Master's degree Tourism - University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons

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Master's degree
Tourism and Change
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Degree programme at a glance

Degree programme at a glance

Tourism is changing. It is vulnerable to change but also contributing to it. For example:

  • Tourism changes the social fabric of a destination and may lead to overtourism.
  • Extreme weather events due to climate change affect the perception of destinations, while tourism contributes to global greenhouse gas emissions.
  • New digital technologies affect travel behaviour with the potential for disruptive innovation within the sector.

The continuous change and ever-shorter innovation cycles present tourism companies and tourism organisations with a considerable challenge to position themselves in a dynamic environment. They need employees and managers who think strategically - in order to be able to respond to global changes and to initiate change processes – and who act as socially conscious entrepreneurs.

In the Master Tourism & Change, you will analyse the different drivers of change, evaluate the consequences of change and determine how to manage as well as design change in tourism. Combine this knowledge of change in tourism with a sound understanding of business administration for a crucial basis for a successful career as a change-maker in tourism.

  • Benefit from small class sizes, international lecturers and a focus on active and experiential learning with the opportunity to work with practical cases, to practice different behaviours in role-play situations, to experience change on an international fieldtrip, to take part in management simulations and to take responsibility in projects.
  • Use the many possibilities to increase your employability such as a personal development programme, a mentoring programme, the international online management simulation or the consultancy projects.
  • Take advantage of student life in the alpine city of Chur. Narrow, winding streets and snow-capped mountains, modern shopping centres and pure, unadulterated nature, Chur offers you an active student life, the hustle and bustle of city life and an alpine recreational playground at your doorstep.
  • Degree

    Master of Science FHGR in Business Administration with Major in Tourism and Change
  • Study model

    Full-time or part-time More about the study model
  • Duration of study programme

    3 semesters full-time or up to 8 semesters
  • Place of study

    Chur, optional semester or summer school abroad More about the place of study
  • Begin of study programme

    September 2020
  • Teaching language

    English
  • Director of Studies

    Mosedale Jan More about Mosedale Jan
Admission requirements

Admission requirements

You must meet the following requirements for admission to the Master of Science in Business Administration with Major in Tourism and Change at the University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons (UAS Grisons). Please contact us if you have any questions about the admission requirements. We will be happy to help you.

Do you have one of the following diplomas?

  • A bachelor's degree or equivalent diploma in tourism or other related subject from a university or university of applied sciences

Do you have a good knowledge of English and fulfil one of the following conditions?

  • Certificate that proves you have a good knowledge of the English language
  • Previous studies undertaken in English
  • English is your mother tongue

Knowledge of business administration

Basic knowledge of business administration is required. Should you not have prior knowledge of business administration at bachelor level, you will be able to make up for this prior to the start of the programme. We will provide all the literature you will need for your preparation.

Exceptions

In exceptional cases, you may be admitted to the programme without fulfilling the requirements mentioned above (admission based on your academic record and application). The Prorector and the Director of Studies decide on admissions on a case-by-case basis.

Transfers from other universities

To arrange a transfer from another university, university of applied sciences or PET college, you must contact the Director of Studies. Credits for modules at master's level previously completed at another university may be awarded in consultation with the Director of Studies prior to the start of the programme.

About the Programme

About the Programme

The master Tourism & Change combines knowledge of business administration with an analytic and comprehensive perspective on the changes affecting and originating from tourism development. These perspectives on analysing, managing and creating change are discussed using examples from the various tourism sectors (hospitality, destination management, airline management, tour operating etc.) and allow for a strategic approach to the future development of tourism.

You will learn to identify, interpret and provide solutions for strategic challenges faced by tourism businesses and to make strategic judgements under uncertainty by relying on an in-depth understanding of change processes in tourism.

As a University of Applied Science, the relationship between studying, research and practice forms an important part of the programme. Gain valuable insights from practitioners in lectures, on international field trips, in the mentoring programme and during the consultancy project. Connect theory and practice in case studies and in real-life situations.

Curriculum

The study programme combines knowledge in tourism, business administration and research methods. The research methods modules are offered in the first semester, as they form the basis for the following consultancy and research projects.

The tourism and change modules are offered across the three semesters and thus create the necessary professional identification at an early stage.

The business administration basics (sustainability, digital transformation and leadership) form an important part of the interdisciplinary study in the first three semesters.

