This Masters will prepare you in the physical sciences and mathematics for a research career in climate, atmospheric or environmental sciences. It ideally bridges the gap between undergraduate studies in physical/natural sciences and engineering, and study for a PhD. Alternatively, if you decide to leave academia, the highly transferable skills gained from this course could lead to a research role in industry or government.
Gain a broad overview of physical problems in climate and atmospheric science, together with a sound physical understanding of natural processes. Alongside this, develop highly transferable skills to conduct research in these subjects with a strong emphasis on quantitative data analysis and physical and numerical modelling.
- Interact with academics who are at the forefront of major global issues. Leeds is a leading centre of excellence across both the physical science of the climate and atmosphere science, and the resultant socio-economic impacts and processes...
- Institute for Climate and Atmospheric Science (ICAS) is the UK’s most diverse academic institute for atmospheric research.
- National Centre for Atmospheric Science (NCAS), one of six research centres funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), providing its core atmospheric research.
- Priestley International Centre for Climate Change (PICC) a world-leading centre for policy-relevant, solution-driven climate research
- Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling (CPOM) is a research centre that studies processes in the Earth's polar latitudes that may affect the Earth's albedo, polar atmosphere and ocean circulation, and global sea level.
- Continue on to a PhD, or move into a research role in industry or government. Highly numerate graduates with training in independent research are widely sought after.
- Develop your research skills – you will be regarded as a researcher in the School and expected to work closely with ICAS staff as well as presenting at the annual ICAS Science Conference along with academics and doctoral researchers.
A career in scientific research is always interesting – sometimes exciting – but might not suit everyone. This course provides an excellent opportunity to get a taste of postgraduate research study and decide whether it is really the career for you.
You'll undertake 180 credits worth of work during the year, based on 4 super-modules, each of which is made up of several components. Two of these super-modules (Quantitative Skills and Specialist Knowledge) allow you to choose from an expansive range of 'atmospheric' and/or 'climate science' options.
You can choose modules based on the direction of your research project and your first degree, as well as any other previous experience.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
All the modules below run over both semesters 1 and 2:
- Research Skills - introductory coursework; atmospheric fieldwork; project proposal; seminar write-ups and presentation skills (30 credits)
- Quantitative Skills - computer-based project; coursework (30 credits)
- Specialist Knowledge - literature survey; coursework (30 credits)
- Project and Dissertation (90 credits)
Learning and teaching
You’ll be taught through classwork, research seminars, lectures, tutorials, poster presentation, fieldwork and tutorials, group work and/or individual.
For your dissertation project, instead of the traditional thesis, you’ll submit a manuscript suitable for submission to an academic journal. This aims to teach the key transferable skill of communicating results professionally and efficiently, and increase the frequency of publication of students’ research.
The School of Earth and Environment’s £23 million building provides world class research, teaching and laboratory facilities. You will also have access to a dedicated computer suite throughout your studies.
Your dissertation project accounts for a significant part of your assessment.
You’re also assessed on work you do in course, for example through field notebooks, project proposals, seminars, submission of a computer project and a literature-based survey.
Applying, fees and funding
A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) or above in a physical science such as physics, mathematics, chemistry, engineering, geophysics, atmospheric or environmental science, meteorology or oceanography.
You should ideally have mathematics to a good A-level grade (or equivalent) as a minimum. Preferably, you will have also studied at least one year of university-level maths, though additional courses are available as part of this programme.
We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For information contact the School of Earth and Environment admissions team.
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.
International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme.
If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.
Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.
Scholarships and financial support
If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.
One full-fee scholarship is available to UK/EU applicants with an offer on this programme. Applications must be received by Wednesday 1st June 2016.
Two full-fee scholarships are available to International applicants with an offer on this programme. Applications must be received by Sunday 1st May 2016.
Other funding sources:
Royal Meteorological Society
Students focusing on Atmospheric Science might also be eligible to apply for a Scholarship from the Royal Meteorological Society.
Career Development Loan
Past students have secured funding through a career development loan, for details visit UK Government website.
You will be prepared for a research career, usually onwards to a PhD but this could also lead to a research role in government or industry.
Traditionally a very high proportion of our students go on to further PhD study in climate or atmospheric science. In fact, over the last three years all our students who applied for funded PhD positions at Leeds were successful, with several of them holding multiple offers of fully funded research studentships.
While others have obtained places at Cambridge, Reading, Edinburgh, and UEA, among others.
Highly numerate graduates with training in independent research are widely sought after. And our graduates who choose to leave academia have strong employment prospects – landing jobs with national agencies, environmental consultancies, wind-power companies and the insurance sector.
Positions taken up by our recent graduates:
- Wind Energy Resource Surveyor (OwnEnergy, USA)
- Catastrophe Modelling Analysts (Willis, UK)
- Beamline Associate (Argonne National Laboratory, US)
- Air Quality Scientist (Golder, UK)
- Environmental Consultant (Haskoning UK Ltd., Peterborough, UK).
We offer extra support and activities to help you stand out in your chosen field and achieve your career goals. In particular, you are actively encouraged to attend conferences to present your work to help advance your research career.
School of Earth and Environment has a strong commitment to enhancing student employability and has its own dedicated Employability Officer. Read more about our careers and employability.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate.
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