Our Ecological Consultancy MSc gives you knowledge, specialised technical skills and professional awareness. It will prepare you for a career as an ecological consultant or in other environmental roles. The course has a professional focus, preparing you for the workplace.
We equip you with key skills which will enable you to pursue careers in ecology, including:
- Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and remote sensing
- experimental and survey design
- wildlife surveying
- wildlife legislation and natural history
- Environmental Impact Assessment
Graduates of this course have an excellent track record of gaining employment in the environmental sector. Within one year of graduation 18 of the 19 students from the 2011-12 cohort were employed, most in the environmental sector and the majority with ecological consultancy companies.
Examples of recent graduate destinations include students now working in ecological jobs for:
We provide a link to cutting-edge research that feeds into ecological consultancy, eg:
- research projects on black grouse and wind farms. Paper in review with the Journal of Applied Ecology
- noise and bird behaviour. Paper in revision in PLOS ONE
- contracts for the Scottish Bird Wind Farm Steering Group. The class of 2013-14 helped collect data for one of these contracts. They were authors on the paper which is being written up on the data they collected.
The Degree Programme Director, Professor John Bythell, is an active research ecologist. He has 27 years of experience of ecological consultancy work, particularly in Environmental Impact Assessment and International Development. His research focuses on wildlife diseases, mainly in tropical marine environments such as coral reefs.
Professor Mark Whittingham is a bird ecologist who contributes significantly to the degree programme. He has a wide network of contacts that can help you gain experience in this area. As a senior editor of the Journal of Applied Ecology he is aware of a wide range of ecological science and how this relates to ecological consultancy work.
Dr Phil McGowan provides international expertise for students wishing to pursue international projects and has extensive global contacts in the conservation sphere. He is heavily involved in work with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
The course is taught and based on the Newcastle campus. It is delivered mostly in two week blocks but initially several modules run concurrently over a six week period.
The course consists of:
- 100 credits of taught work (October to March)
- 80 credit project (April to August)
Contact and independent study times vary depending on the module. We have a good range of practical elements in computer (eg GIS or statistics) and field classes (eg natural history skills or survey skills).
Each Ecological Consultancy project runs in conjunction with an industrial client. These tend to be consultancies or NGOs, eg:
- E3 Ecology
- BSG Ecology
- Baker Consultants
- Denny Ecology
- Mott MacDonald
- Natural England
- Northumberland Natural History Society
- Durham Wildlife Trust
Ecological consultants contribute to the course via informal talks. For example, E3 Ecology run a workshop in induction week where company directors discuss how to get into the industry.
Practitioners with extensive UK wildlife legislation and wildlife management experience teach on some modules.
We are in the process of applying for accreditation from the Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM).
The School of Natural and Environmental Sciences has an outstanding range of facilities to support our research and teaching, including:
- fully equipped laboratories
- a new field station with state of the art facilities for teaching and research
You will also have access, by arrangement, to the University's Cockle Park farm. This is managed by the School of Natural and Environmental Sciences.
In the news
Newcastle moves up 20 places into the top 150 in the QS World University Rankings 2019.
published on: 15 June 2018
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published on: 10 April 2018
Want to know more about postgraduate study? Come along to one of our PG Café events on the 18 July on our city campus.
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Student blogger Kinsey tells us about the differences between studying in the US and the UK.
published on: 6 July 2018
You will study modules on this course. A module is a unit of a course with its own approved aims and outcomes and assessment methods.
Modules for 2018 entry
Compulsory modulesCompulsory modules
- ACE8016 Environment and Habitat Assessment Field Class
- BIO8066 Evidence for Policy and Licensing
- BIO8069 Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing
- BIO8072 Dynamics of Coupled Human-Natural Systems
- CEG8607 The Environment Business
- NES8001 Consultancy Dissertation Project
- NES8003 Consultancy Project Planning
- NES8007 Academic and Professional Skills for MSc
- SPG8013 Environmental Impact Assessment
Optional modulesOptional modules
You take optional modules to the value of 10 credits from the following list:
- NES8006 Data Prep, analysis, interpretation and presentation
- NES8008 Data Analysis and Modelling
- NES8009 Fundamentals of Cell and Molecular Biology
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 2019 entry will be available from mid-May 2019.
Fees & Funding
The fees displayed here are per course.
Full time: £10,200
Full time: £10,200
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 and 2019 will pay the UK (Home) tuition fee for the full duration of their course.
A 2:2 BSc or BEng honours degree, or international equivalent, in a related subject, such as:
- environmental engineering
- biological sciences
- environmental science
- marine biology
We will also consider applicants on an individual basis with lower or non-standard qualifications.
Find out the equivalent qualifications for your country.
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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.