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Agriculture×

Masters Degrees in Agricultural Zoology

Masters degrees in Agricultural Zoology provide advanced study and training in all agricultural aspects of animal biology, including breeding, behaviour, physiology, disease, development, and interactions with the environment.

Courses in this area are usually taught MSc degrees, though research-based MRes and MPhil programmes are also available. Entry requirements normally include an undergraduate degree in a relevant field such as biology or animal sciences.

Why study a Masters in Agricultural Zoology?

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This is an advanced course for students who want to develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the biology, welfare and conservation of domesticated and wild animals managed for production or leisure. Read more

Overview

This is an advanced course for students who want to develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the biology, welfare and conservation of domesticated and wild animals managed for production or leisure.

Course Modules

The MSc programme is delivered over 1 year on a full-time basis during two teaching blocks (semesters one and two) and a period of supervised and independent study (summer). It may also be completed over a two-year period on a part-time basis. The first two semesters (15 weeks each) include 4 taught modules. The dissertation is studied during the subsequent 20 week period in the summer. Each taught module is worth 15 credits whilst the dissertation is 60 credits.

Programme

Semester One (September to January)
Animal Physiology / Comparative Animal Nutrition / Wildlife Resources / Research Methods
60 Credits

Semester Two (January to May)
Animal Ethics and Welfare / Animal Protection and Habitat Conservation / Behaviour / Current Issues in Animal Science
60 Credits

Summer (May to September)
MSc Dissertation
60 Credits

The full MSc degree course consists of 120 compulsory taught credits plus 60 core credits from the dissertation. The Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) can be awarded with 120 taught credits. Whilst a Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert) can be awarded on the successful completion of any 60 taught credits. Credits obtained from the dissertation can also be used when considering whether a postgraduate diploma can be awarded. Before progressing onto the Masters dissertation from the Diploma, students would need to complete the Research Methods module or its equivalent as a prerequisite.

Entry Requirements

Applicants will normally hold a good BSc Honours degree (2.2 or above) from a recognised university in a related science subject such as animal science, agriculture, biological sciences, zoology, veterinary or bioveterinary science or other appropriate life-science degree. Applicants with a BSc (Hons) 3rd class pass, with extensive industrial experience may also be considered for the Masters programme. Applications from non-UK students are particularly welcome. All applications received will be reviewed and decisions for admission to the programme will be made on individual merit. Applicants may be interviewed if there is some doubt over the extent of academic qualification or linguistic skills.

Applicants for whom English is a second language are required to demonstrate a level of competence that enables them to study at a postgraduate level. A test score of 6.5 is required in the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) tests.

Learning & Teaching Methods

The teaching methods are a mixture of lectures, seminars, tutorials, visits and student managed learning. The self-guided study takes place under the supervision of experienced staff from the Centre of Equine and Animal Science at Writtle University College. Students are assessed using a number of methods, for example written examination, reports, essays, seminars, debates, oral presentations, case studies and project dissertation.

The research project is an essential part of the MSc programme and provides the opportunity to carry out an independent piece research, critically analyse data and write a dissertation. The project will normally include hands-on practical experimentation to teach students how to gather and process data and problem solve. The project is supervised by an academic member of staff and takes place over an extended period during the spring and summer. The project can be based either at Writtle University College or other suitable external institution.

Potential areas for dissertation projects

Investigation of keeper-animal relationships in zoos
Animal behaviour and welfare research in collaboration with Colchester Zoo
Assessment of prevalence and risk factors for obesity in companion animals
Lameness detection and measurement in dairy cows
Estimation endangered wild animal population densities
Use of molecular biology techniques in conservation genetics of captive wild animals
Incidence of small mammals in agricultural landscapes
Diet selection and nutrient intakes in captive animals
Behavioural indicators of welfare and performance using different castration methods in lambs

Careers

Graduates are likely to use their award to secure management-level jobs and/or to improve their promotion prospects if they are already employed both in international and national organisations. Many opportunities exist in either government services or related agencies services: for example senior positions in DEFRA as quarantine officers or animal health inspectors. There are also numerous career opportunities in companies specialising in farm animal nutrition and pet food manufacturing, breeding and reproduction, veterinary medicines and pharmaceuticals. There also opportunities in charities engaged in animal welfare such as the RSPCA, zoos, animal rescue centres and safari parks. Also, independent wildlife agencies such as the RSPB, Scottish Natural Heritage, Natural England, and the Countryside Council for Wales would be interested in Animal Welfare and Conservation graduates. Some graduates may take up lecturing positions in universities and colleges or proceed to do further postgraduate study e.g. PhD.

Fees and Financial Support

Part-time student fees for each semester will be charged on a pro-rata basis. There are limited bursaries for part-payment of fees (for UK students only) from the Alice Noakes Memorial Trust. Applications for these bursaries can only be made via the course manager on admission to the course.

