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Masters Degrees in Agricultural Geography, Ireland

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This Masters Programme is extremely timely as it comes when there is increasing attention being placed upon the role and function of rural economies and societies. Read more
This Masters Programme is extremely timely as it comes when there is increasing attention being placed upon the role and function of rural economies and societies. The development agenda for rural areas within a rapidly-changing context for agriculture and the broader countryside sees pressures to achieve economic competitiveness and efficiency balanced with concerns relating to food security, environmental protection and climate change, and where questions of equality, social inclusion, quality of life and the public good are central. Reflecting particularly the globalizing nature of agriculture and rural development processes, the MA in Rural Sustainability addresses the nature of rural and agricultural change not only across a range of dimensions (economic, social, political, cultural), but also scales (local, national, global), locations (Europe and beyond), and interfaces (e.g. human and non-human). As such, it situates itself within the context of leading contemporary and emerging thinking and research on the rural, drawing on concepts and theories, as well as methodologies and practices that critically engage with these varied dimensions of the rural.

€3000 Award for Best Student Performance in MA in Rural Sustainability

The Dr. Patrick Commins Rural Research Award, valued at €3,000 per annum, for the best overall MA student performance was announced at the official launch of the MA in Rural Sustainability in December 2012. Dr. Maura Farrell, Director of the MA, spoke of her delight at the announcement of this prestigious award, and praised Teagasc for their generous sponsorship and their support of the programme. Dr Farrell described the award ’as a considerable incentive for current and future students interested in rural studies and a real vote of confidence in the quality and importance of the Masters programme’. In particular Dr Farrell felt that in these economically stringent times, the award was a statement about the importance of rural issues in broader global economic recovery and the need to develop well-informed and educated leaders who understand the complexities of rural economy and society. The award is a tribute to Dr. Commins who was a leading academic and researcher in rural issues and had a long and distinguished career with their organisation. His reputation as an expert on rural affairs extended well beyond Ireland, and his knowledge and experience was regarded as key to informing EU and wider international academic and policy debates.

Launch of the Master of Arts in Rural Sustainability

NUI Galway has officially launched a new Masters Programme in Rural Sustainability. The full-time, one year postgraduate programme is being co-ordinated by the Discipline of Geography within the School of Geography and Archaeology, and it already has a full complement of students in place for the first year of its operation. The Programme has been devised in response to increasing attention nationally and internationally on the role and function of rural economies and societies. NUI Galway holds a distinguished tradition of rural research and teaching. As a European University that is itself situated in a rural and peripheral location, it seeks to continue its leadership role in rural affairs through providing a postgraduate career path in rural studies. The Programme was officially launched by Professor Gerry Boyle, Director of Teagasc. This association with Teagasc, particularly with its own strong leadership in rural research, is an important component of the programme as it unites expertise in rural theory, research and practice, ultimately benefiting the student experience and future employability.

Why Choose this Programme?

If you are interested in rural sustainability, rural innovation, multifunctionality and agriculture, and you wish to contribute in a meaningful way to rural affairs and potentially influence the contribution rural areas can make in revitalizing the economy at national and European level, this MA Programme can support such an ambition. This MA will enable students to develop theoretical competencies and independent research capacities, with the ability to transfer and apply these to real world contexts and settings.

The programme is delivered by a team of dedicated and highly respected academics and researchers from the School of Geography & Archaeology and by motivated contributors from other associated Schools, from other Universities and from Research Institutions; by individuals drawn from policy and practice-based domains.

This MA situates itself within contemporary and forward-looking perspectives on the rural; however, it also builds on a long-established track record of rural studies and rural research conducted at NUIG, with strong networks of collaboration at national, European and wider international levels across academic and research institutions, as well as the Institutions of the European Union.

In particular, this MA expands on a highly successful EU-funded Framework 7 research project (DERREG), exploring contemporary and future challenges facing rural areas in an era of globalization. It thus represents an important transfer of knowledge from research that has been built on relevant international case-study examples from 6 EU member states and which has informed critical theoretical discussions and policy debates on the rural at EU level. This development to a taught programme offers students an opportunity to benefit from such knowledge and expertise drawn from widely differing rural contexts.

