You study biodiversity conservation as applied ecology in the context of land use - agriculture, forestry and amenity. Focusing on wildlife conservation in the UK and Europe, you develop practical skills in plant identification and habitat assessment from a wide range of upland and lowland areas.
Your studies focus on wildlife conservation with a particular emphasis on agriculture, forestry and amenity. Elements of the course have strong links with national, statutory and non-governmental conservation organisations. Practical management skills are gained through involvement in management problems on nature reserves and field courses that provide experience in species identification.
The course has compulsory and optional modules, giving you the opportunity to tailor your studies to your personal interests. Through the compulsory modules you will develop knowledge and skills in core concepts such as:
- understanding the range of temperate zone ecosystems and wildlife species
- developing a critical awareness of contemporary conservation issues and research insights
- understanding scientific survey, habitat assessment and experimental techniques and the ability to identify common species from selected habitats
- the development of effective management plans for species and ecosystems
- understanding complex biodiversity and ecosystem management issues
- advanced knowledge and understanding of the influence of environmental, management and land-use factors on ecosystems and wildlife species
You also undertake a major conservation project and are supported through training in designing and delivering a project based on a laboratory or field-based investigation. After choosing your topic you collect, analyse and interpret data to produce a thesis.
You benefit from being taught by lecturers who are industry experienced and research active. Our research in integrated agricultural production focuses on soil science, plant science and ecology, spanning a range of scales from: pot – plot – farm – landscape.
Strategic research embraces work on:
- soil quality
- rhizosphere function
- plant-soil feedback
- soil-carbon dynamics
- nutrient cycling
Applied research addresses issues of:
- climate change mitigation (including biofuels)
- ecological (organic) farming systems
- low-input crop systems
- agriculture-environment interactions
Dr Simon Peacock is a teaching fellow and Degree Programme Director of Biodiversity Conversation and Ecosystem Managements MSc.
'My research is centred on how ozone pollution can influence the diversity and community structure of plants of conservation importance both individually and within a community.'
This course is taught in a block format with one 6 week block and then smaller 2 week teaching blocks.
You will be taught through lectures, seminars, practical and field classes, tutorials, case studies and small group discussions. You will be expected to undertake independent study outside of these structured sessions. Your knowledge and understanding will be assessed through written examinations, coursework, field class reports, presentations and your final major project.
You can also study through the Credit Accumulation Transfer Scheme which is a framework that enables us to award postgraduate level qualifications using credit-bearing stand-alone modules as 'building blocks' towards a qualification. This means that the credits from modules undertaken within a five-year period can be 'banked' towards the award of a qualification.
Our facilities and our teaching staff ensure you are fully supported in your studies.
Our multi-purpose farms provide demonstration facilities for teaching purposes, land-based research facilities (especially in the area of organic production) and they are viable farming businesses.
- Cockle Park Farm is a 262ha mixed farm facility that includes the Palace Leas Plots hay meadow experiment and a new anaerobic digestion plant that will generate heat, electricity and digestate - an organic fertiliser - from pig and cattle manure
- Nafferton Farm is a 300ha farm with two main farm units covering conventional and organic farming systems. The two systems are primarily focused upon dairying and arable cropping. Both also operate beef production enterprises as a by-product of their dairy enterprises, although the organic system is unique in maintaining a small-scale potato and vegetable production enterprise.
Our modern laboratories provide important teaching and research environments and are equipped with analytical equipment such as HPLCs, GCs, CNS analyser, centrifuges, spectrophotometers and molecular biology equipment. Our specialist research facilities include:
- a tissue culture laboratory
- plant growth rooms
- a class II laboratory for safe handling of human biological samples
- taste panel facilities and test kitchen
- a thin section facility for soil analysis
We operate closely with other Schools, Institutes and the University's Central Scientific Facilities for access to more specialist analytical services. For work with human subjects we use a purpose built Clinical Research Facility which is situated in the Royal Victoria Infirmary teaching hospital and is managed jointly by us and the Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
In the news
36 scholarships worth £5,000 each for under-represented students wanting to fund a full/part time Masters' course in September 2018.
published on: 11 April 2018
We are pleased to be part of the UK government's pilot to streamline Tier 4 visa applications.
published on: 10 April 2018
Student blogger Lydia's story of why she chose to take on postgraduate study.
published on: 18 April 2018
Want to know what its like to be a Newcastle University student? Join us online for one of our PG Café virtual events.
published on: 16 April 2018
Modules for 2017 entry
- ACE8024 Forest Ecology and Management
- ACE8028 Land Resources - Assessment and Management
- ACE8030 Environment and Habitat Assessment Field Class *
- ACE8041 Ecosystem Management
- ACE8042 Biodiversity Conservation: Policy and Practice
- ACE8045 Ecological Survey Techniques
- ACE8121 Postgraduate Skills1:Project Proposal
- ACE8122 Postgraduate Skills2:Data Analysis
- ACE8123 Postgraduate Skills3:Literature Review
- ACE8195 MSc Dissertation in Agriculture,Food and Rural Development
* The field course element of this module runs in the semester 2 exam period – field based intensive week
You take optional modules to a value of 20 credits - (each one is 10 credits) - by either taking one from each section below or, alternatively. taking both modules from section B only:
* Module runs after week 12 – field based intensive week.
Modules change annually to take account of:
- changing staff expertise
- developments in the discipline
- the requirements of external bodies and partners
- student feedback.
Most module information for 2018 entry will be available from mid-May 2018.
Fees & Funding
The fees displayed here are per year.
Full time: £10,200
Part time: £5,100
Full time: £10,200
Part time: £5,100
Full time: £21,600
Find out more about our tuition fees, including how to pay them and available discounts.
EU students starting at Newcastle in 2018 will pay the UK (Home) tuition fee for the full duration of their course.
A 2:1 honours degree, or international equivalent, in a relevant science discipline, such as:
- animal sciences
- environmental sciences
Find out the equivalent qualifications for your country.
Use the drop down above to find your country. If your country isn't listed please email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
English Language Requirements
Select an English language test from the list to view our English language entry requirements.
Please email us at email@example.com for further information.
Pre-sessional English Course RequirementsPre-sessional English Course Requirements
- 6 week Pre-sessional entry: IELTS 6.0 overall (with a minimum of 5.5 in all sub-skills)
- 10 week Pre-sessional entry: IELTS 5.5 overall (with a minimum of 5.0 in all sub-skills)
You can study our Pre-sessional English course at the INTO Newcastle Centre.
How to Apply
You apply online, track your application and contact the admissions team via our applicant portal. Our step by step guide can help you on your way.
The course starts in September. There is no application closing date for this course.
We suggest international students apply at least two months before the course starts. This is so that you have enough time to make the necessary arrangements.
If you live outside the UK/EU you must:
- pay a deposit of £1,500
- or submit an official letter of sponsorship
The deposit is payable after you receive an offer to study at Newcastle University. The deposit is non-refundable, but is deducted from your tuition fees when you register.