The MSc in Marine Mammal Science is a one-year taught programme run by the Sea Mammal Research Unit (SMRU), the only UK institution dedicated exclusively to marine mammal research, and draws on the quantitative and diverse academic expertise within the University's Scottish Oceans Institute (SOI).
The course consists of two taught semesters followed by an independent research project culminating in a 15,000-word dissertation and poster presentation. The research project takes place during the entire year with particular focus during the last three months from June to August.
Teaching takes the form of lectures, seminars, debates, workshops and tutorials. Practicals involve lab work, field work, modelling and computer-based data analysis. Assessment comprises coursework and end-of semester written examinations. Class sizes range from 5 to 30 students, depending on the module.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2017–2018 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2018 entry.
This programme offers expert understanding of the latest developments in geographical information science (GIS), mixing practical training, theoretical knowledge and an ability to apply learned skills in any software environment.
This programme can be tailored to your interests and career goals, offering hands-on experience in geographical problem solving. A field trip to Perthshire focuses on techniques for capturing geospatial information.
Courses reflecting the industry’s needs prepare you for employment.
Compulsory courses typically will be:
In consultation with the Programme Director, you will choose from a range of option courses. We particularly recommend:
Courses are offered subject to timetabling and availability and are subject to change.
Demand for GIS expertise is growing at an unprecedented rate. The proven ability of our graduates means our internationally recognised programme is held in high regard by employers.
Graduates work worldwide in public and private sector organisations, such as Microsoft, Google, General Electric Aerospace, The World Bank, British Antarctic Survey, The World Conservation Monitoring Centre, Unisys, British Airways, the Forestry Commission, DEFRA and Registers of Scotland.
The programme is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
You may also be interested in the following programmes:
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The degree is the leading Master's programme in remote sensing and environmental mapping available in the UK. It offers the opportunity to study at an advanced level the ways in which remote sensing from ground-based to spaceborne platforms may be used to collect environmental information about the terrestrial biosphere, atmosphere, oceans and cryosphere at a range of scales and across wavelengths.
Students develop an all-round knowledge of remote sensing, mapping and data analysis. including fundamental principles, current technological developments and applications to local, regional and global problems. They gain highly developed, marketable practical skills to enable them to take leading roles in academic, government and industrial sectors.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of four core modules in term one (60 credits), four optional modules in term two (60 credits) and a research project in term three (60 credits).
A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits), full-time 12 weeks, flexible study up to two years is offered.
All students undertake an individual research project. The department has links with industry, and projects may be carried out in collaboration with organisations outside UCL.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, demonstrations, individual and group coursework, and compulsory computer training. Student learning is supported by tutorials, transferable skills training and research supervision throughout the year. Assessment is through unseen written examinations, coursework, dissertation and an oral presentation.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Remote Sensing and Environmental Mapping MSc
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
Graduates find jobs in diverse companies: from consultancies carrying out environmental and spatial analysis through to major international geospatial companies, or government and government-affiliated agencies. The programme is also suitable training for those wishing to undertake higher level work as a prelude to a PhD in a quantitative environmental discipline.
Recent career destinations for this degree
The range of generic, transferable skills provided by the degree programme are attractive to a range of employers. Students gain a fundamental understanding of the key principles of remote sensing, mapping, environmental data handling and analysis, as well as the ability to communicate their ideas. Such skills and knowledge are applicable across a wide range of careers. The long heritage of the programme - over 30 years - and its interdisciplinary, intercollegiate nature provides students with a unique perspective, not just from UCL, but across the wider world of remote sensing, mapping and environmental science.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
The MSc is run by UCL Geography, which enjoys an outstanding reputation for its research and teaching, and has a long pedigree in producing highly employable graduates for industry, research, policy and many other areas.
A distinctive feature of the programme is its intercollegiate nature which exposes students to a range of university departments and expertise across fields including terrestrial vegetation and carbon stocks, solid earth and geology, fire impacts, new sensor technology and ocean processes.
The degree is integrated with other Geography MSc programmes providing greater flexibility when choosing optional modules.
The human race is entirely dependent on the ecosystems that feed us, regulate our environment and recycle our wastes. They provide all we need to survive and thrive. Over the past 100 years, humans have changed ecosystems more rapidly and extensively than in any comparable period in history. There have been net gains in human well-being and economic development, but these gains have been achieved at growing cost in the form of environmental degradation, loss of biodiversity and depletion of natural capital.
Many options exist to reverse ecosystem degradation, but an understanding of the ecological systems and science is just a starting point. Understanding how the science interacts with policies, institutions, and practices is vital to achieve real change.
The Environmental Resource Management* option is designed to provide students with a thorough understanding of how ecological principles can be applied to the management and conservation of natural resources and ecosystems, as well as practical skills and techniques.
Throughout the option emphasis is placed on how best to inform management and conservation decisions using tools that range from geographical mapping software and biodiversity appraisal to life cycle analysis. The important influence of institutional arrangements and economic forces on resource use and management decisions is also a key theme.
Practical applications of ecological, institutional and economic concepts are illustrated by case studies, practical sessions, seminars and workshops. These are augmented by field trips and frequent contact with outside organisations responsible for environmental management. The option draws on a wide range of speakers with first-hand experience of environmental and ecological management in both the developed and developing world.
Students graduating from this option will be well placed to make informed decisions relating to real-world problems and able to identify and evaluate practical management options.
To equip students with the interdisciplinary knowledge and skills to embark on a career in natural resource management and to engage and interact with professionals in these disciplines.
Four main themes run through the option:
Theme 1: Understanding natural resource systems and human interactions
Explores renewable resource systems that are critical to human survival, ecosystem functioning and conservation. Focussing on specific examples we examine how these systems function and investigate the scientific, policy and practical issues involved in their management. Dedicated lectures and case studies include fisheries management, sustainable agriculture, conservation and management of wildlife populations.
Theme 2: Management tools and applications
Introduces and provides practical experience of some of the key tools and techniques used by environmental management professionals, including life cycle assessment, GIS, participatory appraisal and citizen science. Applications of these tools include gathering data, structuring and analysing problems, and communicate insights.
Theme 3: Policy, Assessment and Law
Informing the design of better policy is the objective of a great deal of research in understanding ecosystem processes and responses. Many conservation and resource management initiatives are also underpinned or impeded by legislation. This theme examines the interaction between policy processes, the legal system and conservation objectives. Key aspects of the national, European and international legal system and the role played by international law in the protection of the environment are identified. Regulatory instruments including Environmental Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental Assessment are also examined.
Theme 4: Management in Practice
Based around the fieldtrips and case-studies provided by external speakers and ecological management professional, this theme provides an opportunity to engage with professional working in the field and better understand what happens when theory and ideology meets practical barriers and resource constraints. Visits include forest management; farming and wildlife management, heathland management, ancient woodland and grazed pasture, ecosystem rehabilitation and wetland creation. Though these visits we explore the role of wildlife trusts in local conservation, the role of volunteers in managing sites of scientific interest, and the role of estate management in sustainable agriculture.
The Environmental Resource Management option (formerly called Ecological Management) has been running since 1978 and has more than 480 Alumni that can be found throughout all levels of Government, Industry, International agencies, Consultancy and NGOs.
Graduates are excellently placed to gain employment in a wide range of organizations dealing with natural resources, conservation and international development. Over 80% of graduates gain employment in the environmental field within months of graduating.
Common destinations include consultancy, NGOs, international organisations and government. Recent destinations include: