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Masters Degrees (Bird Conservation)

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The MSc in Bird Conservation aims to provide students with detailed background on the evolution, taxonomy, ecology and behaviour of birds and then apply this knowledge to a wide range of practical conservation issues. Read more

Description

The MSc in Bird Conservation aims to provide students with detailed background on the evolution, taxonomy, ecology and behaviour of birds and then apply this knowledge to a wide range of practical conservation issues.

You will develop your understanding of how evolution has shaped many aspects of bird biology in response to the demands of flight. You will evaluate avian life history strategies, biogeography and population biology and how this information is used to design appropriate conservation measures. You will consider applied avian conservation management in relation to climate change, land-use practices, renewable energy development and other anthropogenic impacts.

There is a compulsory residential field-trip to either Poland or Tanzania which will provide you with practical experience of the essential techniques in the field of bird conservation.

The MSc is completed by a project which can be delivered in the UK or overseas, often in collaboration with an external organisation. There are also opportunities to work within Manchester Met research projects in Tanzania, Kenya, the Philippines, Mauritius and Madeira.

Core units

- Avian Biology and Conservation
- Statistics and Research Design
- Practical Techniques (including field course)
- Project

Option units

- Countryside Management
- Species Conservation
- Genetics of Populations
- Zoos and Conservation
- Behavioural Biology

Study pattern

Course delivery is flexible and most lectures take place in the evening. Lectures, other course materials and assessment information is available via our online learning platform, Moodle. You will be assessed mostly through coursework, although some units have a formal examination.

Career prospects

You will develop the knowledge and practical skills required for a career in avian research, conservation and consultancy. Other career routes will include animal management, agriculture and pest control, and teaching and environmental education with organisations such as environmental consultancies, government research and advisory bodies, zoos and NGOs. Some students will go on to study at PhD level.

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Environmental Anthropology is an interdisciplinary study into how societies are influenced by the environment and how they manage natural resources and hazards. Read more
Environmental Anthropology is an interdisciplinary study into how societies are influenced by the environment and how they manage natural resources and hazards.

This programme offers you the opportunity to acquire advanced knowledge of how different societies are influenced by the environment and manage natural resources and hazards, in relation to issues in human ecology, biodiversity management, sustainable development, environmental change and the practical applications of such knowledge.

As a graduate of this programme, you will have a range of both practical and evaluative skills, and experience of conducting empirical or other applied research. This allows you to pursue work as a researcher and will inform whatever position you take up in the future. Your expertise will be welcome in a range of organisations including national or international environmental bodies, governmental departments and nongovernmental organisations.

Students have the opportunity to study for an MA or an MSc with students who opt for the MSc being offered the opportunity to take conservation modules taught by researchers from the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology (DICE).

Visit the website https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/188/environmental-anthropology

Why study with us?

- One-year Master's programme

- Innovative teaching methods which provide practical, hands-on learning

- Good range of module choices including conservation modules supported by DICE for those taking the MSc version

- Field trip opportunities including to the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, the Eden Project, the National Fruit Collection at Brogdale, the Bird of Prey Centre at Leeds Castle and the Powell-Cotton Museum

- Specialist facilities including an Ethnobiology Laboratory which houses the Powell-Cotton collection of plant-based material culture from Southeast Asia

- Links with the Centre for Biocultural Diversity as well as global partners including the Institute of Ecology in Bandung, the Centre for International Forestry Research in Indonesia and the Global Diversity Foundation

- Research-led teaching by an institution specialising in postgraduate training

We follow an experiential and interactive learning method. We continue to look for innovative ways to present lectures, run seminars and workshops, write exams, design assignments, supervise students and evaluate essays and theses, to ensure that students develop practical expertise as well as an understanding of the methods used by environmental anthropologists.

Generally, you take assessed modules in Environmental Anthropology, Ethnobiological Knowledge Systems, Contemporary Issues in Ethnography, social anthropology, and Research Methods. These modules involve a combination of lectures, seminar discussions and practical laboratories. Additionally, you may opt to attend modules taught in DICE (the Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology) on conservation biology, nature and tourism and the international wildlife trade.

There are also informal workshop series in practical methods in conservation social science (jointly held with DICE), cultural domain analysis, research design, and computer applications, as well as field trips.

Throughout your Master's, you spend time thinking about and preparing for your dissertation project, which is the culmination of the programme. If you are looking to study overseas you can apply for funding from outside bodies as well as for support from the School. You prepare proposals, practice methods, arrange for permits and letters of consent, and, if necessary take language classes to prepare for around eight weeks of research between April and 1 July. You then write a 15,000 word dissertation that goes beyond a simple research report to argue a theoretical point and discuss research findings in much wider contexts. Increasingly, our students are going on to publish edited versions of their projects and are making substantive contributions to the research, development or conservation projects they work with.

