of Celtic and Scottish Studies at the University of Edinburgh and Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI, the National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture on the Isle of Skye. Both institutions have a worldwide reputation for the quality of their teaching and research and the resources for the study of Scotland, particularly relating to languages, cultures and heritage.

The course will be delivered under the joint direction of Professor Hugh Cheape from SMO and Dr Gary West from the University of Edinburgh.

Professor Cheape said: “This new course is based on unique sound archives that offer unusual insights into the culture and history of Scotland, and is exceptional now in allowing us to hear the voices of our ancestors, many of whom were born in the 19th century. Here is a course of study giving us new opportunities to interpret the past from the evidence of oral tradition.”

Dr West added: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with colleagues at SMO, and are very excited to be launching this new distance learning programme this month. Pooling our resources and staff expertise in this way has allowed us to design and construct a product of the highest quality, and with students signing up from as far afield as the USA and Asia, as well as from Scotland, our aim is to inspire and be inspired in equal measure.”

The course’s flagship resource is the digital audio archive website, Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches, which currently holds almost 33,000 recordings in Scots, Gaelic and English, covering traditional music, song, folklore, social history and all forms of cultural tradition.

Flexible distance learning will be provided via the Moodle virtual learning environment (VLE). Lectures will be delivered in video and podcast format and interactive webinars will take place in a virtual classroom hosted by the University of Edinburgh. Guidance and individual technical support will be provided for all students, including those with no previous experience of learning on the web.

The research environment is built on the growing availability of both e-journals and e-books and the full range of digitised resources for the study of Scotland, including extensive digitised audio resources and visual archival resources supported by library services of both institutions. All materials will be available at the fingertips of  students wherever they have online access.

Starting this month (September), the programme is available full-time over 1 year (2 semesters) or part-time over 2 years (4 semesters).

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