Postgraduate study

Environment, Culture and Society MSc

Awards: MSc

Study modes: Full-time, Part-time

Funding opportunities

The MSc Environment, Culture and Society provides you with up-to-date knowledge of the contemporary issues and debates on the relationships between the environment, nature, culture and society.

Welcoming students from a variety of backgrounds, this exciting MSc will explore the core interdisciplinary perspectives and concepts needed to imagine and enact sustainable environmental futures.

You will develop the skills and abilities to assess the importance and implications of geographical and other conceptual debates which shape environmental policy and practice.

Why Edinburgh

Taught by world-leading experts, the programme draws on expertise from across the University, especially from:

  • geography
  • social and political studies
  • landscape architecture
  • literature
  • archaeology
  • philosophy
  • theology
  • science and technology studies
  • development studies

It provides you with a unique critical perspective on current environmental issues and possible futures.

You will learn to think critically, to generate new knowledge related to the environment, and to use this knowledge effectively to address urgent environmental challenges across a range of specialities such as policy, conservation, education, public consultation and the arts.

Networks

This programme is affiliated with a variety of University networks including:

  • the School of GeoSciences Cultural and Historical Geography Research Group
  • the Global Environment and Society Academy
  • the Energy and Society Network

Find out more from our students

Visit our student blog, where students in the School of GeoSciences share their experiences of postgraduate study, living in Edinburgh and everything in-between.

This MSc programme comprises:

  • compulsory and option courses
  • dissertation

Throughout the programme, your teaching team will work with you to prepare for the dissertation project. This will be your opportunity to explore a topic of your choice in relation to the programme.

Teaching methods

You will experience a range of teaching styles while you are studying, depending on the subject matter and courses you are taking.

Courses can be delivered through a mix of teaching and learning styles including:

  • lectures
  • tutorials
  • seminars
  • workshops
  • practicals
  • short field trips

Please view each relevant course for teaching and assessment methods.

Changes to teaching and learning

We are committed to offering a high-quality education to all our students. Please be advised that there may be changes to course options and delivery, including due to Covid-19.

Changes to how we deliver teaching and learning experiences will be made to safeguard the health and safety of our students, staff and community, and to ensure we can maintain the highest standards for educational experience.

Although we endeavour to provide a wide range of optional courses to choose from, these can be subject to change or cancellation at short notice.

Places on optional courses can be limited, due to course capacity and timetabling constraints. It may not be possible to guarantee every offer holder their top choice of optional courses.

Part-time study

As we are committed to helping people into education while continuing to work or managing family and personal commitments, you may study this programme part-time.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

Find out more about compulsory and optional courses

We link to the latest information available. Please note that this may be for a previous academic year and should be considered indicative.

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc1 YearFull-timeProgramme structure 2020/21
MSc2 YearsPart-timeProgramme structure 2020/21

The MSc Environment, Culture and Society will equip you to think critically across disciplinary divides, to generate new knowledge related to the environment and use this knowledge to address urgent environmental challenges.

You will be encouraged and supported to develop your interests at an advanced level in an area you are most passionate about.

Our graduates have been successful in pursuing a variety of careers including:

  • environmental policy
  • conservation
  • animal welfare
  • corporate social responsibility
  • education
  • business communications
  • research

Due to the diversity of the topics within the programme, you can work in a range of sectors including government, NGOs (such as environmental charities and development organisations), the private sector and academia.

Our graduates

Examples of the organisations our graduates have gained employment with include:

  • Conservation International
  • the National Forestry Commission
  • Scottish Natural Heritage
  • The Climate Group
  • European Commission
  • UNESCO World Heritage Centre
  • the Provincial Ministry of Environmental and Climate Change (Canada)
  • KPMG Sustainability (Japan)
  • Environmental Law Institute (America)
  • Barcelona Lab for Urban Environmental Justice and Sustainability
  • Regen
  • Clean Up Australia

Careers Service

Our Careers Service plays an essential part in your wider student experience at the University, offering a range of tailored careers and personal development guidance and support.

We support you to recognise the wealth of possibilities ahead, while at university and after graduation.

This programme provides several day trips and workshop opportunities in locations across southern Scotland.

Previous locations have included the Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh and Jupiter Artland.

There are no additional charges for compulsory field trips.

Changes to field trips

Field course locations may change for a variety of reasons, including due to Covid-19.

Where suitable, fieldwork will be relocated or rescheduled.

We will also look at alternative arrangements that will ensure you achieve the quality learning outcomes of your degree.

Decisions will be made to safeguard the health and safety of our students, staff and community, and to ensure the highest standards for educational experience.

Any changes will be announced as soon as possible.

A UK 2:1 honours degree, or its international equivalent.

We may also consider a UK 2:2 honours degree, or its international equivalent, with relevant industry experience.

International qualifications

Check whether your international qualifications meet our general entry requirements:

English language requirements

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.

English language tests

For 2021 entry we will accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified:

  • IELTS Academic: total 7.0 (at least 6.0 in each module)
  • TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition): total 100 (at least 20 in each module). We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
  • CAE and CPE: total 185 (at least 169 in each module)
  • Trinity ISE: ISE III with a pass in all four components

Your English language qualification must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the programme you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Degrees taught and assessed in English

We also accept an undergraduate or postgraduate degree that has been taught and assessed in English in a majority English speaking country, as defined by UK Visas and Immigration:

We also accept a degree that has been taught and assessed in English from a university on our list of approved universities in non-majority English speaking countries.

If you are not a national of a majority English speaking country, then your degree must be no more than three and a half years old at the beginning of your programme of study.

Find out more about our language requirements:

Deposit

You will need to pay this deposit if you receive an offer of admission (either unconditional or conditional).

  • £1,500 (this contributes towards your tuition fees)

Find out more about tuition fee deposits:

Field trips and field courses

We do not charge extra fees for compulsory field trips or field courses.

Costs of travel, accommodation and subsistence on compulsory field trips will be covered by the programme fees. However, you must pay for incidental or personal expenses.

Living costs

You will be responsible for covering living costs for the duration of your studies.

Tuition fees

AwardTitleDurationStudy mode
MSc1 YearFull-timeTuition fees
MSc2 YearsPart-timeTuition fees

School of GeoSciences scholarships

Browse funding opportunities

You are also encouraged to undertake your own research into the range of potential scholarships and other funding for which you may be eligible.

Other funding opportunities

Search for scholarships and funding opportunities:

  • School of GeoSciences
  • Institute of Geography
  • Drummond Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9XP

We encourage you to apply at least one month prior to entry so that we have enough time to process your application. If you are also applying for funding or will require a visa then we strongly recommend you apply as early as possible.

You must submit one reference with your application.

Find out more about the general application process for postgraduate programmes:

Further information

  • School of GeoSciences
  • Institute of Geography
  • Drummond Street
  • Central Campus
  • Edinburgh
  • EH8 9XP