• University of Leeds Featured Masters Courses
  • Ulster University Featured Masters Courses
  • Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine Featured Masters Courses
  • Birkbeck, University of London Featured Masters Courses
  • Swansea University Featured Masters Courses
  • University of Cambridge Featured Masters Courses
  • Goldsmiths, University of London Featured Masters Courses
  • Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University Featured Masters Courses
King’s College London Featured Masters Courses
University of Leicester Featured Masters Courses
Sheffield Hallam University Featured Masters Courses
Ulster University Featured Masters Courses
Swansea University Featured Masters Courses

MSc Radiation and Environmental Protection

Course Description

Established in 1972, Surrey's MSc in Radiation and Environmental Protection is one of the UK’s longest running programmes in the field of nuclear science and its applications. The substantial practical element of this programme enables you to relate taught material to real-world application.


In addition to the formal lectures for taught modules, the programme provides a wide range of experimental hands-on training. This includes a nine-week radiation physics laboratory which takes place in the specialist radiation laboratories within the Department of Physics (http://www.surrey.ac.uk/physics/) at the University of Surrey. These were recently refurbished as part of a £1 million upgrade to the departmental teaching infrastructure.

Visit the website http://www.surrey.ac.uk/postgraduate/radiation-and-environmental-protection

Programme overview

Our programme aims to provide you with a thorough grounding in the radiation and environmental protection aspects of nuclear physics. This includes giving you an in-depth knowledge of radiation protection and showing you how the technical and organisational procedures of the discipline may be applied to the broader concept of environmental protection.

The substantial practical element of the course enables you to relate taught material to real-world application.

As well as attending formal lectures, you will carry out work in radiation laboratories. There is also an extended project in the spring and an eleven-week MSc dissertation project in the summer. You will use a wide range of radioactive sources and radiation detectors.

Three second semester modules are taught as intense one week sort-course modules. They cover nuclear metrology, nuclear waste management, and environment and legislation. These modules are offered also as part of the Continuing Professional Development programme.

The MSc benefits from both the strong research base in the Department and a number of external lecturers who are working specialists in their fields. The programme’s longstanding reputation within the field and strong industrial links ensure that our graduates are highly sought after for well-remunerated positions in both the public and private sectors.

The programme is taught by a combination of world-leading nuclear physics academics and leading experts from the UK’s radiological protection and nuclear industries.

Module overview

The MSc Radiation and Environmental Protection programme comprises nine compulsory elements.

Semester 1 modules:

• Radiation Biology
This module begins with an overview of human biology, followed by a discussion of the nature of the interaction of ionising radiation with biological systems. The module emphasises the effects at the cellular level and the impact that this has on the individual and across the population. The effects of ingested radionuclides are also covered.

• Radiation Laboratory Skills
The laboratory work is designed to give you practical experience in handling radioactive substances. Initially work comprises scripted experiments, but later on students are asked to design their own.

• Radiation Measurement
This module will give you an understanding of the physical/chemical principles underlying the operation of a wide range of techniques for detection/dosimetry of ionising radiation. On completion, students will be able to make appropriate choices of instrumentation in practical situations.

• Radiation Physics
This module provides a general overview of atomic and nuclear physics. You will gain an understanding of the structure of matter, radioactivity, types of radiation and the mechanisms by which radiation interacts with matter.

Semester 2 modules:

• Environment and Legislation
This module describes the legislative framework of environmental protection, describing the major concepts in the field. It reviews the establishment and verification of systems for environmental protection, considering both legal and economic aspects. The module includes a practical review of environmental protection as applied in the nuclear and related industries.

• Extended Group Project
This module consists of Monte Carlo simulations using the FLUKA code and an intensive group research project.

• Nuclear Metrology
This module gives an introduction to radiation metrology. Calibration standards, uncertainties and quality assurance will be discussed in the first part. It will be followed by lectures on radiochemistry, nuclear dating and nuclear forensic.

• Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety
International legislative frameworks of radiation protection are discussed at the beginning of this module. From this starting point, the module covers population and personal exposures to radiation, the principles of dose calculations and example procedures for implementing radiation protection programmes. The module will also describe reactor operation and fuel composition, and includes an overview of reactor decommissioning, fuel storage and disposal.

