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BA (Hons) International Hospitality & Tourism Management (Top-up)

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    Full time according to Funding Council definitions

This course is specifically designed for students with appropriate existing qualifications (such as HND or Foundation degree) in Hospitality, Tourism or allied subjects to continue their studies to degree level. It develops graduates with the managerial skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in these dynamic and challenging international industries.

As well as gaining a better understanding of hospitality and tourism management, you'll be guided in developing your ability to evaluate and analyse and to apply your knowledge in innovative ways. The core of the course focuses on strategic management subjects taught in the context of hospitality and tourism and on research methods with expert academic support given for your dissertation.

Further information about studying with us is available on the Department of Tourism and Hospitality webpages.

Key information

Next start date:

September 2018, September 2019


Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus


1 year


Institutute of Travel and Tourism

Entry requirements:

Foundation degree or HND with 55%.

International entry requirements:

If English is not your first language you'll need IELTS 6.0 (Academic) with a minimum of 5.5 in each component of writing, speaking, listening and reading or above. For more information check out our full entry requirements page.

Course details

Year 1

  • Dissertation: A piece of independent work that involves collecting, interpreting and analysing data. You’ll share your key findings through a sustained and balanced argument. The dissertation will develop your analytical and problem solving skills. You’ll develop a critical attitude to research methods, and the ethical issues associated with researching.
  • Strategy & Leadership in Hospitality: You will develop your ability to review and analyse inter/ national hospitality businesses and organisations and the rationale and logic behind the strategic and tactical decisions that they take.

As well as studying these units, you'll choose two units from the following options:

  • Tourism Issues & Futures: We will examine a range of critical and contemporary issues that you may not have encountered previously, with the aim of broadening your horizons and understanding of tourism. You will be challenged to think critically about issues that you may have previously taken for granted, and be encouraged to reflect critically on your own experiences and practices as a tourist.
  • Digital Marketing: This unit will equip you with technical skills and the conceptual understanding of how to engage effectively in digital marketing, which has evolved to the extent that it has become the dominant form of marketing in the majority of organisation.
  • Entrepreneurship & SME Management: You will learn how to recognise and analyse internal and external factors likely to affect the success of small hospitality and tourism businesses, and will develop the skills necessary to conceive, research and communicate a business proposal/ idea to secure the necessary external resources for a business start-up.
  • Financial Management: This builds on your earlier studies in finance and accounting. You’ll develop an appreciation for how organisations make financial decisions within the context of corporate strategy, and an understanding of the role(s) of financial management in organisations.
  • Food, Culture & Travel: You will explore the complex relationships between food, culture and travel within an international context, and from commercial and social perspectives, reflecting on aspects of critical food studies and debating a wide range of relevant topics.
  • International Human Resource Management in Hospitality & Tourism: This unit addresses current human resource management opportunities and challenges such as talent management, mobility and staff retention, which shape the international hospitality and tourism industries and organisations. It provides a forum in which you can critically analyse and reflect on relevant issues and their impact on business and your own management career.
  • Transportation for Tourism: Focussing primarily on the rail, commercial aviation and cruise industries, you’ll develop an understanding of a range of contemporary transport-related issues that are analysed and set primarily within a public policy and economics context.
  • Tourism & Hospitality Design: This unit addresses the role and significance of design in and for the Tourism and Hospitality Industries. You will develop the skills necessary to appraise design in relevant real-world contexts, with an emphasis on creative thinking and practice.
  • Visitor Attractions Management: This unit will explore the factors and issues that influence the development and management of visitor attractions in the UK and other countries. It aims to develop your awareness, understanding and appreciation of the principles and practices relating to the development and management of visitor attractions.

You'll be assessed through coursework assignments and end of year examinations.

Programme specification

Programme specifications provide definitive records of the University's taught degrees in line with Quality Assurance Agency requirements. Every taught course leading to a BU Award has a programme specification which describes its aims, structure, content and learning outcomes, plus the teaching, learning and assessment methods used.

Download the programme specification for BA (Hons) International Hospitality & Tourism Management.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the programme specification, the information is liable to change to take advantage of exciting new approaches to teaching and learning as well as developments in industry. If you have been unable to locate the programme specification for the course you are interested in, it will be available as soon as the latest version is ready. Alternatively please contact us for assistance.

Selection criteria

Background and experience

For this course we are looking for applicants who:

  • Are innovative and open to new experiences
  • Possess the ability to think logically and organise their work
  • Have enthusiasm for their chosen industry
  • Have an enquiring mind and are prepared to ask questions
  • Are strong team players who are willing to work and learn alongside others.

You should be able to demonstrate an interest in hands-on organisation, showing the skills to be innovative, flexible and enthusiastic managers. These skills are needed by an industry that exists to create something special for its customers. Good interpersonal skills are vital alongside the ability to problem solve. We are particularly interested in people with new ideas who can express themselves well in writing, work well in groups and can demonstrate a wide range of interests.

Selection methods

We’ll be selecting the candidates for this course by looking at their applications on an individual basis; therefore an interview may be requested. For that reason, make sure your application really stands out from the crowd, and leave us in no doubt as to why you should be joining BU.

You can find some handy hints about filling in your UCAS form on our how to apply webpages.

Full entry requirements

This course requires a Foundation degree or HND with 55% in a required subject.

Required subjects: Business Studies

GCSEs: This course requires GCSE English and Mathematics grade C (or grade 4 in the reformed GCSE grading) or equivalent.