Programme aims

This programme aims to:

- to provide you with a broad range of knowledge in environmental anthropology, a major sub-division of anthropology, showing how it is closely linked to other academic disciplines

- to provide you with advanced level knowledge of the theoretical, methodological and policy issues relevant to understanding the subdiscipline

- introduce you to a variety of different approaches to environmental anthropology research, presented in a multidisciplinary context and at an advanced level

- facilitate your educational experience through the provision of appropriate pedagogical opportunities for learning

- provide an appropriate training if you are preparing MPhil/PhD theses, or if you are going on to employment involving the use of research methods and results in environmental anthropology

- make you aware of the range of existing material available and equip you to evaluate its utility for your research

- cover the principles of research design and strategy, including formulating research questions or hypotheses and translating them into practicable research designs.

- introduce you to the philosophical, theoretical and ethical issues surrounding research and to debates about the relationship between theory and research, about problems of evidence and inference, and about the limits to objectivity.

- develop your skills in searching for and retrieving information, using library and internet resources in a multidisciplinary and cross-national context.

- introduce you to the idea of working with other academic and non-academic agencies, when appropriate, and give you the skills to carry out collaborative research.

- develop your skills in writing, in the preparation of a research proposal, in the analysis and presentation of research results and in verbal communication

- help you to prepare your research results for wider dissemination, in the form of seminar papers, conference presentations, reports and publications, in a form suitable for a range of different audiences, including academics, policymakers, professionals, service users and the general public.

- give you an appreciation of the potentialities and problems of environmental anthropological research in local, regional, national and international settings

- ensure that the research of the Department’s staff informs the design of modules, and their content and delivery in ways that can achieve the national benchmarks of the subject in a manner which is efficient and reliable, and enjoyable to students.

Careers

As a School recognised for its excellence in research we are one of the partners in the South East Doctoral Training Centre, which is recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). This relationship ensures that successful completion of our courses is sufficient preparation for research in the various fields of social anthropology. Many of our students go on to do PhD research. Others use their Master’s qualification in employment ranging from research in government departments to teaching to consultancy work overseas.

The School has a very good record for postgraduate employment and academic continuation. Studying anthropology, you develop an understanding of the complexity of all actions, beliefs and discourse by acquiring strong methodological and analytical skills. Anthropologists are increasingly being hired by companies and organisations that recognise the value of employing people who understand the complexities of societies and organisations.

Many of our alumni teach in academic positions in universities across the world, while others work for a wide range of organisations. Examples of positions held by our alumni include:

- Project director for the Global Diversity Foundation
- Curator at Beirut Botanic Gardens.

Find out how to apply here - https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/

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The course is designed to give you the ability to use and collect biological records and subject them to critical analysis. In Year 1, you will study the compulsory unit Managing Biological Records, which runs over four weekends from October to January with each weekend running from Friday evening to Sunday at 4.00pm. Read more

Description

The course is designed to give you the ability to use and collect biological records and subject them to critical analysis.

In Year 1, you will study the compulsory unit Managing Biological Records, which runs over four weekends from October to January with each weekend running from Friday evening to Sunday at 4.00pm. This is based at Preston Montford Field Centre near Shrewsbury.

In the spring and summer you can choose from a number of field-based units, each of which takes place over a long (three day) weekend running from Friday evening to Monday at 4.00pm. If you stop after successful completion of these units, you will be awarded the Postgraduate Certificate in Biological Recording.

The second year follows a very similar pattern, with the compulsory unit being Research Methods in Biological Recording over four winter weekends, then three more spring and summer units. If you stop after successful completion of these units, you will be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma in Biological Recording. Successful completion of a dissertation will then result in the MSc degree.

Core Units - Year 1

- Managing Biological Recording

Option Units - Year 1

- Identifying Difficult Invertebrate Groups
- Identifying Bryophytes for Recording and Conservation
- Identifying Difficult Higher Plant Groups
- Bird Survey Techniques
- Identification and Survey Techniques
- Site Assessments Using Vegetation and Invertebrates

Core Units - Year 2

- Research Methods in Biological Recording

Option Units - Year 2

The following Year 1 option units are also available in Year 2:
- Identifying Difficult Invertebrate Groups
- Identifying Bryophytes for Recording and Conservation
- Identifying Difficult Higher Plant Groups
- Bird Survey Techniques
- Identification and Survey Techniques
- Site Assessment using Vegetation and Invertebrates

The following option units are available only in Year 2:
- Site Assessment using Invertebrates
- Site Assessment using Vegetation

Core Units - Year 3

- Masters Project

Study pattern

All assessment is continuous there are some essays, presentations, practical assignments such as collection and preparation of voucher specimens, construction of identification keys, site evaluations, identification tests, production of posters and mock journal papers, all of which test your knowledge and critical understanding of biological recording theory and practice.

Career prospects

Our students have an excellent record of promotion and recruitment to jobs in ecology and biological recording, especially those with an emphasis on high quality field skills and record interpretation.

Careers support is available from the moment you join us, throughout your time here, and for up to three years after the completion of your course. We have a range of services available through the School of Science and the Environment and the University Careers Service including dedicated careers and employability advisors.

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Will the otter be able to recover? How do plants settle in new areas? Why do geese always travel south at exactly the same time? How do species of plants and animals live together in a habitat?. Read more
Will the otter be able to recover? How do plants settle in new areas? Why do geese always travel south at exactly the same time? How do species of plants and animals live together in a habitat?

During this two-year Master's programme Ecology and Evolution, you will gain insight into the living organism in relation to its environment.

Ecology is an internationally oriented field and the degree programme has a strong focus on research. You will therefore conduct one or two independent research projects in various fields. But as you can design most of the programme yourself, you can specialize in the area of your interest. This programme also offers a Top Programme in Evolutionary Biology.

The Master's degree programme Ecology and Evolution is offered by t he Groningen Institute of Evolutionary Life Sciences (GELIFES), which conducts research in four relevant areas:
* Evolutionary Ecology & Genetics
* Behavioural Ecology & Ecophysiology
* Conservation Biology
* Community Ecology

Why in Groningen?

- Design most of your programme yourself !
- Offers Top programme Evolutionary Biology!
- Research projects possible in various fields!

Job perspectives

As a graduate of this programe you can for example become a researcher at a university or at an institution for applied research. You also have the options of becoming a project officer, consultant or policy officer.

Job examples

- PhD research position
- Project officer
- Consultant

Research Projects in Various Fields

The Master's degree programme is coordinated by the Groningen Institute for Evolutionary Life Sciences. GELIFES is part of the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences and embraces fourteen research groups, which perform research in the fields of:

-Evolutionary Ecology & Genetics
On the importance of genetic variation: how do genetic variation and natural selection result in reproductive systems, adaptation of organisms to their environment and the emergence of new species? We try to answer this question by means of an experimental, molecular approach (genomics) and via model-based studies.

-Behavioural Ecology & Ecophysiology
Both the morphology and physiology of an organism and its behaviour are formed by selection. Behaviour – for example the timing of reproduction, partner choice and time and route of bird migration – and physiology – for example the degree of plasticity to regulate energy use and temperature – are products of evolution. Theoretical models are paired with experimental ones to study these issues, both in the field and in the laboratory.

-Conservation Biology
Small populations are threatened with extinction because their habitat is fragmented. Their chance of survival depends on their genetic structure, demography, dynamics of distribution, etc. This type of research is important, for example, for the restoration of nature reserves or the development of sustainable fishery. Examples of a research projects include the effects of genetic erosion in fruit flies and the seed dispersal of plants in the Wadden Sea.

-Community Ecology
Species and individuals living in the same area interact with each other and with their environment. Processes of physiological adaptations and restrictions, competition, grazing, predation and succession can change a group of individuals into a community. Combining field observations, laboratory experiments and theoretical models can give us a better understanding of the mechanisms that are active in nature.

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Our MSc in Applied Ecology provides you with the advanced knowledge and skills required for employment in field biology, ecology and related areas.You will follow a curriculum with a highly practical emphasis, undertaking hands-on exercises in field and laboratory settings. Read more
Our MSc in Applied Ecology provides you with the advanced knowledge and skills required for employment in field biology, ecology and related areas.You will follow a curriculum with a highly practical emphasis, undertaking hands-on exercises in field and laboratory settings. In the field, you will learn identification skills for a wide range of species in several key taxonomic groups. You will also learn industry-standard survey techniques such as Phase One Habitat Surveying, Habitat Condition Assessments, National Vegetation Classification and Bird Territory Mapping. Laboratory sessions will include use of microscopes in taxonomy and analysis of environmental parameters, such as water oxygen levels and soil nutrient status, to enable better understanding of species-environment interactions.


There will be numerous opportunities to work on on-going projects with linked organisations including wildlife trusts, zoos and wildlife parks, charities and public authorities. It is an expectation that assignments, and especially dissertation work, will have direct impact on understanding and management of species and their environments.

The course is underpinned by the applied research expertise of the teaching team in applied ecology, including conservation of species in the wild and in captivity, biotic responses to climate change, avian and mammal biology, insect behaviour and evolution, non-native species introductions, population and community ecology, and environmental biology. An additional theme of citizen science develops awareness of the role of public engagement in surveying and conserving species in their environment.

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