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Biological Sciences×

Masters Degrees in Biodiversity, Ireland

We have 4 Masters Degrees in Biodiversity, Ireland

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This blended-learning course applies an evidence-based approach to developing pragmatic solutions for environmental problems with particular emphasis on integrating biodiversity within land-use planning. Read more

Course Outline

This blended-learning course applies an evidence-based approach to developing pragmatic solutions for environmental problems with particular emphasis on integrating biodiversity within land-use planning. Students will learn how to deal effectively with the potential environmental impacts of development manner and in compliance with environmental legislation. The modular course is devoted to formal scientific and policy coursework delivered in a flexible learning format, comprising a mixture of face-to-face contact once every five weeks in addition to private study combined with e-tutorial on-line support. Key areas covered include Appropriate Assessment, Environmental Impact Assessment and Strategic Environmental Assessment.

Core Modules

YEAR 1:
Ecosystem Science (5 ECTS)
Introduction to Flora & Fauna (5 ECTS)
Ecological Survey Techniques (5 ECTS)
Biodiversity Legislation & Policy (5 ECTS)
Habitat Identification & Assessment (5 ECTS)
Habitat Creation, Management & Restoration (5 ECTS)

YEAR 2:
Environmental Impact Assessment (5 ECTS)
Strategic Environmental Assessment (5 ECTS)
Appropriate Assessment (5 ECTS)
Climate Change & Biodiversity (5 ECTS)
Water Framework Directive & Biodiversity (5 ECTS)
Invasive Species & Biodiversity (5 ECTS)

Research Project (30 ECTS)

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This programme has been designed to provide students with a sound theoretical and practical grounding in the science of biological diversity and its conservation. Read more
This programme has been designed to provide students with a sound theoretical and practical grounding in the science of biological diversity and its conservation. The programme is taught in modules, and these are grouped into theoretical components, practical research skills, and modules dealing with individual desk-based and experimental research projects. The course is taught through a variety of methods - lectures, practical classes, field-based learning, guided reading and discussion groups and web-based methods. A variety of assessment procedures are used - essay writing, oral presentations, web-based tests, examinations and dissertations. The approach is to develop, progressively, a high degree of independent thinking and academic excellence in students completing the course.

Following successful completion of the taught part of the course, students embark on a closely supervised research project of approximately three months duration, intended to expand the skills and knowledge base acquired in earlier modules.

This is a full-time, intensive programme that will run over a twelve-month period. All modules are compulsory for M.Sc. candidates while P.Grad.Dip. candidates are required to take all modules except the Research Project.

The programme provides in-depth training and experience for those looking to further their career in various aspects of biodiversity and its conservation, for students wishing to pursue further post-graduate research in this area, and for professionals already working in conservation biology wishing to obtain relevant qualifications.

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“A one year MSc degree that focuses on how animal behaviour can be applied to wildlife conservation. You will study the behaviour of a wide range of species from marine, freshwater and terrestrial habitats.”. Read more

“A one year MSc degree that focuses on how animal behaviour can be applied to wildlife conservation. You will study the behaviour of a wide range of species from marine, freshwater and terrestrial habitats.”

The course consists of six taught modules (5 ECTS each) and a major research thesis (60 ECTS). The taught modules are: Studies in Conservation Behaviour; Data Analysis using R and RStudio; Residential Field Course; Applied Geographic Information Systems; Animal Behaviour: Recording and Analysis; Acoustic Monitoring as a Marine Conservation Tool.

Course Highlights

Teaching by research-active staff working in the field of Conservation Behaviour, with particular interests in aquatic species.

A residential field course on an island off the west coast of Ireland, where the behaviour of a number of species will be studied in a natural setting.

A major research thesis on a real conservation problem, in collaboration with a supervisor from GMIT and a supervisor from an external organisation.

Career Opportunities

Graduates will be well prepared for careers in wildlife conservation and management, or may continue to PhD research. Potential employers include: Ecological Consultancies, Non-Governmental Organisations and Charities, Research Institutes and Government Agencies.

How to Apply

We are currently accepting applications through the post. To request an application form, please contact Dr Martin Gammell at:

For any queries about the application process please contact the Admissions Office at +353 (0)91 742305, or at

For any queries about the course please contact the course coordinators: Dr Martin Gammell, email: , or Dr Joanne O’Brien, email:



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The ReNu2Farm project will explore the demand for nutrients and organic matter, at farm and regional levels, with the aim to make a map of regions in North West Europe with their specific nutrient and organic matter needs and propose alternatives to conventional fertilisers derived from recycling. Read more

The ReNu2Farm project will explore the demand for nutrients and organic matter, at farm and regional levels, with the aim to make a map of regions in North West Europe with their specific nutrient and organic matter needs and propose alternatives to conventional fertilisers derived from recycling.

The project is a large European collaborative effort and involves multiple research partners from academia and industry from Belgium (2), France (1), Germany (2), Ireland (3), Luxembourg (1) and the Netherlands (1). The project is funded by the Interreg NWE (North-West Europe) programme, part of the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund).

Specific Project Information

Nematode analyses will be done mostly using morphological approaches via microscopy based on appropriate keys. In addition, where necessary, molecular techniques will also be utilised to PCR amplify and sequence the 18S rDNA of certain nematode taxa. Data analysis by statistics and bioinformatics will also be carried out and various ecological indices will be calculated to assess the ecological impact of the novel fertilisers to the environment. 

This position will provide the opportunity to the successful candidate to complete a Level 9 Master Degree by research, specialising in the environmental field, and most specifically on the ecological impact assessment of recycling derived fertilisers.

• A literature review will be completed by both students as soon as they start to bring them to the state of the art in this area.

• The students will work closely with two Irish partners (Teagasc, University of Limerick) to investigate the impact of fertilisers derived from recycling approaches on the microbiota (nematodes, fungi and bacteria) of Irish grass land soil.

• The successful candidates will have the opportunity to interact in a multidisciplinary European wide research project with important environmental application for sustainable agriculture, with relevant stakeholders in Ireland and in project partner countries.

• The project will involve traveling to trial sites, taking samples of soil and plant material, extracting nematodes, identifying them morphologically, extracting DNA and RNA, purification and quantification of DNA/RNA, sending nucleic acid samples for sequencing analysis, curating and analysing sequencing data and preparing data for publication, both in highly specialised scientific journals, but also in popular science media and project technical reports as required.

• The projects will involve travelling to meetings and conferences as required. 

The successful candidates are expected to take up the postgraduate positions no later than September 2018.

Note: Postgraduate fees will be covered and a student stipend will be paid monthly for the duration of the project to each successful applicant.

Please apply to: Dr Thomaé Kakouli-Duarte () on or before 4th June 2018



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