Sustainability MSc

University of Dundee - School of Social Sciences

Program Description

Sustainability MSc

University of Dundee - School of Social Sciences

Overview

Sustainability has emerged as one of the defining issues of the 21st century. Achieving enduring and fairer societies requires viable economies, sound science and good governance. This course provides training in theory and critical analysis along with the practical skills to facilitate the transformations needed to deliver secure low carbon futures.

The MSc in Sustainability is being introduced in recognition of the grand challenges of water, food, energy and health security facing the planet. The portfolio of environmental disciplines is exceptionally strong in the University as are its traditions of cross-disciplinary collaboration and cooperation.

Along with the flagship MSc in Sustainability, there are three specialised pathways:

  • MSc in Sustainability and Water Security
  • MSc in Sustainability and the Green Economy
  • MSc in Sustainability: Climate Change and Low Carbon Futures

The University of Dundee includes both the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law Policy and the Centre for Water Law, Policy and Science (under the auspices of UNESCO) both of which have long-standing international reputations. Specialist high-level speakers sourced from international organisations are invited to present throughout the year, these sessions provide a vital opportunity for students to become connected with industry so continued communication is encouraged by the events.

CECHR similarly have an extended programme of guest lectures and speakers and through xcechr, there are multiple events bringing Masters and PhD students together with a common interest in environmental change research. Examples of the activities that result include Student-Supervisor-Seminar-Series, ‘change-maker workshops’ and a national show-case ‘Facing the Future’ Symposium.

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Who should study this course?

This course is suitable for a wide range of graduates from;

  • environmental backgrounds (e.g. geography, planning, environmental studies) looking to upskill and achieve a deeper understanding
  • natural science graduates (e.g. chemistry, maths) and engineers looking to develop a more rounded understanding of environmental issues, especially in relation to regulation and policy
  • arts and social science students wishing to use their social, economic and political perspectives to take on the challenges associated with complex environmental systems and their management.

How you will be taught

The course is taught as a collection of 20 credit modules amounting to a total of 180 Masters (SHE M, SCQF 11) credits. The delivery style and assessment requirements for each module vary as we believe a diversity of practice provides strength. Nevertheless, all modules combine a mixture of formal lecture, small group seminar, practical/field classes and individual tutorials depending on need and the particular learning objectives of each module. The study load corresponds to one third in each of the first two teaching semesters and one third for independent study for the dissertation the summer recess.

How you will be assessed

The assessment follows a variety of styles including individual essays and practical assignments along with formal written examinations; to group exercises and peer group assessment – this is particularly important where oral presentations are involved. The independent research project (dissertation) is an excellent opportunity for a candidate to achieve deep insight into a topic of their own choice. Masters level dissertations can be very diverse and include formal hypothesis-led research projects; a theory or literature-based projects; case-study assessment and advanced professional practice evaluations. Choice of dissertations is negotiated between the student and his or her academic supervisor.

In terms of overall assessment, the 180 credits for the MSc comprises 120 credits obtained from modules (6 x 20 credit modules) and 60 credits from the independent research project.

What you will study

There is a choice of three specialist pathways in addition to the MSc in Sustainability:

  • MSc in Sustainability and Water Security
  • MSc in Sustainability and the Green Economy
  • MSc in Sustainability: Climate Change and Low Carbon Futures

Each of the four MSc pathways contains a common core comprising ‘Principles of Sustainability’ and ‘Transformation for Sustainability’, along with the ‘Research Training’ module. Each named pathway then comprises a specialised core module and then options are drawn from a wide range of electives (c. 30 available from contributing academic Schools). All four MSc pathways feature a 60 credit individual research project, the weighting of which reflects the importance of independent investigation and permitting students to develop expertise in their chosen area through effectively four months of dedicated research.

