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Master's courses – University of Reading

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  • Take your career to the next level

    100% of master's graduates are in work or further study six months after graduation*

Master's courses

Expert lecturers, state-of-the-art facilities, and outstanding career prospects. Our master's programmes help you to establish a firm grounding in your chosen specialism and take your skills to the next level​.

We are skills focused. Through our world-leading fieldwork and research projects we train graduates to the highest standards as a preparation for professional employment or doctoral study.

How you'll learn

Teaching is through a mixture of lectures, laboratory and computer practicals, site visits and a field study. Lectures from our industrial partners and former MSc students ensure that the programme remains relevant to current and emerging environmental issues.

The course will provide you with the skills required by employers by designing coursework assignments to reflect the outputs required by industry and by giving every student the opportunity to undertake their independent research project with an external partner.

“I was taught both practical and theoretical skills which I was able to use to successfully complete assignments and my dissertation. The course also enhanced my understanding and knowledge of environmental legislation through the EU Environmental Law module. This has particularly helped me in my current employment where I assess risks to aircraft materials and processes based on EU REACH Regulations.”

Heather Selwyn-Smith

Honeywell Aerospace | MSc Environmental Management

Expert lecturers

You'll be taught by lecturers with expertise across a broad range of areas, including contaminated land, air pollution, environmental economics, environmental law, ecosystem service, and project management with extensive experience in both academic and industrial applications, showing you how to develop and apply your skills.

Many of our academics are well-known within the scientific world. For example, Professor Chris Collins' research into the bioavailability and bioaccesability of environmental pollutants has been recognised by appointments onto two Defra committees that advise the government on the environmental chemistry of hazardous substances and veterinary products.

Based on the most recent Research Excellence Framework assessment (REF 2014), the University of Reading ranked 4th in the UK for research power in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences^.

79% of our research was ranked in the world-leading and internationally excellent categories, and our scores were well above the sector average for research impact and research environment.

State-of-the-art facilities

The Department of Geography and Environmental Science has long-standing expertise in environmental research that embraces theory, laboratory and field measurements, exploits large data-sets (including satellite observations and global analyses) and advanced numerical modelling.

The department's core is in a custom-designed building with specialised research facilities, including laboratories and instrumentation for work in molecular ecology and biochemistry, environmental chemistry, physics and stable and radioisotopes. Our students have access to superb controlled environment facilities, a large area of experimental polytunnels and glasshouses and extensive opportunities for fieldwork at our experimental farms.

You will join a vibrant and welcoming department situated on one of the most beautiful campuses in the UK. You will study on our beautiful parkland campus at Whiteknights, which has been voted among the best and most popular green spaces in the UK for nine consecutive years in the Green Flag awards, and was voted as one of the top ten most popular green spaces in the UK in 2017.

We treat our campus as a laboratory; both staff and students make the most of their immediate surroundings for field work.


100% of our Geography and Environmental Science master's graduates were in work or further study six months after graduation - Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education 2016/17.

Our graduates are highly employable in the growing market for environmental managers and consultants. Many have gone on to work in public and private sector organisations within the UK and internationally, as well as continuing their research in a wide variety of academic posts.

Recent graduates have gone on to work for organisations such as the Environment Agency; Natural England; National Trust;WSP Environmental; RPS consultancy; HFL Risk Services; ERM; Thames Water; Forestry Commission; RSPB; CL Associates; Environ UK Ltd., Peter Brett Associates, British Geological Survey, and STM Environmental. Graduates also go on to study for PhDs.

"I believe my MSc has helped me secure my dream job as an Environmental Consultant, where my employer is very impressed with the breadth and level of knowledge I have acquired.”

Claire Nichols

WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff | MSc Environmental Pollution, graduated 2015


Apply now

The quickest and easiest away to apply for postgraduate study at the University of Reading is through our online application service.

*Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey, 2016-17

^Research Fortnight's Analysis Power Rankings, 2014, based on its analysis of REF 2014


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