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School of Environment, Education and Development

Student of environmental monitoring and modelling at The University of Manchester
MSc Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction
Develop your environmental fieldwork skills, data handling and analysis at master's level.

MSc Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction

Year of entry: 2018

Overview

Degree awarded
Master of Science
Duration
12 Months (Full-Time); 27 Months (Part-Time)
Entry requirements

You should hold an Upper Second class Honours degree (or above) or its equivalent, in Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, or Geography. Graduates in Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Mathematics, Engineering, or a cognate discipline are also welcome. We particularly welcome applications from geographers already working in research or policy-related fields.  

Please submit the following documents with your application:

  • Copies of official degree certificates and transcripts of your previous study, showing the subjects taken and grades obtained. If these documents are in languages other than English please provide official translations.
  • Two written references, signed by the referee and on official headed paper.
  • A personal statement detailing why you wish to study the course, your experiences, what you can bring to the course and any other information that you see as relevant to your application
  • Your CV
  • Copies of English Language Certification, e.g. IELTS, TOEFL or Pearson test score report.

Full entry requirements

Number of places/applicants

Approximately 80 applications are received each year and 15 new students are registered.

How to apply

Apply online

The deadline for applications is the 31st August 2018; later applications are considered at our discretion. Please note that we receive a very high number of applications so the course may be closed to new applications before the final deadline given.

Course options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning
MSc Y Y N N

Course overview

  • You would like to train in the use of the most up to date software, and the sourcing of digital data
  • You are interested in learning from academic staff and industry professionals to develop real-world skills
  • You want to carry out a diverse range of practical assignments focused on monitoring, modelling, and reconstruction
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Geography Taught master's (Alumni showcase - The University of Manchester)

Open days

Postgraduate open days provide a great opportunity to take a look at the University and find out what Manchester has to offer you. For further information please see: open days and visits

Fees

For entry in the academic year beginning September 2018, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (full-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £9,500
    International students (per annum): £18,000
  • MSc (part-time)
    UK/EU students (per annum): £4,750
    International students (per annum): £9,000

The fees quoted above will be fully inclusive for the course tuition, administration and computational costs during your studies.

All fees for entry will be subject to yearly review and incremental rises per annum are also likely over the duration of courses lasting more than a year for UK/EU students (fees are typically fixed for International students, for the course duration at the year of entry). For general fees information please visit: postgraduate fees . Always contact the department if you are unsure which fee applies to your qualification award and method of attendance.

Self-funded international applicants for this course will be required to pay a deposit of £1000 towards their tuition fees before a confirmation of acceptance for studies (CAS) is issued. This deposit will only be refunded if immigration permission is refused. We will notify you about how and when to make this payment.

Scholarships/sponsorships

The School of Environment, Education and Development is offering a number of scholarships for 2018 entry. For further information please click here .

The Manchester Alumni Scholarship Scheme offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a 1st and are progressing to a postgraduate taught masters course for September 2018 entry (terms and conditions apply - please contact us for further information).  

See also the University's postgraduate funding database for more funding opportunities.

Contact details

Academic department
School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
Susan Harney
Telephone
+44 (0) 161 275 0969
Email
Website
http://www.seed.manchester.ac.uk/subjects/geography/postgraduatetaught/
Academic department overview
See: The School .

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

You should hold an Upper Second class Honours degree (or above) or its equivalent, in Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, or Geography. Graduates in Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Mathematics, Engineering, or a cognate discipline are also welcome. We particularly welcome applications from geographers already working in research or policy-related fields.  

Please submit the following documents with your application:

  • Copies of official degree certificates and transcripts of your previous study, showing the subjects taken and grades obtained. If these documents are in languages other than English please provide official translations.
  • Two written references, signed by the referee and on official headed paper.
  • A personal statement detailing why you wish to study the course, your experiences, what you can bring to the course and any other information that you see as relevant to your application
  • Your CV
  • Copies of English Language Certification, e.g. IELTS, TOEFL or Pearson test score report.

English language

Students whose first language, or language of instruction, is not English may be asked to provide evidence of fluency in English as follows:  
  • IELTS 6.5 overall, 6.5 in writing, no sub-section below 6.0
  • TOEFL IBT overall score of 90 with a minimum score of 22 in writing and 20 in the other subsections.
  • Pearson PTE overall score of 59 with a minimum score of 59 in the writing section and 51 in the other subsections
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) overall score of 176 or above, with 176 in writing and no sub-section below 169 - OR - Grade C if taken before January 2015.

Results are only valid for two years. Your English language test report must be valid on the start date of your course.

English language test validity

Some English language test results are only valid for two years. Your English language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply online

The deadline for applications is the 31st August 2018; later applications are considered at our discretion. Please note that we receive a very high number of applications so the course may be closed to new applications before the final deadline given.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry. In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved. We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.

Course details

Course description

MSc Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction focuses on analysing past, present, and future dynamic environments, providing you with the skills for a career in environmental management or consultancy, and a firm grounding for research in the environmental sciences. 

Concerns over the human impact on the environment have stimulated demand from governments and industry for the monitoring, analysis and modelling of natural processes in environmental systems. This is essential if we are to improve understanding of the interrelation of environmental variables in order to predict and manage their responses to anthropogenic perturbations.