Finally, the master thesis provides you with the opportunity to create a distinctive profile and allows you to strategically position yourself for management level positions. The current master thesis brochure (in German/English) gives you an impression of possible topics for your thesis.

Major Tourism and Change

Change is ever-present and successful organisations need to adapt to external changes but may also create change. To provide you with a comprehensive perspective on change in tourism, the Major Tourism & Change is organised into three key practices: analysing, managing and designing change. This framework focuses on a critical analysis of change factors, an understanding of change processes and ways to create positive change.

Analysing Change

This set of modules combines change theory and diagnostic tools with an analysis of the main drivers of change in tourism. You will learn how to monitor and analyse the internal and external environments of tourism organisations, skills that are crucial for detecting early signs of change and for identifying opportunities and threats. Practical examples from tourism will focus on actions and outcomes.

Managing Change

Tourism is experiencing a period of considerable change. The ability to successfully manage the changes affecting tourism is therefore crucial and a much valued skill.  Both practical and action-oriented, the modules will provide you with the tools to deal with the messy reality of change in tourism.

Designing Change

Change emerges from complex, dynamic, iterative processes. But how can you create positive change? How are ideas developed into successful projects, products, services or new ways of doing things? How can you influence behaviours so that they benefit individuals and communities for the greater social good? We know that just providing information to the public does not really lead to systematic changes in behaviour. Otherwise no one would climb Uluru, take a cruise or fly short-haul. Learn about innovation and social marketing in tourism and acquire the ability to create positive change.

The Business Administration modules focus on three key topics of change: sustainability, digital transformation and leadership.

Sustainability

In this module category, you will critically examine the role of businesses in society, the expectations of different stakeholders and the aspiration to deliver economically, socially and ecologically sustainable services.

Digital Transformation

Explore the impact of digital transformation on products, services and processes and become acquainted with digital business models such as online platforms, e-commerce, digital services, web 2.0 and social media applications. Understand their revenue mechanics as well as how online marketing can support digital business. Analyse how companies develop and the tools that can be used to facilitate and control business development.

Organisational Leadership

You will learn how to manage your employees, discover the prerequisites for successful managers, obtain the skill to set and achieve common goals with your employees and learn how to adjust your management style to different situations. You will analyse how companies can attract talented employees, how they want to be treated and how they can be tied to the organization.

You can choose five modules from the following elective modules:

  • Corporate Communication (taught in English)
  • Corporate Responsibility (taught in English)
  • Sustainability Management (taught in German)
  • Data Analytics (taught in German)
  • Data Management (taught in German)
  • Digital Business (taught in English)
  • Leading Change (taught in English)
  • Organisational Development (taught in German)
  • Organisational Leadership (taught in German)
  • Talent Management (taught in English)

The entire Master Tourism & Change can be studied in English. While some elective modules are taught in German, the assessments can be undertaken in English.

Research Methods

In the module category research methods, you will study how practical challenges can be addressed via academic research. You will design research projects, choose appropriate research methods and learn how to manage challenging projects. You will also gain new, advanced skills in qualitative and quantitative research methods. You will thus be able to critically analyse the appropriateness of a project’s research design and to undertake your own research project.

Research Projects

The interaction between academic studies, research and industry is an important element of the master programme. In the consultancy project you will apply the knowledge acquired in your studies to real-life challenges. You will work in a small group for an external client. This client will expect you to develop solutions relevant to their particular challenge.

The pinnacle of your study is the master thesis. It expands your in-depth knowledge in a topic that particularly interests you. Choose your topic strategically and you may demonstrate to future employers that you are able to provide answers to applied challenges in the tourism sector and that you are a specialist in that particular topic. The master thesis allows you to choose a particular profile and thus to position yourself in the job market. A good choice of topic is critical for your job prospects. Write the master thesis with a tourism organisation or company, extend your network and improve your chances on the job market.

While lectures are a good tool to transfer a certain kind of knowledge (explicit knowledge) between lecturers and students, we place a lot of importance on you also gaining tacit knowledge (for example intuitive knowledge and know-how). We reinforce this by focusing on co-learning and co-creation in the classroom and by offering active learning opportunities outside of the classroom.

See the brochure for more detail

Competences & Skills

“The pace of change … is ever increasing, so graduates need to ensure they are developing skills and abilities that will not only empower them to land the job of their choice, but also allow them to thrive as their career develops” Stephen Isherwood, CEO of the Institute of Student Employers.