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[General Information]]. Applied Animal Biology offers opportunities for advanced study and research leading to M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in animal physiology, behaviour, welfare, and management of livestock, aquaculture, and wildlife species. Read more
[General Information]]
Applied Animal Biology offers opportunities for advanced study and research leading to M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in animal physiology, behaviour, welfare, and management of livestock, aquaculture, and wildlife species. Graduate training in applied animal biology normally involves a combination of courses in both basic and applied sciences, with research leading to a thesis or dissertation. Students are expected to publish their research results in relevant leading international refereed journals. Coursework selected in consultation with the student's supervisory committee includes graduate courses in areas relevant to each student's research.

The program is enriched through collaboration with colleagues in other UBC graduate programs such as Zoology, and with agencies such as Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Canadian Wildlife Service, and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

On-campus teaching and research facilities are located in the MacMillan Building. Off-campus research facilities available to students include: the UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre in Agassiz; shared research facilities at Fisheries and Oceans Canada at West Vancouver; and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada.

Quick Facts

- Degree: Master of Science
- Specialization: Applied Animal Biology
- Subject: Agriculture and Forestry
- Mode of delivery: On campus
- Program components: Coursework + Thesis required
- Faculty: Faculty of Land and Food Systems

Applied Animal Biology is intended for students who want to study and/or work with animals. It provides students with fundamentals of animal behaviour, animal physiology and related fields as applied to farm, companion and other animals. It also exposes students to the role of animals in human society and the ethical, environmental and other issues that arise. It offers training in research skills needed for graduate work, and (with appropriate selection of courses) prepares students for admission to veterinary and human medicine. Students have various options to gain practical experience on farms and in laboratories, animal shelters and wildlife rehabilitation centres.

Potential career paths include veterinary medicine, human medicine, biomedical research, animal ecology, sustainable aquaculture, animal training, animal nutrition, wildlife rehabilitation, wildlife conservation, agricultural extension and animal welfare.

Facilities

On-campus facilities include laboratories in the MacMillan Building. Off-campus research facilities available to students include: the UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre in Agassiz; shared research facilities at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans at West Vancouver; Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada; and the Agassiz Poultry Centre, which includes unique poultry and quail stocks for biomedical and genetic research. Field research facilities for studies in wildlife productivity are also available.

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Animal Health and Welfare relates the study of animal health to improving and enhancing welfare. There is an increased global awareness of the link between animal and human health and this suggests that graduates with skills in this area are well placed for a range of career destinations within the animal sector. Read more

£1,000 postgraduate bursary available. Application deadline 1 July 2015.

Animal Health and Welfare relates the study of animal health to improving and enhancing welfare. There is an increased global awareness of the link between animal and human health and this suggests that graduates with skills in this area are well placed for a range of career destinations within the animal sector. The course aims to develop an appreciation of the theoretical and practical application of health and welfare knowledge in a wide range of contexts. These include the use of animals in a global society, agricultural production and welfare implications, companion animal biology and the more generic roles and uses of animals in society.

Why study Animal Health and Welfare at NTU?

• Staff expertise and experience in the field of animal health and welfare science across a range of species.
• Your studies will be based at the Brackenhurst campus which offers 200-hectares of rural estate and modern laboratories for the development of scientific skills and experience.
• You will have access to our modern Animal Unit on campus which houses over 200 animals.
• Benefit from a new £2.5 million campus eco-library offering IT resources 24-7.
• Benefit from excellent links to partner organisations, conservation projects and academic institutions across the world.
• You will benefit from both academic rigour and comprehensive student support within a friendly family atmosphere.

MRes projects

Students applying for this MRes course can either choose to study a relevant project of their choice, or apply to undertake one of the specific research projects listed below:

• Quantitative and qualitative welfare assessment of zoo housed giraffe involved in visitor feed experiences. Dr Sam Ward.
• An analysis of the health and welfare implications of canine sporting disciplines. Dr Jacqueline Boyd.

MRes applicants also have the opportunity to apply for a competitive £1000 bursary towards course tuition fees. In addition, all MRes students can apply for up to a maximum of £1000 to cover consumables costs, which will need to be discussed and agreed with the supervisor, and approved by School Management.

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Animal Health and Welfare relates the study of animal health to improving and enhancing welfare. There is an increased global awareness of the link between animal and human health and this suggests that graduates with skills in this area are well placed for a range of career destinations within the animal sector. Read more

£1,000 postgraduate bursary available. Application deadline 1 July 2015.

Animal Health and Welfare relates the study of animal health to improving and enhancing welfare. There is an increased global awareness of the link between animal and human health and this suggests that graduates with skills in this area are well placed for a range of career destinations within the animal sector. The course aims to develop an appreciation of the theoretical and practical application of health and welfare knowledge in a wide range of contexts. These include the use of animals in a global society, agricultural production and welfare implications, companion animal biology and the more generic roles and uses of animals in society.

Why study Animal Health and Welfare at NTU?

• Staff expertise and experience in the field of animal health and welfare science across a range of species.
• Your studies will be based at the Brackenhurst campus which offers 200-hectares of rural estate and modern laboratories for the development of scientific skills and experience.
• You will have access to our modern Animal Unit on campus which houses over 200 animals.
• Benefit from a new £2.5 million campus eco-library offering IT resources 24-7.
• Benefit from excellent links to partner organisations, conservation projects and academic institutions across the world.
• You will benefit from both academic rigour and comprehensive student support within a friendly family atmosphere.

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The M.S. degree in Sustainable Agriculture aims to provide advanced knowledge in the field of agricultural systems as well as skills to develop and manage sustainable production systems. Read more

Sustainable agriculture

The M.S. degree in Sustainable Agriculture aims to provide advanced knowledge in the field of agricultural systems as well as skills to develop and manage sustainable production systems.

Programme Summary

The context of the topics is international, having as its main area of investigation warm-temperate environments at a global level. The graduate in Sustainable agriculture must work to achieve food security objectives associated with improving the quality and wholesomeness of food products. The graduate must know the issues related to biodiversity, global change and ecosystem services, which are analyzed according to a systemic and adaptive approach, considering also the traceability of processes.
To address the global challenges, students are equipped with a wide learning platform, and are able to make comparisons between different production systems at the international level in terms of environmental, socio-economics, and regulatory environments.

Dual degree with USA

With the aim of strengthening this global approach to sustainability and food security, the degree program has been included in an internationalization project in collaboration with the University of Georgia, USA, which enables students to achieve a dual degree in "Sustainable Agriculture" (Italy) and "Crop and Soil Science" (USA).

Who is the MSc candidate?

The course is intended for highly-motivated national and international students and is conceived for Bachelor graduates with a main interest in agricultural and environmental sciences.

What career opportunities does the MSc provide?

The graduate in Sustainable Agriculture is able to perform a wide range of activities in a professional and efficient manner:
1) Operate internationally by conducting activities of planning, management, monitoring, coordination and training in agricultural production processes to meet the needs of the international market;
2) Be involved in activities of experimentation and research in both the public and private sectors (eg. Biotechnology companies);
3) Fill a position or interact with international organizations such as FAO, EU and World Bank;
4) Be involved in the transfer of technologies (innovation broker);
5) Manage technical and international business related to agricultural products and processing, and related to agricultural mechanization;
6) Play an active role in private and public structures aimed at land management and the management of water resources, including historical, cultural and landscape values of agricultural land;
7) Collaborate in the establishment and operation of projects in basic and applied research in the field of agricultural production in the international arena.

How is the programme organised?

The training course in Sustainable Agriculture, lasting two years, includes two main areas of study:
1) Production: training in the areas of agronomy, crop and animal productions, soil science, plant breeding, and integrated management of pests and diseases, all aimed at the sustainability of the production process and its social implications;
2) Technology: training in the areas of management and protection of air-soil-water, use of biomass of agricultural plants and animals, land management, and management of the production process (at different geographic scales) considering both innovative technologies and socio-economic aspects.
Learning is based on active studies covering activities in the classroom, in the laboratory and in the field as well as the possibility of using the contribution of Italian and foreign teachers, and industry experts that can provide specific case studies. The program offers intensive individual tutoring of students, as well as the opportunity to intern for six months, in companies in the public and private sectors, possibly abroad, for the study of cases of excellence in preparation of the thesis

Visit the MSc “Sustainable agriculture” page on the Università di Padova web-site http://www.unipd.it/en/educational-offer/second-cycle-degrees/school-of-agricultural-sciences-and-veterinary-medicine?ordinamento=2016&key=AV2293 for more details.

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In the future, agricultural and horticultural production will demand new intellectual and technological understanding and skills. Read more
In the future, agricultural and horticultural production will demand new intellectual and technological understanding and skills. The new technologies of sensors, computing, data analysis, remote sensing, robotics, drones and systems of data analysis and interpretation will allow new and sophisticated ways of managing both productive and natural environments.

The course will explore and study the high level of technical innovation currently being applied to agricultural and horticultural production, as will business management and the entrepreneurial skills that will be of fundamental importance to those entering this dynamic, technical based sector. Students will gain skills in data capture, processing, infographics, and the application of such technologies to all aspects of production and for the management of natural environments.

This course will be of relevance to those wishing to start a career in this emerging industry, join an established company, or looking to develop the skills needed to start their own enterprise.

Structure

The course may be studied full-time over 12 months. You will study six modules over the autumn and spring terms, followed by a Research Project, which is carried out over the summer to be submitted the following September. This may include a viva voce examination.

You will have the opportunity to engage with real-world problems, to find solutions to current issues and experience the working world of new technologies in animal and crop production, and the natural environment.

Modules are assessed primarily by coursework. Some modules have an examination as part of the assessment.

Modules

• 4230 Production Resource Management
• 4231 Research Project in Agricultural Technology and Innovation
• 4232 Business Development
• 4233 Computing and Information Technology in Precision Agriculture
• 4234 Livestock Production Technology
• 4235 Environmental Technology
• 4236 Crop Production Technology

Career prospects

Graduates are highly likely to go on to pursue a career within:

• The high-tech agricultural and environmental sectors
• Industries allied to crop and animal production
• Technical consultancy
• Government and international agencies
• The development of new companies through entrepreneurial initiatives

Potential job opportunities

• Agricultural and horticultural engineering
• Information technology
• Resource appraisal
• Agronomy
• Farm management

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please follow this link: https://www.rau.ac.uk/STUDY/POSTGRADUATE/HOW-APPLY

Funding

For information on funding, please view the following page: https://www.rau.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/fees-and-funding/funding

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MTSU’s new Agricultural Education Leadership graduate program offers the opportunity to study agricultural leadership and its application in a variety of agricultural and environmental contexts. Read more
MTSU’s new Agricultural Education Leadership graduate program offers the opportunity to study agricultural leadership and its application in a variety of agricultural and environmental contexts. This concentration leads to a Master of Education (M.Ed.) degree in the Administration and Supervision major. The program helps disseminate the latest research and best practices in agribusiness and agriscience to educational leaders such as extension officers, FFA club advisors, 4-H leaders, and K-12 teachers who integrate agricultural content into their curriculum. Electives allow master’s candidates to tailor studies for individual career goals. The program draws upon the expertise of School of Agribusiness and Agriscience faculty and builds on MTSU’s strong foundation in K-12 education. Although not traditionally identified as STEM fields, agribusiness and agriscience rest on the ever-growing and ever-changing currents of science, technology, and engineering that require agricultural leaders to remain up-to-date in scientific arenas, apply that knowledge to agribusiness and agriscience, and communicate that information to a variety of audiences in a number of formats.

Career

With leadership being a mandate of employers, the Agricultural Education Leadership master’s degree positions graduates to work with communities, organizations, and agencies that are committed to agriculture and the environment. The program is geared toward agricultural extension agents, 4-H leaders, recent graduates, and teachers who seek advanced agricultural leadership skills.

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MPhil - full time. minimum 12 months, part time. minimum 24 months. PhD - full time. minimum 36 months, part time. minimum 72 months. Read more

Course Description

MPhil - full time: minimum 12 months, part time: minimum 24 months
PhD - full time: minimum 36 months, part time: minimum 72 months

MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of research topics supported by research active academic staff. Our range of research areas relate to animal health and welfare, environmental impact of livestock systems, and safety and quality of livestock products.

The school of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development has an internationally recognised centre of excellence in Animal Sciences, drawing on fundamental research and applying it to areas of societal, industrial and policy importance.

Our research primarily involves:
•farm livestock, domesticated animal and wildlife applied research
•integrated livestock system development and evaluation
•animal behaviour, health and welfare
•survival, health and efficiency of nutrient utilisation

Opportunities are available for postgraduate research in the following areas:

Animal health and welfare:
Work ranges from understanding animal behaviour and behavioural problems, through development of practical on-farm monitoring and assessment methods to mechanistic studies of health and disease at the molecular level.

Environmental impact of livestock systems:
Our work examines the consequences of modifications in nutrition and husbandry and alterations in breeding strategies to improve the efficiency of resource use.

Safety and quality of livestock products, including milk, meat and eggs:
Our 'field to fork' expertise allows us to study the relationships between husbandry systems and nutritional inputs of animals and the composition of their products, with further implications for human diet and health.


Delivery

We offer a number of different routes to a research degree qualification, including full-time and part-time supervised research projects. We attract postgraduates via non-traditional routes, including mature students and part-time postgraduates undertaking study as part of their continuing professional development. Off-campus (split) research is also offered, which enables you to conduct trials in conditions appropriate to your research programme.

Facilities:

Farms:
Our multi-purpose farms provide demonstration facilities for teaching purposes, land-based research facilities (especially in the area of organic production) and they are viable farming businesses.

Cockle Park Farm is a 262ha mixed farm facility that includes the Palace Leas Plots hay meadow experiment and an anaerobic digestion plant that will generate heat, electricity and digestate - an organic fertiliser - from pig and cattle manure.

Nafferton Farm is a 300ha farm with two main farm units covering conventional and organic farming systems. The two systems are primarily focussed upon dairying and arable cropping. Both also operate beef production enterprises as a by-product of their dairy enterprises, although the organic system is unique in maintaining a small-scale potato and vegetable production enterprise.

Laboratories:
Our modern laboratories provide important teaching and research environments and are equipped with analytical equipment such as HPLCs, GCs, CNS analyser, centrifuges, spectrophotometers and molecular biology equipment. Our specialist research facilities include:
•tissue culture laboratory
•plant growth rooms
•class II laboratory for safe handling of human biological samples
•taste panel facilities and test kitchen
•thin section facility for soils analysis

We operate closely with other schools, institutes and the University's Central Scientific Facilities for access to more specialist analytical services. For work with human subjects we use a purpose built Clinical Research Facility which is situated in the Royal Victoria Infirmary teaching hospital and is managed jointly by us and the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

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MPhil - full time. minimum 12 months, part time. minimum 24 months. PhD - full time. minimum 36 months, part time. minimum 72 months. Read more

Course Description

MPhil - full time: minimum 12 months, part time: minimum 24 months
PhD - full time: minimum 36 months, part time: minimum 72 months

MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of research topics supported by research active academic staff. Our broad range of research areas relate to land use, natural resources and environmental change; rural planning, community governance and resilience; rural change, culture and wellbeing; and rural economy, enterprise and innovation.
Areas of research include:
•impact and implications of ‘local-global’ processes and relationships for rural areas
•characteristics and performance of rural businesses and households
•rural governance
•demographic ageing and social change
•living with environmental change

Opportunities are available for postgraduate research in the following areas:

Land use, natural resources and environmental change
•multifunctional land use and the evolving role of small farms
•land use and food security
•the management and governance of natural resources
•agri-environment policy
•environmental valuation and choice modelling
•access to land for outdoor recreation and leisure
•protected areas management

Rural planning, community governance and resilience
•relationship between rural development policy and communities in a changing political landscape
•rural policies and the role of communities in policy development
•neo-endogenous or networked rural development
•rural housing and trends in counter-urbanisation
•community asset management
•rural partnerships and stakeholder relationships
•community resilience

Rural change, culture and wellbeing
•perceptions of rurality
•rural social change
•the role of rural women
•the needs of a changing rural community
•wellbeing and quality of life
•rural social capital
•social exclusion and rural poverty
•changing perceptions of farming

Rural economy, enterprise and innovation
•rural enterprise and its economic contribution
•innovation and entrepreneurialism
•networks and knowledge exchange
•the nature and needs of rural enterprise
•technological adoption and innovation in agriculture
•linkages between urban and rural economies
•business collaboration and networking
•expertise and knowledge exchange
•social and community enterprise
•the green economy

Find out more about the work of the Rural Studies and Resource Economics research group.

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MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of topics supported by research active academic staff. We conduct research in all areas of food and society, including subjects which require collaboration between the social and natural sciences, and translate research into policy recommendations. Read more

Course Description

MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of topics supported by research active academic staff. We conduct research in all areas of food and society, including subjects which require collaboration between the social and natural sciences, and translate research into policy recommendations.

Our research primarily involves food systems, food consumption and food marketing:
•consumer studies in food, food provisioning and behaviour change
•perceived risk associated with food and food production
•food supply chains and territorial development
•international political economy of food and agriculture
•risk-benefit communication
•acceptance of novel food and technologies within the value chain

Opportunities are available for postgraduate research in the following areas.

Understanding and measuring societal and individual responses to risks and benefits
•food, nutrition and healthy dietary choices
•sustainable consumption and the reduction of food waste
•food safety and authenticity throughout the supply chain
•emerging food technologies

Developing new methodologies for assessing socio-economic impacts of food risks and communication strategies and other public health interventions related to food choice
•systematic review
•evidence synthesis
•systems thinking
•Bayesian networks
•rapid evidence assessment

Employing qualitative and quantitative methodologies to understand attitudes and behaviours related to food
•microbiological food hazards
•personalised nutrition
•food authenticity
•societal and consumer responses to emerging food production technologies
•behaviour change in relation to food
•food waste

Stakeholder analysis and effectiveness of public engagement
•research agenda setting
•policy and governance, in the area of emerging food technologies
•food and agricultural policy issues

Integrating social and natural science into the development of predictive models of food security to provide evidence for policy translation in the agrifood sector.
•Bayesian networks
•systems thinking

Find out more about the work of the Agr-Food and Society research group.

Modules

See our Prospectus online.

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Relevant to vets, animal health specialists and livestock farmers, the programme addresses contemporary issues of livestock production that have worldwide relevance. Read more

Study for a prestigious MSc in Livestock Health and Production

by distance learning

Relevant to vets, animal health specialists and livestock farmers, the programme addresses contemporary issues of livestock production that have worldwide relevance. The subject areas covered include breeding, nutrition, welfare and disease processes and management.

Programme aims

Graduates of this programme will be able to improve the health and production of livestock through:

- understanding the interaction of livestock with people and the environment
- gaining an overview of the factors that influence livestock production
- implementing control strategies by integrating this knowledge with the principles of epidemiology, economics and disease control within the context of management and infrastructure
- communicating effectively on the health of animal and human populations to a range of audiences including the general public, farmers, politicians, and other key policy makers.

Prestige

The programme has been developed by academics at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), the oldest and largest veterinary school in the UK and one of the leading veterinary research centres in Europe. In 1999, RVC became the first UK veterinary school to be granted approval by the American Veterinary Medical Association. The RVC also provides support for the veterinary profession through its three referral hospitals, diagnostic services and continuing professional development courses.

Career progression

Graduates of the programme are employed in a variety of organisations including the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), university veterinary faculties and international organisations including the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO).

Comprehensive study materials and support

The support you receive includes:

- academic feedback on written assignments
- tutorial support concerning academic matters from RVC staff
- opportunities for local networking and mutual support from other students on the programme
- as all of the study materials you require are mailed to you, there is no requirement to purchase expensive textbooks or spend time trying to locate journals, which may not be available to you locally.

