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Masters Degrees (Evolutionary Ecology)

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Ecology and evolutionary biology offer a perspective on biology from the level of genes to communities of species. In the master's degree program, you can become familiar with a wide variety of topics in three areas. Read more
Ecology and evolutionary biology offer a perspective on biology from the level of genes to communities of species.

In the master's degree program, you can become familiar with a wide variety of topics in three areas: ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology. You can choose studies from any of these areas, as well as from other master's degree programmes. The programme is diverse and multidisciplinary: teaching is done with lectures, laboratory and computer training courses, interactive seminars, study tours and field courses. The field courses range from the northern subarctic region to tropical rainforests.

Our wide expertise extends from molecular ecology to population and community biology. The Centres of Excellence of Metapopulation Biology and Biological Interactions are located in our department.

Our programme offers you a wide range of options: evolutionary biology or genetics for those interested in ecological genetics and genomics, as well as the ability to take advantage of the high-quality molecular ecology and systematics laboratory; conservation biology for those interested in regional or global environmental problems; and ecological modelling skills for those interested in computational biology. Our training also offers Behavioural Ecology.

Ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology are not only fascinating topics for basic research, they also have a key role in addressing global environmental challenges.

Upon graduating from the Master's degree in ecology and evolutionary biology programme, you will:
-Have mastered the main theories and methods in ecology and evolutionary biology and be able to apply them to practical problems.
-Be able to plan and carry out a scientific research project.
-Have read the relevant scientific literature and be able to utilise your expertise in different types of work.
-Be able to work as an expert in your field.
-Be able to to write good scientific English.
-Be able to work in research projects and groups.
-Be able to continue on to doctoral studies.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

The Master's degree program includes studies of ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation biology. The studies are organised in modules. You can affect the content of the studies by planning your personal curriculum. You can study the following themes:
-Ecology studies the abundance and distribution of species (animals, plants, microbes) and the interactions among them and with the environment. The perspective ranges from the molecular to the ecosystem level. In ecology, a central question is: Why are some species able to invade new habitats and displace native species? Which species are able to adapt to environmental change or migrate with the changing climate, and which species will become extinct?
-Evolutionary biology examines the processes which support biodiversity on its various levels (genes – individuals – populations – species – ecosystems). You will learn about the theory of evolution and how to use population genetics and genomics methods in researching evolutionary issues.
-Conservation Biology studies the depletion of biodiversity, its causes and consequences. You will learn to apply ecological theory to the problems of environmental conservation, to assess the effectiveness of methods of conservation, as well as to resolve the problems relating to conservation e.g. by modelling and computational methods. The training emphasizes the importance of interdisciplinary education in the area of conservation.

Programme Structure

You undertake modules producing a total of 120 credits (ECTS) according to your personal study plan. The degree consists of:
-60 credits of advanced studies, including a research project (Master’s thesis, 30 credits)
-60 credits of other studies chosen from the Programme or from other Programmes

Career planning or extracurricular activities can be included in your personal study plan. If you are studying to qualify as a biology teacher, you will need 60 credits of pedagogical studies in your degree. This applies only to Finnish or Swedish speaking students.

Career Prospects

Master's degree in ecology and evolutionary biology gives an access to the capability of University teaching and research tasks, for a wide range of expert and administrative tasks of the various research centres, companies, in the field of public administration (e.g., The UNITED NATIONS, the European Union, the State and the provincial administration, cities, municipalities), international and national organizations and the media. The degree also provides the scientific validity for doctoral education in different areas of biology.

The Master’s degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology is a well-liked option among students studying towards biology teacher qualification (Finnish and Swedish speaking students).

Internationalization

You will have the opportunity to study at foreign universities and research institutions within the framework of an international student exchange. You can also gain valuable experience by working as a tutor of international students or participating in the international activities of the Student Union or other student organisations.

The teachers and researchers in the department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology are internationally known and respected. Their research groups host numerous international researchers as visitors and workers. They also employ many foreign graduate students, which creates an international atmosphere in the programme.

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This MSc is taught by the Centre for Ecology and Conservation (CEC http://biosciences.exeter.ac.uk/cec/), whose evolutionary and behaviour research groups are amongst the most dynamic in the UK. Read more
This MSc is taught by the Centre for Ecology and Conservation (CEC http://biosciences.exeter.ac.uk/cec/), whose evolutionary and behaviour research groups are amongst the most dynamic in the UK. As an MSc student you will be integrated into these groups and conduct cutting-edge research projects that aim to make genuine contributions to the field of evolutionary and behavioural ecology. The goal is to prepare you for a future research career.

The Centre is the fastest growing institute of its kind in the UK and an integral part of the School of Biosciences at the Penryn Campus. Research is almost exclusively organismal, with particular emphasis on social mammals, birds, turtles and insects. We also specialise in modelling animal behaviour and species interactions and see this as essential and complementary to our whole approach. The other area of emphasis which underpins much of our work is quantitative and molecular genetics; fundamental to the evolutionary process and to conservation biology and policy issues.

Programme overview

- Delivered by leading international researchers in the Centre for Ecology and Conservation, who regularly publish in peer-reviewed journals;
- Designed to prepare you for a future research career with excellent graduate employment opportunities. In the first year of operation, 78 per cent of our students had secured a PhD position before finishing the programme;
- Provides extensive training in current research techniques;
- Develops knowledge and critical awareness of current problems and new insights in evolutionary and behavioural ecology, much of which is at, or informed by, study at the forefront of the field;
- Offers access to excellent facilities including state-of-the-art molecular and genetics labs with a full range of microscopy equipment, greenhouses, aviary and controlled environment rooms. (http://biosciences.exeter.ac.uk/facilities/cornwall/)

Fieldwork

The census research projects will see you spending a considerable amount of time in the field collecting data at several key research sites in West Cornwall and interacting with local NGOs (Cornwall Wildlife Trust, South West Lakes Trust).

This programme includes a two week field course in Kenya and will include visits to some of Africa’s largest and most important game reserves, as well as an introduction to some of the day-to-day problems faced by conservation biologists in developing nations. You will study the behaviour of animals in a natural ecological setting with a focus on large mammals, birds and insects.

Find out more about our field course modules at http://www.exeter.ac.uk/postgraduate/taught/biosciences/fieldwork/. You can also keep up to date and share the experiences of our students in the field on our Field Course Fortnight website at http://blogs.exeter.ac.uk/fieldcourses/ .

Learning and teaching

The taught component of this programme is delivered in the first five months, during which time you will be encouraged to develop your census research projects. The rest of the academic year is dedicated to these projects.

Teaching and learning methods

All material is designed for Masters level and will involve fieldwork, seminars and group discussion. Within modules there is considerable scope for you to direct your learning towards fields of particular interest, especially through your choice of research project. Students are located in the Centre for Ecology and Conservation laboratories, where close working relationships are fostered. Every student has the personal and academic support of the programme director, as well as their academic tutor, module leaders and project supervisors. Because of the layout of our research laboratory, postdoctoral researchers and PhD students interact closely with postgraduates to provide more personal support during the research phase of the programme.

Programme structure

The programme is made up of compulsory modules. Constituent modules may be updated, deleted or replaced as a consequence of the annual programme review of this programme.

Compulsory modules

The compulsory modules can include; Research Project; Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology; Approaches in Evolutionary and Behavioural Ecology; African Behavioural Ecology Field Course; Statistical Modelling and Key Skills

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The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology is embedded in the Master's programme in Ecology and Evolution. The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology explores the interface between ecology and evolution. Read more
The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology is embedded in the Master's programme in Ecology and Evolution. The Top Programme Evolutionary Biology explores the interface between ecology and evolution.

The hallmark is to explore the interface between ecology and evolution. You will benefit from a wide spectrum of national and international expertise in these fields. You will acquire top quality research competences. The programme is specifically designed to acquire the right research competences and prepare you for conducting top quality research.

The Top Programme is administered by the Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Studies (CEES), a centre of excellence in ecological and evolutionary research and the lead partner in the national Research School Functional Ecology and Biodiversity. This central position ensures that students can benefit from a wide spectrum of national and international expertise across the fields of ecology and evolution. Via advanced theoretical and practical training you will become highly attractive for research positions in the area of Evolutionary Biology.