Career Opportunities?

As a graduate of this programme, you will possess a depth of rural-specific knowledge combined with a host of transferrable skills. This combination will equip you to work in a selection of contexts that require the ability to think at conceptual levels about rural-related issues and transfer this knowledge into practical applications and solutions in policy, management and consultancy domains. Among the potential employment settings are national and international organizations and agencies with a rural development remit, groups and consultancies related to a range of government programmes, government departments and other public sector organizations concerned with the rural sector.

The MA is Rural Sustainability is also designed to enhance students’ prospects for undertaking further research at PhD level, with our students being well placed to pursue PhD studies in universities nationally and internationally.

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Given the wider development of Citizen GIS and an increased public awareness and knowledge of the power and value of spatial data, vastly increased amounts of such data from different sources are now available to researchers. Read more

Overview

Given the wider development of Citizen GIS and an increased public awareness and knowledge of the power and value of spatial data, vastly increased amounts of such data from different sources are now available to researchers. However, in order to turn these data into useful information, they must be efficiently managed, processed and analysed before being displayed in a comprehensible format. Geographical Information Systems and the associated field of Remote Sensing greatly aid us in such tasks. The course is equally split between both parts - GIS and Remote Sensing - with four core module introducing the theory and practice of both subject at an introductory and advanced level. Geographical Information Systems or GIS as they are better known, are widely used in a wide variety of subject fields across the physical and social sciences and even in the humanities, with applicability in everything from archaeology and astronomy to geomorphology and globalisation to soil science and social planning. Remote Sensing – the analysis and interpretation of aerial and satellite imagery – has transformed the manner in which we view the Earth. The synoptic view of the Earth that it has given us has greatly improved our understanding of atmospheric and oceanic processes, sustained environmental management and the interaction of humans with the natural world. It is now a standard research tool in many fields such as geology, geography, pollution control, agriculture and climatology. Additional optional modules in Programming, Spatial Databases and Remote Sensing of the Subsurface are also available to students who want to develop the technical side more fully, though the course has a strong applied flavour throughout. In addition, all students complete a work placement in the Summer months which allows them to gain valuable practical experience to test and develop the skills learnt across the course.

Aims of the Course:
- To provide highly qualified, motivated graduates who have been trained in Geographical Information Systems, Remote Sensing and Digital Image Processing and who can apply the information technology skills they obtain.

- To produce marketable graduates who will make significant contributions to GIS and RS application areas including; industry, government, academia, the community and voluntary sector and other public and private bodies.

- To provide an understanding of Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing, the technology involved and its applications for specific investigations.

Course Structure

The course consists of 6 modules, 5 of which are compulsory. Two of these cover the theoretical concepts underpinning GIS and Remote Sensing. Two other modules involve gaining the theoretical and technical skills necessary to become proficient in the management and analysis of spatial data. A fifth module involves an assessed work placement during the summer months. Modules include work placement, theoretical remote sensing, digital image processing and advanced remote sensing, introductory GIS systems and science and GIS in practice with optional programming, spatial databases and geophysics modules.

Career Options

The MSc in GIS and Remote Sensing is first and foremost a course to skill students for work in a wide range of employment areas. These include a wide range of government and semi-state agencies, local authorities and the voluntary sector, especially in areas associated with the environment and planning. In addition, graduates have worked in a wide range of private sector organisations and businesses, where the ability to work with and critically managed big spatial data is increasingly valued. Successful students have also proceeded to PhD level research and gained employment in academia.

How To Apply

Online application only http://www.pac.ie/maynoothuniversity

PAC Code
MHN58
The following information should be forwarded to PAC, 1 Courthouse Square, Galway or uploaded to your online application form:

Certified copies of all official transcripts of results for all non-Maynooth University qualifications listed MUST accompany the application. Failure to do so will delay your application being processed. Non-Maynooth University students are asked to provide two academic references and a copy of birth certificate or valid passport.

Find information on Scholarships here https://www.maynoothuniversity.ie/study-maynooth/postgraduate-studies/fees-funding-scholarships

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