Environmental Monitoring Modelling and Reconstruction MSc

Northumbria University

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Program Overview

This master's in Environmental Monitoring, Modelling and Reconstruction offers a remarkable opportunity to learn cutting-edge technological techniques. It is underpinned by advanced theoretical knowledge from some of the world’s foremost authorities in the industry.

Throughout the course, you will develop your practical skills and theoretical understanding of contemporary measurements. You will do this by intertwining them with the reconstruction of past environments and behaviours.


A week-long field trip in an Arctic location (e.g. Abisko, Sweden) will provide you with an excellent opportunity to practice your high-level data collection skills, developed within our thriving and inspiring research culture. Please note, this trip will be COVID-19 permitting.


Our applied approach will allow graduates from any scientific background to develop the skills and theoretical knowledge required for the industry. Should you wish to continue your research, this Masters would be excellent preparation for one of our funded PhD programs.


This innovative new Masters offers:


A stepping stone from any scientific discipline to a range of careers in environmental management and consultancy, geosciences or further academic research


A taught course with a skills focus. You will learn how to apply high-level skills required for core environmental roles in the workplace or further academic research


A tailored experience. You will design and carry out your own research in conjunction with staff who are leading experts in environmental geosciences


A field trip to the Arctic. A remarkable opportunity to practise a wide range of high-level data collection and analysis skills in a unique location (included in the course fee and Covid-19 permitting).



NewcastleUnited Kingdom

  Course Duration

12 Months

  Tuition Fee

£ 17,250


IELTS: 6.5


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You will be part of a cohort of dedicated students, learning in small groups through seminars and practical skills workshops. 


Throughout the programme, there is an emphasis upon self-directed learning, critical thinking, and independent research to support your academic and personal development. Many of your taught classes are supported by one to one sessions with academic staff, who are experts in their field and bring their research into their teaching. You will be taught through a variety of seminars, lectures, workshops and tutorials.


The first semester will include a contextual module ‘Frontiers in Geoscience’, which will allow you to identify the big scientific questions and learn how fundamental principles underpin both applied and theoretical studies. You will also study two intensive practical and analytical modules exposing you to new data collection and laboratory skills, focusing on monitoring and reconstruction respectively. 


In ‘Environmental Monitoring’ you will develop skills across a wide range of advanced techniques. These will include assessment of erosion using drones and laser scanning; air pollution and toxicity in soils or water in relation to policy and legal enforcement; river quality assessment through ecological and geochemical analyses; sea level change and ocean acidification. In ‘Environmental Reconstruction’ you will be taught multi-proxy methods to reconstruct past climates, and advanced statistical methods for addressing palaeoenvironmental research questions.


In semester two you will learn and apply new computational skills. You will learn through technical demonstrations and project work, as well as having the opportunity to run complex computational models in a variety of industry-leading, research-grade computer languages regularly used by SMEs in the sector. You will also study ‘Communicating Geoscience’ to equip you with the critical skills required to articulate your ideas and analyses. In parallel with this, you will begin to design your major project in a topic of your choice, working closely alongside academic staff. 


Towards the end of this semester you will go on a week-long field trip in the Arctic (e.g. Abisko in northern Sweden). There you will undertake advanced monitoring techniques with substantial responsibility for scientific decision-making in the field, to prepare you for professional life (Covid-19 permitting).


In the final semester you will undertake independent study and present the findings of your work to academics and peers, developing the strong scientific communication skills that will be vital in your future career.



Module information is indicative and is reviewed annually therefore may be subject to change. Applicants will be informed if there are any changes.


Year one


  • KE7029 -Environmental Monitoring (Core,20 Credits)
  • KE7031 -Environmental Modelling (Core,20 Credits)
  • KE7032 -Environmental Reconstruction (Core,20 Credits)
  • KE7033 -Communicating Geoscience (Core,20 Credits)
  • KE7034 -Masters Dissertation (Core,60 Credits)
  • KE7035 -Environmental Fieldwork (Core,20 Credits)
  • KE7036 -Frontiers of Geoscience (Core,20 Credits)

Entry Requirements 2022/23


Standard Entry


Applicants should normally have:


A minimum of a 2:2 honours degree in relevant subjects including geography, natural and earth sciences, as well as physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, mathematics, or computing related subjects. Other subject qualifications, equivalent professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be considered on an individual basis.


International qualifications:


If you have studied a non UK qualification, you can see how your qualifications compare to the standard entry criteria, by selecting the country that you received the qualification in, from our country pages.


English language requirements:


International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

Fees and Funding 2022/23 Entry

Full UK Fee: £8,700


Full EU Fee: £17,250


Full International Fee: £17,250

You will graduate from this highly practical and skills-focused Masters with the technical skills and critically applied expert knowledge that are demanded by industry.


The need to process overwhelming volumes of data in a meaningful way is one of the biggest challenges in almost every industry, and you will be equipped with the skills to make a valuable contribution. The emphasis on science communication throughout the course will prepare you to articulate your contributions clearly to both specialist and non-specialist audiences, as well as giving you valuable access to regional employers.


Your focus on modelling, monitoring and reconstruction of the environment will equip you for careers in the environmental consultancy and management sectors, with organisations such as the Environment Agency, Natural England or the UK atomic Energy Authority. Within this sector you will be fully prepared for a wide range of highly diverse roles such as Environmental Advisor, Pollution Monitor, Risk Analyst or Environmental Engineer.


This MSc is also an ideal stepping stone into full-time research, allowing you to refine and maintain your future career options in a competitive marketplace.


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