Master of Science in
Major in Tourism
Table of contents
Master of Science in Business Administration
Major in Tourism
2 The programme at a glance
4 The Bologna reforms and the new Master’s degree
5 What advantage does a Master’s of Science in Business Administration –
Major in Tourism offer?
6 The programme – overview of competencies
7 The programme – success factors
8 The programme – modules
12 Application, admission and further information
13 The value of the Master’s degree for your career
15 Additional information
Lucerne School of Business
Lucerne School of Art and Design
Preface The world is a book, and those who do not travel
read only one page.
Learning to cope in a complex environment
Challenges in the tourism industry are becoming increasingly complex. The
wide-spread need to travel, combined with the continually growing portion of
the global population who can afford to do so, have triggered a protracted
boom and sharpened the challenges faced by the industry. Moreover, tourists
are generally averse to crowds and prefer personalised offers. Providers, on the
other hand, are faced with issues that range from residents living near airports
to global competition for guests – the desire of developing countries to benefit
from the attractive jobs and earnings afforded by tourism. In order to prevail in
this highly competitive and complex environment, it becomes necessary to
offer services with an excellent price-value ratio geared to an increasingly
demanding clientele. To live up to this challenge, the tourism sector and its
closely linked industries rely on highly trained individuals who can take a broad
view of current trends and are able to adopt a strategic approach in response
to industry developments.
The Master’s programme is laid out in two broadly defined yet closely related
content areas. During the first year, students will focus primarily on the topic of
service management, which provides them with a solid foundation for under-
standing the complexity of the products that visitors will ultimately consume.
During the second year, the programme offers a series of integrated modules
that examine specific aspects of the tourism industry. First, students will learn
about the international tourism environment. They will examine important
business models found in the industry in order to understand how tourism and
the environment interrelate – primarily as seen from an economic perspective –
by working on case studies and going on excursions. Strategy, communication
and marketing lie at the core of the curriculum, which aims to develop stu-
dents’ analytical, strategic and methodological skills. Because interpersonal
skills such as conflict management, sensitivity to foreign cultures and indirect
leadership are highly significant in tourism, the major pays special attention to
Leading experts agree that the Major in Tourism will provide students with the
competencies needed to make a long-term contribution to the international
tourism industry. And that is exactly what the Master’s program is all about.
Dr. Andreas Liebrich
Head of the Major in Tourism
Lucerne School of Business
The programme at a glance
– The programme continues where a Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent qualifi-
cations) in economics or business administration leaves off. Those with a
Bachelor’s degree in another discipline, in particular economic geography, may
be admitted to the programme if they show proof of having accumulated a
minimum of 6 credits in economics or economic geography and 6 credits in
– Students have the possibility of enrolling in a work-study programme during
which they hold a part-time position encompassing up to 50% of working
hours in management or tourism, or in an organisation with a strong interna-
– The degree offers graduates attractive career prospects as team leaders or
project managers in a tourism organisation or in a related area in Switzerland
– The programme’s content, which was developed in collaboration with numer-
ous practitioners, focuses heavily on service management and tourism and
investigates business models and related aspects.
– The classes are taught in English.
– The programme lasts four semesters and the coursework offers 90 credits. In
terms of workload, students will need to invest approximately 2,700 hours.
– The curriculum adopts a hands-on approach aligned with its academic objec-
tives and offers internationally oriented training in management or a special-
– Classes are held in the heart of Lucerne, only ten minutes from the world-
famous Chapel Bridge.
– The programme awards graduates with a Master of Science (MSc) degree in
Business Administration that is internationally recognised.
The Bologna reforms and the new Master’s degree
Virtually no other change has had a stronger impact on Swiss education than
the Bologna reforms. By establishing an international benchmark in pro-
grammes and qualifications, the reforms promote mobility among students on
the one hand and open up career options internationally on the other. Further-
more, students now have the option of graduating from universities or universi-
ties of applied sciences with a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree of equal value.