• Research Project and Dissertation
An extensive dissertation project is carried out during the summer.

Teaching and learning

On this programme, you will gain:

Professional skills:

- A systematic understanding of radiation and environmental protection in an academic and professional context, together with a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights

- A comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to your own research project in radiation and/or environmental protection

- Originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of radiation-based, experimental research projects

- An ability to evaluate and objectively interpret experimental data pertaining to radiation detection

- Familiarity with generic issues in management and safety and their application to radiation and environmental protection in a professional context

Core academic skills:

- The ability to plan and execute, under supervision, an experiment or investigation, and to analyse critically the results and draw valid conclusions from them

- The ability to evaluate the level of uncertainty in results, understand the significance of uncertainty analysis and be able to compare these results with expected outcomes, theoretical predictions and/or with published data – graduates should be able to evaluate the significance of their results in this context

- The ability to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in the discipline of radiation protection

- The ability to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, make sound judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate your conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences

Personal and key skills:

- The ability to both communicate complex scientific ideas and the conclusions of an experiment, investigation or project concisely, accurately and informatively

- The ability to manage your own learning and to make use of appropriate texts, research articles and other primary sources

- Responsibility for personal and professional development, and the ability to use external mentors for personal/professional purposes


The programme has produced over 500 UK and overseas graduates, many of whom have gone on to well-paid positions in companies in the nuclear and radiation sectors. In the UK we need to decommission old reactors and build new ones to provide a low-carbon source of energy. This, together with, for example, the importance of radioisotopes in fields such as medicine, means that the career prospects of our graduates are excellent.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.surrey.ac.uk/apply/postgraduate

Visit the MSc Radiation and Environmental Protection page on the University of Surrey website for more details!

Student Profiles

Discounts for Surrey graduates - No. of awards TBC

If you are a self-funded UK, EU or international student who has studied for an undergraduate degree at the University of Surrey campus in Guildford, you could be eligible for a ten per cent discount on our taught postgraduate Masters programme fees. This scheme is for applicable to Postgraduate Taught entry students only and is reviewed annually.Students who graduated in 2013 are eligible, as well as alumni from previous years, on receipt of evidence of the award from Surrey and where we can identify that you actually studied in Guildford. Students from SII-DUFE are eligible for this scheme.Associated Institution students are not eligible. Not available to modular self-pacing students.

Value of Scholarship(s)

10% tuition fee discount


Self-funded UK, EU or international student who has studied for an undergraduate degree at the University of Surrey campus in Guildford

Application Procedure

If you have any enquiries regarding this matter please contact the Student Fees and Funding Office on .


GREAT Surrey Scholarships India - 6 Awards

Funded by the University and the UK government’s GREAT Britain campaign, up to six scholarships worth £5,000 (paid in the form of a fee discount) are being offered on postgraduate taught courses from the following subjects:- Chemical and Process Engineering
- Chemistry
- Civil and Environmental Engineering
- Computer Science
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering
- Environment and Sustainability
- Mathematics
- Mechanical Engineering Sciences
- PhysicsWHO CAN APPLY?You can apply for a GREAT Surrey Scholarship if:- You hold a high first-class degree from an Indian university (the minimum requirement is 65 per cent from a prestigious university or 70 per cent from a regional university).
- You hold an offer from Surrey to study any MSc course within the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, as listed above (you must hold an offer before submitting an application for a scholarship)

Value of Scholarship(s)



The GREAT Scholarship – India programme is aimed at high-calibre Indian students who want to study for a postgraduate programme in engineering.

Application Procedure

To apply, you will need to complete the online form - http://www.surrey.ac.uk/content/great-scholarships-india-2016

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A minimum 2.2 honours degree (or overseas equivalent) in the physical or environmental sciences, electronics or in a relevant engineering discipline.English language requirements: IELTS minimum overall: 6.5; IELTS minimum by component: 6.0

Email Enquiry

Recipient: University of Surrey
Insert previous message below for editing? 
You haven’t included a message. Providing a specific message means universities will take your enquiry more seriously and helps them provide the information you need.
Why not add a message here
* required field
Send a copy to me for my own records.
Email Sent

Share this page:

Cookie Policy    X