The Disasters, Adaptation & Development MA, MSc course takes a social development perspective, exploring topics such as human vulnerability, response to natural and technological hazards and to hazards associated with climate change. You will examine disaster risk reduction and choose from a wide range of modules, enabling you to build a study pathway that can include technical specialities in GIS and remote sensing, organisational risk management, or poverty alleviation and international development.
The Disasters, Adaptation & Development MA/MSc aims to equip students with an in-depth and critical awareness of the political, geographical and technological aspects of disaster risk reduction and their contribution to sustainable adaptation and disaster responses. Taking a social development perspective, the course covers issues such as human vulnerability and responses to natural and technological hazards. This course embeds training in disaster risk reduction with technical specialities in geographic information system (GIS) and remote sensing, organisational risk management, or poverty alleviation and international development.
The study course is made up of optional and required modules. You must take the minimum of 180 credits to complete the course. In addition to a required dissertation, you will choose from a wide range of related modules. If you want to qualify with an MSc, you will be required to study Advanced Quantitative and Spatial Methods in Human Geography as an additional module.
If you are studying full-time, you will complete the course in one year, from September to September. If you are studying part-time, your course will be delivered over two years. You will take a combination of required and optional modules over this period of time, with the dissertation in your second year.
We will teach you through a combination of lectures and seminars, and you will typically have 20 hours of this per 20 credit module. We also expect you to undertake 180 hours of independent study for each module, although some modules in the Geography Department may involve lab work or e-learning which would require less self-guided learning. For your 12,000 word dissertation, we will provide four workshops and five hours of one-to-one supervision to complement your 587 hours of independent study. Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.
Performance on taught modules in the Geography Department is normally assessed through essays and other written assignments, oral presentations, lab work and occasionally by examination, depending on the modules selected. All students also undertake a research-based dissertation of 12,000 words.
The Disasters, Adaptation and Development degree aims to provide technical training and professional exposure. Both are needed to secure careers in humanitarian and development organisations. Professional exposure and networking is delivered through four mechanisms:
1. Environmental Internship. This is a stand alone module based on one to two weeks full-time equivalent working in a host organisation: usually a Humanitarian or Development NGO headquaters office in London or as part of a research team working on disaster risk within the Department of Geography. The student will undertake a defined task, typically a literature or policy review to feed into policy development work. The module is assessed by a reflective essay on the experience and lessons learned. The internship is appropriate for those wishing an introduction to professional life in the sector, some internships can turn into thesis research ideas.
2. Thesis placements. These allow students to undertake their three month research project within an international humanitarian or development NGO in the field. Current partners include the Red Cross Climate Centre, Oxfam, Save the Children, YCARE and the All India Disaster Mitigation Institute. Students propose thesis ideas and these are crafted with host organisations to make sure they meet academic criteria and policy impact goals. Typically thesis research is translated into a policy brief. Host organisation commitments vary but all local costs (translation, accommodation, transport) are covered, and often international transport costs as well. An example of a thesis internship can be found here.
3. Post-degree internships. Increasingly employers look for experience and are also prepared to offer paid internships. We only partner with internship providers providing at least basic living costs. Current internships providers are the Stockholm Environment Institute - Asia and the Asian Disaster Preparedness Centre, both based in Bangkok. Post degree internships are three months commencing in September - think about this being a 15 month degree where you get paid for the final three months!
4. Networking events. because the Disasters, Adaptation and development programme is associated with King's Centre for Integrated Research on Risk and Resilience (CIRRR) students are encouraged to attend its seminars and social events. Monthly meetings and occasional seminars help to integrated masters students with researchers and policy actors with many opportunities to become informally involved in research and outreach.
This course builds on your previous knowledge of computer science and Information Technology (IT), and aims to provide you with an in-depth specialism in the fields of cyber security, cyber threat intelligence and digital forensics. You will gain advanced and in-depth knowledge of penetration testing, cyber forensics, malware reverse engineering and software vulnerability and will exploit research using a very hands-on approach. You will gain practical and real-world skills in all major areas of cyber security including penetration testing, digital forensics, cyber warfare and threat intelligence. Moreover, you will learn how to apply your skills in analysis, testing and maintenance of software systems or enterprise networks from a cyber security perspective.
You will use your penetration testing and vulnerability assessment skills in finding weaknesses in existing devices and applications and to advise developers or network administrators to secure their application or environment. Your cyber forensics skills can be used to identify, collect, preserve and analyse a wide range of digital evidences and present them in the court of law. You will use your knowledge of programming to analyse different malwares to determine how they work and how countermeasures can be developed. Only a small percentage of cyber security professionals are capable of analysing advanced persistent threats and are capable of understanding and managing malware campaigns. Finally, your cyber threat intelligence knowledge and skills will help you to strategically fight against organised cyber crimes, understand and analyse cyber warfare activities and propose appropriate defensive and offensive mechanisms to reduce or eliminate those risks.
You will have close and active contact with industry experts with the opportunity to attend regular industry guest lecture programs in cyber security while you operate within a well-formed professional and ethical framework.
Graduates from this course can work in a wide variety of technical security roles within business, banking, software, networking, government, consultancy, etc. This would include roles such as malware analyzer, penetration tester, information security manager, security consultant, forensics investigator or security programmer. There is a significant worldwide skills shortage in this area, particularly for graduates with the in-depth technical knowledge and skills that are developed by this course.
This course has contacts with local industry such as software companies (such as Web Applications UK), infrastructure providers (such as UKFast) and security consultants (such as KPMG). These companies will provide you with a real-world perspective to help you appreciate the barriers that exist and the compromises that must be made to manage conflicting demands (known as the C-I-A triad).
Your MSc project will need you to demonstrate “originality in the application of knowledge”. Given a suitable topic, this may be able to be developed into an area where you can undertake a higher research degree to demonstrate “an original contribution to knowledge” which is the target for a PhD. You will get a chance to learn about the research interests of the University’s research active staff in order to help you develop a suitable topic. This may be directly in a security field, or applications of other fields of computing such as artificial intelligence or big data in cyber security and cyber forensics.
This award is for people who have an interest in the complex policy and practice issues in diverse settings affected by conflict or countries emerging from conflict. Emphasis will be given to: the concepts of vulnerability and resilience of individuals; households and their interaction with health and social structures in the context of forced migration; the range of actors involved during the humanitarian crisis and transitional period; and the alternative approaches to psychosocial protection of individuals and communities.
The objective is to identify the needs of diverse stakeholders and formulate effective and appropriate programmatic responses.
Teaching comprises a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, case studies, simulation exercises and projects. Assessment is continuous and incorporates assignments, action plans and projects.
Each module which you study on campus will require you to attend classes and carry out independent work. Your attendance requirements at QMU will depend on which module you are studying and whether you are studying full or part time. Modules usually require two sessions of three hours in class plus around 10-12 hours of work each week consisting of preparatory class work with colleagues and on web based learning platforms as well as independent study. Subsequent to class contact, 3 weeks are given to prepare the written assignment.
You will study a total of 60 credits, comprising the core modules Strengthening Health and Health Systems in Fragile and Conflict-affected States; Independent Study module on a topic related to health in fragile and conflict affected states; and either Psychosocial Interventions for Displaced Populations or Global Mental Health & Psychosocial Wellbeing. You will select one 15 credit IGHD module*.
Former IGHD students work in a variety of settings where a social development understanding informs approaches to health. Examples of positions filled by IGHD graduates include: Health Advisor for Save the Children UK, Senior Coordinator for International Operations with Partners in Health, Policy Development Officer in the Scottish NGO sector, Public Health Policy Workers for First Nation’s communities in Canada, Humanitarian Worker with Islamic Relief. Others have taken internships with organisations such as the WHO on graduation, while others have progressed to doctoral studies.
Santander Scholarships: 2 x £5,000 scholarships are available for international students undertaking a course within the IGHD.
See http://www.qmu.ac.uk/study-here/fees-andfunding/scholarships-for-new-students/ for more information.