Aquatic Science MSc
Options: PG Diploma, PG Certificate
Environmental issues such as eutrophication, habitat degradation and climate change threaten the sustainability of our aquatic resources. Responding to these threats the Aquatic Science MSc equips students with an interdisciplinary understanding of the structure and functioning of aquatic environments, encompassing lakes, ponds, rivers, wetlands, groundwaters, estuaries and shallow seas.
Mode of study
- Full-time 1 year
- Part-time 2 years
- UK/EU Full-time: £9,000
- UK/EU Part-time: £4,500
- Overseas Full-time: £17,400
- Overseas Part-time: £8,750
- UK/EU applicants: 1 August 2014
- Overseas applicants: 31 July 2014
More details in Application section.
What will I learn?
Students gain a sound training in field sampling, study design, instrumentation, numerical analysis and the taxonomy of a range of aquatic organisms. Distinctive features include the integration of aquatic ecology with hydrological and geomorphological processes, analysis of sediment cores, design of aquatic monitoring programmes and modelling of aquatic system dynamics.
Why should I study this degree at UCL?
The Aquatic Science MSc is run by UCL Geography, which enjoys an outstanding international reputation for its research and teaching.
The programme is taught by members of departmental research groups specialising in environmental change and environmental modelling, and has specialist input from the UCL Thames Estuary Partnership http://thamesweb.com/, and in-house aquatic consultancy Environmental Scientific Services http://ensis.org.uk/.
Speakers from other universities and environmental organisations including the UK Environment Agency, Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, the UK Wildlife Trusts, the Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Sciences and the Broads Authority are invited to lecture on the programme and take part in fieldwork.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), four optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, full-time nine months, part-time two years) is offered.
A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, full-time 12 weeks, part-time one year) is offered.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words. Dissertation placement positions are offered linked to external conservation bodies and research-orientated consultancies.
Teaching and Learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, practical classes, laboratory sessions, case-studies and residential field classes. Assessment is through coursework and the dissertation, which includes an oral presentation of the research proposal.
Further details available on subject website:
For information on bursaries available, please visit www.geog.ucl.ac.uk/aquatic
Scholarships available for this department
Selection based solely on financial need.
For a prospective UK Master's student from under-represented background enrolling on a participating programme . Selection based solely on financial need.
Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.
Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with relevant professional experience in aquatic science or environmental management will also be considered.
Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements
English language proficiency level: Good
How to apply
The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014. Applicants who require a student visa should submit their programme application before 31 July 2014.
Who can apply?
The programme is particularly suitable for students with a first degree in environmental science, geography, oceanography, biology, chemistry or engineering who wish to develop the skills necessary for further research in the field, or for a career in the areas of environmental protection and conservation.
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Aquatic Science
- why you want to study Aquatic Science at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to this programme
- how your academic and/or professional background meets the demands of a challenging academic environment
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
This programme provides an ideal foundation for PhD research, or for employment with environmental protection and conservation agencies, the water industry and environmental consultancies.
The first cohort of students on the Aquatic Science MSc are due to graduate in 2014, therefore no information on graduate destinations is currently available.
The MSc provides students with the science background and practical skills necessary for a career working in aquatic conservation, with stakeholder agencies, or as a route to PhD study. We aim to expose students to potential employers from the outset and students receive expert tutition in field sampling and monitoring programme design, conservation biology, taxonomy of key species groups, knowledge of important conservation pronciples and legislation and working with stakeholders.
Ms Fiona Mannion
T: +44 (0)20 7679 0575/7579
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"I made contacts at other universities and was encouraged to take part in conferences, receiving financial support to do so, which was great for getting general research experience and networking skills."
Research Associate, Loughborough University, 2012
"UCL provides its students with the opportunity to enrich their networks in the academic and business world. I have attended many career open day events organised either by UCL itself or by companies outside UCL."