Environmental Systems Engineering MSc

The global challenge of environmental sustainability highlights the need for holistic design and management of complex environmental and technological systems. This interdisciplinary Master's programme presents environmental issues and technologies within a systems engineering context. Graduates will understand interactions between the natural environment, people, processes and technologies to develop sustainable solutions.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years
  • Flexible: up to 5 years

Programme start date

September 2016

Tuition Fees (2016/17)

£11,090 (FT) £N/A (PT)
£23,440 (FT) £N/A (PT)

Application dates

All applicants
Open: 5 October 2015
Close: 29 July 2016
Optional qualifications: This degree is also available as a PG Diploma with fees set accordingly.
Fees note: Fees for part-time study are charged at approximately half the full-time Master's fee. Fees for flexible, modular study are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. The tuition fee schedule for 2016/17 entry can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class UK Bachelor's degree in a cognate subject or related discipline or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard is usually required. Extensive work experience covering related areas will be considered.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Standard

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

Students will develop an understanding of systems engineering and environmental engineering. Environmental engineering is a multi-disciplinary branch of engineering concerned with devising, implementing and managing solutions to protect and restore the environment within an overall framework of sustainable development. Systems engineering is the branch of engineering concerned with the development and management of large complex systems.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), a collaborative environmental systems project (30 credits), two optional modules (30 credits) and an individual environmental systems dissertation (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits) is offered.

Compulsory Modules

  • Collaborative Environmental Systems Project
  • Environmental Systems
  • Systems Engineering and Management
  • Systems Society and Sustainability
  • Environmental Modelling


  • Options may include the following:
  • Urban Flooding and Drainage
  • Energy Management and the Control of Noise
  • Hydrogeology and Groundwater Resources
  • Coastal Engineering
  • Social Dimensions of Sustainability
  • Energy Systems Modelling
  • Science and Politics of Climate Change
  • Environmental Masterplanning
  • Water and Wastewater Treatment
  • Finite Element Modelling and Numerical Methods
  • Advanced Building Simulation
  • Energy Systems and Sustainability


All MSc students undertake an independent research project addressing a problem of systems research, design or analysis, which culminates in a dissertation of 10,000–15,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through lectures, seminars, tutorials, laboratory classes and projects. The individual and group projects in the synthesis element involve interaction with industrial partners, giving students real-life experience and contacts for the future. Assessment is through written examination, coursework, presentations, and group and individual projects.

Further information on modules and degree structure available on the department web site Environmental Systems Engineering MSc


Some funding schemes are available globally, but they are extremely competitive.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Brown Family Bursary - NOW CLOSED FOR 2015/16 ENTRY

£15,000 (1 year)
UK students
Based on both academic merit and financial need

SPDC Niger Delta Postgraduate Scholarship - NOW CLOSED FOR 2015/16 ENTRY

Tuition fees, plus stipend, flights and allowances. (1 year)
Overseas students
Based on academic merit

More scholarships are listed on the Scholarships and Funding website


Career paths for environmental systems engineers are diverse, expanding and challenging, with the pressures of increasing population, desire for improved standards of living and the need to protect the environmental systems. There are local UK and international opportunities in all areas of industry: in government planning and regulation; with regional and municipal authorities; consultants and contracting engineers; research and development organisations; and in education and technology transfer. Example of recent career destinations include Ford, KPMG, EDF Energy, Brookfield Multiplex, and the Thames Tideway Tunnel Project.


The discipline of environmental systems engineering is growing rapidly with international demand for multi-skilled, solutions-focussed professionals who can take an integrated approach to complex problems.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The discipline of environmental systems engineering is growing rapidly with an international demand for multi-skilled professionals who can take an integrated approach to solving complex environmental problems (e.g. urban water systems, technologies to minimise industrial pollution). Environmental engineers work closely with a range of other environmental professionals, and the community.

Skills may be used to:

  • design, construct and operate urban water systems
  • develop and implement cleaner production technologies to minimise industrial pollution
  • recycle waste materials into new products and generate energy
  • evaluate and minimise the environmental impact of engineering projects
  • develop and implement sound environmental management strategies and procedures

UCL Civil, Environmental & Geomatic Engineering is an energetic and exciting environment in which to explore environmental systems engineering. Students have the advantages of studying in a multi-faculty institution with a long tradition of excellence in teaching and research, situated at the heart of one of the world's greatest cities.

Student / staff ratios › 95 staff including 43 postdocs › 200 taught students › 170 research students

Department: Civil, Environmental and Geomatic Engineering

Degree reviews

Staff review

"Located at the heart of the world's largest cluster of building design companies and a short journey from the key professional bodies (RIBA, CIBSE, IMechE, RICS) and relevant government departments, studying at UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering will benefit any student. "

Dejan Mumovic

Environmental Systems Engineering MSc, Energy MPhil, Environmental Design and Engineering MPhil
UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

This MSc is suitable for students and professionals with a first degree and/or work experience in engineering, environmental science or a related field, who wish to develop the skills necessary to progress in the diverse, expanding and challenging field of environmental systems engineering.

Application deadlines

All applicants
29 July 2016

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Environmental Systems Engineering at graduate level
  • why you want to study Environmental Systems Engineering at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your personal, academic and professional background meets the demands of a challenging programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.


  • Register interest in your chosen subjects
  • Receive notice of graduate open days, events and more
Register now

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