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Masters Degrees (Palaeo)

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The MSc in Human Anatomy and Evolution is a unique programme, allowing you to study human anatomy from an evolutionary perspective. Read more
The MSc in Human Anatomy and Evolution is a unique programme, allowing you to study human anatomy from an evolutionary perspective. You will acquire practical and theoretical knowledge of cutting edge tools for morphometrics, imaging and functional simulation used to interpret the fossil record. In addition, you can gain practical knowledge of anatomy through dissection of human cadaveric material as well as comparative anatomical study. You will also undertake a research project of your choice in consultation with your supervisor to investigate a current question in human evolution.

You will be taught in small groups and have access to, and work alongside, tutors and researchers who are leading experts in their fields. They will share their expertise, knowledge and skills, and support you throughout the duration of your course.

The Human Anatomy and Evolution programme offers a mix of core modules and electives, giving you the opportunity to develop fundamental evolutionary and anatomical knowledge whilst also enhancing your skills in specialist areas of interest. You also have the option to study full-time over one year, or part-time over two years - refer to the programme brochure for more details.

Cutting edge facilities and techniques

You will have access to a dedicated computer suite with a full range of software, including generic and specialist anatomy, virtual anthropology, modelling and engineering packages. You will practice 3D modelling and imaging, 3D printing and visualisation, as well as research techniques, including data collection and analysis.

You will also have access to the state-of-the-art dissection facilities at the where you will gain practical anatomical knowledge through the study of human cadaveric material.

Access to world-leading experts and networks

Through membership of the interdisciplinary PALAEO Centre at the University of York, you will meet and work alongside internationally renowned specialists. PALAEO holds regular meetings to research major questions in human evolution.

An ideal option for intercalating students

This programme is an ideal option for medical students wishing to intercalate. It will hone and develop your analytical and research skills, as well as your practical skills using state-of-the-art equipment, which will enhance your performance on your undergraduate programme.

Flexible options available

If you would like to study part-time, the programme has been designed with an estimated seven hours contact time per week spread over two working days. More information on the part time structure is available in the handbook.

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This award-winning programme combines the expertise of anthropologists and biologists to examine primate conservation biology in a broad context, with particular emphasis on the relationships between humans and wildlife in forest and woodland environments. Read more
This award-winning programme combines the expertise of anthropologists and biologists to examine primate conservation biology in a broad context, with particular emphasis on the relationships between humans and wildlife in forest and woodland environments. It provides an international and multidisciplinary forum to help understand the issues and promote effective action.

Whether working in the lab, with local conservation groups (including zoos and NGOs), or in the field, you will find yourself in a collaborative and supportive environment, working with international scholars in primate conservation and gaining first-hand experience to enact positive change.

See the website http://www.brookes.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/primate-conservation/

Why choose this course?

- A pioneering programme providing scientific, professional training and accreditation to conservation scientists

- Awarded the Queen's Anniversary Prize in 2008

- Opportunity to work alongside leading academics for example Professor Anna Nekaris, Professor Vincent Nijman and Dr Kate Hill

- Excellent learning resources both at Brookes and through Oxford’s museums and libraries including the Bodleian Library, the Radcliffe Science Library, and the Museum of Natural History

- Links with conservation organisations and NGOs, both internationally and closer to home, including Fauna and Flora International, TRAFFIC and Conservation International

- Field trips for MSc students to Apenheul Primate Park in the Netherlands as well as to sanctuaries and zoos in the UK

- A dynamic community of research scholars undertaking internationally recognised and world leading research.

Teaching and learning

Teaching is through a combination of lectures, research seminars, training workshops, tutorials, case studies, seminar presentations, site visits, computer-aided learning, independent reading and supervised research.

Each of the six modules is assessed by means of coursework assignments that reflect the individual interests and strengths of each student. Coursework assignments for six taught modules are completed and handed in at the end of the semester, and written feedback is given before the start of the following semester. A seventh module, the final project, must be handed in before the start of the first semester of the next academic year. It will be assessed during this semester with an examinations meeting at the beginning of February, after which students receive their final marks.