Each of the MSc in Sustainability pathways is geared around the following learning outcomes:

Knowledge and Understanding:

  • Achieve a critical understanding of key sustainability principles and perspectives informing actions in pursuit of sustainable development, inclusive of environment, economy and equity considerations;
  • Demonstrate knowledge of approaches to evaluating and measuring sustainability;
  • Apply different concepts of transformation and change to enable individual and societal shifts towards more sustainable practices;
  • Each of the four named MSc in Sustainability pathways (Water Security; Living with Climate Change, Low Carbon Futures and the Green Economy) features additional thematic modules complemented by a cognate independent research project.

Skills:

  • Ability to analyse, evaluate and critically review theory and policy debates relating to sustainability;
  • Ability to draw on international perspectives and examples of best practice in relation to methods of evaluation and assessment of sustainability;
  • Ability to design and plan interventions for creating change to promote greater sustainability across different scales;
  • Design and undertake a substantial independent research project to address significant areas of theory and/or practice.

Capabilities:

  • Critique and synthesise theory and evidence drawing on a variety of sources;
  • Ability to communicate evidenced based reports relevant to a range of stakeholders, including policymakers;
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team tackling complex environmental problems to tight deadlines;
  • Ability to design and evaluate transformative change leading to improved sustainability strategies, processes and plans

Transferrable skills, including building arguments, synthesis, reflexivity and making presentations.

MSc Sustainability

Compulsory core modules

Semester 1

  • Principles of Sustainability (GE51026)
  • Research Training and Project Planning (GE51011)

Semester 2

  • Transformation for Sustainability (GE52031)

Summer

  • Independent Research Project (GE50001)

Optional modules

Semester 1

  • International Law of Natural Resources and Energy (CP51007)
  • Quantitative Methods (GE51013)
  • Freshwater, Wetlands and Ecosystem Services: Science and Society (GE52032)
  • Environmental Regulation (LW51115)

Semester 2

  • Qualitative Methods (GE52030)
  • Research in practice (placement) (GE52030)
  • Politics of the Environment and Climate Change (CP52061)
  • International Relations and Energy and Natural Resources (CP52008)
  • Renewable Energy: Technology, Economics and Policy (CP52063)

MSc in Sustainability and Water Security

Compulsory core modules

Semester 1

  • Principles of Sustainability (GE51026)
  • Research Training and Project Planning (GE51011)

Semester 2

  • Transformation for Sustainability (GE52031)

Summer

  • Independent Research Project (GE50001)

Optional modules

Semester 1

  • Legal Framework for Water Resource Management (LW51145)
  • Freshwater, Wetlands and Ecosystem Services: Science and Society (GE52032)
  • Quantitative Methods (GE51013)

Semester 2

  • International Law of Water Resources (UN50001)
  • Politics of the Environment and Climate Change (CP52061)
  • Governance and Regulation of Water Services (LW52138)
  • Qualitative Methods (GE52030)
  • Research in practice (placement) (GE52030)

MSc in Sustainability and the Green Economy

Compulsory core modules

Semester 1

  • Principles of Sustainability (GE51026)
  • Research Training and Project Planning (GE51011)

Semester 2

  • Transformation for Sustainability (GE52031)

Summer

  • Independent Research Project (GE50001)

Optional modules

Semester 1

  • Foundation Accounting (CP52048)
  • Energy Economics: The Tools (CP51003)
  • Quantitative Methods (GE51013)
  • Renewable Energy: Technology, Economics and Policy (CP52063)

Semester 2

  • Energy Economics the Issues (CP52002)
  • Politics of the Environment and Climate Change (CP52061)
  • Freshwater, Wetlands and Ecosystem Services: Science and Society (GE52032)
  • International Relations and Energy and Natural Resources (CP52008)
  • Qualitative Methods (GE52030)
  • Research in practice (placement (GE52030)

MSc in Sustainability: Climate change and Low Carbon Futures

Compulsory core modules

Semester 1

  • Principles of Sustainability (GE51026)
  • Research Training and Project Planning (GE51011)

Semester 2

  • Transformation for Sustainability (GE52031)

Summer

  • Independent Research Project (GE50001)

Optional modules

Semester 1

  • Context for Sustainable Built Environment (AR51008)
  • Energy Economics: The Tools (CP51003)
  • Downstream Energy Law and Policy-1 (CP51002A)
  • Renewable Energy: Technology, Economics and Policy (CP52063)
  • Quantitative Methods (GE51013)