What is a consecutive Master’s degree and what are its benefits?
The consecutive Master’s degree is geared to individuals who have a Bachelor’s
degree or equivalent qualification and are interested in gaining an additional
qualification, or who have a strong need to pursue an academic interest. As a
rule, consecutive Master’s degrees at universities of applied sciences award 90
credits, which equals approximately 2,700 hours in coursework, usually distrib-
uted over four semesters.
As a continuation of the Bachelor’s degree, the Master’s programme offers a
specialisation in a particular area of academic expertise while adopting an
applied approach. Master’s programmes thus are strongly focused on develop-
ing analytical skills among students, thereby providing them with career pros-
pects in middle and upper management. Many Master’s programmes are
designed as a work-study option that permits participants to benefit from
immediate knowledge transfer and to continue their professional development
without interruption. Thanks to the Bologna reforms, consecutive Master’s
degrees are internationally recognised and open up career options for gradu-
ates outside of Switzerland as well.
The Master of Science is not the same as the Master of Advanced Studies
The new consecutive Master’s degree counts as a second level of higher educa-
tion and should not be confused with the Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) or
an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) degree. Both the MAS
and the EMBA are professional development programmes that require students
to have several years of practical experience. The consecutive Master’s degree,
however, demands a higher workload and features more stringent academic
What advantage does a Master’s of Science in Business Administration –
Major in Tourism offer?
Contributing approximately 300,000 jobs and 4% of the GDP, tourism ranks as the
fourth-largest export industry of Switzerland, and is known universally as the largest
industry. Growth in tourism organisations abroad and in Switzerland, combined
with increasingly complex projects underway in Eastern Europe, India, China and
other emerging destinations, open up a wide range of perspectives in tourism-
related organisations for highly trained graduates holding a Master’s degree.
A sought-after degree with interesting career options
The Master in Business Administration with a Major in Tourism offers the follow-
Study with a strong industry orientation: The curriculum is closely tailored to
– the needs of industry. Lecturers from industry, industry simulations, case studies
and the option work in the industry are only a few examples. The university
believes that successfully combining a strong practical orientation with challeng-
ing applied programme components will enhance its graduates’ long-term
prospects in the job market.
Strong international focus: The programme’s content is geared primarily to the
– needs of organisations with a strong international orientation. Some lecturers
come to Lucerne from foreign partner universities to teach in the Master’s
programme. The teaching language is English. It goes without saying that the
destinations of the study trips and excursions will be abroad.
The unique combination of service management and tourism: In the first two
– semesters, students will be exposed primarily to the field of service manage-
ment, which constitutes the basis for operational decision-making in tourism. In
the third and fourth semesters, students will focus almost exclusively on strategic
issues relating to tourism around the world.
The holders of the Master’s degree are faced with favourable career and
development opportunities because the programme enables them to assume
challenging roles in project work, specialised fields and management.
Entry level function include leadership positions in quality assurance; heading
the marketing unit of a small organisation; managing product, sales, or market-
ing projects; or assisting executives or association heads. Graduates can transfer
their expertise to other industries, drawing on tourism’s reputation as a “training
camp” where managers develop a service orientation. This means they will be
qualified to work for hotel chains, destination management companies, tour
operators and other service providers.
The programme – overview of competencies
Developing a broad range of expertise – Specialist skills in tourism
The consecutive Master of Science in Business Administra- Graduates will have the expertise needed to devise solu-
tion with a Major in Tourism constitutes a specialist and tions to management problems encountered in tourism and
management programme with a strong academic focus its environment (see page 8).
and an industry orientation. Graduates will acquire the
following competencies in particular: – Strategic decision making
Managers who adopt a strategic approach and can respond
ex ante to anticipated moves of partners or competitors
will have a foundation on which to build a sustainable
competitive advantage. The programme includes a number
of modules that introduce students to the principles of
successful strategic decision making.
