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Full Time Masters Degrees in Environmental Sciences, Netherlands

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Are you up to the challenge of finding innovative methods and sustainable solutions to the threats facing the environment? The Environmental Sciences Master programme at Wageningen University has its roots in the natural, technological and social sciences. Read more

MSc Environmental Sciences

Are you up to the challenge of finding innovative methods and sustainable solutions to the threats facing the environment? The Environmental Sciences Master programme at Wageningen University has its roots in the natural, technological and social sciences.

Students will gain insight into the socio-economic causes and the characteristics of pollution and degradation of the natural environment, including the effects on human beings, the atmosphere, ecosystems and other organisms. This two-year programme is based on an interdisciplinary approach. Students learn to develop analytical tools and models, as well as technologies, socio-political arrangements and economic instruments to prevent and control environmental and sustainability issues.

Programme summary

We are facing a future with an increased demand for food, water, energy and other resources, which will have an enormous impact on our already heavily burdened environment. Environmental challenges for the future include using our resources efficiently, minimising our impact on nature, and creating and changing people’s awareness and behaviour towards their environment.

The MSc Environmental Sciences programme is designed for students who want to take up this challenge in finding innovative and sustainable approaches to secure and improve the state of the environment. This programme provides insight into the socioeconomic causes, the characteristics of pollution and degradation of the natural environment, and their effects on human beings and ecosystems. By taking an interdisciplinary approach, students learn to develop analytical tools and models, environmental technologies, socio-political arrangements and economic instruments to prevent and control environmental problems.

To allow you maximum flexibility in your individual course of study, there are no formal specialisations and compulsory elements are kept at a minimum. This allows you to tailor the programme to your individual needs. Major thesis research can be conducted in one of the ten thesis tracks (major) and each major can be combined with a minor in Environmental Communication or Education.

Thesis tracks

The ten thesis tracks are clustered in 4 groups.

Environmental Quality
Investigates the physical, chemical and biological processes that influence the quality of the environmental compartments: Soil, Water and Air; and the effects of pollutants on humans and ecosystems. Students can choose the thesis tracks Aquatic Ecology and Water Quality Management, Air Quality and Atmospheric Chemistry, Soil Biology and Biological Soil Quality, Soil Chemistry and Chemical Soil Quality, or Environmental Toxicology.

Environmental Systems Analysis
Studies the natural and social processes involved in environmental issues. It aims to develop integrative tools and methodologies and to apply these in strategic research. Students can choose to develop such an integrated approach via the thesis track Environmental Systems Analysis.

Environmental Policy and Economics
Covers the contribution of the social sciences to environmental research. The focus is on the social, political, legal and economic aspects of environmental issues and the goal is to provide students with the skills for studying, formulating and designing innovative forms of national and international environmental governance. You can choose a thesis track in the disciplines of Environmental Policy, Environmental Economics and Natural Resources, or Integrated Water Management.

Environmental Technology
Concentrates on biological, chemical and physical processes for water reuse and the recovery of nutrients, minerals and energy. The aim is to fully understand these processes in order to design and optimise innovative technologies for renewable energy, closing nutrient cycles and solving environmental issues. You can choose any of these topics via the thesis track Environmental Technology.

Your future career

Graduates from this programme are well-equipped to continue their scientific training in a PhD programme or to begin - or continue - a professional career requiring independent scientific performance. Students are taught the knowledge and skills needed to communicate with experts from different disciplines allowing them to play a key role in complex environmental and sustainability issues. Most graduates enter careers in environmental consultancy, research and management, while others are involved in policy development and higher education.

Alumna Charlotte Van Erp Taalman Kip.
Upon graduation, Charlotte started working as environmental consultant at MWH Global. Two years later, she continued her career at the water board Hollandse Delta as innovation engineer. She works together with different parties for implementing innovative and sustainable ideas. One project she is involved in is an initiative of all water boards that focuses on the recovery of valuable compounds in sewage. “It’s time to see our sewage not as a dirty waste stream, but as a valuable resource. We should not destroy this potential of sewage. On the contrary, it is our duty to recover and reuse all its valuable components.”

Related programmes:
MSc Climate Studies
MSc Urban Environmental Management
MSc Earth and Environment
MSc Forest and Nature Conservation
MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management.

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What are the solutions to the environmental issues on a global scale, like climate change, sustainable development and the greenhouse effect? What alternative sources of energy do we need to explore?. Read more
What are the solutions to the environmental issues on a global scale, like climate change, sustainable development and the greenhouse effect? What alternative sources of energy do we need to explore?

The Master's degree programme in Energy and Environmental Sciences focuses on the large-scale issues and tries to contribute to possible solutions to the energy and environmental challenges.

The programme is connected to the Energy and Sustainability Research Institute Groningen (ESRIG). Several research groups are joining forces in ESRIG resulting in a variety of research subjects, such as:

* Polymer and organic solar cells

* Climate and atmosphere

* Geo-energy

* Combustion technology

* Bio-fuels technology, land and ocean-based

* Renewable energy

* Energy and land use scenario's and modeling


The Master's programme is accessible for several Bachelor degrees in Natural Sciences.

Why in Groningen?