Semester 2

  • Downstream Energy Law and Policy-2 (CP51002B)
  • Politics of the Environment and Climate Change (CP52061)
  • Applied Assessment in Neighbourhood Development and Building Design (AR52012)
  • Qualitative Methods (GE52030)
  • Zero Carbon & Low Energy Housing Development: Challenges, Strategies & Design (AR52007)
  • Research in practice (placement (GE52030)

Careers

The environmental sector is one of the key growth areas in the global economy and in UK terms is comparable in size to the pharmaceutical and aerospace sectors combined. An MSc in Sustainability is designed to equip our graduates to take up a wide range of careers in policy, practical management, training and research across a spectrum of organisations from local to international and within the public and private sectors.

  • International Agencies and NGOs
  • Civil Service
  • Governmental environmental and conservation agencies (e.g. SNH, SEPA, EA)
  • Environmental management and policy sectors (private and public sector)
  • Environmental consultancy
  • Management consultancy
  • Public affairs
  • Built environment sustainability
  • Local planning authorities
  • Research and development
  • Preparation for PhD research

Entry Requirements

A good Honours degree, equivalent to UK standards, preferably at Upper Second Class or above.

English Language Requirement

IELTS Overall 6.5

  • Listening 6.0
  • Reading 6.0
  • Writing 6.0
  • Speaking 6.0

English Language Programmes

We offer Pre-Sessional and Foundation Programme(s) throughout the year. These are designed to prepare you for university study in the UK when you have not yet met the language requirements for direct entry onto a degree programme.

Scottish Funding Council (SFC) Funding

The University of Dundee is pleased to offer a limited number of fully-funded places to eligible students across nine taught postgraduate programmes. This is an initiative from the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) designed to support key sectors in the Scottish economy to develop a high-level skills base.

Eligibility

Only those UK/EU students who have been resident in Scotland or the EU for the preceding three years are eligible for this funding.

Funding

This funding covers the full tuition fee cost for your chosen programme of study. You can study one-year full time or two years part-time on selected programmes.

How to apply for SFC Funding

There is no formal application to complete, when you apply for your chosen programme please indicate on the UKPASS application form that you would like to be considered for the SFC funded places.

Funded places will be awarded competitively to applicants with the strongest applications in the judgement of the programme leaders.

This will principally be based on a student's prior academic performance, but equivalent work experience may also be taken into account.

About Dundee

Fantastic culture, beautiful landscapes and famously friendly people….Scotland has passion and innovation at its heart and these are just some of the reasons why it’s an amazing place to live and study.

Dundee is located on the banks of the River Tay on the east coast of Scotland. It regularly appears at the top end of ‘quality of life’ surveys in the UK – offering all that’s great about city life, but being friendly, compact and easy to navigate.

The Wall Street Journal named Dundee as one of their ten hot destinations for 2018.

Dundee’s population is around 150,000. With students making up 1 in 5 of the population, our city is geared towards student life.

Our campus is right in the heart of Dundee’s vibrant and fun West End, with shops, cafes and restaurants all on your doorstep.

“Scottish people are nice and friendly. I remember the first day I arrived, the fellow who was supposed to meet me was not there yet. The taxi driver dropped me off, I knocked on the door and he was not there, so I was waiting outside. Someone came and asked if I was okay and invited me in while I waited. He welcomed me and gave me food and drink, so I started to love the people of Dundee and Scotland from the first day I came.” Willy William Mrema is from Tanzania and is studying MSc Geotechnical Engineering.

This school offers programs in:
  • English
University of Dundee - School of Social Sciences

Last updated November 16, 2018
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2019
Duration
Duration
12 months
Full time
Price
Price
Information
Deadline
Locations
United Kingdom - Dundee, Scotland
Start date : Sept. 2019
Application deadline Request Info
End date Aug. 31, 2020
Dates
Sept. 2019
United Kingdom - Dundee, Scotland
Application deadline Request Info
End date Aug. 31, 2020