A global survey shows that for 14 of 15 key employability skills the satisfaction of employers is lower than the importance attributed by employers; in particular with problem-solving, resilience, communication, teamwork and adaptability (Quacquarelli Symonds 2019). We take this graduate skills gap seriously and aim to extend your learning beyond the mere transfer of knowledge. As a student in the Master Tourism & Change you will receive ample opportunities to develop skills critical to the tourism labour market.

In addition to the knowledge in tourism and business administration, you will be able to improve your change management and personal skills as well as putting them into practice in practical experiences.

The teaching at the UAS Grisons is research-led. This means that our lecturers, assistant lecturers and academic staff are also involved in a number of research and consultancy projects at the Institute for Tourism and Leisure. Because we collaborate closely with companies in the tourism and leisure industry, we are aware of the latest challenges facing the industry and are able to come up with ground-breaking solutions.

Portrait  Prof. Dr Jan Mosedale
‘The tourism industry must think about the future and find innovative solutions to challenges, this...
‘The tourism industry must think about the future and find innovative solutions to challenges, this is why strategic thinking is the cornerstone of the programme. Consultancy projects and case studies will help you to connect theory and practice and to manage change successfully.’
Prof. Dr Jan Mosedale, Director of Studies
Portrait Lisa Möller
‘The consultancy projects are a great way to gain hands-on experience with real clients. We were not...
‘The consultancy projects are a great way to gain hands-on experience with real clients. We were not only able to apply theoretical knowledge, but also to improve our project management skills.’
Lisa Möller, alumna MSc Business Administration, Major Tourism
Organisational information

Organisational information

How much does it cost to undertake a master’s programme at the UAS Grisons? Where does the programme take place? How many ECTS credits will I receive? On what days will I have lectures and seminars? What degree will I be awarded after completing the programme?

Tuition fees

There is a one-off enrolment fee of CHF 300, which is deducted from the tuition fee for the first semester. If you do not take up the offer of a place on the programme, the enrolment fee will be forfeited.

The tuition fee per semester is CHF 960 for students with Swiss citizenship or the Principality of Liechtenstein citizenship. The tuition fee per semester for all other students is CHF 1,550.

Foreign students who have resided in Switzerland for at least two years before the start of their studies and who are financially independent and not in education may be able to benefit from the reduced tuition fee of CHF 960. The reduced tuition fee has to be reviewed and approved by the UAS Grisons on the basis of documentation provided by the students.

Students not from Switzerland, the Principality of Liechtenstein, the European Union or the European Free Trade Association are charged a deposit of CHF 3,000.

The tuition fees do not include textbooks, travel, food or accommodation in connection with field trips, multiday seminars and the bachelor thesis.

You will need a suitably powerful laptop (Windows recommended).

Grants

The universities of applied sciences are recognised by the Swiss Confederation and the cantons, which means students may be entitled to grants. For further information, please contact the grants department of the Department of Education for the canton in question.

Students from outside Switzerland can contact the relevant public funding institutions in their home country.

Place of study

The taught modules of the study programme are held in Chur, Switzerland. Individual events may take place in other locations and will be communicated in good time.

Semester abroad

An international exchange may prove an asset for your personal development. Analyse tourism in a different and international context and learn a new language at the same time. We maintain a network of universities worldwide and can help you organise a semester abroad with our partners.

Duration of study programme

The master’s degree programme takes three semesters and can be extended individually up to eight semesters. Non-EU students with a student visa are not eligible for part-time studies. An academic year consists of two semesters lasting 14 weeks each and three examination weeks. In addition, examination weeks and single block weeks with no lectures take place which typically last from Monday to Friday.

You can find exact dates and details in the academic calendar.

Days of classes

The programme starts with an introductory, two-day kick-off event. The curriculum is structured into separate modules that may take place as weekly lessons or in a block of lessons, usually only on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturday mornings. Lessons are held between 9.45 a.m. and 4.45 p.m.

ECTS credits

European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS)

The European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) is a tool of the European Higher Education Area (EHEA) for making studies and courses more transparent and thus helping students to move between institutions of higer education. ECTS credits are awarded based on the student workload required to achieve the objectives of a course or a programme. ECTS credits are the basis for the recognition of course or programm achievements and diplomas between institutions of higher eduction.

An ECTS credit point corresponds to a student workload of 30 hours. The student workload includes the lectures but also time needed to pre- and postprocess the lectures, prepare exams and for self-studying. 60 credits a year are acquired in a full-time study course, which corresponds to a student workload of 1800 hours. At University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons a bachelor's degree course is comprised of 180 ECTS credits, a consecutive master's degree of 90 ECTS credits.

Study and examination regulations

You can find all details in the Study and Examination Regulations document.

University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons

University of Applied Sciences of the Grisons

Switzerland is the land of the Alps, Heidi and yodelling, right? If this is your perception, you’re in for a big surprise. Sure, St. Moritz might have been one of the world’s first destinations to develop tourism. But Switzerland is still playing a leading role in defining global tourism as it is today. The UAS Grisons is an innovative and entrepreneurial higher education institution with around 1,700 students and places great emphasis on individuality.

The UAS Grisons offer various services to support your studies and to guide you in your personal and professional development. Take advantage of the wide range of sports opportunities, make use of the job and housing exchange or seek advice.

Employability

Employability

Tourism is subject to a pronounced dynamics of change, which requires strategic thinking and the utmost professionalism at all levels. Required are graduates who not only have profound knowledge in their respective fields, but who understand the changes affecting and created by tourism and are able to devise appropriate strategies for the future. The Master Tourism & Change provides this expertise and thus prepares graduates for the tourism labour market, either as responsible employees at middle management level in larger tourism businesses or as consultants.

Gain tourism & business competence, hone your personal skills, apply them in practice to become a change maker in destination management, tourism marketing, tour operation, hotel management, aviation, etc.

Our recent graduates are doing the following jobs

  • Hotel manager, Switzerland (graduated in 2015)
  • Account manager, global construction technology company (graduated in 2016)
  • Manager PR and communications, regional tourism organisation, Germany (graduated in 2016)
  • Project Manager Marketing & Student Recruitment, Swiss hotel school (graduated in 2016)
  • Management and marketing consultant, specialist for risk management, consultancy in Switzerland (graduated in 2016)
  • VP of Business Development in China at Swiss integrated company (including tourism) (graduated in 2016)
  • Marketing and Reservations Manager, Swiss cable car company (graduated in 2017)
  • Event Manager, Swiss sports event company (graduated in 2019)
  • Head of Tourist Center & Mountain Lab, Switzerland (graduated in 2019)
  • Junior Sales Support (graduated in 2019)
  • Operations Manager Groups & Events, Swiss inbound tour operator (graduated in 2019)
  • Sales Marketing Support, working outside tourism (graduated in 2019)
Portrait Jörg Hentschel
‘The MSc Business Administration with Major in Tourism and Change has been enriching both from a...
‘The MSc Business Administration with Major in Tourism and Change has been enriching both from a professional and personal perspective. I am sure the friendships I have made during my time at the UAS Grisons will last a lifetime and will prove to be a good initial network for my career. My decision to attend the UAS Grisons has already paid dividends as my former employer offered me an interesting position even before I graduated.’
Jörg Hentschel, alumnus MSc Business Administration, Major Tourism
Portrait Maria Coli
‘Studying the programme in conjunction with my role at the Waldhotel Davos was an ideal preparation...
‘Studying the programme in conjunction with my role at the Waldhotel Davos was an ideal preparation for my future career. After graduating, I assumed the management of the four-star superior Hotel Vitznauerhof on the shore of Lake Lucerne. I am very happy to have made the decision to study the MSc Business Administration at the UAS Grisons as it has enabled me to achieve continued success in the hotel sector.’
Maria Coli, alumna MSc Business Administration, Major Tourism
Application and advice

Application and advice

Application

If you would like to apply for a place on the programme, please send your completed application form and the required documents to the UAS Grisons.

Application deadline

The deadline for applications is May 31st in the year you intend to start your course of study.

Applications received after the application deadline may also be considered if there are still places available on the programme. Please contact the programme administrator for information.

Do you have any questions about the study programme? Would you like any advice, or are you still unsure? Do you have any administrative questions? We will be happy to help you.

Fachhochschule Graubünden
Comercialstrasse 22
7000 Chur
Switzerland

Phone +41 81 286 24 65
Mail master@fhgr.ch

Director of Studies

Mosedale Jan
Prof. PhD, M. Research Methods, M. Environmental Studies, BSc (Hon) Applied Biology

Administration and Admissions

Information events

Information events

Join an information event for the Master's degree Tourism & Change – we hope to see or talk to you soon! The presentation on the Master Tourism & Change will be held in English.