Advanced Materials Science (Sustainability) MSc

London, Stratford (UCL East)

As climate change continues to affect our lives, the link to the continuous production and consumption of goods is clear. Sustainable materials development is an evolving concept required across all disciplines, with scientists urgently needed to contribute towards initiatives, such as net zero emission targets announced by governments around the world, including the UK. Our MSc Advanced Materials Science (Sustainability) will prepare you as a new materials scientist to support this agenda., You will learn to promote research and come up with new, more sustainable ways to manage critical resources related to commodity materials. 

UK students International students
Study mode
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
1 calendar year
Programme starts
September 2024
Applications accepted
Applicants who require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 28 Jun 2024

Applications closed

Applicants who do not require a visa: 16 Oct 2023 – 30 Aug 2024
Applications close at 5pm UK time

Applications open

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

The English language level for this programme is: Level 1

UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level.

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

If you are intending to apply for a time-limited visa to complete your UCL studies (e.g., Student visa, Skilled worker visa, PBS dependant visa etc.) you may be required to obtain ATAS clearance. This will be confirmed to you if you obtain an offer of a place. Please note that ATAS processing times can take up to six months, so we recommend you consider these timelines when submitting your application to UCL.

Equivalent qualifications

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. Please note that the equivalency will correspond to the broad UK degree classification stated on this page (e.g. upper second-class). Where a specific overall percentage is required in the UK qualification, the international equivalency will be higher than that stated below. Please contact Graduate Admissions should you require further advice.

About this degree

This Master’s will equip you with a solid foundation in materials sciences and related technologies, so you can confidently play your part in developing new materials that are good for industry and better for the planet.
We will explore the structure, properties and applications of the main groups of materials, delivered through seven core disciplines. 

Research is interwoven through almost every aspect of the course, and you will build your own scientific research skills, working on a route-specific literature project and six-month research project.
Studying at UCL, alongside globally-renowned academics, means you’ll have the chance to participate in projects that can have a global impact on society today. 

You will be based at our campus in the heart of East London, with easy access to all the cultural, entertainment and academic resources across the capital. 

By the end of your time with us, you will be set up with the skills needed to design new, more advanced materials – materials that will play an important role in helping organisations to reduce their environmental impact, while also enhancing the durability of their goods.

Who this course is for

This programme is for students with a background in materials sciences, physics, chemistry, polymers, engineering or biotechnology. You will have a strong basis for a career discovering and designing materials that can be used for sustainable developments which will shape the future of our world.

What this course will give you

A solid ground in the scientific theories underpinning the research and applications of advanced materials. 

A course that encourages innovation and creative thinking, and contextualises scientific innovation within the global market and entrepreneurship.

A mix of innovative teaching methods including the chance to work on group design projects, where you’ll be challenged to design the next advanced materials.

A choice of route-specific modules (like ‘Advanced Materials for Sustainable Energy Technologies’, and ‘Advanced Topics in Materials Sciences for Sustainable Developments’) where you’ll learn important concepts for achieving a sustainable future, and unpick the issues that led us to this point in time. 

Students on this interdisciplinary programme benefit from UCL's emphasis on enterprise- and research-led  teaching informed by current research input from departments across UCL.

In addition to the specific skills and knowledge students acquire by taking this programme, they also develop managerial and entrepreneurship skills, and transferable skills in areas including literature survey, design of experiments, materials research, critical data analysis, teamwork and effective communication skills using real-life case scenarios and student-led group projects.

You will be based at our UCL East campus in the heart of East London, with easy access to all the cultural, entertainment and academic resources across the capital. 

The foundation of your career

On successful completion of this course, you will be in a strong position to go into a career as a materials scientist or engineer in academia or industry, or to work as an entrepreneur. Graduates from this programme are prepared to enter a variety of fields such as aerospace, biomedical, engineering and other multidisciplinary industrials, with past students being offered roles at companies including Shell, Johnson Matthey, Rolls-Royce, Merck, Oxford Instruments, Huawei, Bytedance, Procter & Gamble, Coca-Cola.