Contact us

If you have any questions, please contact our Student Advice Centre:
http://www.londoninternational.ac.uk/contact-us

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The course is intended to provide students with a detailed understanding of the sustainability issues associated with Northern European agriculture, and is underpinned by an extensive programme of agri-environment research at Harper Adams. Read more
The course is intended to provide students with a detailed understanding of the sustainability issues associated with Northern European agriculture, and is underpinned by an extensive programme of agri-environment research at Harper Adams.

Having completed the MSc you will be able to identify farming systems and determine their key characteristics, and critically evaluate the environmental impacts of conventional, integrated and organic farming systems. You will also learn to assess and exploit the latest developments in technology, and produce integrated farm management solutions that pay due regard to agronomic, social and environmental requirements.

The course

The continuing production of safe, wholesome food in an environmentally sensitive manner is a major political issue for national governments and internationally within global commodity markets. A report produced by the UK Cabinet Office in 2008 (Food Matters: Towards a Strategy for the 21st Century) predicts that the global population will rise to 9 billion by 2050 rising from a current estimate of nearly 6.8Bn. This increase in population size will substantially increase the demand for food. The global estimates vary in magnitude, but it is thought approximately 25% of crops are lost to pests and diseases, such as insects, fungi and other plant pathogens (FAO Crop Prospects and Food Situation 2009)

In a 2009 response to the emerging issues centred on global food security, the UK BBRSC launched a consultation exercise entitled Future Directions in Research Relating to Food Security. In seeking responses as to the direction of future research BBSRC identified a number of key themes. These included the:
■ Translation of research into commercial practice and the creation of effective partnerships to enable exchange of knowledge and development of skills in the uptake of new scientific findings
■ Establishment of require long-term programmes in research and training, underpinned by investment in the agricultural research infrastructure
■ Focus on applying the latest science to increasing crop and animal productivity globally while minimising negative environmental impact (including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving the efficient use of water, energy and other inputs, conserving biodiversity and landscapes), reducing losses from pests and diseases, enhancing food safety and quality for improved nutrition, and reducing waste throughout the food supply chain.

This course is intended to provide students with a key understanding of the issues involved in the sustainable production of food in accordance with the themes outlined above and is underpinned by an extensive programme of associated research at Harper Adams.

How will it benefit me?

The course provides an overview of the key issues involved in sustainable agricultural production within a global context. Since there is a focus on the underlying scientific principles, the course is suited to students of all nationalities in addition to those from the UK. Initially, you will learn to identify global farming systems and determine their key characteristics, before undertaking more complex evaluations of conventional and integrated or organic farming systems. You will undertake training in the use of the latest resources and use these to produce global integrated farm management solutions that pay due regard to agronomic, social, economic and environmental requirements. You will also have the option of undertaking a case study module where you will be able to focus exclusively on farming system of relevance to your background or intended career destination. The research project will provide training in the design, execution, analysis and interpretation of appropriate experiments or surveys to address research questions or problems relevant to sustainable agriculture.

Careers

Students have typically entered a wide variety of professions. Some have worked for government departments and agencies such as Natural England or the Environment Agency. Others have joined agrochemical companies or found positions within agricultural or environmental consultancies.

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The two-year MSc programme Animal Sciences is a continuation of a BSc in Animal Sciences or an equivalent programme in the field of livestock, companion animals and wildlife. Read more

MSc Animal Sciences

The two-year MSc programme Animal Sciences is a continuation of a BSc in Animal Sciences or an equivalent programme in the field of livestock, companion animals and wildlife.

The focus is to deliver skilled professional animal scientists who are well equipped to tackle problems related to sustainable livestock development as well as to the management of livestock and companion animals. The animal-human interaction plays an important role in this study programme. Themes like animal nutrition, animal health, animal welfare, levels of management, genetic diversity and socio-economic factors are all widely discussed.

Programme summary

Humans interact with animals in many different ways, ranging from raising livestock for food to keeping pets for companion. Animal husbandry and livestock development are not only constrained by technical factors, such as feed supply, animal health, management and genetics, but also by infrastructural and socio-economic factors. Consequently, today’s animal scientists need in-depth scientific training combined with a critical attitude towards all factors that limit the sustainable development of animal husbandry. Our individually tailored programme trains students to become expert animal scientists, well-equipped to tackle relevant issues of livestock and animal management.

Specialisations

Within the MSc Animal Sciences you can choose from various specialisations. Each of the specialisations trains you to become an expert in the field. The specialisations in MSc Animal Sciences are:

Animal Breeding and Genetics
Understanding how genetic differences work and how they can be used in a sustainable manner in a wide range of species plays a central role in this specialisation. Students learn how breeding and genetics can contribute to safe and healthy food from animal origin and how it contributes to the health and welfare of animals.

