Today, tourism is becoming an important economic sector for Oman, which has approximately received 2.1 million tourist and generated more than 115,000 jobs, as well as achieving a real annualized growth rate of 5.5 per cent to reach R.O. 2.4 billion ($6.2 billion). It is important to highlight the escalating interest in tourism in Oman, especially as a tool for diversifying economy as well as creating job opportunities.
The Tourism Department, College of Arts and Social Sciences, has well-recognized expertise in teaching, research and community service. The Master of Arts in Tourism seeks to put this experience at the disposal of the Omani society. This leading-edge graduate program is the first of its kind in the Sultanate of Oman’s tourism and hospitality education system.
The Master of Arts in Tourism is designed to provide students with the essential background and fundamental knowledge required to embark on higher tourism and hospitality positions in both public and private organizations.
Tourism is currently receiving a remarkable attention at the Omani national level, where it is seen as an essential element of economic diversification, a major source of jobs and an important factor in attracting foreign and domestic investments.
In this regard, A Master of Arts in Tourism Program is needed to meet:
- The escalating momentum around the tourism sector with regard to its importance and role in supporting the national economy now and in the future.
- The growing demand for postgraduate programs in the Omani tourism sector as well as the evolving interest in a Tourism Master's program expressed by several leading tourism and hospitality employers from the public and private in the Sultanate of Oman.
- The need for supporting the on-going human resource development and employability and upgrading the efficiency and vigor of the Omani labor force in the Sultanate of Oman.
- The increasing demand from Omani tourism graduates, as well as from other related academic disciplines, for a domestic option to pursue their graduate studies.
- The need for enriching tourism research in Oman.
This program offers three tracks:
(1) Tourism Destination Management
(2) Hospitality Human Resources Management
(3) Event Management.
Tourism Destination Management:
The Tourism Destination Management track of the Master of Arts in Tourism program places strong emphases on tourism destination development, management and marketing issues, especially for natural and cultural destinations. It considers the management requirements in both the macro and micro contexts of tourism destinations. This track is of interest to individuals who seek to enhance their knowledge managing tourism destinations in a sustainable manner at both national and international levels. The students will learn and develop objective and critical approaches to tourism destination management that will help ensure the continued value and long-term sustainability of tourism destinations. It prepares students for a career path that involves areas such as destination planning, development and marketing, interpretation development and environmental planning.
Degree Plan for Master of Arts in Tourism: Tourism Destination Management
Hospitality Human Resources Management
The Hospitality Human Resources Management track of the Master of Arts in Tourism program is a progressive program designed to meet the needs of a rapidly changing hospitality industry. The program is also designed to supply the growing field of hospitality education and research with graduates who possess the theoretical background, research skills and hospitality knowledge through coursework necessary to advance in the hospitality field. The Hospitality Human Resources Management track prepares students to assume managerial roles and provide leadership skills in settings such as the lodging and food service industries.
Degree Plan for Master of Arts in Tourism: Hospitality Human Resources Management
The Event Management track of the Master of Arts in Tourism program is distinctive for its strong focus on organizing special events in Oman as the program is designed to meet the needs of the Omani market, which is currently evolving regarding the number and diversity of events taking place. The Event Management track of the Master of Arts in Tourism program will discuss in detail the managerial and professional procedures required for organizing different types of events in Oman. This will include investigating the process starting from building up the bidding file, if required, the planning, implementation and evaluation phases. The program prepares students to assume managerial roles in both public and private organizations.
Degree Plan for Master of Arts in Tourism: Event Management
Program Vision, Mission, and Objectives
The Department of Tourism aspires to provide a leading and distinguished postgraduate program at the national, regional and international levels in tourism and hospitality teaching, research, and community service.
The Department of Tourism offers a post-graduate program which is committed to academic excellence in tourism and hospitality learning and research, in an environment that fosters creative and critical thinking, articulates effective communication skills, and promotes freedom of expression and social responsibility.
The main objectives of the Tourism Master's Program include:
- Addressing the growing national, regional and international demand for postgraduate qualifications in tourism and hospitality;
- Equipping graduates with the tools of inquiry necessary for academic professional growth and achieving better understanding of the discipline of tourism and hospitality;
- Promoting tourism and hospitality research;
- Furthering the educational attainment level of those engaged in the fields of tourism and hospitality;
- Providing a domestic option for those who prefer to pursue their postgraduate studies in Oman; and
- Providing a facility to attract postgraduate students from GCC and other countries.
Program Expected Outcomes:
The Department of Tourism strives to ensure the quality and competence of its graduates, by completing the program graduates should be able to:
- Apply scientific methods to conduct research and prepare written studies that efficiently address tourism and hospitality related issues.
- Communicate effectively in regard with research conducted on tourism and hospitality issues in both written and oral contexts.
- Demonstrate knowledge and expertise of the key theories and principles of tourism and hospitality.
- Show ability in critical analysis, creativity and innovation.
Students may select between two study options in accordance with the SQU Postgraduate Academic Regulations 2008.
"The Courses and Thesis option":
A bi-lingual track where to accomplish the degree requirements, students must complete 24 credit hours (18 credit hours in English / 6 credit hours in Arabic), in addition to writing and successfully defending a thesis in either Arabic or English language.
"The Thesis only option":
A mono-lingual option where thesis should be prepared and presented in English only.
For meeting this track requirements, student must write and successfully defend thesis in English.
In accordance with Sultan Qaboos University postgraduate academic regulations, the Master of Arts in Tourism Program duration is two years (4 semesters) for full-time students or three years (6 semesters) for part-time students.
Students will be accepted on a competitive basis depending on the candidate's academic qualifications and merits and English language abilities, as well as on the interview result, and finally the number of available seats.
Acceptance is according to SQU postgraduate regulations.