UCL Department of Geography


MSc Conservation

Widely recognised as a leading programme for aspiring nature conservation professionals, this interdisciplinary course gives you first-hand experience of practical conservation challenges.

About this degree

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The programmes take a holistic, interdisciplinary approach, teaching you to actively address key areas of ecological, social and political conservation.

The key aim of the course is to prepare you for a career in the sector or academia. 

With that in mind, you will take part in a series of residential field courses to give you exposure to real-world conservation issues.

You also gain the scientific foundation needed to conduct evidence-based assessments and understand the intricacies of the natural environment. 

Learn more about this course

Who is this course for?

Who is this course for?

You will be best suited for the MSc Conservation if you have a first degree in a relevant discipline such as environmental science, geography or biology. 

As the programme has a strong vocational focus, you may be interested in careers in conservation or may already be a conservation professional looking for further training.

The course also provides an excellent foundation for further academic research and PhD studies.

MSc Open Event


Hear more about the course from Professor Jan Axmacher:

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Academic Staff
Jan Axmacher

Professor Jan Axmacher (Convenor)

Jan is the Convenor of the MSc Conservation programme. His research covers a wide range of issues related to global biodiversity conservation in forested and agricultural landscapes. 

Carl Sayer

Professor Carl Sayer

Carl is the leader of the UCL Geography Pond Restoration Research Group and convenes the MSc in Aquatic Conservation, Ecology and Restoration. His research focuses on the ecology, palaeoecology conservation and restoration of aquatic ecosystems and the conservation of rare aquatic species planning plants, invertebrates and fish. Carl also leads several conservation projects including the River Glaven Conservation Group and the Norfolk Ponds Project.

Samuel Randalls

Dr Samuel Randalls

Sam's research interests are at the interface of business, science and the environment, with a particular focus on weather and climate. His recent research focuses on the development of 19th-century weather-related insurance and histories of climate policies.

Jon French

Professor Jon French

Jon directs the Coastal and Estuarine Research Unit. His research interests extend across coastal, estuarine and lacustrine environments and mainly concern the dynamics of coupled natural, socio-economic and engineered infrastructure systems and their resilience to geohazards and climate change. He has expertise in hydrodynamic and physical process modelling, data-driven 'machine learning' methods, and behavioural system modelling.

Helene Burningham

Professor Helene Burningham

The central aim of Helene's research is to explain coastal behaviour, system dynamics and mechanisms of forcing over decades and centuries. In particular, she is exploring the relative importance of intrinsic system control versus external climate forcing on the geomorphology and morphodynamics of coastal sedimentary systems.

Professor Helen Bennion

Professor Helen Bennion

Helen's research interests are in aquatic ecology and palaeoecology with a focus on freshwater diatoms. She is interested in the scientific application of lake management and conservation, particularly the EU Water Framework Directive. Her publications include around 70 academic articles and over 80 research reports and she is a peer reviewer for numerous international scientific journals and funding bodies. She has supervised more than 20 Master's and PhD students.

Jonathan Holmes

Professor Jonathan Holmes

Jonathan is the Director of the Environmental Change Research Centre. His research is concerned with the reconstruction of late Pleistocene and Holocene climates using lake sediments, abrupt climate change, human–climate interactions and data-model comparisons. He has authored over 100 publications and supervised/co-supervised over 20 PhD students.

Julian Thompson

Professor Julian R. Thompson

Julian's research includes the investigation of hydrological functioning and numerical modelling in wetland environments. This has predominantly, but not exclusively, involved freshwater ecosystems. His work has focused on the wider catchment hydrological context and the links between wetland hydrology and ecology. In addition, his research investigates the impacts and associated uncertainties of climate change and anthropogenic activities on wetlands, river basins and water resource



Applicants for this course may qualify for studentship awards supported by the British Hydrological SocietyJBA Trust, and Environment Agency.

For additional information regarding the MSc Studentship Award Scheme, please visit the dedicated webpage.

Additionally, it is worth noting that previous UCL MSc Conservation students have successfully obtained funding from sources including The Mercers' Company and The Percy Sladen Memorial Fund.

Visit the Prospectus for information on Fees:



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