– Analytical skills
Students will learn how to analyse complex issues and prob-
lems in and around tourism organisations, develop solu-
tions, and implement these successfully using a range of
– Applied research skills
The art of managing applied research projects lies in
using scientific principles without losing sight of their
benefit in the practical sphere. The university is committed
to conducting precisely this type of research.
– Cross-disciplinary competencies
Tourism is inextricably embedded in its social, political and
physical environment. And this means modern managers
must have the tools to cope with any tensions that arise.
Graduates will be able to apply their broad expertise from
management and related disciplines using a systems
– Intercultural skills
Those working in tourism will invariably come into contact
with a broad range of cultures through their interactions
with employees, colleagues, guests and business partners.
Furthermore, service providers must work together closely
to ensure seamless service provision in line with set quality
standards – the key reason why developing intercultural
skills is an integral part of the curriculum.
– Executive competency
The ability to manage small and medium-sized projects
such as developing a scheme for innovation becomes
indispensable in view of the current state of the tourism
industry. Students will have opportunities to develop such
skills through their involvement in applied projects and by
working on case studies.
The programme – success factors
Academic and practical orientation Students
Any attempt to harmonize an academic and a practical The Master’s programme is primarily geared to graduates
orientation might seem contradictory at first. However, who hold academic or Bachelor’s degrees in business from
Lucerne School of Business is committed to aligning these a university or university of applied sciences. Those with
two approaches as follows: Students develop competencies another university or Bachelor’s degree may be admitted if
by completing academic work, participating in practical they have earned at least 6 credits in business administra-
research projects, and writing a Master’s thesis on a tion and 6 credits in economics or economic geography.
particular topic relevant to an applied field. With regard to Students with no background in tourism at the time of
research projects, they collaborate closely with industry enrolment will have opportunities to acquire these credits
partners. over the course of the first two semesters.
The programme places great store in developing those Lecturers
competencies that are clearly applicable in day-to-day Lucerne School of Business engages lecturers from select
professional life. This means students will be able to apply partner universities such as the University of Brighton.
many of the methods and instruments encountered in the Furthermore, the teaching staff includes a distinguished
practical work of their professional activities. group of experts from companies, consulting firms and
other organisations. This ensures that the curriculum
Teaching methods maintains its high quality standards for content and
The programme thoughtfully combines in-class instruction relevance to applied fields.
with guided and self-directed study. To ensure that the
programme aligns academic and practical orientations in a
meaningful way, lecturers working at the Master’s level
must have a rigorous academic background as well as
up-to-date practical experience in their field.
The programme is taught in English because a strong
command of English is essential for a career in interna-
tional tourism. The university recommends level C1 of the
Cambridge ESOL (IELTS 6.0 – 7.0) or an equivalent as the
The programme – modules
The Master of Science in Business Administration comprises allowing students to learn about the sub-sectors of the
a fundamental component with general management tourism industry. Business models are of particular interest
content and a clear focus on service management that because they depend on their ability to form close networks
includes all coursework completed during the first and among several organisations. The International Tourism
second semesters. Environment module takes a close look at relevant aspects
surrounding international tourism. It offers an integration
Modules 4 – 8 constitute the Major in Tourism module during which students work on complex case
The Strategy in Tourism and Marketing and Communica- studies. They thus rely on knowledge gained in previous
tion in Tourism modules, both of which examine individual modules with a view to reinforcing and applying particular
organisations, make up the core of the Major. Moreover, skills. Modules 9, 10 (research) and 11 (Master’s thesis)
the programme studies a range of business models, naturally also have a clear focus on tourism issues.