Numeracy and Literacy: We need to be sure that you can express yourself in written English and have basic numeracy skills. We look at Level 2 of the National Qualifications Framework, which includes GCSEs, Key Skills and Functional Skills Level 2. If you do not have formal qualifications to this level or have alternatives, we may still be able to consider your application, please contact the Future Students Enquiry Team to find out more.

International entry requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

  • IELTS (Academic) 6.0 with minimum 5.5 in each component of writing, speaking, listening and reading, or equivalent.

View further information about our English language requirements.

A number of pre-sessional English and preparatory programmes are offered through our partner institution, Bournemouth University International College, and will get you ready for study at BU at the appropriate level.

You can also find further details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our international entry requirements page.


How we spend our free time is becoming increasingly important, which means the hospitality and tourism management industry is always looking for innovative and skilled graduates. This course will prepare you for work in this exciting sector, giving you an insight into various aspects of the hospitality and tourism industry.

Our graduates are highly sought after, thanks to our excellent reputation in the tourism and hospitality sector. You'll be equipped to take on a variety of roles once you graduate, including:

  • Customer service assistant
  • Health and safety advisor
  • Marketing co-ordinator
  • Project manager
  • Duty manager.

You can find our graduates working for some of the world's best-known tourism organisations, including Walt Disney World, Hilton Worldwide, Travco and VisitScotland to name just a few.

Industries worked in

  • Hospitality
  • Tourism
  • Travel
  • Business
  • Marketing.

Further study

Once you have completed an undergraduate Honours degree, you can further develop your education by studying for a postgraduate degree. Please visit our postgraduate section for further details about our range of Master's degrees.

Our lecturers

Our staff are actively engaged in research and professional practice in the tourism sector, which is integrated into the teaching of this course. Find out more about some of the staff who will be teaching on this course, and their research activities.

Philippa Hudson – Senior Lecturer/Programme Leader

Philippa is a food safety professional specialising in the implementation of food safety management systems in smaller businesses. With a background in practical food microbiology, Philippa delivers aspects of food safety and food hygiene to hospitality and nutrition undergraduates. Philippa’s research focuses on the everyday impact of food safety, from children’s lunchboxes to students’ fridges. She has also worked on consultancy and Knowledge Transfer Partnership projects with local businesses to ensure they have appropriate systems in place to manage food safety. She was interviewed by regional press and radio about her research into the cleanliness of children’s lunchboxes.

Richard Ward – Senior Lecturer/Programme Leader

Richard’s research revolves around young adults and alcohol, and food allergen management within the hospitality industry. Richard is an external consultant/qualification developer to City & Guilds of London for hospitality management, food & beverage supervision and food safety qualifications, he is also a Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality and Member of the British Institute of Innkeeping.

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis – Head of Department, Tourism & Hospitality

Professor Dimitrios Buhalis is widely regarded as an expert in strategic management and marketing with specialisation in technology and tourism. He has worked around the world and has written over 18 books and 100 journal articles. Dimitrios is still an active tourism practitioner working closely with tourism organisations, governments and hospitality businesses for strategic marketing, technology and experience innovations.

Derek Robbins – Senior Lecturer

Derek trained as a transport planner and has many years’ experience teaching and researching in the growing area of how transport services can best be managed and developed to meet the needs of tourism, and he has written widely on this topic.

Dr Philip Alford – Senior Lecturer

Philip is a small business marketing specialist. His particular interest lies in investigating and improving the ways in which technology can support more innovative and entrepreneurial marketing among small businesses.

Dr Neelu Seetaram – Principal Academic

Neelu has undertaken significant research work in the field of tourism economics, especially in the area of demand modelling and economic impact studies related to the tourism and travel industry. Her current research focuses on tourism taxation and the effect of tourism on development in less developed countries.

Dr Hanaa Osman – Senior Lecturer

Hanaa’s research interests are in the areas of culture and the experiences of ethnic migrant workers in the UK hospitality industry.

Sean Beer – Senior Lecturer

Sean has a passionate interest in the interaction between tourism, culture, food, the countryside and the food supply chain. His academic work has been backed up with considerable practical experience in agriculture, marketing, the food supply chain and the rural economy in general, gained on the family farm and within associated family businesses and the food industry, local and international.

Dr Duncan Light – Senior Lecturer

Duncan is a human geographer by background and all his teaching and research highlights the relationships between tourism, places and spaces. Much of his research focuses on Romania, a country which he has visited regularly since 1995.

Find out more about the staff in our Department of Tourism & Hospitality.

Course changes

The table below indicates the latest changes to this course.

Date Changes to this course Where the change was made Previous text

GCSE entry requirements have changed to: This course requires GCSE English and Mathematics grade C (or grade 4 in the reformed GCSE grading) or equivalent qualifications.

Full entry requirements

This course requires a minimum of 5 GCSEs grades A* - C (or grade 4 or above in the newly reformed GCSE grading) including Maths and English or equivalent qualifications.

10/08/2017 Changes to all core and option units for students starting in September 2018 onwards Course details Sept 2018 onwards Course details 2017

What our students say

Mhairi Strachan

Like a cup of tea, the hospitality management course warms you up to the industry, prepares you for placement and polishes you up for the future.

What employers think

Suzi Wotton

Take every networking opportunity available. Meet new people and this could result in you finding a good industry mentor to give you inspiration.

What our students say

Olivia Perry

Being a hospitality student welcomes you into a family. The lecturers are so friendly and helpful; they really help you get through the course.

Additional information

Students in Dylans Bar

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Open day walking courtyard

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Purbeck House common room

International students

We have a strong international student community. Find all the practical advice and information you need here.