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Environmental Modelling - MSc/PGDip/PGCert

Course Description

There is a growing need for qualified professionals with expertise in environmental modelling. The UCL Environmental Modelling MSc is a cross-disciplinary degree that provides rigorous technical and scientific training for the next generation of environmental modelling professionals.

Degree information

You will gain a well-rounded training in the role, implementation and application of models in environmental science. Core modules provide a critical perspective on model-based science, and introduce essential computational and numerical methods. The programme is contextualised with reference to the challenges of understanding both natural and human-induced changes to a variety of environmental systems.

Students take modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of four core modules (60 credits), optional modules (60 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits). A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits, full-time nine months, part-time two years) is offered. A Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits, full-time 12 weeks, part-time one year) is offered.

Core modules
-Models in Environmental Science
-Global Environmental Change
-Scientific Computing
-Analytical and Numerical Methods

Optional modules - options may include:
-Climate Modelling
-Coastal Change
-Environmental GIS
-Impacts of Climate Change on Hydro-Ecological Systems
-Ocean Circulation and Climate Change
-Surface Water Modelling
-Terrestrial Carbon: Monitoring and Modelling
-Other MSc modules offered across UCL may be taken at the discretion of the MSc convenor

All students undertake an independent research project, culminating in a dissertation of approximately 12,000 words and an oral presentation.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, and laboratory and computer-based practical classes. Assessment is through independent project work, practical-based and written coursework, written examinations and the dissertation.


The programme has been designed to provide an ideal foundation for PhD research, or for employment with environmental monitoring and protection agencies, industry and environmental consultancies. Graduates have gone on to careers as management consultants, business analysts and university researchers.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-Research Fellow, University of Girona and studying PhD Sanitas, Universitat de Girona (University of Girona)
-Risk Analyst, Canopius

Modelling was identified as the highest priority UK skills gap in a government review of the environmental sector. This MSc programme exposes students to the full range of environmental modelling which places graduates in a strong position to find employment. We anticipate that graduates of this MSc are either employed in the private environmental consulting sector or undertake a PhD.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Environmental Modelling MSc is run by UCL Geography which enjoys an outstanding international reputation for its research and teaching. Research groups contributing to the MSc include those concerned with environmental modelling and observation, past climates, and recent environmental change and biodiversity.

The programme draws on the unrivalled strengths of UCL in environment modelling. Our expertise encompasses state-of-the-art global climate models, regional ocean models, advanced hydrodynamic and hydrological simulations, palaeoclimate reconstruction over geological to recent historical timescales, earth observation-derived vegetation and carbon cycle modelling, and model-based assessment of climate change impacts on coastal, estuarine and freshwater systems.

Visit the Environmental Modelling - MSc/PGDip/PGCert page on the University College London website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Matthew Raywood

"The Environmental Modelling MSc appealed to me because it had a strong mixture of theory and application in the research topics I was interested in. I also wanted to improve upon my computing skills in terms of programming and GIS. Gaining an MSc gave me a definite advantage in getting into catastrophe modelling, and the knowledge acquired on modelling during the programme really helps me understand how the models we use at work are built and what uncertainties are present."


UCL Graduate Support Bursary - 20+ Awards

UCL is making 93 individual bursary awards available. Each bursary will cover the full tuition fee cost for the programme and provide £10,000 in maintenance funding per year.

Value of Scholarship(s)



The scheme is aimed at supporting traditionally under-represented groups to progress on to graduate study at UCL. All applicants will be required to demonstrate that their annual household income is currently under £42,611. This scheme is open to prospective students domiciled in the UK (that is, UK is your country of "ordinary residence”) who have "Home" tuition fee status.

Application Procedure

This initiative is funded through the HEFCE Postgraduate Support Scheme. The UCL Graduate Support Bursary scheme forms part of UCL’s wider initiative to support graduate Master’s students.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Applicants are expected to have a first or upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant subject (e.g. computer science, environmental science, geography, oceanography, engineering, mathematics, physics or biology) from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with relevant professional experience will also be considered.

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