Animal Nutrition
This specialisation deals with the interaction between animals and their nutrition. Students learn about the way animals digest and convert food by studying the nutrient flows and the physiology of the animals in relation to the composition of feeds. They also learn about the effect of feed in relation to health, welfare and behaviour of the animal.

Applied Zoology
Understanding the relationship between structure and function of all systems within the body is the main focus of this specialisation. Students look at organ structures, hormones, bone structure or the immune system of animals and learn how these systems respond to external influences.

Animal Health and Behaviour
Knowledge of the adaptive capacity of animals is required to be able to determine how to keep an animal healthy and how changes affect the animal. Students learn to study behaviour, stress or immune parameters or energy metabolism to determine e.g. which housing system or feed regime is best for animal health and welfare.

Animal Health Management
How can the risk of transmission of infectious diseases be quantified between and within groups of animals? And which factors are of influence on this process? In this specialisation, students learn to combine animal health management at population level with socioeconomic aspects by studying aspects of veterinary epidemiology.

Animal Production Systems
In this specialisation, students will look at animal production systems in relation to the environment worldwide. Students learn about human and animal interaction. They will also study the environmental, economical and social impact that animal production has on the world.

Professional Tracks and International Programmes
In addition to a specialisation, students can choose a professional track that leads to a specific type of career. You can focus on Research, Education, Communication & Policy, or Business & Management. We also offer international programmes that lead to a double master degree, i.e. in Animal Breeding & Genetics, Sustainable Animal Nutrition & Feeding, European Animal Management, or Animal Welfare Assessment.

Your future career

Our graduates work as nutritionists, policymakers, breeding specialists, advisors, managers, researchers or PhD students. They work for feed manufacturing companies, pharmaceutical companies or breeding organisations but also within regional and national governmental organisations, non-governmental organisations or research institutes and universities.

Alumna Linda van Zutphen.
"I work as a Communication Officer for the Research & Development and Quality Affairs department of Nutreco. This company is a global leader in animal nutrition and fish feed. I am involved in marketing and group communication about innovations, quality and sustainability. During my MSc Animal Sciences, I did my internship at Nutreco’s research facility in Spain. The MSc programme provided me with multidisciplinary knowledge on animal production and the skills to apply this. My job gives me the opportunity to combine my scientific background with my passion for communicating about the applications of our research in products for animal health."

Related programmes:
MSc Biology
MSc Forest and Nature Conservation
MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management
MSc Biosystems Engineering
MSc Organic Agriculture.

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MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of specific research topics supported by research active academic staff. Our broad range of research areas relate to food security, farming and rural development. Read more

Course overview

MPhil and PhD supervision covers a number of specific research topics supported by research active academic staff. Our broad range of research areas relate to food security, farming and rural development.

Agricultural research areas include:

Ecological agriculture

This includes: genes and physiological traits, eg resistance to crop pests and diseases, molecular-assisted selection and breeding methods, functional biodiversity for control of pest, disease and weed pressure

Food and human nutrition

Research on food quality including: sensory evaluation; effects of agronomic and production environment on nutrient and phytochemical composition; consumer acceptability; physiological responses to diet

Integrated animal science

An internationally recognised centre of excellence in integrative animal science, drawing on fundamental research and applying it to areas of societal, industrial and policy importance. Our research primarily involves: farm livestock, domesticated animal and wildlife applied research; integrated livestock system development and evaluation; animal behaviour, health and welfare; survival, health and efficiency of nutrient utilisation

Soils, plants and environment

This includes: soil ecology and the contribution of soil biodiversity to soil quality; interpretation of soil and landscape processes to improve understanding of recent and historical environmental change; land degradation processes and their control; water management in irrigated and dryland farming systems; plant environment interactions and their relationships to stress biology; physiological basis of crop yield and quality

Rural development in advanced economies

This includes: impact and implications of ‘local-global’ processes and relationships for rural areas; characteristics and performance of rural businesses and households; rural governance; demographic ageing and social change; living with environmental change

Food systems, consumption and marketing

This includes: consumer studies in food; risk and health; food supply chains and territorial development; international political economy of food and agriculture

Science and technology studies in food and environment

This includes: controversies in food and environment; politics of biosecurity

We offer a number of different routes to a research degree qualification, including full-time and part-time supervised research projects. We attract postgraduates via non-traditional routes, including mature students and part-time postgraduates undertaking study as part of their continuing professional development. Off-campus (split) research is also offered, which enables you to conduct trials in conditions appropriate to your research programme.

Training and Skills

As a research student you will receive a tailored package of academic and support elements to ensure you maximise your research and future career. The academic information is in the programme profile and you will be supported by our Postgraduate Researcher Development Programme, doctoral training centres and Research Student Support Team.

For further information see http://www.ncl.ac.uk/postgraduate/courses/degrees/agriculture-mphil-phd/#training&skills

How to apply

For course application information see http://www.ncl.ac.uk/postgraduate/courses/degrees/agriculture-mphil-phd/#howtoapply

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The Organic food and farming sector within Europe is continuing to develp in response to governmental Action Plans and CAP policy development. Read more
The Organic food and farming sector within Europe is continuing to develp in response to governmental Action Plans and CAP policy development. The organic sector requires highly trained individuals to work as certification officers, advisers, agronomists, farmers, farm managers and livestock specialists. SRUC offers this programme to enable students with a variety of academic and working experiences to gain a fast-track understanding of the key technical production, marketing and management aspects of organic farming and food.