An important feature of the course is the contribution by each student towards an outreach project that brings primate conservation issues into a public arena. Examples include a poster, display or presentation at a scientific meeting, university society or school. Students may also choose to write their dissertation specifically for scientific publication.

Round-table discussions form a regular aspect of the course and enable closer examination of conservation issues through a sharing of perspectives by the whole group.

Careers

This unique postgraduate programme trains new generations of anthropologists, conservation biologists, captive care givers and educators concerned with the serious plight of non-human primates who seek practical solutions to their continuing survival. It provides the skills, knowledge and confidence to enable you to contribute to arresting and reversing the current devastating destruction of our tropical forests and the loss of the species that live in them.

You will be joining a supportive global network of former students working across all areas of conservation in organisations from the BBC Natural History Unit through to the International Union for Conservation of Nature and in roles from keeper and education officer in zoos across the UK and North America to paid researcher at institutes of higher education. Some of our students have even gone on to run their own conservation-related NGOs.

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

Our vibrant research culture is driven by a thriving and collaborative community of academic staff and doctoral students. In the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 70% of our work was judged to be of international quality in terms of originality, significance and rigour, with 5% "world leading".

Our strong performance in the RAE, along with our expanding consultancy activities, have enabled us to attract high quality staff and students and helped to generate funding for research projects.

Conservation Environment and Development, comprising several research clusters.

The Nocturnal Primate Research Group specialises in mapping the diversity of the nocturnal primates of Africa, Asia, Madagascar and Latin America through multidisciplinary teamwork that includes comparative studies of anatomy, physiology, behaviour, ecology and genetics. Field studies are helping to determine the origins and distribution of these neglected species, as well as indicating the conservation status of declining forests and woodlands. The NPRG has developed a widespread network of collaborative links with biologists, game wardens, forestry officers, wildlife societies, museums and zoos/sanctuaries.

The Human Interactions With and Constructions of the Environment Research Group develops and trains an interdisciplinary team of researchers to investigate priorities within conservation research - using an interdisciplinary framework in anthropology, primatology, rural development studies, and conservation biology.

The Oxford Wildlife Trade Research Group (OWTRG) aims to quantify all aspects of the trade in wild animals through multidisciplinary teamwork including anthropology, social sciences, natural resource management, biodiversity conservation, environmental economics, and legislation. Their strong focus is on wildlife trade in tropical countries –as this is where most of the world's biodiversity resides and where the impacts of the wildlife trade are arguably the greatest. Recognizing that the wildlife trade is a truly global enterprise they also focus on the role of consumer countries.

The Europe Japan Research Centre (EJRC) organises and disseminates the research of all Brookes staff working on Japan as well as a large number of affiliated Research Fellows.

The Human Origins and Palaeo Environments Research Cluster carries out ground-breaking interdisciplinary research, focussed on evolutionary anthropology and environmental reconstruction and change. The study published in the journal Science reports findings from an eight-year archaeological excavation at a site called Jebel Faya in the United Arab Emirates. Palaeolithic stone tools found at the Jebel Faya were similar to tools produced by early modern humans in east Africa, but very different from those produced to the north, in the Levant and the mountains of Iran. This suggested early modern humans migrated into Arabia directly from Africa and not via the Nile Valley and the Near East as is usually suggested. The new findings will reinvigorate the debate about human origins and how we became a global species.

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Supported by Aberystwyth University’s internationally renowned Centre for Glaciology, this unique MSc programme is designed to provide students with a range of skills appropriate for the practical and theoretical challenges of glaciological research. Read more

About the course

Supported by Aberystwyth University’s internationally renowned Centre for Glaciology, this unique MSc programme is designed to provide students with a range of skills appropriate for the practical and theoretical challenges of glaciological research. Graduates of this course emerge equipped fora wide range of career paths both within Physical Geographical/Earth Science contexts and beyond.

Why study MSc Glaciology at Aberystwyth University?

Aberystwyth University’s Centre for Glaciology is a leading British research group whose interests cover contemporary and palaeo-glacial processes and products across the world.

Opportunity to study in an internationally-renowned research institute and to be taught by lectures and researchers who are at the cutting edge of their disciplines.

Conduct fieldwork in a glacierised environment - this course commences with a 6 day field course in the European Alps.
Aberystwyth is located in a high quality outdoor physical environment and comprises a multi-national community

The Department of Geography and Earth Science (DGES) is top in Wales, with 78% of its research classified as either ‘world leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ in the most recent research assessment - REF 2014

DGES is in the top ten of UK Geography departments with regards to research power, which provides a measure of the quality of research, as well as of the number of staff undertaking research within the department

Engage with research that aims to further human knowledge at a delicate stage in global affairs

DGES receives funding from organisations such as United Nations, WHO, NERC and the European Research Council

Benefit from a superb variety of outside and in-class learning environments, and state-of-the-art teaching facilities.

Course content and structure

In the first two semesters, you will undertake a number of core and optional modules that will give you a strong theoretical understanding of glaciology and will also convert the purely academic theory of glaciological research and data collection into the proven know-how of experience. At the beginning of the course, as part of the module Glaciological Field Techniques, you will undertake a 6 day field course to the European Alps on a data-collection expedition.

In the final semester, you will undertake a 60 credit 15,000 word master’s dissertation, through which you will be able to prove your mastery of your chosen topic and directly contribute to the knowledge base of DGES.

Core modules:

Advanced Research Skills 1: science communication and data analysis
Advanced Research Skills 2: research design and data acquisition
Approaches to Glaciology
Glacial Processes and Products
Glaciological Field Techniques
Research Dissertation in Glaciology

Optional modules:

Fundamentals of Remote Sensing and GIS

Contact Time

Approximately 8-10 hours a week in the first two semesters.

Assessment

The taught part of the course (Part1) is delivered and assessed through lectures, student seminars, practical exercises, case studies, course work and formal examinations. The subsequent successful submission of a 12,000 word research dissertation (Part 2) leads to the award of an MSc.

Skills

This course will empower you to:

- Engage with the practical and theoretical challenges of glaciological research
- Master the latest technological tools available for glaciologists
- Get to grips with an impressive array of systems and technologies including GIS, SDI, satellite imaging and remote sensing
- Gain subject-specific expertise, field skills, and technical experience
- Develop study and research skills, as well as a professional work ethic
- Enhance your presentation and communication skills
- Develop your ability to work independently and in a team-setting
- Improve your critical analysis and evaluation
- Develop and sustain a self-initiated programme of study underpinned by good time management skills
- Enhance your project management skills to deliver a demanding combination of research, analysis, communication and presentation

Careers

Our graduates have gone on to work for/as/within:

- The Met. Office
- The European Space Agency
- National parks
- Field technicians
- Geologists
- Explorationists
- Environmental consultancy
- Oil and gas exploration and development
- Research work alongside prominent institutions/initiatives - REDD+ initiative, Norwegian Space Centre
- Policy advocacy work in the energy sector
- PhD researchers, post-doctoral researchers and lecturers in Higher Education.
- Other pathways our graduates have taken include:
- Management
- Commercial & Quality Assurance
- Strategic Research Consultancy
- Marketing and Strategy Development
- Planning roles across various market sectors
- Local and national government
- UK Parliament
- International, investment, and private banking
- Education

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Oxford Brookes is one of very few UK universities where social and biological anthropology are taught alongside each other. This course emphasises the holistic and comparative breadth of anthropology - studying humans from a variety of social, cultural, biological and evolutionary perspectives. Read more
Oxford Brookes is one of very few UK universities where social and biological anthropology are taught alongside each other.

This course emphasises the holistic and comparative breadth of anthropology - studying humans from a variety of social, cultural, biological and evolutionary perspectives.

See the website http://www.brookes.ac.uk/studying-at-brookes/courses/postgraduate/2015/anthropology/

Why choose this course?

- We are one of the few universities in the UK to teach social and biological anthropology side by side

- You get opportunities to work alongside leading, research-active academics such as Professor Anna Nekaris, Professor Jeremy McClancy and Professor Kate Hill.

- There are excellent learning resources, both at Oxford Brookes and at Oxford’s museums and libraries including the Bodleian Library, the Radcliffe Science Library, the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Museum of Natural History

- We have a dynamic community of research scholars undertaking internationally recognised and world-leading research

- The course flexibility in module choices enables students to follow their particular interests

- There is the option to join MSc students on a field trip to Apenhuel Primate Park in the Netherlands

- The Graduate Diploma in Anthropology enables graduates from other disciplines, and those with equivalent qualifications or work experience, to gain a qualification in anthropology at advanced undergraduate level.

Teaching and learning

We provide a broad range of learning experiences, including independent study, work in small groups, seminars and lectures.

We also use a wide range of assessment techniques, including essays, book reviews, class presentations, fieldwork reports and exams.

Field trips

You will be offered the opportunity to join MSc students on their annual trip to Apenhuel Primate Park in the Netherlands. The 3-day trip costs between £105 and £115, depending on numbers.

Careers

Many students choose the graduate diploma as a route to further study, continuing their education at master's and PhD level. However, anthropology graduates go on to a variety of careers including overseas development aid, environmental maintenance, education, eco-tourism, urban planning and the civil service.

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

Professor Anna Nekaris has been awarded a prestigious Leverhulme Trust grant of over £200k to undertake research in to why and how the seemingly cute and cuddly slow loris is the only primate to produce a biological venom. Understanding the nature of slow loris venom should also have implications for the conservation of this seriously threatened primate, a popular but illegal pet that is widely traded on the black market.

An international team of scientists, including Professor Adrian Parker, have revealed that humans left Africa at least 50,000 years earlier than previously suggested and were, in fact, present in eastern Arabia as early as 125,000 years ago. The new study published in the journal Science reports findings from an eight-year archaeological excavation at a site called Jebel Faya in the United Arab Emirates. Palaeolithic stone tools found at the Jebel Faya were similar to tools produced by early modern humans in east Africa, but very different from those produced to the north, in the Levant and the mountains of Iran. This suggested early modern humans migrated into Arabia directly from Africa and not via the Nile Valley and the Near East as is usually suggested. The new findings will reinvigorate the debate about man’s origins and how we became a global species.

Professor Jeremy MacClancy's latest book Centralizing Fieldwork, critical perspectives in primatology, biological and social anthropology, was co-edited with Augustin Fuentes of Notre Dame University and is published by Berghahn.

Research areas and clusters

Research can be undertaken in the following areas:
- Anthropology of Art
- Anthropology of Food
- Anthropology of Work, and Play
- Anthropology of Gender
- Social Anthropology of Japan, South Asia and Europe
- Social Anthropology of Family, Class and Gender in Urban South Asia
- Basque studies
- Culture and landscapes
- Environmental archaeology and palaeo-anthropology
- Environmental anthropology
- Environmental reconstruction
- Human origins
- Human resource ecology
- Human–wildlife interaction and conservation
- Physical environmental processes and management
- Primate conservation
- Primatology
- Quaternary environmental change
- Urban and environmental studies.

Research centres:
- Europe Japan Research Centre
- Anthropology Centre for Conservation, Environment and Development.

Consultancy:
- Oxford Brookes Archaeology and Heritage (OBAH).

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The MSc in Environmental Change, Impact and Adaptation is your opportunity to study the latest understanding of environmental change and our efforts to plan for and manage future change. Read more

About the course

The MSc in Environmental Change, Impact and Adaptation is your opportunity to study the latest understanding of environmental change and our efforts to plan for and manage future change. Having completed your undergraduate degree in a related field, this MSc will enable you to bring your skills and knowledge up to date with a view to continuing in employment or further research.