Studying this course, you will gain:

  • advanced theoretical knowledge and practical expertise in order to collect, interpret and analyse contemporary and past environmental data.
  • modelling skills, in order to investigate the interrelationships between environmental variables, and to predict their responses to changing internal and external conditions.
  • intellectual and practical skills, in order to design and undertake field and/or laboratory experiments in contemporary environmental process-monitoring, or palaeoenvironmental reconstruction, and to design and test appropriate environmental models with the data you collect.

We also use the proximity of Manchester to the upland areas of the Peak District; several past MSc students completed dissertation work in close collaboration with various organisations responsible for land management in the Peak District, giving their work direct policy relevance.

Aims

Teaching focuses on training in theory, concepts and research skills in the first semester, and practical applications and research experience in the second semester.

We teach course units in small-group interactive styles with a mix of lectures, tutorials, seminars, practicals and presentations. A range of physical geographers provide training in their specialised fields, covering both content and practical research methods.

In a typical week, expect to spend some time in the library, preparing for seminars; in the laboratory, completing practicals; in the dedicated postgraduate computer laboratory, or writing reports; and in the classroom.

The second semester in particular gives you increased opportunities to go out into the field, both for practicals and to gain research experience by doing field research with members of staff. We maintain an intensively monitored catchment on the moors near the Snake Pass in the Peak District and this is the focus of several practical exercises, as well as a source of data to support dissertation work.

Field and laboratory research are essential to your learning process in environmental monitoring, and these form integrated parts of both the taught units and dissertation work.

Teaching and learning

  • Part-time Study

Part-time students complete the full-time programme over 27 months.  There are NO evening or weekend course units available on the part-time programme, therefore if you are considering taking a programme on a part-time basis, you should discuss the requirements with the Programme Director and seek approval from your employer to have the relevant time off.  Timetabling information is normally available from late August from the Programme Administrator and you will have the opportunity to discuss course unit choices during induction week with the Programme Director.

Coursework and assessment

Taught units comprise two-thirds of the course and are assessed by a wide range of project work, essays and presentations. There are no formal examinations. The remainder of your course consists of the dissertation.  

Course unit details

CORE COURSE UNITS

These typically cover:

  • Environmental Change and Reconstruction
  • Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Concepts
  • Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Practice
  • Dissertation Support.

OPTIONAL COURSE UNITS

Choose three from the following:

  • Applied Study Unit
  • Climate Change, Disasters and Urban Poverty
  • Digital Image Processing and Data Analysis
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Environmental Remote Sensing
  • GIS and Environmental Applications
  • Issues in Environmental Policy
  • Planning for Environmental Change.

Availability of course units may vary from year to year.

LEVEL 4 OPTIONS

Students are allowed to take up to 2 of the following level 4 options:

  • Hydrochemical Modelling
  • Ice Age Earth
  • Managing the Uplands
  • Climate Change and Carbon Cycling
  • Coastal Processes
  • Frozen Planet, Satellites & Climate Change.

Typical course units comprise a minimum of a one-hour lecture per week, or seminar supported by supervised laboratory time. The exact balance varies, depending on the requirements of particular units. Additional contact time is arranged on an ad hoc basis by students to discuss assignments and other matters. By the end of the course, you will have an advanced level of theoretical knowledge and practical experience in:

  • Field/laboratory monitoring techniques for analysis of environmental processes
  • Advanced techniques for analysis of environmental materials field and laboratory techniques for palaeoenvironmental reconstruction based on stratigraphical studies of sediment cores, including microfossil and pollen analysis
  • GIS and remote sensing and advanced statistical methods
  • Designing, planning, funding and executing research projects in environmental monitoring, modelling or palaeoenvironmental reconstruction
  • Processing/analysing results logically, using objective statistical methods and/or mathematical modelling techniques objective, unbiased, and impartial reporting of analytical results and their interpretation, both oral and written, particularly scientific report writing. Normally taken full-time, the course is also well suited to part-time study over two years.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Environmental Change & Reconstruction GEOG60112 15 Mandatory
Dissertation Support GEOG60662 15 Mandatory
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Practice GEOG70552 15 Mandatory
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Concepts GEOG70581 15 Mandatory
Organic Geochemistry EART60311 15 Optional
Water Chemistry EART60451 15 Optional
Water Movement EART60461 15 Optional
Global Environmental Change EART60492 15 Optional
Living with Climate Change EART61451 15 Optional
Climate Change and Carbon Cycling GEOG60182 15 Optional
Environmental Remote Sensing GEOG60942 15 Optional
GIS and Environmental Applications GEOG60951 15 Optional
Applied Study Unit GEOG70560 15 Optional
GIS and the Web GEOG70611 15 Optional
Issues in Environmental Policy GEOG70911 15 Optional
Understanding GIS GEOG71552 15 Optional
Climate Change, Disasters and Responses MGDI60552 15 Optional
Environmental Impact Assessment PLAN60411 15 Optional
Planning for Environmental Change PLAN60771 15 Optional
Displaying 10 of 19 course units

Facilities

The Arthur Lewis Building provides excellent resources including analytical laboratories, studio facilities, workshops, seminar rooms, an onsite café and dedicated computer clusters including GIS facilities.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

In the second semester, various speakers from environmental employers visit the department to give a flavour of their work and advice on employment.

The MSc in Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction has an excellent track record in providing a springboard for students to go on to careers in environmental industries, consultancies and government agencies, or to further research for higher degrees.

Recent graduates have found employment in agencies like the UK Atomic Energy Authority, The Environment Agency, Natural England and a range of environmental consultancies. Others have moved on to undertake full-time research for a PhD.