- Energy and Sustainability are main research focus areas
- Accessible for several Bachelor's degrees in Natural Sciences
- Excellent career prospects
- Offering interdisciplinary system and several experimental specialisations

Job perspectives

Energy and Environmental scientists from the University of Groningen are renown for their interdisciplinary systems-approach and/or specialised experimental skills. In general they easily obtain jobs in their field of study at or in:
- Research institutes or universities
- Industry
- Companies like major consultancy firms
- Governmental agencies

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If Environmental Sciences is your passion, the specialisation in Water and Environment would be a great choice. This specialisation aims at the insight needed to tackle problems such as climate change, flooding, eutrophication, chemical pollution, habitat fragmentation and bio-invasions. Read more

Master's specialisation in Water and Environment

If Environmental Sciences is your passion, the specialisation in Water and Environment would be a great choice. This specialisation aims at the insight needed to tackle problems such as climate change, flooding, eutrophication, chemical pollution, habitat fragmentation and bio-invasions. We provide you with the laboratory, field and assessment tools needed to protect ecosystem and human health in the context of multiple environmental pressures. After completing the Water and Environment specialisation you will have the qualifications needed for positions at research institutes, industry, consultancies, universities, governments and other scientific and management oriented organisations.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/waterandenvironment

Admission requirements for international students

1. A completed Bachelor's degree in Biology or related area
2. Proficiency in English
In order to take part in this programme, you need to have fluency in both written and spoken English. Non-native speakers of English* without a Dutch Bachelor's degree or VWO diploma need one of the following:
- A TOEFL score of >575 (paper based) or >90 (internet based)
- A IELTS score of ≥6.5
- Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE), with a mark of C or higher

Career prospects

After completing the Water and Environment specialisation you will have the qualifications needed for positions at research institutes, industry, consultancies, universities, governments and other scientific and management oriented organisations.

Our approach to this field

If Environmental Sciences is your passion, the specialisation in Water and Environment would be a great choice. This specialisation aims at the insight needed to tackle problems such as climate change, flooding, eutrophication, chemical pollution, habitat fragmentation and bio-invasions. We provide you with the laboratory, field and assessment tools needed to protect ecosystem and human health in the context of multiple environmental pressures. After completing the Water and Environment specialisation, you will have the qualifications needed for positions at research institutes, industry, consultancies, universities, governments and other scientific and management oriented organisations.

Our research in this field

- Rich programme
This M.Sc. programme not only puts the interactions between organisms into context, it also integrates all levels of organisation from the molecule and the cell up to ecosystems and the landscape. This combination of experience results in a rich and coherent MSc. programme of Master's courses and exciting internships with state-of-the-art research. It prepares you for a career in science, both fundamental and applied, but also provides the necessary knowledge for innovative evidence-based applications in nature and water management.

- Personal tutor
Our top scientist are looking forward to take you with them on a challenging and inspiring scientific journey. This programme offers you many opportunities to follow your own interests under the guidance of a personal tutor. Radboud University offers you a multitude of research fields to choose from in close collaboration with the
- academic hospital UMCN St. Radboud;
- Institute for Water and Wetlands Research;
- Nijmegen Centre for Molecular Life Sciences;
- Donders Institute.

This allows you to specialise in a field of personal interest.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/waterandenvironment

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The Water Technology programme is a two year programme with a joint degree. The programme is offered jointly by Wageningen University, University Twente and University of Groningen with education being provided at the Technological Top Institute for Water technology (TTIW Wetsus), in Leeuwarden. Read more

MSc Water Technology

The Water Technology programme is a two year programme with a joint degree. The programme is offered jointly by Wageningen University, University Twente and University of Groningen with education being provided at the Technological Top Institute for Water technology (TTIW Wetsus), in Leeuwarden

Programme summary

There are a lot of new and existing global problems related to the availability and quality of water for personal, agricultural and industrial use. And these problems require sustainable solutions with a minimal impact on the environment. Water technology has unfortunately not been a focal point of most academic research and education programmes, despite its enormous importance to society. Instead, the expertise of various research groups is usually concentrated on other processes and in some cases, only later dedicated to water treatment in spin-off projects. New technologies will be necessary to develop new concepts for the treatment of waste water. And also for the production of clean water from alternative sources like salt (sea) water, waste water or humid air in order to minimise the use of precious groundwater. These challenges require academically trained experts who can think out-of-the-box and help to find practical solutions in the near future. A dedicated joint Master Water Technology programme has been created to train and educate these experts.

The MSc Water Technology is situated in Leeuwarden, the capital of water technology, and is offered jointly by three Dutch universities: Wageningen University, the University of Twente and the University of Groningen. A combined technological approach, based on state-of-the-art universities in science and technology, will search for solutions to several developments within business and society; with a worldwide impact on the demand for and use of water. One dedicated Master programme with joint degree allows for flexibility and can be adapted to the changing needs of the labour market. Wageningen University offers a strong focus on environmental sciences, the University of Twente on science and technology, and the University of Groningen on fundamental sciences. Students will be educated in the multidisciplinary laboratory of the technological top institute for water technology called Wetsus.

The MSc Water Technology programme specifically targets students interested in beta science and technology. The programme offers a unique combination of scientific insights and technological applications from the field of Biotechnology and Chemical Engineering. This combined approach for problem solving within the global framework of water problems is an asset to the programme. The programme is a valuable addition for postgraduate students with a completed bachelor degree in Environmental Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology; or in related fields with a strong knowledge of mathematics, physics, chemistry and/or biology, and with affinity of water processes. Students are challenged with examples and case studies of real (research) problems that they might encounter as water professionals.