This enables students to build on their existing expertise and aspirations, and to give them enhanced career opportunities as practitioners, promoters and facilitators within the sector.

The organic farming courses are offered on a part-time distance learning basis to allow those in continuing employment or with family commitments to be able to participate. Course participants come from a wide range of backgrounds, including farmers, growers, vets and other agricultural and food sector workers who wish to develop their career and businesses in the organic food and farming sector, as well as those from unrelated backgrounds wishing to increase their knowledge and understanding of organic systems.

Specific course objectives are to provide graduates with:
- An ability to critically appraise organic farming as an agricultural system
- A good understanding of the organic sector
- A sound knowledge of the science underpinning organic farming
- An understanding of the marketing, business & quality assurance requirements for organic produce
- Work placement experience
- Research skills (MSc only)

The course is accessible through its delivery by part-time on-line distance learning.

Course Content

The course modules comprise of a mix of technical production, marketing and management, and skill development modules.

Organic Forage and Livestock Production

This module will provide an understanding of the role of forage legumes in organic systems and describe grassland management systems that maximise the contribution of legumes. Students will also be given an understanding of the organic approach to livestock production, particularly in terms of animal welfare, preventative health management and nutrition.

Soils and Nutrient Cycling

This module will aim to provide the students with the tools for optimal management of their soils. Ultimately, they should be able to describe soil properties, evaluate soil fertility and assess management requirements in the context of organic farming. The module provides an understanding of the chemical, physical and biological features of soil fertility and nutrient cycling and develops practical skills in soil assessment and whole farm nutrient budgeting.

Organic Crop Production

This module will provide an understanding of methods of crop production for arable and vegetable field crops, with particular reference to organic farming in the UK. The module will develop an understanding of breeding, establishment, nutrition, protection, harvesting and storage in the context of organic crop production of field crops.

Organic Farming Case Study

This module will improve the student's ability to undertake whole farm analysis and in particular organic conversion planning. Whole farm analysis involves a range of skills and examination of a wide range of issues: technical, financial, marketing and environmental. The module will require the student to integrate the knowledge gained in other modules, to provide an evaluation and plan for the conversion to organic production of an actual farm example.

Organic Farming Profession

This module will provide an overview of the philosophy, principles, history and development of the organic farming industry. The organic standards will be introduced and the ways in which they are used to regulate the organic food and farming industry at UK, European and world levels will be covered. The roles of the main UK organisations that influence the development of the organic sector will also be explored.

Organic Farming Work Placement

This module will allow students to become familiar with an organisation or business in the organic food and farming sector during a 6-week (or equivalent) work placement. The student will gather relevant and unique material to enable them to carry out a technical and business analysis and make recommendations for future development of the organisation or business in question. The material will also be used in class discussion and to contribute to group learning.

Issues in Organic Farming

This module explores the public goods delivered by organic farming. It develops an understanding of food quality and the role and application of Quality Assurance (QA) Schemes in the organic food sector to meet the needs of relevant legislation and consumer concerns. The module also provides an overview of the principles of environmental management in the context of organic agriculture, helping students gain an appreciation of the potential impacts of agricultural enterprises on the environment, measures for minimising such impacts, and opportunities for incorporating positive environmental management measures into farm business plans.

Marketing and Business Management in the Organic Farming Sector

This module will provide an understanding of the concepts, principles and techniques involved in marketing management and how they are applied in the context of the organic farming sector. Financial accounts are one source of information regarding an organic business, and aid the process of planning and control. This module will provide an understanding of accounts to assist in the process of setting goals within a business and assessing the financial consequences of alternatives.

Course Format

This course is studied part time through on-line distance learning. This allows those in continuing employment or with family commitments to participate. With the exception of several weekend schools and a short study tour, the learning is carried out in the student's home or work place.

The MSc Project (taken following successful completion of taught modules)
Provides an opportunity for in-depth individual research on a topic related to organic farming.

Postgraduate Diploma

The PgDip is a high level learning course taught at university post-graduate level for students who opt not to progress to the Masters. Students are required to complete all taught modules detailed above. Typically a student will study 4 modules per year and complete the PgDip in two years. This would normally take an average of 12 to 15 hours study time a week.

Study Tour

The study tour is used to visit a range of organic and conventional farms as well as businesses operating in the organic food supply and distribution chain. In the taught modules an element of student choice is often built in through the use of essay and other course work topics that cover areas of potential interest. There is also a Work Placement module. Students following the distance learning course may gain exemption from the practical element of the placement but will require to complete a report of their work experience.

The study weekends and short study tour are an integral part of teaching delivery and students are strongly recommended to attend these if they are to succeed in this course.

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