Module 1 6C
Module 9 6C
Module 2 6C
Module 9 3C
Module 3 6C
Modul 10 9C
Applied Project Work
Module 4 6C
Studies while working (up to 50% of full-time position)
Module 5 6C Module 10 9C
Business Models in Applied Project Work
Module 6 6C
of Tourism Destinations
Module 7 6C Module 11 15 C
Major in Tourism
Marketing/Communi- Master’s Thesis
cation in Tourism
Module 8 6C
Integration and Inter-
M1 = module 1 6C = 6 ECTS credits (1 credit = 30-hour workload for students)
The programme – modules
Service Management (Modules 1–3)
Module 1 (6 credits, 1st Semester) Module 2 (6 credits, 1st Semester)
Network Management Customer Relationship Management
This module focuses on strategic management as observed Customer relationship management proposes a holistic
in the context of networks. On the basis of strategic management approach that places the client at the centre
management processes in organisations the module offers of the organisation’s activities. Client-focused management
a behind-the-scenes look at the particular nature of practices are further understood as the central strategic
management involving networks. It analyses the fluid issue of small and medium-sized enterprises across the
boundaries that exist between organisations and their industry. Customer relationship management has proven to
surrounding networks and markets while analysing both the be a robust concept in its ability to coordinate cross-func-
possibilities and limitations of decision making at the same tional strategies, processes and measures in the long term
time. In this context, traditional opposites such as coopera- with the aim of securing profitable client relationships.
tion and competition, or markets and hierarchies, cease to As they work on projects, students will gain understanding
be common denominators, while legal and regulatory of the operational methodologies and competencies
control mechanisms become more important. relating to internal support functions as encountered in
customer relationship management projects.
Module 3 (6 credits, 2nd Semester)
This module examines the interface between the organisa-
tion and its markets from a dynamic, developmental
perspective. This means that change becomes the source of
innovation in technology, service and processes and thus is
seen as the prerequisite for safeguarding the long-term
survival of organisations. The need of organisations to
change forces them to recognise the importance of plan-
ning, supporting, driving and evaluating change processes.
Major in Tourism (Modules 4 – 8)
Module 4 6C
International Tourism Module 5 6C
Environment Business Models in
Tourism Markets Module 6 6C Module 7 6C
Tourism Strategic Management Marketing/Communi-
Nature Tourism Cruise Management
Intercultural Aspects of Tourism Destinations cation in Tourism
Hotel Chain Management Strategy Development Branding
of Tourism Airline and Airport Management
Int’l Tourism Politics Strategy Implementation Distribution
Tour Operating Stakeholder Management Communication Channels
Module 8 6C
The programme – modules
Major in Tourism (Modules 4 – 8)
Module 4 (6 credits, 3rd Semester) Module 8 (6 credits, 4th Semester)
International Tourism Environment Integration and International Excursions
Students will develop an in-depth understanding of the Students will work on the practical components of a
internationally connected systems found in tourism as they business project and go on a study tour to a tourism
relate to the environment, politics, law and culture; they will destination. These projects are developed together with
also learn to identify the resulting opportunities and risks representatives of leading tourism institutes and take the
that individual organisations face. current challenges of the industry into consideration.
Module 8 integrates and reinforces the content of Modules
Module 5 (6 credits, 3rd Semester) 4 to 7.
Business Models in Tourism
Students will be able to evaluate the business models of Module 9 (9 credits, 1st / 2nd Semester)
key sub-sectors of the tourism industry (cruise manage- Research Methodology
ment, tour operation, airline and airport management and This module enables students to develop the instruments
hotel chain) using a structured approach. Moreover, they and methodologies used in applied research by tackling a
will work closely with international partner organisations in particular problem in the field of service management and
order to gain an overview of a range of business models. innovation.
