MSc Environmental Management (Energy)


Program Description

Britain seeks to be a world leader in renewable energies and its generating potential is recognised globally, but it is equally renowned for the quality of its natural environment. This creates the potential for conflict. As a result, we need to better understand the various environmental costs associated with 21st-century energy technologies, whether renewable or non-renewable and how these costs can be evaluated, managed and mitigated.

Our Master's course in Environmental Management (Energy) builds on the success of our respected and long-running Environmental Management course, which has over 600 graduates. The course draws on our existing expertise and research strengths in environmental impact assessment, carbon trading, planning and impacts of wind, hydro and nuclear power, as well as our expertise in energy management and environmental economics.

The division of Biological and Environmental Sciences, which runs this course, specialises in studies of human interactions with the environment. Their key strengths are environmental assessment and management.

Top reasons to study with us

  1. Go on a six-day residential course in the Cairngorm National Park to hone your practical skills.
  2. Benefit from our strong links with a variety of relevant organisations including SEPA, Environment Agency, the nuclear industry, Scottish Coal and Scottish Renewables.
  3. Opportunities for work-based placements in the energy sector.

Course objectives

  • An understanding of the scientific principles (atmospheric, hydrological, geomorphological and ecological) that underpin current environmental issues related to energy production.
  • An understanding of the economic, political, social and legal frameworks for managing the environment.
  • Sound training in relevant practical, investigative, research and all-encompassing skills that managers in the energy and environment sector need.

Course details

You’ll take three modules in each semester followed by a dissertation. Each module is worth 20 SCQF credits at level 11 and the dissertation is worth 60 credits.

If you meet the requirements of the taught course you’ll qualify for the Diploma and may proceed to the MSc. This involves completion of a three-month Research Project, often in collaboration with an outside agency. Students frequently choose a topic complementary to their option selection, allowing them to develop a high level of competence in aspects of environmental management relevant to their future employment.


The course is taught primarily by staff within Biological and Environmental Sciences, but also by staff from other departments of the University and visiting professionals from outside agencies.

Delivery will include a mixture of conventional lectures, workshop sessions, field excursions, critiques of environmental statements, student-led debates and oral presentations. These activities may be undertaken in teams.


You’ll take a residential field module and immediately begin learning practical identification, surveying, measuring and sampling skills.


Both exams and coursework will be used with a focus on the use of case studies on different aspects of environmental impact, assessment and monitoring in relation to energy production. Modules will be assessed either by exams and coursework (typically 50:50 weighting) or, where appropriate, by coursework alone. Coursework will be based on written work and/or oral presentation.

Classroom hours

Full-time students are expected to be on campus most days of the week, and part-time students should ensure that they are available for two to three days each week.

The residential Cairngorms National Park field course takes place in early October over six days and the Gabon field course is during the last two weeks of February.

Course director

Professor David Copplestone has over 20 years’ experience directing, leading research and modelling the fate, behaviour and impact of radionuclides in the environment. He is particularly interested in understanding how ecological systems adapt to environmental stresses caused by exposure to ionising radiation and modelling the transfer and behaviour of radionuclides.

Professor David Copplestone
+44 (0) 1786 467852

Fees - 2020/2021

  • Overseas £18,950
  • Home/EU £8,500
Last updated Aug 2020

About the School

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society.

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society. Read less