Masters degrees in Community Ecology offer advanced scrutiny of the coexistence of different species groups within the same locality, including their interactions, trophic structure (food resources), spatial structure and biodiversity.
Popular specialisms and related subjects include Conservation Ecology, Evolutionary Ecology as well as branches of Anthropology. Entry requirements normally include an undergraduate degree in a relevant subject.
Put simply, courses in this field examine why some places contain more species than others – human or otherwise. They are often interdisciplinary in nature, including exploration of evolutionary history through palaeobiology and paleobotany, as well as ecogenomics – the molecular study of an organism’s responses to its environment.
You may wish to specialise in areas such as ethnobiology and ethnobotany, or the management of threatened species and restoration of endangered wildlife and ecosystems.
Careers may include roles as policy coordinators, management positions within zoo keeping and wildlife conservation programmes, or research careers including lab-work. For a career in academia, your Masters is ideal preparation for further study at PhD.
Ecology is an important discipline to inform many different environmental management issues which often involve wider impacts being assessed for planning and other purposes. There is an increasing desire to utilise sites which are environmentally sensitive and this puts pressure on ecology and habitat survival. There are many other types of environmental impacts which are often hidden but also affect Ecology such as the many different pollutants which are often highlighted monthly. Species decline is becoming a well known issue globally and the ability to maintain and continue species and grow is important in a declining environment.
The programme comes from a very strong department which has been ranked consistently at number 1 in soil science and soil ecology in the UK (REF 2014). The Master's in Ecology has very solid foundations as it has been taught to generations for over 50 years and with this comes considerable knowledge and experience. With this programme you get a chance to influence how we utilise our environment and manage it to the best ability to preserve our ecology.
Our MSc programme provides flexibility to enable you to gain knowledge and skills to meet your career aspirations, whether in research or as a practicing ecologist. The programme runs through a full year, starting with a field course and culminating in a major research project. You will have the opportunity to gain hands on experience of everything from field survey to chairing discussions, from statistics and modelling to report writing and from identifying important ecological questions to researching them and writing a scientific paper. Previous graduates have gone on to the top of their chosen profession in research, consultancy, conservation, policy, education and advocacy.
Experimental Design and Analysis
Introduction to GIS
Population and Community Ecology
Statistics for Complex Study Designs
Introduction to Ecological Field Research in Northern Scotland
Molecular Ecological Techniques
Soils for Food Security
Introduction to Bayesian Inference
Research Project Planning
Environmental Impact Assessment
Spatial Information Analysis
Marine Spatial Management and Top Predators
Readings in Ecology, Conservation and Environment
Ecology, Conservation and Society
Environmental Management Plan
Applied Forest Ecology
Advanced Modelling for Ecology and Conservation
Project in Ecology
Find out more detail by visiting the programme web page
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*Please be advised that some programmes have different tuition fees from those listed above and that some programmes also have additional costs.
View all funding options on our funding database via the programme page
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This programme is a unique collaboration, jointly delivered by Southampton and Marwell Wildlife. Marwell Wildlife is a conservation charity with a zoological park as part of its conservation profile. It undertakes a broad portfolio of conservation research including managing individuals and populations of threatened species and restoration of endangered wildlife and ecosystems. This MRes is the only wildlife conservation programme currently available in the UK to offer such a high degree of interaction between a university and a conservation organisation. Its ultimate aim is to produce individuals with the skills, experience and academic credentials required for employment as conservation biologists. To provide an immersive experience for students and to ensure we have the scope to cover all that the MRes encompasses, the course is based on a full calendar year, running from October until late September. The MRes is a full-time course, with no provision for a part-time option at this time. Tuition fees will depend on which research project is undertaken.
- Wildlife Conservation: Disciplines and Principles
- Fieldwork- Before, During and After (10 day field course to Marwell Wildlife's conservation and research site in Kenya)
- Techniques in monitoring and surveying
- Advanced Quantitative methods
- MRes Wildlife Conservation research project (independent research in the UK or Africa)