MSc Environmental Sciences
- Full Time
- Degree of Master of Science
- Course Length
- 1 years
- Course Start Date
- September 2023
What are the links between the effects of climate change and pollution and the mismanagement and overexploitation of resources? How can we solve the environmental challenges we face today? What role can you play in making change happen?
If these questions fascinate you, this course is for you. You’re passionate about studying the Earth’s natural processes and human impacts – and you want to prepare for a rewarding career in environmental sciences.
Take the MSc Environmental Sciences and develop your advanced scientific knowledge in your field along with essential transferable skills in data analysis, tools such as geographic information systems (GIS) and decision-making.
Environmental sciences is the interdisciplinary study of atmospheric, oceanic, freshwater and terrestrial environments, coupled with an assessment of the interactions with human society.
This MSc programme will give you a rigorous understanding of the Earth’s natural processes, the impacts of human activities on the global environment and the strategies required for the sustainable management of natural resources.
It will offer you a range of subjects to choose from and a wide array of career options, both in vocational employment and postgraduate research. Whether you’re an environmental sciences graduate seeking additional training, or you’ve studied a related subject and wish to widen your environmental knowledge and skills, this flexible course is ideal.
You’ll explore the science of climate change and human adaptive response to increasing global temperatures and sea-level rise. Your training will also develop skills in the collection, analysis, interpretation and presentation of diverse datasets and the application of analytical tools such as numerical models and geographic information systems (GIS) to aid complex decision-making.
These transferable skills are invaluable for the jobs market, and will support you to move into a rewarding career.
Study and Modules
The MSc Environmental Sciences is a one-year full-time course with both taught components and an independent research project.
The course is made up of 180 credits – with 100 credits gained from the taught components (usually five 20 credit modules) and 80 credits from your independent research project.
Through your choice of taught modules, you can carve your own curriculum pathway – you could focus on a specific area of environmental sciences or include a range of interdisciplinary subjects. You’ll work with your advisors and course director to choose your 100 credits of modules from our wide selection. You can even choose modules from other Schools if they contribute to a clear programme of study in the field of environmental sciences. You’ll complete your taught modules over two semesters.
Of the 80 credits for your research project, 20 credits are for the Research Skills Module coursework (includes your project proposal) while the remaining 60 credits are for your final project report. You’ll start planning your independent research project in the autumn semester, submit your project proposal in the Spring Semester, and hand in your final project report in early August. This means that you’ll be working on your research project from the spring semester onwards through the summer. You’ll be marked on successfully completing the assessment for each module and reaching the learning outcomes.
In addition to our core MSc Environmental Sciences course, we also offer two environmental sciences pathways focusing specifically on sustainability.
Optional A Modules(Min Credits: 40, Max Credits: 60)
Optional B Modules(Min Credits: 40, Max Credits: 60)
Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, the University will endeavour to consult with students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will inform students.
Teaching and Learning
You’ll be taught through a combination of lecture and seminar classes, practical classes and field visits. Naturally, as an MSc student you’ll be encouraged to extend your knowledge and understanding through directed reading and assessed coursework assignments. Your independent project is a major activity that permits the in-depth acquisition of knowledge and the opportunity to integrate understanding of your chosen topic.
In the Research Skills module, you’ll further develop your transferable skills – such as the use of IT facilities to find bibliographic material and techniques for data analysis and interpretation.
You will also learn how to prepare a research proposal for the independent project with a statement of the hypothesis you’ll test, the data and methods you’ll use, and a plan of work that includes a list of deadlines and deliverables.
Your project planning will see you develop additional skills such as costing the research plan and liaising with staff over practical issues such as safety and general working practices. We'll be on hand to support you during your independent project – particularly around training in diagram production, report presentation and writing.
Depending on the modules you choose, we’ll use different methods of assessment to test your intellectual skills. These include essays, seminar presentations, position papers, short reports, problem sheets, mini-projects and an independent project report. You’ll perfect your ability to present arguments in a concise and coherent manner – a transferable skill that will prepare you for either vocational or research-oriented careers.
We’ll assess your practical skills mainly through your coursework. In essays and reports we’ll look for the skill with which bibliographic material has been obtained and discussed within the context of the assignment. You’ll also complete problem-solving and project-based work, which allows us to assess your numerical and practical skills.
We’ll assess your transferable skills mainly based on your research project proposal, which you’ll submit in support of your independent project. Your independent project and accompanying dissertation will give us an assessment of your overall skills and ability as an environmental scientist.
- Degree Classification
- Bachelors degree - 2.1 or equivalent
- Degree Subject
- Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences or related disciplines. Also single-discipline degrees in Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Mathematics, Computing, Engineering, Economics and Politics
- English Foreign Language
We welcome applications from students whose first language is not English. To ensure such students benefit from postgraduate study, we require evidence of proficiency in English. Our usual entry requirements are as follows:
IELTS: 6.0 (minimum 5.5 in two components only, with 6.0 in the other two)
PTE (Pearson): 64 (minimum 59 in only two components with 64 in the others)
Test dates should be within two years of the course start date.
Other tests, including Cambridge English exams and the Trinity Integrated Skills in English are also accepted by the university. The full list of accepted tests can be found here: Accepted English Language Tests
INTO UEA also run pre-sessional courses which can be taken prior to the start of your course. For further information and to see if you qualify please contact email@example.com.
This course is open to UK, EU and International applicants. The annual intake for this course is in September each year.
Fees and Funding
Tuition fees for the Academic Year 2023/24 are:
UK Students: £10,500 (full time)
International Students: £21,250 (full time)
If you choose to study part-time, the fee per annum will be half the annual fee for that year, or a pro-rata fee for the module credit you are taking (only available for Home students).
We estimate living expenses at £1,023 per month.
Further Information on tuition fees can be found here.
Scholarships and Bursaries
The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.
Course Related Costs
Please see Additional Course Fees for details of course-related costs.
How to Apply
Applications for Postgraduate Taught programmes at the University of East Anglia should be made directly to the University.
To apply please use our online application form.
If you would like to discuss your individual circumstances prior to applying please do contact us:
Postgraduate Admissions Office
Tel: +44 (0)1603 591515
International candidates are also encouraged to access the International Students section of our website.
After the Course
Our degrees lead to a range of specialist environmental careers in areas such as sustainable environmental management, biodiversity conservation, renewable energy, carbon reduction, catchment management, weather forecasting, geophysics, natural hazard analysis, risk management, and teaching and education.
We’re proud to say that past students have been successful in gaining jobs within various sectors including government organisations (eg the Environment Agency and Norfolk County Council), NGOs (eg Green Alliance) and consulting firms such as JBA and CH2M. Some students have also chosen to progress to PhD research.
A degree at UEA will prepare you for a wide variety of careers. We've been ranked 1st for Job Prospects by StudentCrowd in 2022.
Examples of careers that you could enter include: