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Integrated Management of Freshwater Environments MSc

Course Description


This programme is delivered in close collaboration with our advisory board of representatives from the water industry, and provides fundamental and applied training in the science and management of freshwater environments. Combining hydrology, geomorphology, biogeochemistry and ecology, the degree is designed to produce outstanding scientists capable of developing interdisciplinary environmental solutions to priority water resource and catchment issues. It involves fieldwork at our research sites including the near-natural Tagliamento River, Italy, and heavily impacted rivers within London and the south-east of England.

This programme:

- facilitates networking within the water and environmental sectors
- lets you develop core understanding of freshwater environmental systems and the key policy and legal frameworks that underpin their management
- provides hands-on training in flood estimation and inundation modelling using industry-standard software
- allows you to broaden your skills and knowledge in the monitoring and management of pollutants, nutrient levels and greenhouse gas emissions in aquatic systems
- provides training in river assessment methods
- develops your skills and knowledge in the theory and practice of river restoration
- learn transferable skills in field and lab methods, project management, statistical analysis, Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and the use of remotely sensed data, report writing, problem solving and presenting
- follow in the footsteps of our graduates who have secured positions in the water and environmental sectors including Jacobs, Halcrow Group, JBA Consulting, River Trusts, Thames Water, Environment Agency, Parish Geomorphic and ESIS Inc.


Modules can include: Catchment Science in Practice; Flood Risk Management and Modelling; River Assessment and Restoration; Biogeosciences and Ecosystem Services; Field Methods for Freshwater Environmental Science; Data Analysis; Physical Modelling of Fluvial Processes; Desk Study. (check QMUL website for latest)

Become a part of QMUL Geography

- Almost 80 per cent of our research outputs (books and articles) are rated as world-leading (4*) or internationally excellent (3*) placing us 5th in the UK for this measure. Our research scores increased across all areas in the latest UK score of research excellence (REF 2014) and we're ranked joint 11th for geography in the UK overall. We're also proud to feature in the top 100 departments in the world to study geography (QS World University rankings 2015)
- 100% of respondents from our postgraduates were in work or further study six months after graduation; 93% at graduate level
- QMUL postgraduates earn an average salary of £34,515 on completing their programme
- You will develop knowledge and understanding relevant to employment in organisations such as Environment Agency, Defra, Natural England, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, British Geological Survey and environmental consultancies.


A bursary of up to £4,000 is available from the Worshipful Company of Water Conservators for this programme. Contact Dr Gemma Harvey at to find out more.


Students visit our researchers' site at the near-natural Tagliamento River in Italy as well as heavily-impacted rivers in London and the south east of England.

This programme is led by Dr Gemma Harvey, Senior Lecturer in Physical Geography.

Visit the Integrated Management of Freshwater Environments MSc page on the Queen Mary University of London website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Katy Kemble

1907.jpg “I chose the Queen Mary masters programme because it included everything I wanted to do while giving enough detail in specific areas. It gave me the background knowledge I needed in order to get my job as a graduate geomorphologist as well as skills such as presenting. The regular coursework deadlines helped me prepare for consultancy work and my thesis provided the opportunity to work with potential employers in external agencies, which was highly important to me.
"The passion and enthusiasm from the teaching staff really contributed to my enthusiasm for geomorphology and the continuing rapport has been invaluable even after my course has finished."

(Student Profile)

Laura Kerrigan

As a Canadian, I was concerned about my post-graduate prospects within the UK; however achieving my masters at Queen Mary provided me with the necessary qualification and knowledge to obtain a graduate career within the UK. I also now feel confident to pursue work internationally.

My studies at Queen Mary equipped me with an in-depth understanding of hydrology, the various important principles and processes, and the implications of these for water resources / freshwater management. As a result, I felt well prepared and sufficiently confident for my interview with Halcrow. Additionally, I have been able to apply what I have learned in my everyday work.

I work on a range of projects within the Water and Environmental Management business group. So far, my work has mostly been within the broad field of flood risk and drainage management. For example, I am currently involved in a project to assess the standard of protection offered by flood defences built after the UK 2007 events. I am also helping to develop a framework to support UK water companies in making informed decisions about storm water reduction and separation measures.

My favourite aspect is the variety in the type of projects and the ability to work flexible hours (‘flextime’). I also enjoy the ability to collaborate with others on projects and find I am continually learning from key specialists in the field.

(Student Profile)

Grant Tregonning

3804.JPG “I chose to continue studying at Queen Mary due to the exceptionally strong fluvial research group who provided expertise knowledge and support throughout my undergraduate studies. I also found the School of Geography to be highly supportive of students and found the quality of teaching to be incomparable. Studying here allowed me to develop a fantastic network of contacts, specialist knowledge of the environmental sciences and an insight into the world of academia.”


Worshipful Company of Water Conservators Bursary - Single Award

A bursary of up to £4,000 is available from the Worshipful Company of Water Conservators for 2016 entry on to this programme. Please contact the programme convenor Dr Kate Spencer at [email protected] for further details.

Value of Scholarship(s)



This bursary is open to Home students (UK) for 2016 entry.

Application Procedure

Applicants should put together a short statement (max. one side of A4), explaining why they believe they should receive the award. This is then considered alongside your academic achievements. The deadline for application is 5pm on Friday 15th July 2016.

Further Information



Chevening Scholarships - 20+ Awards

The programme makes awards to outstanding scholars with leadership potential from around the world to study postgraduate courses at UK universities.

Value of Scholarship(s)

Full tuition fees


Available to students across the UK and Overseas (from a Chevening-eligible country).

Application Procedure

Visit the Chevening website for more information.

Further Information



Walter Oldershaw Award - 8 Awards

Eight awards will be available across all masters degrees offered by the School of Geography for 2016 entry.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Home/EU and international students are eligible to apply.

Application Procedure

Interested applicants must submit a 300-word statement elaborating why they should be considered, highlighting their academic and professional merit and details of how the award will further their professional development. Applications should be sent to the Postgraduate Studies Manager ([email protected]) by Friday 15th July 2016. Successful candidates will be informed on the 22nd of July 2016 and must confirm acceptance by the 15th of August 2016. Further details or queries should be addressed to the Director of Masters Programmes, Dr Kavita Datta ([email protected]).

Entry Requirements

An upper second class honours degree or higher in a relevant subject from a UK university (or an equivalent international qualification) together with two supportive references is usually required. It is not a requirement to have previously studied geography and we encourage applications from students from a natural and environmental sciences background. Candidates who do not meet these criteria but have relevant work experience will be considered and are encouraged to contact the programme convenor.Good English language ability is required to the standard of IELTS, or equivalent at a level of 6.5.

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Recipient: Queen Mary University of London
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