This programme has also provided students with an excellent foundation for the pursuit of further academic study such as another postgraduate degree or doctoral research. Graduates have gone on to be awarded full PhD studentships in Purdue University in the USA, Universities of Oxford, Queen Mary, Nottingham, Bath, St Andrews, and UCL in the UK, as well as other top universities in Australia and Hong Kong.


As well as developing your skills and knowledge in materials science, you will go away with transferable skills in areas such as literature survey, designing experiments, materials research, critical data analysis, teamwork and effective communication, using real-life case scenarios and student-led group projects.

Many of the skills you gain will be highly valued by employers and beneficial to further academic study or research, such as analytical thinking and innovation, active learning and learning strategies, complex problem-solving, critical thinking, creativity, originality, taking initiative, leadership and social influence.


Staff at the Institute for Materials Discovery have extensive professional networks and often organize research seminar talks given by internal and external academic and industrial speakers worldwide. Students are strongly encouraged to participate in these scientific seminars. In addition, students are also encouraged to organize their own academic, social and alumni events with staff supports to enhance their sense of belonging.

Teaching and learning

The programme will introduce you to the area of advanced material science through a blended mixture of lectures, face to face and online, case study workshops, individual and group activities, and lab practices. You will be expected to supplement material provided by lecturers with your own independent-learning and research, by reading around the subject and by engaging with wider activities in advanced materials science, for example by attending seminars.

The programme’s compulsory curriculum is assessed by a combination of different methods that typically include individual coursework, a group project and/or a written examination, individual research projects with associated presentations, dissertation reports and viva voce. Students are also given time to revise and work through their assessed work with opportunities for individual and group feedback.

Assessment methods vary according to modules and are designed to enable students to demonstrate learning over time.

Each taught module is normally lectured for 30 hours with around 20 hours tutorials and/or tutor-lead lab practices. The student is expected to spend around 100 hours on self-directed study for each taught module.


In Term 1 you will study compulsory modules relating to the Microstructural Control in Advanced Materials, Advanced Materials Processing and Manufacturing, and you will be exposed to the concepts of research design and research methods, thus gaining the necessary knowledge to develop your research project during the year. You will also study compulsory, route-specific module Advanced Materials for Sustainable Energy Technologies.

In Term 2 you will further develop the skills gained in term 1, where you go on to undertake compulsory modules in Advanced Materials Characterisation, Material Design, Selection and Discovery as well as starting your six-month independent research project on cutting-edge topics regarding sustainable materials, sustainable manufacturing and production, and sustainable energy technologies. You will also study compulsory route-specific module Advanced Topics of Materials Science for Sustainable Development. .

In Term 3 you will continue to engage in your research project, supported by your project supervisor. This will culminate in you presenting your research progresses and findings to your contemporaries in both written and oral presentation formats.

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability are subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded an MSc in Advanced Materials Science (Sustainability).


Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support and Wellbeing team.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £15,100
Tuition fees (2024/25) £37,500

The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Where the programme is offered on a flexible/modular basis, fees are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website:

Additional costs

Full-time overseas students are required to pay a fee deposit of £1,000 for this programme and part-time overseas students are required to pay a fee deposit of £500.

There are no programme-specific costs.

For more information on additional costs for prospective students please go to our estimated cost of essential expenditure at Accommodation and living costs.

Funding your studies

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

UCL East London Scholarship

Value: Tuition fees plus £15,700 stipend ()
Criteria Based on financial need
Eligibility: UK

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.

There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at Application fees.

When we access your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study Advanced Materials Science at graduate level
  • why you want to study Advanced Materials Science at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this 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. Applicants who have a portfolio are strongly recommended to submit it when they apply.

Please note that you may submit applications for a maximum of two graduate programmes (or one application for the Law LLM) in any application cycle.

Choose your programme

Please read the Application Guidance before proceeding with your application.

Year of entry: 2024-2025

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.