• For Entry: January | May | September
  • Duration: 12 - 30 months
  • School: Humanities
  • Study Mode: Part Time+Distance Learning

This course covers the fundamental principles and practice of digital recordkeeping and provides students with the basic knowledge required to undertake digital recordkeeping within their institution.

TEF Gold - Teaching Excellence Framework

We are the leading international provider of professional educational courses in recordkeeping and related disciplines by online distance learning. Since 2004 over 1000 individuals have undertaken professional education or training with us. The quality and breadth of our provision is unrivalled and the excellence of our courses has been recognised by academic and professional accreditation from the University of Dundee, Records & Information Management Professionals Australasia and the Archives & Records Association, UK & Ireland. CAIS has also been highly commended by the Information & Records Management Society, UK. We have also developed a global interdisciplinary research network focusing on aspects of recordkeeping in the context of memories, identities and communities.

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)

The University of Dundee has been given a Gold award – the highest possible rating – in the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).

Read more about the Teaching Excellence Framework

TEF Gold - Teaching Excellence Framework

Postgraduate Certificate in Digital Record keeping

In the Management and Preservation of Digital Records module we explore the practical and theoretical aspects of this area, one which is increasingly important for nearly all records keepers.  Records are now overwhelmingly created and stored in digital form, and while drawing on the principles of traditional records keeping in this module we study the essential properties of digital records which make them very different to manage and preserve.  In the module we study the fundamental nature of digital records, their management and preservation, introduce the major standards such as OAIS and PREMIS, and study management considerations.  We also look at the future developments in the field.

  • The fundamental properties of digital records dictating their special management and preservation needs.
  • Digital archiving and preservation processes: comparing digital archiving and analogue archiving requirements.
  • Systems to support digital archiving and preservation: current status and limitations; the Open Archival Information System (OAIS) standard.
  • Metadata standards, including the PREMIS standard for preservation metadata.
  • Organisational and business considerations, including repository validation.
  • Special types of digital records, including emails and databases, social media, concluding with the future agenda.

Number of credits

20 SCQF credits (10 ECTS credits) on Level 5, SHE M (SCQF 11)


Melinda Haunton, Penny Legge

Metadata standards are an essential component in the organisation and management of records and archival material.  With the digitisation of valuable and fragile material, metadata management has become an increasingly important part of the work of archivists and records managers.  Document management systems and EDRMS depend on well-organised and properly considered metadata in order to operate effectively.  This module takes students through the fundamental principles of metadata before discussing some of the metadata standards that are relevant to archives and records management.  The second half of the module studies information taxonomies and is based on classification principles.  Students will explore the types of taxonomy that are used in archives and records collections.  The module provides an opportunity for students to develop their own taxonomies and to understand the techniques that are used to create file plans and controlled vocabularies such as thesauri.

The Metadata Standards and Information Taxonomy module will cover the following areas:

  • What metadata is, the basic concepts behind metadata, and its role in the management of records collections and archives
  • Ways in which metadata provides better access to archival materials and records
  • Taxonomies and their role in categorising records and archival materials
  • The different types of taxonomy that are used including: simple hierarchies, faceted classifications and folksonomies
  • Management of taxonomies and their role as encoding schemes for creating metadata content
  • Creation of thesauri and file plans and how they are used for managing records

Number of credits

20 SCQF credits (10 ECTS credits) on Level 5, SHE M (SCQF 11)


Getaneh Alemu

Knowing how to manage electronic records is imperative for all organizations to remain competitive and compliant in the digital age.  With the exponential rise in volume and processing capacity required for electronic data, being able to strategically align and understand core principles to effectively manage electronic records is a vital skill for archives and records managers.  Students will write analyses and develop their business writing style by compiling a series of reports targeted towards their organization’s director and senior management.  Students will also develop a knowledge base to become integral stakeholders in driving their organization towards records automation.

The electronic records management module will discuss:

  • Technical terms and concepts
  • Academic studies and current events
  • Business drivers and challenges
  • Electronic document / records management systems (ED/RMS)
  • Analysis of a student’s organizations’ own electronic records environment and recommendations for improvement

Number of credits

20 SCQF credits (10 ECTS credits) on Level 5, SHE M (SCQF 11)


Ilona Koti

The requirement to be working or volunteering prior to, and throughout the duration of, the course gives students a distinct advantage in terms of appropriate work experience. The course itself is a mixture of theory and practice, and enables direct application of learning within the workplace. The dissertation gives students the opportunity to specialise in a particular area of direct benefit to employers.

Applications for Certificate programmes and modules via CPD are welcome from all candidates although we may discuss experience and suitability upon application.

 EU and International qualifications

English Language Requirement

IELTS Overall 6.5
Listening 6.0
Reading 6.0
Writing 6.5
Speaking 6.5

 Equivalent grades from other test providers


English Language Programmes

We offer Pre-Sessional and Foundation Programme(s) throughout the year. These are designed to prepare you for university study in the UK when you have not yet met the language requirements for direct entry onto a degree programme.

 Discover our English Language Programmes

The fees (in pounds sterling) are below. Fees do not require to be paid in full at the beginning of study and are paid per module as study progresses, making it feasible for most students, who may or may not, be sponsored by their employers.

Fees for students starting 2019/20
Registration Fee Certificate £95
Individual 20 credit module £970
Individual 10 credit module £485
Certificate (Total cost) £2,910

Fees will be amended periodically.

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your education at the University over and above tuition fees in an academic year.

Examples of additional costs:

One off costOngoing costIncidental cost
Graduation feeStudio feeField trips

*these are examples only and are not exhaustive.

Additional costs:

  • may be mandatory or optional expenses
  • may be one off, ongoing or incidental charges and certain costs may be payable annually for each year of your programme of study
  • vary depending on your programme of study
  • are payable by you and are non-refundable and non-transferable

Unfortunately, failure to pay additional costs may result in limitations on your student experience.

For additional costs specific to your course please speak to our Enquiry Team.

For further information on fees, see our Policy for Payment of Fees and Refunds.

Application deadlines:
 May 2019Sep 2019Jan 2020May 2020Sep 2020
MLitt/MSc/Dip 15 March 2019 12 July 2019 8 November 2019 13 March 2020 3 July 2020
PGCert/CPD 22 March 2019 19 July 2019 8 November 2019 20 March 2020 17 July 2020
Family and Local History
19 April 2019 23 August 2019 6 December 2019 17 April 2020 21 August 2020
Semester start date 6 May 2019 9 September 2019 13 January 2020 11 May 2020 7 September 2020

Supporting documents

  • References - Two references in support of your admission (one must be from your current employer detailing relevant experience; the other should be an academic reference). 
  • Referee Form 1  |  Referee Form 2   |   Referee Guidance
  • Photograph
  • CV
  • Copy of Academic Awards and Transcripts
  • Language Certificate (if applicable)

You will also need to

  • provide a personal statement of 500-750 words detailing previous experience and explaining why they want to undertake the course

Download Application Form

All application forms should be emailed to cais@dundee.ac.uk

All applications need to reach CAIS before midnight on the final day. Application forms will not be processed until all parts (including references) are submitted. If you have any questions regarding the application process please contact cais@dundee.ac.uk or +44 (0)1382 385543.

There are three possible outcomes to your application:

  • We make you an unconditional offer of a place on the course 
  • We make you a conditional offer of a place on the course, dependent upon your examination results and/or further work experience 
  • We do not make you an offer of a place on the course

Course Contact

Mrs Nicola Barton
+44 (0)1382 385543