Nematodes or roundworms are everywhere. They are among the most harmful organisms of crops, especially in the tropics, but on the other hand, some species are natural antagonists that can be used in bio-control programs against pest insects. Because of their ubiquitous presence, overwhelming densities and diversity (sometimes compared to insects) the free-living nematodes are an ideal tool for biodiversity studies. They are used as bioindicators of pollution in both terrestrial and aquatic environments.
The first master year consists of 60 credits compulsory courses of which the first semester are basic nematology courses aimed at bringing all students to the same level. The second semester is more specialized and applied.
During the first master year and the summer holidays, students follow the Summer Course: Networking & Seminars. This course consists of participation to international symposia, a seminar day, visits to companies and institutes in the EU working on nematodes or in a related field. This course is a compulsory course of the second master year.
In the second master year, students should choose between 3 tracks:
- UGent Track: 2 compulsory courses and choice of 20 credits elective courses: students can decide in this track to further specialize or broaden their knowledge to other fields than nematology. It is possible to choose for a professional internship.
- Kenya Track: all compulsory courses aiming to give students a better experience to work in a tropical region. It consists of some compulsory courses at UGent, after which students go to Kenya in November/December to do an internship and to follow two courses at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (Icipe). These courses are focused on integrated pest management and agricultural extension services, and students will also be involved in the training of local students during a workshop in nematology.
- International Mobility Track: for students who wish to experience Erasmus Exchange in another EU university.
The last semester focuses on the master dissertation.
The International Master of Science in Agro- and Environmental Nematology prepares students for a career in very diverse fields and environments. Their work can vary between teaching, research in universities and laboratories in governmental institutions and industry and providing advisory services to the general public, farmers or governmental policies. The multidisciplinary approach allows nematologists to be active both in the field of biology and agro-engineering and medicine, work in sophisticated laboratories (advanced molecular and genetic research) as well as in suboptimal conditions where there is hardly any basic equipment as in some developing countries. Main trumps are: in-depth and broad scientific knowledge, capacity to analyze and solve problems, write research proposals, good communication skills and contacts with national and international nematologists and centers of nematological research and applications or related fields.
More information: http://www.imanema.ugent.be