Module 6 (6 credits, 3rd Semester) Module 10 (18 credits, 2nd / 3rd Semester)
Strategic Management of Tourism Destinations Applied Project Work
Students will learn how to cope with the particular strategic This module enables students to employ the methodologies
challenges encountered in tourism organisations and used in applied research correctly by focusing on specific
business models. By developing and implementing strate- case examples taken from the fields of banking and
gies, managing stakeholder interests, and practicing finance. To this end, it offers structured exercises that aim
corporate governance and cross-cultural management, they to explore specific problems from Modules 1 and 2 more
will learn how to successfully develop, evaluate, and deeply.
implement complex measures by taking stakeholders’
interests into consideration. Module 11 15 credits, 4th Semester)
Module 7 (6 credits, 4th Semester) While working on their Master’s thesis (15 credits), stu-
Marketing & Communication in Tourism dents will pursue their own research topic independently
This module consistently focuses on the principles of and thus create an overarching context for the technical,
developing and managing a tourism brand. Students will applied and academic skills they acquired in earlier mod-
gain experience in decision-making as it relates to market ules. The Master’s thesis counts as the culmination of the
research (brand status), brand distribution, brand communi- Master’s programme.
cation and relationship marketing (brand loyalty). More-
over, they will acquire the tools for tackling the important
tasks involved in implementing a tourism organisation’s
marketing and communication mix. The module is fully
focused on providing the strategic and conceptual expertise
needed to develop a uniform tourism brand that enables
the organisation to differentiate itself.
Application, admission and further information
The decision of whether or not to accept a student to the The application documents must be submitted by
MSc in Business Administration programme rests with the mid-May to:
dean of the programme. Applicants must meet the follow-
ing criteria: Lucerne School of Business
Secretariat of the Master’s programme
– Bachelor’s degree or a university degree in business Zentralstrasse 9
administration, economics or similar discipline. In order to CH-6002 Lucerne
enrol in the Master’s programme with a Major in Tourism, Switzerland
students must have 6 credits (equivalent to 6 contact hours
per week per semester) in business administration and 6 T +41 41 228 41 30
credits in economics. F +41 41 228 41 31
– Starting from the 3rd semester, students are expected to
have a basic knowledge of tourism. Graduates with a The university will conduct interviews starting at the end of
Bachelor’s degree or a degree from a university of applied January and will not issue a letter confirming acceptance,
sciences not specialised in tourism must show certificates before the interview was conducted. Because seats in the
of completion for the following credits within the first year programme are awarded in the order in which applications
of study in the Master’s programme: are received, early application is encouraged.
– 3 credits in destination management and 3 credits Further information on the consecutive Master’s
in transport/mobility, or 6 credits in a foundation course programmes and application forms are available at
in tourism. Partial credits are accepted. www.hslu.ch/w-master.
Applicants who do not meet these entry requirements may The head of the programme will be happy to provide
be admitted on the condition that they make up any advice and information. Contact Dr. Andreas Liebrich at
missing requirements during the first year of the pro- T +41 41 228 42 34 or at email@example.com.
The application must include the completed application
form and all documents listed on this form.
Candidates who are still working on their Bachelor’s studies
at the time of the application may submit any pending Note: The MSc in Business Administration is offered on the condition
application documents at a later time. that a sufficient number of students enrol.
The value of the Master’s degree for your career
“The unique combination of gaining work experi- “Being of service to clients and aiming for high
ence while studying for a Master’s degree gives performance are decisive factors in tourism
graduates an edge in the job market. That’s organisations. Furthermore, the relationship of
clearly the type of course I’d choose if I were price to service quality lies at the centre of deci-
studying again. As an employer I find it most sion making in inbound and outbound tourism
impressive.” organisations, and in the hospitality and catering
sector as well. With this in mind, the Service
Management programme as part of the Master’s
degree offers a basis for a wide range of career
opportunities in Switzerland and abroad.”
Dr. Stefan Kreuzpaintner Roland Schmid
Head of Profit Management Chief of Staff
Munich regional hub Corporate Communications
German Lufthansa TUI Suisse
“Competition in tourism has stepped up its pace “Quality as it relates to basic service, expecta-
considerably in recent years and has reached tions and the surprise elements are often
cut-throat levels today. This means mature tour- communicated as the key success factors in
ism markets are forced to rely on highly qualified hospitality. However, an organisation will only
management staff. In view of this, the Master of succeed in surprising and delighting its guests
Science in Business Administration with a Major if it has a highly innovative culture.”
in Tourism clearly fills a need in the professional
development market in Switzerland.”
