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Coastal Engineering - MSc

Course Description

Do you want to be involved in the defence, protection and management of the world’s coastlines? Aimed at engineers and physical scientists, our MSc Coastal Engineering combines the theory of waves and tides with coastal modelling, port engineering and management. Supported by a team of experienced staff in one of the largest coastal engineering research groups in the UK, you’ll gain expertise to help progress your future career.

Key features

-Broaden your coastal engineering expertise by selecting from a range of options, including port policy and management, modelling of coastal processes, remote sensing and GIS, mechanics of marine renewable energy structures, and assessment of coastal resource impacts.
-Deepen your knowledge through collaboration with our large, internationally-recognised research group.
-Be inspired by our new £19 million Marine Building, housing the acclaimed COAST laboratory which offers facilities for teaching water and coastal engineering as well as conducting world-class research.
-Benefit from a degree accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired an Accredited CEng (Partial) BEng (Hons) or an Accredited IEng (Full) BEng/BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree. See http://www.jbm.org.uk for further information.
-Recent graduates work as scientists, researchers or engineers at graduate destinations such as: Arup, Mott MacDonald, Environment Agency, Symprove, HR Wallingford, Mining Searches UK, Canterbury Council and JBA Consulting.
-Take part in an integral work placement year and conduct the programme over two years.

Course details

You’ll study the theory of waves, tides, surges and modern techniques in coastal data collection and analysis, including GIS and remote sensing. You’ll study core topics in coastal and port engineering, gain research skills, be introduced to numerical modelling techniques and obtain hands-on experience of using state-of-the-art software tools. Towards the end of the programme, you’ll have the opportunity to undertake a substantial research project focused on an aspect of coastal engineering, supervised by academic staff actively researching this field. You may also have the option of undertaking a placement year in industry.

Core modules
-MAR513 Research Skills and Methods
-BPIE500 Masters Stage 1 Placement Preparation
-COUE506 Port and Harbour Engineering
-PRCE505 MSc Dissertation
-COUE507 Coastal Engineering

Optional modules
-MAR706 Port Policy and Management
-MATH523 Modelling Coastal Processes
-MAR528 Mechanics of MRE Structures
-MAR512 Assessment of Coastal Resources and Impacts
-MAR518 Remote Sensing and GIS

Final year
Core modules
-BPIE504 Civils Masters Industrial Placement

Every postgraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the programme aims, the programme structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

Visit the Coastal Engineering - MSc page on the Plymouth University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Bonita Rickard

639.jpg After 16 years working as an Administrator I was looking for a career change. After successfully completing the Foundation Pathways in Technology course I was able to progress onto the BEng (Hons) Civil & Coastal Engineering degree and then decided to continue my studies on the MSc in Coastal Engineering in order to specialise within this field. The BEng (Hons) Civil & Coastal Engineering degree at the University of Plymouth is widely respected within the engineering community and this has allowed me to secure a good job as a coastal engineer.

Since graduating from the MSc in Coastal Engineering I have been working in the Plymouth office of Hyder Consulting (with whom I spent my undergraduate placement year) as a Graduate Engineer. My work has included assisting with the project management of the design checks for a tender submission for a port redevelopment in Scotland, proposals for a hydro-electric power scheme - which has included the investigation of alternative methods of excavating the bed material from an existing tidal reservoir - and a study to determine the viability of a cross-Forth Passenger ferry service, to relieve some of the congestion on the Forth Road Bridge.


Plymouth University graduates - Automatic Postgraduate Bursaries - 20+ Awards

This award is available for:Graduates of the University of Plymouth assessed as Home or EU.
Enrolled on a full-time taught postgraduate programme on which a postgraduate fee is charged and no student loan is available.
Where the student is self-funded.
Where the student is part funded/sponsored the discount will apply to the self funded element of the tuition fee only.Please note:The award is not available from postgraduate to postgraduate programmes.
The following programmes are not covered by this postgraduate discount: PGCE programmes and Graduate Diploma in Architecture.
The award of 10% off the fees is only redeemable once, within the first year of the programme.

Value of Scholarship(s)



A 10% alumni discretionary award is available in all faculties for Home and EU graduates.

Application Procedure

Automatic scholorship.Contact [email protected]

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Minimum of a lower second class honours degree (2:2) in engineering or physical science subject e.g. geography, environmental science or physics. Students with advanced standing who can evidence an academic ability to similar levels may also be considered. Applicants with overseas qualifications can check their compatibility with the UK equivalent through NARIC, who provide an advisory service.

Last Updated

24 April 2017

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