The taught M.Sc. degree in Environmental Sciences, as the first of its kind in Ireland, has an established pedigree, attracting students with diverse academic backgrounds from Ireland and abroad. This full-time, intensive course is intended for administrative and scientific workers and new graduates with an appropriate biological/earth science background. It comprises a series of taught modules encompassing a variety of current environmental themes, followed by a five-month, research project. There is also the possibility to opt for a diploma course in Environmental Sciences, consisting of the taught modules only.
The course provides students with a wide range of knowledge and skills relating to the expanding subject of Environmental Science. It aims to provide a firm scientific understanding of current environmental issues that will be of relevance to those interested in environmental management and related areas. The course provides a foundation of understanding of current environmental policies and legislation, and builds upon this with practical and theoretical courses that include subjects such as ocean and coastal management, water resources and pollution, climate change and environmental impact assessment. Theory and practice are closely linked to develop field, analytical, and presentation skills, including dedicated modules relating to data analysis and Geographic Information Systems. The course provides the opportunity to develop interests in particular areas of Environmental Science through tutorials, seminars and an extended desk study.
Following successful completion of the taught part of the course, students embark on a closely supervised research project intended to expand the skills and knowledge base acquired in earlier modules. Previous research projects have covered a diverse range of subjects including: groundwater contamination; atmospheric heavy metal deposition; environmental education; sewage processing systems; bio-indicators of marine pollution; and the impacts of erosion in African lakes.
Previous graduates of this M.Sc. course have been employed by a range of agencies involved in environmental protection, as environmental consultants and in local government. Many graduates have gone on to do further research in a range of environmentally related disciplines. Graduates from the course have pursued their interests in environmental sciences throughout the world.