We also offer an Erasmus Mundus programme in Evolutionary Biology: A joint project between four European universities. Students will start the programme at one of these universities and will spend at least one semester at a partner university.

Why in Groningen?

- Acquire Top Quality Research Competences
- Coaching by Personal Mentor
- CHE Excellence Ranking in Biology since 2007

Job perspectives

These programmes are specifically designed to prepare you for conducting top quality research. Often you continue your career by starting PhD research.

Job examples

- PhD research position

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This degree programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. Read more
This degree programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. It is taught in association with the Centre for Culture and Evolutionary Psychology (C-CEP), and the Centre for Cognition and Neuroimaging (CCNI) at Brunel.

The degree programme aims to provide students with an understanding of how evolutionary theory can provide a framework for the study of human psychology and behaviour. Students will acquire comprehensive knowledge of important theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in evolutionary psychology. You will study concepts, findings and recent advances in evolutionary biology, animal behaviour and behavioural ecology that are critical for research in evolutionary psychology. Moreover there will be the opportunity to take an optional module in either Cognitive Neuroscience or Cross-Cultural Psychology.

The programme team includes, Nicholas Pound PhD (McMaster), Andrew Clark PhD (McMaster), Michael Price PhD (UCSB) and Achim Schützwohl PhD (University of Bielefeld). In addition, there are opportunities for dissertation research projects to be co-supervised by psychologists with expertise in other areas of Psychology (eg cognitive neuroscience, social psychology).

At Brunel we have extensive facilities for human subjects research (including EEG, fMRI, motion capture and 3D body scanning).

Who is this Degree For?
This course is particularly suited to students in the life sciences or social sciences who are interested in finding out how principles from evolutionary biology can provide a framework for the scientific study of human psychology and behaviour.

Course Content
Modules are subject to variation and students are advised to check with the School on whether a particular module of interest will be running in their year of entry. At the time of printing, planned modules are as follows:
Core modules: Evolutionary Biology and Research Methods; Evolutionary Psychology; Animal Behaviour and Behavioural Ecology
Optional modules: Cognitive Neuroscience; Cross-Cultural Variations in Psychological Findings. Check the web for the latest updates.

Assessment
Assessment is by coursework (including term papers and oral presentations), examinations and a dissertation of up to 15,000 words.

Careers
The MSc will provide students with the knowledge and skills required to go on to do PhD research not just in Evolutionary Psychology, but also in other areas of Psychology and the Biological and Social Sciences. Moreover, students will acquire analytic and research skills that will be useful in diverse areas of employment including governmental and non-government research organisations, and the private sector.

Here is what one of our past students says:

Gillian: "I enjoyed studying for my BSc in Zoology with Evolutionary Psychology at Liverpool University and missed my studies after I graduated. So I took on the Brunel MSc in Evolutionary Psychology part-time alongside my job as a Communications Manager for the Department of Health. The course has deepened my understanding of the subject and I am now considering taking on a PhD. I have also found the learning useful in my work. Many strategic communications campaigns aim to change behaviour – for example to improve hygiene in hospitals or encourage people to eat healthier foods. Such campaigns often use insights from psychology in order to make them more powerful and the MSc has given me a good insight into how and why they work."

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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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How can evolutionary theory help us understand human behaviour?. Do humans have a species-typical psychological design?. What learning mechanisms would have been favoured by natural selection in ancestral environments?. Read more
How can evolutionary theory help us understand human behaviour?
Do humans have a species-typical psychological design?
What learning mechanisms would have been favoured by natural selection in ancestral environments?

This programme provides an exciting opportunity for advanced study in Evolutionary Psychology, ie psychological science informed by explicit consideration of the fact that the human mind, like the human body, is a product of evolutionary processes. This course is particularly suited to students in the life sciences or social sciences who are interested in finding out how principles from evolutionary biology can provide a framework for the scientific study of human psychology and behaviour.
Aims

The degree programme aims to provide students with:

an understanding of how evolutionary theory can provide a framework for the study of psychology and behaviour in both human and non-human species;

knowledge of important theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in Evolutionary Psychology;

an overview of concepts, findings and recent advances in Evolutionary Biology, Animal Behaviour and Behavioural Ecology that are critical for research in Evolutionary Psychology;

the opportunity to acquire important transferable research skills (eg research design, data analysis, report preparation, seminar presentation);

the opportunity to acquire knowledge of theoretical issues, research findings and recent advances in a related area of psychology (Cognitive Neuroscience or Cross-Cultural Psychology).

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The programme will focus on concepts and theory essential to understanding global ecological change, including. state of the art techniques for environmental process research, invasive species ecology and conservation genetics. Read more
The programme will focus on concepts and theory essential to understanding global ecological change, including: state of the art techniques for environmental process research, invasive species ecology and conservation genetics. Students will learn how to convert science to policy or management, and how to consult with stakeholders. Students will also spend time shadowing our multidisciplinary research teams before conducting a substantive six-month project. These projects may be jointly supervised by colleagues at related institutes or within industry. We will equip science graduates with the essential skills to proceed to further research via PhD or careers in consultancy and industry.

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This Graduate Diploma in Ecology consists of a range of Honours level units covering topics in Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Conservation Biology. Read more
This Graduate Diploma in Ecology consists of a range of Honours level units covering topics in Ecology, Evolutionary Biology and Conservation Biology. The course gives you the chance to build on your undergraduate study and develop a deeper understanding of Ecology as well as an excellent range of transferrable skills.

The Diploma is great preparation for further study or a variety of exciting careers – whatever your path, you’ll have the chance to customise the course with optional modules in topics like Aquatic Ecology, GIS Skills, and Environmental Politics and Policy Making. You’ll also be trained in field work, team work, data mining and analysis, critical writing, and communication.

We have very strong academic expertise in Ecology, based around UEA’s Centre for Ecology, Evolution and Conservation (CEEC) – one of the largest groups of its kind in Europe with strong links to major institutions like the RSPB and CEFAS.

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The field of Ecology, Evolution and Development describes how the molecular and genetic regulation of development changes in response to evolutionary forces to generate organismal diversity. Read more
The field of Ecology, Evolution and Development describes how the molecular and genetic regulation of development changes in response to evolutionary forces to generate organismal diversity. Understanding development, and its regulation in ecological and evolutionary contexts is critical for developing emerging molecular medical techniques, understanding biodiversity and tracing evolution.

See the website http://www.brookes.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/ecology-evolution-and-development/

Why choose this course?

- Development of interdisciplinary research skills and experience.

- Opportunity to carry out an in-depth research project to address open questions in this field.

- Hands-on research driven training in field work, advanced wet laboratory techniques and state-of-the-art bioinformatics.

- Intensive one week introductory workshop for students from all backgrounds.

- Enhanced ability of graduates to successfully compete for PhD positions in the UK and internationally.

- Training will provide skills that will increase the employability of graduates in the biotechnology, commercial and health sectors.

- Teaching by world class researchers in this field with recognised excellence and experience in teaching and learning.

Teaching and learning

Teaching and learning methods used in the course reflect the wide variety of topics and techniques associated with ecology, evolution and development.

- Structure
This course is designed to provide you with both the conceptual framework of this interdisciplinary field and develop practical and academic skills as a platform for the research project. An intensive one week Research Methods module will introduce you to key topics and practical approaches. These are then elaborated on during the three other taught modules in Developmental Biology, Bioinformatics, and Molecular Ecology and Population Genetics, before the students embark on the research project. A variety of teaching and learning methods are employed in this course, all underpinned by research.

- Lectures
By providing the framework, essential background and knowledge base for each module, the lectures encourage you to probe more deeply by reading widely. Analysis, synthesis and application of material introduced in lectures are achieved through practical work in the field and laboratories, and in tutorials and seminars with your tutors and fellow students.

- Practical work
This offers you training and hands-on experience in important aspects of field and laboratory work, and computational biology. We ensure that teaching is up-to-date by integrating research findings in lectures and practical classes, and staff involved with major international developments in the field bring these advances to your teaching. An important component of the course is that you read and present key papers that emphasise the application of interdisciplinary approaches to their tutor and peers during tutorials.

- Guest seminars
During the Research Methods module, guest seminars provide you with the chance to hear about other areas of research in ecology, evolution and development. Emphasis is placed on critical evaluation of existing information and identifying knowledge gaps and areas of controversy, fostering the development of academic and research literacy, and developing your critical self-awareness.

- Research project
Standards that are expected in research are also widely taught and practised, developing your research literacy. You are provided with the opportunity to undertake substantial research specific activities in the Research Module, and undertake projects in labs with active research in this field.

- Digital literacy
This is enhanced by the use of advanced information retrieval techniques, data handling and the development of professional presentation techniques. Furthermore, you will develop skills in programming which underpin the application of state-of-the-art tools in bioinformatics and biostatistics.

How this course helps you develop

Training provided by this course will give you the research and transferable skills necessary for further research in field, lab and computational biology in both academic and industrial sectors. We anticipate that many of our graduates will go on to study for PhDs in the UK and abroad. In this respect, our programme will increase the opportunities for UK graduates to compete for PhD positions here and be eligible to apply for PhD programmes elsewhere in the EU. We also anticipate that, given their skills sets, our graduates will be highly competitive for employment in research support and sales, biotechnology, heath care, education, administration, and consultancy.

Careers

- PhD
- Employment in others sectors including biotechnology, healthcare and commercial.

Free language courses for students - the Open Module

Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

Please note that the free language courses are not available if you are:
- studying at a Brookes partner college
- studying on any of our teacher education courses or postgraduate education courses.

Research highlights

In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, 95% of our research in Biological Sciences was rated as internationally recognised, with 58% being world leading or internationally excellent. That makes us the top post’92 University for its Biological Sciences submission.

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The Master of Science by Research degree in Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution is a 12-month, research only degree, in which the candidate will undertake a supervised research project in the broad area of Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution, in the School of Biology, University of St Andrews. Read more
The Master of Science by Research degree in Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution is a 12-month, research only degree, in which the candidate will undertake a supervised research project in the broad area of Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution, in the School of Biology, University of St Andrews.

The candidate will be based in the interdisciplinary Centre for Biological Diversity (CBD), based in the centre of St Andrews. The CBD links researchers in evolution, behaviour, ecology, molecular biology and biodiversity, plus researchers in other Schools across St Andrews. Research themes include: the mechanistic causes and the ecological and evolutionary consequences of animal behaviour, with strengths in behavioural ecology, animal cognition, social evolution and social learning; evolutionary and population genetics, including the genetic basis of population divergence and speciation; animal-plant interactions, including pollinator biology; conservation biology, focusing in particular on the measurement of broad-scale patterns of biodiversity and biodiversity change. These themes are underpinned and guided by theoretical evolutionary ecologists and geneticists, asking fundamental questions about the causes and consequences of organismal interaction. Our final objective is to advance this scientific understanding of the diversity of life to contribute pro-actively to policy that helps protect and nurture biological diversity.

Candidates may approach potential supervisors in the CBD directly (https://synergy.st-andrews.ac.uk/research/phd-study/phd-study-supervisors/phd-study-cbd-supervisors/) or via advertised projects listed here (https://synergy.st-andrews.ac.uk/research/mscres/). We strongly recommend that potential candidates make contact with a potential supervisor before applying.

The School of Biology provides a unique and supportive environment for scholarship, amid a beautiful setting for university life. We are a highly research active School, with a diverse and vigorous post-graduate community. The School comprises a large number of research groups organised into three interdisciplinary Research Centres: the Scottish Oceans Institute (SOI), the Biomedical Sciences Research Complex (BSRC) and the Centre for Biological Diversity (CBD). Together these centres encompass the full spectrum of research in biological sciences, spanning investigations on the properties and behaviour of individual molecules through to planetary environmental dynamics. Our postgraduate students enjoy a supportive and welcoming environment, including the student-led ‘Bionet’ society that provides a wide range of networking and social opportunities.

Progression and Assessment

Students in the MSc(Res) program will be assigned an Internal Examiner (IE) and Post-Graduate Tutor by the School. There will be a progress review meeting at three months to monitor and evaluate student progression, convened by the IE, with the student and Tutor in attendance.

In addition to the project-specific training that you will receive during your degree, Msc(Res) students will also have access to a wide range of training in transferable skills through the award-winning University of St Andrews GradSkills program, run by our Professional Development Unit CAPOD. Specific post-graduate programs run within the School of Biology may also offer additional training, for instance in statistical, bioinformatics or molecular techniques.

The degree requires submission and examination of a dissertation at the end of the one-year program. This thesis will consist of up to 30,000 words. The thesis will be evaluated by the IE and an External Examiner appointed at time of submission. Evaluation will be based on the written submission and there is no requirement for a viva voce examination.

Fees

For details of post-graduate tuition fees relevant to our research degrees including the MSc(Res), please visit:
http://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/study/pg/fees-and-funding/research-fees/

Application

Please apply via the University’s Post-Graduate Application portal: https://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/pgr/home.htm

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Researchers in the School of Biological Sciences conduct cutting-edge research across a broad range of biological disciplines. genomics, biotechnology, cell biology, sensory biology, animal behaviour and evolution, population biology, host-disease interactions and ecosystem services, to name but a few. Read more
Researchers in the School of Biological Sciences conduct cutting-edge research across a broad range of biological disciplines: genomics, biotechnology, cell biology, sensory biology, animal behaviour and evolution, population biology, host-disease interactions and ecosystem services, to name but a few.

In 2014 the school relocated to a new £54 million, state-of-the-art Life Sciences building. Our new laboratory facilities are among the best in the world, with critical '-omics' technologies and associated computing capacity (bioinformatics) a core component. The new building is designed to foster our already strong collaborative and convivial environment, and includes a world-leading centre for evolutionary biology research in collaboration with key researchers from earth sciences, biochemistry, social medicine, chemistry and computer sciences. The school has strong links with local industry, including BBC Bristol, Bristol Zoo and the Botanic Gardens. We have a lively, international postgraduate community of about 150 research students. Our stimulating environment and excellent graduate school training and support provide excellent opportunities to develop future careers.

Research groups

The underlying theme of our research is the search for an understanding of the function, evolution, development and regulation of complex systems, pursued using the latest technologies, from '-omics' to nanoscience, and mathematical modelling tools. Our research is organised around four main themes that reflect our strengths and interests: evolutionary biology; animal behaviour and sensory biology; plant and agricultural sciences; and ecology and environmental change.

Evolutionary Biology
The theme of evolutionary biology runs through all our research in the School of Biological Sciences. Research in this theme seeks to understand organismal evolution and biodiversity using a range of approaches and study systems. We have particular strengths in evolutionary genomics, phylogenetics and phylogenomics, population genetics, and evolutionary theory and computer modelling.

Animal Behaviour and Sensory Biology
Research is aimed at understanding the adaptive significance of behaviour, from underlying neural mechanisms ('how', or proximate, questions) to evolutionary explanations of function ('why', or ultimate, questions). The approach is strongly interdisciplinary, using diverse physiological and biomechanical techniques, behavioural experiments, computer modelling and molecular biology to link from the genetic foundations through to the evolution of behaviour and sensory systems.

Plant and Agricultural Sciences
The global issue of food security unifies research in this theme, which ranges from molecular-based analysis of plant development, signal transduction and disease, to ecological studies of agricultural and livestock production systems. We have particular strengths in functional genomics, bioinformatics, plant developmental biology, plant pathology and parasite biology, livestock parasitology and agricultural systems biology. Our research is helped by the LESARS endowment, which funds research of agricultural relevance.

Ecology and Environmental Change
Research seeks to understand ecological relations between organisms (plant, animal or microbe) at individual, population and community levels, as well as between organisms and their environments. Assessing the effect of climate change on these ecological processes is also fundamental to our research. Key research areas within this theme include community ecology, restoration ecology, conservation, evolutionary responses to climate change and freshwater ecology. Our research has many applied angles, such as ecosystem management, wildlife conservation, environmental and biological control, agricultural practice and informing policy.

Careers

Many postgraduate students choose a higher degree because they enjoy their subject and subsequently go on to work in a related area. An Office of Science and Technology survey found that around three-quarters of BBSRC- and NERC-funded postgraduates went on to a job related to their study subject.

Postgraduate study is often a requirement for becoming a researcher, scientist, academic journal editor and for work in some public bodies or private companies. Around 60 per cent of biological sciences doctoral graduates continue in research. Academic research tends to be contract-based with few permanent posts, but the school has a strong track record in supporting the careers of young researchers by helping them to find postdoctoral positions or develop fellowship applications.

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Sussex has long been a centre of excellence for evolutionary biology, counting John Maynard Smith among its founding members. By studying with us you’ll develop into a researcher capable of contributing to the grand challenges of antibiotic resistance, cancer and environmental change. Read more
Sussex has long been a centre of excellence for evolutionary biology, counting John Maynard Smith among its founding members. By studying with us you’ll develop into a researcher capable of contributing to the grand challenges of antibiotic resistance, cancer and environmental change.

This research-focused degree is based on our strengths in evolutionary biology, from the evolution of sociality, symbioses and sexual conflict to the process and effect of mutations. You’ll study how and why organisms are the way they are, and how this affects fundamental parts of our lives.

How will I study?
In the autumn and spring terms, you’ll have access to a variety of taught modules, including our unique field modules in tropical rainforest and Mediterranean regions.

From the spring term onwards, you’ll be researching real-world problems in close contact with your supervisor. This forms part of the in-depth research project that forms a core part of this course, and ultimately aims to produce a scientific publication.

Taught modules are assessed via:
-Essays
-Reports
-Presentations

The project is assessed with a dissertation.

Scholarships
Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

Chancellor's International Scholarship (2017)
-25 scholarships of a 50% tuition fee waiver
-Application deadline: 1 May 2017

Geoff Lockwood Scholarship (2017)
-1 scholarship for Postgraduate (taught) of £3,000 fee waive
-Application deadline: 24 July 2017

HESPAL Scholarship (Higher Education Scholarships Scheme for the Palestinian Territories) (2017)
-Two full fee waivers in conjuction with maintenance support from the British Council
-Application deadline: 1 January 2017

USA Friends Scholarships (2017)
-A scholarship of an amount equivalent to $10,000 for nationals or residents of the USA on a one year taught Masters degree course.
-Application deadline: 3 April 2017

Faculty
The degree is delivered primarily by faculty in the Evolution, Behaviour and Environment subject group in the School of Life Sciences.

We are an enthusiastic and dynamic group of researchers, working with a diverse range of organisms, from plants, social insects and fruit flies, to Trinidadian guppies and humans.

Some of our research topics include:
-Understanding the evolutionary biology of sociality
-Rates of adaptive evolution and mutation in genomes
-Links between genotype, phenotype and selection
-Evolution of symbiosis and host-parasite relationships
-Evolutionary neuroscience
-Evolutionary genetics of sexual conflicts and sexually antagonistic selection

Careers
This degree will provide you with the high-quality learning experience necessary to place you in a strong position to move on to a PhD in evolutionary biology, or a research career in associated areas.

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The MRes in Evolutionary Biology involves the study of adaptation of organisms to their environment, at the whole organism and molecular scales. Read more
The MRes in Evolutionary Biology involves the study of adaptation of organisms to their environment, at the whole organism and molecular scales. Studies available include the evolutionary and behavioural ecology of insects and mammals and other species, genetic variation in wild populations of fungi, ecological genetics, and the interface between evolution and development. In addition, a number of researchers are interested in estimation of the deep phylogeny of major groups of organisms, such as pulmonate molluscs and protists. One of our staff members, Angus Davidson, uses an evolutionary approach to attempt to understand the origin of the use of 'sex' darts during courtship in slugs and worms.

APPLICATION PROCEDURES

After identifying which Masters you wish to pursue please complete an on-line application form
https://pgapps.nottingham.ac.uk/
Mark clearly on this form your choice of course title, give a brief outline of your proposed research and follow the automated prompts to provide documentation. Once the School has your application and accompanying documents (eg referees reports, transcripts/certificates) your application will be matched to an appropriate academic supervisor and considered for an offer of admission.

COURSE STRUCTURE
The MRes degree course consists of two elements:
160 credits of assessed work. The assessed work will normally be based entirely on a research project and will be the equivalent of around 10 ½ months full-time research work. AND
20 credits of non-assessed generic training. Credits can be accumulated from any of the courses offered by the Graduate School. http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/gradschool/research-training/index.phtml The generic courses should be chosen by the student in consultation with the supervisor(s).