Jürg Schmid Clemens Hunziker
Director General Manager
Switzerland Tourism Hotel Schweizerhof Lucerne
Programme dates “Campus Lucerne” and university sport
The MSc in Business Administration always starts in The universities and other renowned educational institutes
mid-September and lasts two years. The dates of the of central Switzerland are members of the “Campus
semester breaks are posted at www.hslu.ch/w-master. Lucerne” programme, which is available to all students and
staff members free of charge. There is no registration
Weekly programme schedule procedure and the programme offers courses in fitness,
Courses are held on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. This wellness, games, outdoor sports and water sports. Please
allows students to plan their work schedule or meet their refer to www.campusluzern.ch for more information.
Location Lucerne School of Business works closely with the Lucerne
Classes are held in the heart of the city of Lucerne. The University of Applied Sciences and Arts in providing career
campus in Lucerne has modern and well-equipped teaching services so that students are well prepared for life after
facilities. graduation. In this regard, career services are the interface
between university and professional life. While offering
Programme fees practical assistance in starting a job (e.g. individual
Tuition is CHF 800 per semester. This does not include the counselling, courses, workshops and other important
costs of instructional material and study trips, etc. The full requirements) career services also provides contacts to
costs for living are posted at www.hslu.ch/w-master employers, companies and institutes. For more information,
go to www.careers.hslu.ch.
All new students are expected to have their own notebook Student housing
computer. The student resident association (StuWo-Luzern) helps
students find affordable housing in the area. For more
Lucerne information, go to www.stuwo-luzern.ch.
Lucerne is known as the City of Lights and features dis-
tinctive landmarks, such as the Water Tower and the Language
Chapel Bridge, both built around the year 1300. Tourists Although all courses are taught in English, it is useful to
discovered the beauty of Lucerne and its surrounding learn German as in the everyday life German ist the main
regions in the early 18th century, a time that marks the language used in Lucerne. Moreover, it is very hard to find a
birth of the regional tourism industry. Situated by the Lake job without any knowledge of German.
of Lucerne with its backdrop of snow-covered mountains,
Lucerne embodies all the traits of a typical Swiss city. It
continues to attract tourists from around the world, almost
half of whom come from other continents.
As the “capital” of central Switzerland, Lucerne offers a
wide range of opportunities for taking part in sports,
attending cultural events and visiting attractions. Moreover,
the efficient Swiss public transport system puts Lucerne
within easy reach of Zurich, Basel and Berne.
Lucerne School of Business
Lucerne School of Business is one of the departments of Besides the Bachelor’s programme in business adminis-
Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts. As a com- tration covering seven majors, Lucerne School of Business
petence centre for upper management training, it makes offers three consecutive Master’s programmes. Lucerne
an important contribution to developing the overall level School of Business features the most comprehensive post-
of knowledge in society through its participation in applied graduate programmes of all Swiss universities of applied
fields (training and development), research and consulting. sciences. Furthermore, it is affiliated with other universities
It aims to provide training for specialists and managers and and partners in the fields of business and administration in
supports organisations and institutes in developing solu- Switzerland and abroad.
tions for their administrative and operational needs.
S e e b rü c
b rü Bahnhof
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Pi lat ass
Ze nt ra lst ra ss
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Rö o fs
Tr i e
Location of facilities in Lucerne
Lucerne School of Business Lucerne School of Business
Main building Institute of Tourism ITW
Zentralstrasse 9 Rösslimatte 48
CH-6002 Lucerne CH-6002 Lucerne
Lucerne School of Business
Secretariat of the Master’s programme
T +41 41 228 41 30
F +41 41 228 41 31