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Environmental & Earth Resource Management Masters (MSc)

Mode Duration Start date
Full time 1 year To be confirmed
Part time 2 years To be confirmed

Choose Kingston's Environmental and Earth Resource Management MSc

Environmental problems are multidisciplinary by nature and thus they require a multidisciplinary approach. This course provides a broad-based understanding of environmental and sustainability issues from biodiversity to waste management, as well as the social, legal and economic factors that come into play. It also allows you to specialise in a particular contemporary issue in environment and earth resources management that interests you.

  • This course will provide you with the skills applicable to careers both in resource management and development or in monitoring the environmental impact of resource development.
  • Specialist research laboratories and analytical instrumentation, which are also accessed by PhD students and established research scientists, are used in many modules and during dissertation research, all backed up by a dedicated technical support team.
  • You will benefit from visiting speakers who work in the industry and can provide real-world experiences and perspectives.

What will you study?

You will examine the need for a multidisciplinary approach to the management of environmental problems arising from the use and misuse of natural resources. You will be trained in relevant earth science techniques for the collection, analysis and interpretation of environmental data. You will also investigate the rationale behind the exploitation and conservation of the natural environment and the need for a sustainable management strategy.

Environmental law and policy is a central theme across the taught modules, and you can specialise in a particular area of interest by replacing a taught module with a self-study module on contemporary issues in environmental and earth resources management.


Exams, individual or group-based exercises, reports, reviews, practical exercises, seminars, poster presentations, role-play exercises and simulations, research project.

Course structure

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list.

Core modules

  • The module examines the relationship between land and water management, global challenges associated with the management of land and water, and sustainable options to seek their resolution. The module will develop an understanding and critical evaluation of these challenges from several perspectives through the systematic investigation of land-use practices, the applications of soil science and linking practices to processes to understand the nature of contaminants, contaminated land management and remediation, the interface between land management and water management, global concerns for water security, land use impacts on the wider environment, including climate, physical and socio-political drivers and an examination of the regional land-water management issues. The module will develop practical skills for the field data collection, sampling and laboratory analysis of soil contaminants and water quality.

  • Sustainability is about not producing environmental degradation, but it also concerns avoiding a reduction in the stock of 'natural capital'; that is not depleting the environment for future generations. The main focus of the module will be on waste and energy, although the course will consider all sectors of the economy (primary, secondary, tertiary and quaternary) and the policies, legal basis and practices designed to achieve 'sustainability'. Scales, from global to local will be considered. The module will explore its theoretical basis in macro and micro-economic, as social and environmental factors associated with natural resource usage. Regulation and market-based incentives, property rights (as they affect sustainable development), public participation and economic behaviour will be discussed. The module will come to focus on local level practical applications, especially for key aspects of sustainability and Good Practice in the modern business sector. Specifically, it will consider re-cycling, Environmental Auditing, Eco-Design and Management and Audit (EMAS), Environmental Management Systems (EMS), British Standards, Environmental Impact Assessment and Corporate Social Responsibility.

  • This module provides basic skills in research methods and techniques, including geographical information system (GIS) for data storage, manipulation and display. It initially develops GIS skills by introducing GIS concepts, sources for geographical information and outlines basic spatial concepts. Subsequently the module encompasses the theoretical underpinnings to research methods and techniques, including sampling schemes, measurements, quality control issues, and data collection, manipulation and analysis. This together with practical elements of designing research proposals and data testing enables the necessary skills for carrying out independent research work.

    On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:

    • Evaluate the use of GIS in the capture, storage and handling, manipulation and analysis of geographical information.
    • Critically discuss what a GIS is and develop an understanding of its relevance to key application areas.
    • Apply the latest developments in geographical database technology to geographical database case studies.
    • Synthesise the literature on a specific topic and identify key researchable issues relating to the literature review.
    • With respect to one researchable issue, develop aims and objectives and relevant research methodologies for a specific research project to enable them to meet their aims and objectives.
    • Manipulate data using a computer and select, execute and interpret results of appropriate data analytical methods.
  • This module provides experience of planning, designing and executing a sustained piece of independent research. It involves formulating a testable hypothesis; designing a programme of data collection to test it; critically evaluating and interpreting your own data in the light of current research; and summarising and reviewing in a clear and professional manner.

    On successful completion of the module, you will be able to:

    • Plan, design and execute a sustained piece of independent research.
    • Formulate a testable hypothesis and design a programme of data collection aimed at testing it.
    • Demonstrate enhanced and improved data collection skills.
    • Critically evaluate and interpret their own data in the light of current research.
    • Summarise and critically review their own work in a clear and concise manner.
    • Engage in full professional and academic communication with their peers.

Option modules (choose one)

  • This module reviews the concept of biodiversity and examines current conservation policy, strategies and issues as they apply at a range of scales. An examination of their applications within local, regional and national and global frameworks provides an important policy perspective.

  • This module reviews current ideas on climate change and its implications for society. The complexities of this debate and their relevance to a sustainable future for human societies, and to ecosystems and planetary well being, more generally, are explored. Keynote lectures will introduce the science of climate change; uncertainties and challenges in global climate change modelling; implications of climate change predictions; appropriate societal responses; and 'best' strategies for mitigating potential climate change and its impacts. The challenges of policy-making against a background of uncertain science are explored through case studies and role-play scenarios and by site visits.


You will have the opportunity to study a foreign language, free of charge, during your time at the University as part of the Kingston Language Scheme. Options currently include: Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish.

For further information:

Postgraduate admissions
Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 4546
Email us


This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

View Penrhyn Road on our Google Maps

For further information:

Postgraduate admissions
Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 4546
Email us


This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

View Penrhyn Road on our Google Maps
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