ASSESSMENT
The research project will normally be assessed by a dissertation of a maximum of 30,000 to 35,000 words, or equivalent as appropriate*. The examiners may if they so wish require the student to attend a viva.
*In consultation with the supervisor it maybe possible for students to elect to do a shorter research project and take a maximum of 40 credits of assessed modules.

The School of Life Sciences will provide each postgraduate research student with a laptop for their exclusive use for the duration of their studies in the School.

SCHOLARSHIPS FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS
http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/studywithus/international-applicants/scholarships-fees-and-finance/scholarships/masters-scholarships.aspx

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This Masters programme in Ecology and Environmental Biology is mainly intended to provide training for students who hope to enter a PhD programme in the areas of ecology and environmental biology, and who wish training in transferable skills and in ecological and environmental disciplines. Read more
This Masters programme in Ecology and Environmental Biology is mainly intended to provide training for students who hope to enter a PhD programme in the areas of ecology and environmental biology, and who wish training in transferable skills and in ecological and environmental disciplines.

Why this programme

-This Ecology and Evnvironmental Biology degree programme draws on the research expertise of a large number of University staff and allows you the chance to obtain experience in a wide range of modern research techniques.
-There is considerable expertise in this area of biology available at Glasgow, especially in ornithology, fish biology, aquatic ecosystems, and theoretical, physiological, molecular and evolutionary ecology.
-Excellent research and teaching facilities are available at the Scottish Centre for Ecology and the Natural Environment (SCENE) and Cochno Farm and Research Centre
-You will be encouraged to tailor the MSc Ecology and Environmental Biology programme to your own specific requirements and interests, within the limitations of the courses and projects offered.

Programme structure

The programme consists of a taught component, and two research projects in individual laboratories and/or field based.

The taught component consists of core research skills and specialist option in analytical and sampling techniques.

The main part of the degree, however, is devoted to experience of research techniques. You will carry out two 20-week research projects with individual placements chosen to reflect your interests and the skills you wish to acquire. After each project, you will write a scientific report.

Core and optional courses

Core Courses
-Key Research Skills
-Research Project (x 2)

Optional Courses
-Programming in R (prerequisite for all modelling and epidemiology)
-Infectious Disease Ecology & the Dynamics of Emerging Disease
-Single-species Models
-Conservation Genetics & Phylodynamics
-Freshwater Sampling Techniques
-Invertebrate Identification
-Molecular Analyses for DNA Barcoding and Biodiversity Measurement
-Phyloinformatics
-Vertebrate Identification

Career prospects

The programme will provide an excellent training for those who want to undertake a PhD programme and enter ecological management or conservation businesses. It should also serve as an excellent introduction to research in the UK for overseas students intending to proceed to a PhD in this country.

Some of the Institutions/Organisations our M.Res students went on to:
-Bremen Institute for Tropical Marine Ecology (ZMT)
-Clyde River Foundation
-Dakshin Foundation, India
-Victoria University, Wellington (New Zealand)
-University of Glasgow
-Warwick University

Some of the more exotic locations for MRes projects in recent years have included southern Brazil, Trinidad, Tobago, Kuwait, Egypt, Svalbard (Norway), Canada, the Azores (Portugal), Oman, Cayman Islands, and The Philippines.

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The International Masters in Applied Ecology brings together nine leading Universities from across the world to train specialists who can lead ecological projects in a wide range of environments. Read more
The International Masters in Applied Ecology brings together nine leading Universities from across the world to train specialists who can lead ecological projects in a wide range of environments.

You’ll focus on a major field of Ecology – such as Biodiversity, Ecotoxicology or Evolutionary Ecology – while attending courses and field trips in locations as diverse as Ecuador, New Zealand and the Galapagos Islands. The course consists of a number of optional modules that you can use to tailor your learning, before completing a Masters-level dissertation on your chosen subject.

This unique course gives you the chance to visit different countries and learn about practical Ecology with experts from some of the best Ecology departments in the world. The School of Environmental Sciences at UEA was ranked 1st in the UK for the impact of our research, and we’ve got fantastic links with major industry, NGO and governmental organisations.

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