A series of new modules have been developed specifically for this programme and ensure you will receive a balanced appreciation of many aspects of environmental change. You will critically assess the evidence for environmental change across ecosystems and different temporal scales; gain experience in field-based data collection; examine the historic, present and future risks posed to human societies; and critically eval­uate solutions proposed to address challenges arising from climatic and environmental change.

The course begins with an overseas fieldtrip in week one where you will learn to devise your own field-based experiments to investigate environmental change. Training will be given in a range of advanced techniques such as quantification of CO2 emissions from soils and interpretation of evidence for past climate and environments in the landscape. There are no written exams, instead we use a variety of alternative assessment methods including short-film making, white papers, tender reports, computing practicals, field-based experiments, reviews and essays.

This course is delivered by the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences, which has links to Natural Resources Wales and the Centre for Alternative Technology. You will also be assigned a personal tutor and a dissertation coordinator to support your personal and academic needs.

This course will help you develop the latest technological, theoretical and practical understanding of the subject and a range of transferable skills to support your employability. You will be able to: expertly debate the subject in written, oral and on-line forums; develop alternative approaches to research; work independently and as part of a team; undertake self-regulation of work regimes and time management; and collate, process and interpret data sets efficiently.

Our lecturers are active researchers working at the cutting edge of their disciplines, and you will benefit from being taught the latest geographical theories and techniques. In the most recent Research Excellence Framework assessment (REF 2014) DGES retained its crown of the best Geography department in Wales, with 78% of the research being undertaken classified as either "world leading" or "internationally excellent”. DGES is also in the top ten of UK Geography departments with regard to research power, which provides a measure of the quality of research, as well as of the number of staff undertaking research within the department.

This degree will stand you in good stead for a career in risk management, development, disaster relief, environmental management or consultancy. This course is also highly suitable to prepare you for future research at PhD level.

Course content

Core modules:

Advanced Research Skills 1: science communication and data analysis
Environmental Change Dissertation
Environmental Change: a Palaeo Perspective
Global Climate Change: Debates and Impacts
Investigating Environmental Change: Fieldwork
Managing Environmental Change in Practice
Risk Management and Resilience in a Changing Environment

Contact time

Approximately 10-14 hours a week in the first two semesters. During semester three you will arrange your level of contact time with your assigned supervisor.

Assessment

The programme comprises 180 credits. There are 120 credits of taught modules completed during Semester 1 and Semester 2. This is followed by a research dissertation (60 credits) in semester 3.

Employability

This degree will suit you:

- If you want advanced training in environment based topics from one of the UK's leading research departments
- If you have a 2:1 degree or higher in a related discipline
- If you wish to gain academic expertise, field skills and technical experience in an environmental discipline
- If you wish to enter a career in environmental management or consultancy, development, disaster relief, risk management as well as future doctoral research.

Upon completing the Aberystwyth Masters in Environmental Change, Impact and Adaptation, you will be suited to specialist environment-related employment and more general areas of work. As a specialist, you will be a highly competent contributor to any work relating to climate change, human impacts on terrestrial ecosystems, environmental risk assessment and environmental policy analysis. In more generic employment situations, your strengths will be broad and deep because you will be able to demonstrate mastery in any planning, research, analysis and reporting skills that your employer will require.

Studying for this Masters degree will allow you to sharpen all your core scientific disciplines, your professional work ethos and your presentation and communication skills. Once secured by obtaining your Masters Degree, you will have gained confidence in the level of your academic expertise and practical field skills, which in turn will enhance your employability in both highly specialised related professions and also on broader, unrelated professional paths. All employers, whether subject-related specialists or more general corporate bodies and consultancies, place a high value on first-rate technical aptitude, clarity in research and analysis and fluency in communication.

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