Students apply for the MSc Water Technology programme at Wageningen University, but will be registered at the other two universities as well. They will have access to the facilities of all three universities. Upon the successful completion of the programme, students receive one joint degree MSc Water Technology issued by all participating universities.

Specialisations

There are no official specialisations within the programme Water Technology. Students specialise themselves by doing a thesis within one of the research fields. Some examples are: Priority compounds, Virus Control, Applied water physics, Desalination, Concentrates, Biofouling, Aquatic worms, Advanced waste water treatment, Algae, Separation at source, Resource recovery, Membrane processes and operation for wastewater treatment and reuse and Sensoring.

Your future career

This study domain is becoming more and more relevant due to the urgent need for new technologies to meet global water problems. Water technology for public drinking water production and sewage water treatment is a very large market. Furthermore, the largest use of fresh water is for irrigation purposes. The industrial water supply and industrial waste water treatment also represent a significant market. There is no question that businesses involved in water technology will grow tremendously. Besides this, human capital is a basic condition to guarantee the success and continuity of the development of sustainable technologies. In many EU countries, the lack of talented technological professionals is becoming an increasingly limiting factor. The programme prepares students for a professional position in the broad area of water technology. Graduates have good national and international career prospects in business and research.

Student Stefanie Stubbé.
"Wetsus gave me the opportunity to get personalized education: teachers that take the time for you and fellow students that challenge and collaborate with you at the same time. Water technology is going to be huge in the future; I already experienced that at several companies when I searched for an internship. Although it is sometimes hard work and far away from the "city-life" in the Netherlands; I've never regretted my choice to start this Master!"

Related programmes:
MSc Biotechnology
MSc Environmental Sciences

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The question is no longer if our climate will change, but how will it change and how will we adapt to these changes? Adaption and mitigation to global warming, the greenhouse effect and climate change all form the basis of the Master Climate Studies programme at Wageningen University. Read more

MSc Climate Studies

The question is no longer if our climate will change, but how will it change and how will we adapt to these changes? Adaption and mitigation to global warming, the greenhouse effect and climate change all form the basis of the Master Climate Studies programme at Wageningen University.

Students will gain a broad overview of climate change during this two-year programme. As changes and challenges crystallise, the demand for scientists able to understand and investigate them will rise. This master programme is specifically targeted at students who wish to focus on the scientific insights into climate change and on the social and economic implications of climate change in the broadest sense.

Programme summary

The MSc Climate Studies programme focuses on an improved understanding of climate change across the earth and its impact on ecosystems and society. The debate in science no longer revolves around whether our climate will change, but how it will change, how we can cope with the impact (adaptation), and how we can limit climate change in the long term (mitigation). These issues are important for the entire world and fuel a range of new challenges to natural and social sciences. Society needs answers to questions such as: How will climate change affect ecosystems and how will these in turn affect the climate system? What will the effect be on the availability of water and food? How will climate change issues set national and international political agendas? How will citizens, consumers, companies and other social actors respond to climate change? What will the economic costs be of the impact and measures related to climate change, and how will these costs be distributed globally? Will new social and economic opportunities emerge in the process of adaptation?

As these changes and challenges become ever more apparent, the demand for scientists who are able to understand and investigate them will rise. Wageningen University has therefore bundled expertise from several disciplines in a Master study programme specifically designed for students who wish to focus on the scientific insights into climate change and its implications for nature and society. Climate Studies does not only cover the most important geophysical and biogeochemical processes involved in climate change (the mechanisms), but it also covers the socio-economic aspects of causes and effects; as well as adaptation and mitigation as the main categories of societal response.

Specialisations

Climate Studies gives you a broad overview of climate-change related issues. You can specialise in a topic of your choice during your thesis research. We offer a wide range of thesis tracks:
• Meteorology
• Air Quality and Atmospheric Chemistry
• Hydrology and Quantitative Water Management
• Crop and Weed Ecology
• Nature Conservation and Plant Ecology
• Soil Biology and Biological Soil Quality
• Earth System Science
• Environmental System Analysis
• Integrated Water Management
• Environmental Economics and Natural Resources
• Environmental Policy

You future career

Graduates from this programme are well-equipped with the knowledge and skills to continue their academic training as a PhD student or to start a career as a scientific professional at universities, research institutes, and environmental and governmental organisations. Applied climate change researchers and experts are sought after by banks, insurance companies, construction, power companies and government.

Student Lennart Pompe.
"Climate Studies and the specialisation Integrated Water Management are the perfect combination for me where science and society come together to tackle the challenges the water sector faces. I took the opportunity to enrich my master with the label of the Climate-KIC, a European knowledge and innovation community. I joined several Climate-KIC activities, among others, the inspiring 5-week summer school ‘the Journey’ aimed at developing your own business plan. My thesis focussed on climate change and human development in the Bengal delta and the related salinisation issues. I am excited to enter the Dutch-leading water sector."

Related programmes:
MSc Environmental Sciences
MSc Earth and Environment
MSc Management, Economics and Consumer Studies

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Are you interested in working on solutions for these and other environmental issues? The Wageningen University Master Earth & Environment was born from the necessity of helping the next generations of scientists find solutions for the issues confronting the way we look after our planet, now and in the future. Read more

MSc Earth and Environment

Are you interested in working on solutions for these and other environmental issues? The Wageningen University Master Earth & Environment was born from the necessity of helping the next generations of scientists find solutions for the issues confronting the way we look after our planet, now and in the future. Within the programme you can specialise in Hydrology and Water Resources, Meteorology and Air Quality, Biology and Chemistry of Soil and Water or Soil Geography and Earth Surface Dynamics.

Programme summary

Planet Earth is a complex, interactive and fascinating system. Protected by a thin layer of atmosphere, it provides all the essentials needed to sustain life and support living organisms. Natural processes and human needs often clash, leading to a wide range of environmental issues. Water scarcity and quality, soil degradation , food supply , loss of biodiversity, vulnerability to severe weather, and climate change are just a few examples of key issues that need to be addressed urgently.

As a Wageningen University geoscientist, you study Planet Earth and its ability to sustain life. Using tools from physics, chemistry, biology and mathematics, you build a quantitative understanding of the composition, structures and processes of the Earth and its atmosphere; as well as its resources and the influence of human activity. Thus, you have an important role to play in improving natural resource management and in removing obstacles to sustainable development.

Your study of the Earth system largely focuses on gaining an understanding of the interdependent physical, chemical and biological processes, and developing models that describe these processes on relevant scales. You develop scenarios that describe expected local, regional and/or global changes and the time scale on which they will occur. The Wageningen MEE focuses on the Earth’s ‘Critical Zone’ -including the atmospheric boundary layer, where flows of energy and matter determine the conditions for sustaining life; hence its name: Earth and Environment.

Specialisations

• Hydrology and Water Resources
The focus of this specialisation is to study the effects of climate change and other influences on the water balance of catchments to support optimal land management when dealing with hydrological extremes.

• Meteorology and Air Quality
Would you like to contribute to further understanding of atmospheric processes and their relevance for weather and climate? In this specialisation you learn about physical-chemical processes, the composition of the atmosphere and the exchange between the atmosphere and earth's surface and meteorology.

• Biology and Chemistry of Soil and Water
This specialisation allows you to develop an in-depth understanding of chemical and biological processes and their interactions in soils and natural waters, and their role in the functioning of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems in a world that faces increasing anthropogenic pressures. You learn how these insights can contribute to develop effective strategies for the preservation and restoration of soil and water quality, biodiversity, and the functioning of natural ecosystems and the services they provide.

• Soil Geography and Earth Surface Dynamics
This specialisation allows you to explore the spatial and temporal processes that are active in soils, landscapes and the wider earth system. It uses an integrative approach that combines biophysical and human elements to gain insight in past, present and future system dynamics.

The combination of specific discipline training and the Earth System approach prepares you for working on the scientific and societal questions of the future. You can also choose from a selection of elective courses, and we also offer a special variant in preparation for a PhD.

Your future career

The MSc Earth and Environment programme offers our graduate scientists excellent opportunities to develop their career in research or as a science professional at universities, research institutes and consultancies. Our graduates can be found all over the world, working as meteorologists, hydrologists, water quality scientists or soil scientists, to name but a few disciplines.

Are you interested in working on solutions for these and other environmental issues? The master programme was born from the necessity of helping the next generations of scientists find solutions for the issues confronting the way we look after our planet, now and in the future.

Alumnus Nick Gorski.
NIck Gorski came from Canada to Wageningen because of the excellent reputation the Netherlands has in the field of water. He conducted two thesis research projects during his time here. The first dealt with the fluxes of sediment-bound contaminants in a river basin in southwestern Turkey. The second involved the development of a new modelling methodology for heterogeneous flow and solute transport in unsaturated soils. “I had the opportunity to take classes, do field work and research in other countries. It was an excellent way to put theory into practice.” After graduating Nick went on to work for the KWR Watercycle Research Institute in Nieuwegein, the Netherlands.

Related programmes:
MSc Biology
MSc Climate Studies
MSc Environmental Sciences
MSc International Land and Water Management
MSc Plant Sciences.

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The Urban Environmental Management programme is an international and interactive programme providing a balanced curriculum of theory, tools and application. Read more

MSc Urban Environmental Management

The Urban Environmental Management programme is an international and interactive programme providing a balanced curriculum of theory, tools and application. It aims to train students to guide the future along the path of sustainable urbanisation.

Programme summary

The world we live in is an increasingly urban one. Over the past century, a great population shift has occurred from rural to urban areas. Cities now hold half of the world’s population and it is estimated that three out of every five people will live in an urban environment by 2030. This development calls for measures to control the environmental impacts of urbanisation, such as growing traffic, increasing waste emissions, deteriorating air and water quality, and rising energy and resource consumption. Of particular concern are the speed and scale of urbanisation in the developing world as many Asian, African and Latin-American cities are incapable of providing adequate housing and basic urban services. Inadequate water supply, sanitation, waste collection and waste management systems are the cause of serious urban pollution and health hazards. Sustainable management of the urban environment has become one of the major challenges for the future.

The MSc Urban Environmental Management programme aims at equipping its students with the outlook, concepts and tools to manage the urban environment. The programme unites four essential perspectives on the urban environment: environmental quality and health, environmental infrastructure and technology, spatial planning, and governance. Besides integrated theories and views from several disciplines, urban environmental management requires technical and managerial competencies and skills for its implementation. Consequently, the programme provides a balanced curriculum of theory, tools and application. It emphasises the development of an interdisciplinary outlook, critical-thinking, analytical problem solving and practical decision making skills through a combination of teamwork, practical simulation exercises, field trips and an individual research project.

Specialisations

The internship programme offers a valuable opportunity to gain practical experience in a country and organisation as desired. Students can conduct their major thesis research within seven thesis tracks:
• Environmental Economics
• Environmental Policy
• Environmental Systems Analysis
• Geo-information Science
• Management Studies
• Land Use Planning
• Urban Systems Engineering

Experimental thesis research will usually be part of ongoing research programmes of chair groups or research institutes of Wageningen UR. Otherwise, thesis topics originate from the student's own research interests or from discussions with potential supervisors

Your future career

Graduates from the MSc Urban Environmental Management are well-equipped with the skills and knowledge to continue their academic training as a PhD student or to begin careers as researcher, adviser or consultant in for example the utilities companies, the services or manufacturing industries, or in governmental organisations.

Alumnus Indra Firmansyah.
“The MSc Urban Environmental Management helped me a lot in acquiring knowledge of both environmental technology and management. After my graduation in 2011, I returned to my home country Indonesia where I worked for the firm Royal HaskoningDHV on a project that focused on urban sanitation development. Recently, I started a PhD at Wageningen UR on the topic of closing nutrient cycles by reusing treated domestic waste (water) in agriculture and aquaculture, taking the Caribbean island St. Eustatius as a case study. This research is interdisciplinary and requires combining the expertise of spatial planning, new sanitation, agriculture and aquaculture.”

Related programmes:
MSc Environmental Sciences
MSc International Development Studies
MSc Landscape Architecture and Planning.

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The Plant Sciences programme has been designed to help meet the worldwide demand for scientific expertise in the development of plant and crop production and farming systems. Read more

MSc Plant Sciences

The Plant Sciences programme has been designed to help meet the worldwide demand for scientific expertise in the development of plant and crop production and farming systems.

Programme summary

Plant Sciences deals with crop production ranging from plant breeding to the development of sustainable systems for the production of food, pharmaceuticals and renewable resources. It is linked with a professional sector that is highly important to the world economy. The programme focuses on the principles of plant breeding, agro-ecology and plant pathology and the integration of these disciplines to provide healthy plants for food and non-food applications. Technological aspects of crop production are combined with environmental, quality, socio-economic and logistic aspects. Students learn to apply their knowledge to develop integrated approaches for sustainable plant production.

Specialisations

Crop Science
Sound knowledge of crop science is essential to develop appropriate cultivation methods for a reliable supply of safe, healthy food; while considering nature conservation and biodiversity. An integrated approach is crucial to studying plant production at various levels (plant, crop, farm, region). This requires a sound understanding of basic physical, chemical, and physiological aspects of crop growth. Modelling and simulation are used to analyse yield constraints and to improve production efficiency.

Greenhouse Horticulture
Greenhouse horticulture is a unique agro-system and a key economic sector in the Netherlands. It is the only system that allows significant control of (a-) biotic factors through protected cultivation. The advances in this field are based on technological innovations. This specialisation combines product quality with quality of production and focuses on production, quality- and chain management of vegetables, cut flowers and potted plants.

Natural Resource Management
The development of sustainable agro-ecosystems requires understanding of the complex relationships between soil health, cultivation practices and nutrient kinetics. Other important aspects include the interactions between agriculture and nature, and competing claims on productive land worldwide. Natural Resource Management provides knowledge and tools to understand the interactions between the biotic and abiotic factors in agro-systems to facilitate diverse agricultural demands: bulk vs. pharmaceutical products, food vs. biofuel, conservation of biodiversity, climate change, and eco-tourism.

Plant Breeding and Genetic Resources
Plant Breeding and Genetic Resources ranges from the molecular to the population level and requires knowledge of the physiology and genetics of cultivated plants. Plant breeding is crucial in the development of varieties that meet current demands regarding yield, disease resistance, quality and sustainable production. The use of molecular techniques adds to the rapid identification of genes for natural resistance and is essential for accelerating selection by marker assisted breeding.

Complete Online Master
In September 2015, Wageningen University started the specialisation "Plant Breeding" as the first complete online Master of Science. For more information go to http://www.wageningenuniversity.eu/onlinemaster.


Plant Pathology and Entomology
The investments made in crop production need to be protected from losses caused by biotic stress. Integrated pest management provides protection by integrating genetic resistance, cultivation practices and biological control. This specialisation focuses on the ecology of insects, nematodes and weeds, and the epidemiology of fungi and viruses, including transmission mechanisms. Knowledge of plantinsect, plant-pathogen, and crop-weed relations establishes the basis for studies in integrated pest management and resistance breeding.

Your future career

Graduates in Plant Sciences have excellent career prospects and most of them receive job offers before graduation. They are university-trained professionals who are able to contribute to the sustainable development of plant production at various integration levels based on their knowledge of fundamental and applied plant sciences and their interdisciplinary approach. Graduates with a research focus are employed at universities, research institutes and plant breeding or agribusiness companies. Other job opportunities are in management, policy, consultancy and communication in agribusiness and (non-) governmental organisations.

Alumnus Maarten Rouwet.
“I was born in Germany and raised in the East of the Netherlands. After high school I applied for the Bèta-gamma bachelor at the University of Amsterdam where I majored in biology. After visiting the master open day at Wageningen University I knew that the master Plant Sciences had something unique to offer. In my master, I specialised in plant breeding, an ever so interesting field of research. I just started my first job as junior biotech breeder of leavy vegetables at Enza Zaden, a breeding company in Enkhuizen. One of my responsibilities is to identify resistances in wild species of lettuce and to implement these in breeding programmes of cultivated lettuce.”

Related programmes:
MSc Biosystems Engineering
MSc Biotechnology
MSc Biology
MSc Forest and Nature Conservation
MSc Organic Agriculture
MSc Plant Biotechnology.

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Marine Sciences studies how marine systems and processes operate naturally and how they change through human intervention. Seas and oceans play an important role in our day-to-day lives, and over 65% of the world's population lives or works in coastal areas. Read more

CONTRIBUTE TO THE SUSTAINABLE USE OF SEA AND OCEAN RESOURCES

Marine Sciences studies how marine systems and processes operate naturally and how they change through human intervention.

Seas and oceans play an important role in our day-to-day lives, and over 65% of the world's population lives or works in coastal areas. Vital for our economy and health – as well as for climate, food, and biodiversity – seas and oceans have immense societal significance. However, the oceans are changing rapidly as human-induced pollution and CO2 emissions lead to global warming and ocean acidification. The impact on organisms, ocean chemistry, and currents on short to long timescales is uncertain, affecting both business and policy making.

As part of your two-year Master's programme in Marine Sciences, students will learn how marine systems and processes operate naturally – and how they change through human intervention. The programme offers multidisciplinary cutting-edge information in this rapidly developing field.

PROGRAMME OBJECTIVE

The Marine Sciences Master’s programme will enable you to specialize in the physical, chemical, biological, and geological processes taking place in seas and oceans. You will investigate how seas and oceans functioned in the past, are functioning at present, and will function in the future.

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The MSc Programme is intended for mid-career professionals with an interest in environmental sciences and in maintaining environmental integrity in relation to human development. Read more
The MSc Programme is intended for mid-career professionals with an interest in environmental sciences and in maintaining environmental integrity in relation to human development.

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The MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management (MAM) is a two year programme, which comprises of 120 credits (ECTS). Students learn to manage living resources in all types of water bodies, natural or man-made. Read more

MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management

The MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management (MAM) is a two year programme, which comprises of 120 credits (ECTS). Students learn to manage living resources in all types of water bodies, natural or man-made. The programme provides understanding of the biology and ecology of aquatic organisms and water bodies.

Programme summary

Oceans, seas, estuaries and lakes are major providers of ecosystem goods and services such as food, tourism and coastal protection. In many cases, exploitation levels have bypassed the carrying capacity of these ecosystems, leading to devastating effects on biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. To preserve marine biodiversity and its ecosystem functions, innovative and sustainable solutions are necessary. Therefore, there is a need for young professionals who know how to take an integrative approach to marine ecosystems management.

The MAM programme starts with courses that give a common basis on aquaculture and marine resource management. In these courses, you will learn the principles of marine ecology and the governance of marine systems, the biology and ecology of aquatic organisms and the role of science in public policy processes. Within the Aquaculture and Marine Resource master programme, you can choose one of three specialisations: Aquaculture, Marine resources and ecology, Marine Governance. Graduates are skilled in techniques and methods for analysing and solving biological environmental problems in aquatic systems by looking at the organisms and the communities including ecological, management and social aspects.

Specialisations

All students acquire a thorough understanding of processes governing life in any type of water body. In addition, students can choose to put more emphasis on any of the following aspects: ecology, natural resource management, capture fisheries or aquaculture. Depending on the specialisation the topics differ.

Aquaculture
This specialisation deals with the culture of numerous aquatic organisms (such as finfish, shrimp, shellfish, ornamental fish, corrals, sponges and algae) in a wide range of culture environments (from sea enclosures to semiextensive ponds and high-tech recirculation systems). Production methods should be sustainable, guarantee the health and wellbeing of the culture organisms, be economically viable, socially accepted, and result in safe and healthy products. This can only be achieved through knowledge and skills in aquatic production ecology based on knowledge of biological, physical and chemical integrity of water bodies and insight in economic and social driving factors.

Marine Resources and Ecology
This specialisation focuses on the sensitivity of marine communities in relation to human interventions, including climate change, fisheries and habitat destruction. You will learn to address limiting factors in order to be able to contribute to an improved biodiversity, environmental quality and sustainability of marine ecosystems. To do so, it requires insight into the ecological processes that form the basis for marine food chains, the interaction between species and the functioning of the different ecosystems.

Marine Governance
The main focus of this specialisation lies on the sustainable governance and economics of marine and coastal systems. The goals and strategies of commercial enterprises, non-governmental and governmental organisations and international institutions are analysed, and their effects are evaluated in relation to both organisations and ecosystems involved.

Your future career

The interest in sustainable management of the seas and coasts is booming, while there are only few professionals available with an integrated and specialised training in this field. Numerous types of specialists are needed, including technical specialists, researchers, consultants and project leaders in commercial, governmental and non-governmental organisations.

Alumna Pascalle Jacobs.
"I had already graduated as a terrestrial ecologist before I started the Master Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management. I started the MSc Aquaculture and Marine Resource Management mainly because I saw a lot of potential in marine research. I did my thesis at IMARES and after my graduation they gave me the opportunity to work there as a PhD on a research project. In my research, I look at if and to what extent big amounts of young mussels attached to ropes or nets (mussel seed collectors) change the environment. These young mussels eat a lot so one of my research questions is if this grazing affects the amount of food available for other animals."

Related programmes:
MSc Animal Sciences
MSc Biology
MSc Environmental Sciences
MSc Forest and Nature Conservation.

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Radboud University’s Master’s specialisation in Microbiology deals with the interface between fundamental biological and medical sciences. Read more
Radboud University’s Master’s specialisation in Microbiology deals with the interface between fundamental biological and medical sciences. It focuses on molecular, medical and environmental microbiology to improve our health and environment and provides in-depth insight into present-day microbial research in general and clinical microbiology.

The major topics of the Microbiology specialisation are:

Environmental microbiology and Biotechnology

Microorganisms can be used to break down environmental pollutants and toxic chemicals. Therefore microbiology has the potential to replace common energy-intensive chemical processes with more sustainable solutions. Radboud University collaborates closely with environmental scientists and industrial partners to create energy-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions for societal waste problems.

Immunology

Unfortunately some microorganisms make us ill. A better understanding of battle between our immune system and these microorganisms will lead to the development of improved vaccines.

Molecular Microbiology

The genome of a microorganism is a key factor in research, because it determines how the organisms interact with the host cell and how they cause diseases. Molecular Microbiology acts on the interface between microbiology, molecular biology and genetics and is fundamental for the development of novel antibiotics and improvement of vaccines against microorganisms.

Top research

The department of Microbiology at Radboud University has been bestowed with the most prestigious science prizes, including two ERC Advanced Grants, a Spinoza Prize, and two Gravitation Grants. Additionally, many of out students have been awarded prizes for best thesis, poster and paper. The department works at the forefront of environmental microbiology and is specialised in the discovery of ‘impossible’, new anaerobic micro-organisms. The laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art bioreactors, electron microscopy, GC-MS, metagenomics, and metaproteomics facilities to grow and study micro-organisms that contribute to a better environment by consuming greenhouse gasses and nitrogenous pollutants.

Our approach to this field

- Research themes
The Master's specialisation Microbiology is mainly focused on research. You can choose one of the following themes as the subject of your research internship:

- Environmental Microbiology & Biotechnology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: How does life without oxygen work? How do global biogeochemical (nutrient) cycles govern the functioning of the Earth? Can we use microorganisms to create a more sustainable wastewater industry? How do microorganisms break down environmental pollutants and toxic chemicals?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, environmental sciences and biochemistry. The research questions cover several levels, from gaining fundamental understanding of energy metabolism of bacteria to their applications in wastewater treatment.
Societal relevance: Microbiology has the potential to replace common energy-intensive chemical processes by more sustainable solutions. Radboud University collaborates closely with environmental scientists, animal ecologists and industrial partners to create energy-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions for societal waste problems.

- Immunology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: Why do some bacteria make us ill whereas others do not? How do bacteria outsmart our immune system? What are the mechanisms of human defence against microorganisms?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, Immunology and Cell Biology, and can, for example, work on how microorganisms are recognised by the host defence system
Societal relevance: A better understanding of host defence will lead to the development of improved vaccines against microorganisms.

- Molecular Microbiology
For students who are intrigued by questions like: How are microorganisms able to persist inside the human body and how do they cause diseases? What does gene regulation tell us about their pathogenic capabilities? Can microbial genomes help us determine how microorganisms interact with human host cells?
You will do research at the interface between Microbiology, molecular biology and genetics, and can, for example, work on functional gene analyses by mutagenesis studies and on the interaction between epithelial cells and pathogenic bacteria.
Societal relevance: Understanding host-pathogen interactions is fundamental for the development of novel antibiotics and improvement of vaccines. Radboudumc collaborates with public health institutes – such as the RIVM (National Institute of Public Health) – and with industrial partners.

- Personal tutor
Our top scientists are looking forward to guiding you during a challenging and inspiring scientific journey. This programme offers you many opportunities to follow your own interests under the excellent supervision of a personal tutor. This allows you to specialise in a field of personal interest.

- The Nijmegen approach
The first thing you will notice as you enter our Faculty of Science is the open atmosphere. This is reflected by the light and transparent building and the open minded spirit of the people working, exploring and studying there. It is no wonder students from all over the world have been attracted to Nijmegen. You study in small groups, with direct and open contact with members of the staff. In addition, Nijmegen has excellent student facilities, such as high-tech laboratories, libraries and study ‘landscapes'.

Studying by the ‘Nijmegen approach' is a way of living. We will equip you with tools which are valuable for the rest of your life. You will be challenged to become aware of your intrinsic motivation. In other words, what is your passion in life? With this question in mind we will guide you to translate your passion into a personalised Master's in Biology.

See the website http://www.ru.nl/masters/microbiology

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The two-year Master's programme in Water Science and Management gives students an in-depth understanding of modern water management techniques and water policies from a sustainable development perspective. Read more

Contribute to Sustainable Water Management

The two-year Master's programme in Water Science and Management gives students an in-depth understanding of modern water management techniques and water policies from a sustainable development perspective. Students gain an understanding of water's role with regard to humanity and nature as well as the societal impact of interventions in the water cycle.

The programme integrates knowledge from natural and social sciences as a response to emerging needs in the field. Trends such as sustainable development, stakeholder participation, and economic accountability increasingly complicate the tasks of water managers. This has given rise to a need for water managers with a broad societal focus on water management issues, operating next to and in cooperation with more traditional and technical water managers. The Water Science and Management programme is an excellent choice for students who are interested in both the scientific analysis of the water system, and the application of water science in integrated and complex societal problems that occur in contemporary water management.

Tracks

Depending on your undergraduate education and interests, you can apply for one of two tracks and specialize in an Environmental Sciences or Earth Sciences profile.

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During the two-year MSc programme in Forest and Nature conservation you will learn about forest management, deforestation, forestry, ecosystem conservation, wildlife management, social aspects of nature and more. Read more

MSc Forest and Nature Conservation

During the two-year MSc programme in Forest and Nature conservation you will learn about forest management, deforestation, forestry, ecosystem conservation, wildlife management, social aspects of nature and more.

Programme summary

This programme focuses on policy, sustainable management and conservation of forest and nature; i.e. understanding and predicting the effect of phenomena such as global climate change, deforestation, biodiversity loss, ecotourism, timber production, hunting and animal reintroduction. Insights into all aspects of forest and nature conservation are required to address these issues with emphasis on both ecological and social aspects. The MSc Forest and Nature Conservation programme represents an integrated approach to natural resource management that can be applied at different scales, to diverse ecosystems and in varying political and social contexts. A tailor-made structure, an outstanding research environment and three comprehensive specialisations contribute to making the programme challenging for undergraduates from both the natural and social sciences.

Specialisations

Policy and society
The central study object is the dynamics between people, organisations and institutions within policymaking and policy innovation processes, referred to as `governance'; relative to forest and nature conservation issues, including spatio-temporal aspects. Issues in the field of economics, public administration, communication and strategic planning are addressed in order to conserve and manage forests and natural areas in a sustainable way. Examples are: recreation, communities and natural resources, deforestation, forest governance, sustainable forestry and certification schemes.

Management
This specialisation aims to design and assess realistic and feasible management options for forests and natural areas. The approach is based on specific knowledge and understanding of wildlife management, management of forests and other terrestrial vegetation. Special attention is given to the following questions: What is the best option for wildlife conservation? Do populations need to be managed or not? How does one determine an optimal population level? How should the effects of various management activities, at different spatial and temporal scales, be evaluated? How should the perceptions of different people be dealt with? What are the best options in forest management for a specific area? How to manage nature? How to deal with abiotic, biotic and social bottlenecks in restoration ecology? What is the role of N and P pollution? How to restore shallow lakes? How to restore tropical forests? It is also possible to focus on specific aspects of natural resource management.

Ecology
The emphasis is on understanding the ecological processes that form the basis for the structure, composition and functioning of forests and natural areas. You can specialise in tropical forestry, landscape ecology, animal ecology, forest resource management, plant ecology, biodiversity conservation or tropical nature conservation.

Your future career

The programme provides excellent preparation for Dutch as well as European and non-European jobs. Career possibilities include positions at research institutes and universities, government ministries and local authorities. Positions are also available at state and private forestry, nature conservation services, and environmental assessment agencies. Examples include the European Forest Institute, Birdlife International, and landscape and animal protection organisations such as RAVON or WWF. In the private sector, graduates find jobs at engineering and consultancy bodies, such as Royal Haskoning, the National Fund for Rural Areas or forestry companies. Graduates often begin their career by carrying out research, computer analysis and modelling of ecological systems, working in knowledge transfer or preparing policy documents. Eventually, their careers usually shift towards advisory work, consultancies, research coordination and project management.

Alumnus Wouter Wubben.
Wouter Wubben works for the municipality Westland and is responsible for matters concerning ecology, landscape and water quality. “When I just started working I could directly apply the ecological knowledge from my master, and I was able to pick up missing knowledge very quickly”. Wouter went to the USA to work on forestry for his internship. “During my internship I worked in the field with a lot of different teams, this experience now helps me to communicate with people involved with the implementation of municipality plans. I have a constantly changing job, I started with executive work but I am now responsible for the development of issues in ecology, landscape and water.”

Related programmes:
MSc Animal Sciences
MSc Biology
MSc Development and Rural Innovation
MSc Landscape Architecture and Planning
MSc Geoinformation Science
MSc International Development Studies.

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In the Master's in Toxicology and Environmental Health you gain knowledge and skills in the recognition and evaluation of human or animal exposure to potentially hazardous factors in the environment. Read more

Toxicology and Environmental Health

In the Master's in Toxicology and Environmental Health you gain knowledge and skills in the recognition and evaluation of human or animal exposure to potentially hazardous factors in the environment.

The Master's programme in Toxicology and Environmental Health deals with the health risks of exposure to potentially harmful agents in the environment, in the workplace and through the food chain. Possible effects on ecosystems are also examined.This two year research programme is comprised of theoretical courses, a major and minor research project to gain practical skills, and the writing of a final Master's thesis. This programme is organised by the Institute for Risk Assessment Sciences (IRAS), an inter-faculty institute of Utrecht University; for your research projects it is therefore possible to work within one of the divisions of IRAS. Your minor project may also be carried out at an institute outside Utrecht University or abroad; or depending upon the career you find most appealing, you may replace your minor research project with a professional profile, including Management, Communication & Education, or Drug Regulatory Sciences. Graduates of the programme are prepared for further PhD studies in fundamental or applied research, or for a post at an academic level; they may work as toxicological risk assessors, occupational hygiene consultants, or forensic specialists.

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