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Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc

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Our Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc is an interdisciplinary course that examines key issues relating to climate and environmental change at an advanced level. You will explore a wide range of critical topics, focusing on human influences on the Earth’s climate and environment, and their societal consequences. This MSc is unique because it’s flexible and allows you to study climate change from a policy or science pathway - and choose from an interdisciplinary list of optional modules to deepen your knowledge. You can choose to take the science pathway and concentrate your studies on the physical science aspects, such as forecasting climate change and its impacts. If you opt for the policy pathway, you’ll focus on the societal aspects, such as policymaking, adaptation and communication. This flexibility allows you to specialise while still studying modules from the other pathway. By drawing on social, natural, and environmental science approaches, you’ll learn how to critically analyse and interpret scientific evidence related to climate change, its distributional impacts across the globe, and the responses of nation-states, businesses, and other key stakeholders. You’ll join an alumni network boasting graduates working in consultancy, NGOs, governments and further academic research.

Key benefits

  • Bring your understanding of climate and environmental change issues up-to-date, focusing on the human influences and societal consequences of climate change.
  • Learn about how the potential future impacts and consequences of environmental change can be studied, including changes to the climate, carbon cycle, hydrology and land use.
  • Master your ability to address complex research and policy questions with newly developed multidisciplinary skills. Gain the skills to critically evaluate and analyse environmental change research, the implications of the science, and the range of possible policy responses.
  • Develop your understanding of what policymakers and society need from scientific research in order to respond to global and regional environmental changes.
  • Find out more about the nature of the uncertainties involved in future predictions.

This Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc is unique because it approaches the topic from both a science and policy perspective, which means you’ll learn more about applied physical science that's policy-relevant. It’s also the only MSc where you can choose to study climate change with a focus on science or policy - or you can opt for a more comprehensive understanding of both disciplines. With 50 modules to choose from, this Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc is a rare opportunity to get truly interdisciplinary teaching. You’ll complete compulsory modules on the Fundamentals of Climate Change and Environmental Science and Policymaking or Modelling Environmental Change, to develop your cross-disciplinary outlook. You’ll get the chance to learn from researchers who have, and are currently, contributing to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, as well as staff providing expert advice to the UK Government on a wide-range of pressing policy matters. You’ll also have the freedom to pick from a large number of optional modules from across all our Geography programmes, including the Environmental Internship where students gain hands-on experience of formulating and implementing actions on behalf of an environmental actor. Students can also take one module outside Geography such as the Global Law of Climate Change. You’ll be taught by physical and social scientists, and gain an in-depth understanding of the scientific and policy basis of a series of global environmental change issues.

Base campuses

strand-quad
Strand Campus

Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

waterloo-banner
Waterloo Campus

Waterloo campus is home of the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery and facilities for other faculties

Regulating bodies

King's is regulated by the Office for Students

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Teaching methods - what to expect

Curious to find out more? Access on-demand content including taster lectures and talks, and meet our current staff and students on our subject hub page.

We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face-to-face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

We will teach you through a combination of lectures and seminars, and typically 20 hours per module. We also expect you to undertake 130 hours of independent study for each module.

 
Module Lectures, seminars and feedback Self-study
Per 15-credit taught module 16-30 hours 120-134 hours (some modules may involve lab work or e-learning which would require less self-guided learning)
Dissertation module Usually 5 contact hours of one-to-one or group consultation with supervisors 595 hours of self-study and project work

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

  • Coursework
  • Written Examinations
  • Practical Examinations
  • Essays
  • Oral Presentations
  • Lab Work
  • Examinations
  • Dissertation

Your performance will be assessed through a combination of coursework and written/practical examinations. Forms of assessment may typically include essays and other written assignments, oral presentations, lab work and occasionally an examination, depending on the modules selected. All students also undertake a research-based dissertation of 12,000 words.

Structure

Required modules

You are required to take the following module:

Dissertation (60 Credits)

Science Pathway If you choose the Science pathway, you are also required to take the following modules:

Fundamentals of Climate Change (15 credits)
Environmental Data Analysis (15 credits)
Modelling Environmental Change (15 credits)
Research Design and Project Management (15 credits)

Policy Pathway If you choose the Policy pathway, you are also required to take the following modules:

Environmental Science and Policymaking (15 credits)
Fundamentals of Climate Change (15 credits)
Practising Social Research (15 credits)
Research Design and Project Management (15 credits)

Optional modules

Please note that for international students, UK Government guidelines are currently more restrictive for those holding part-time visas than full-time visas. If you hold a student visa for a part-time programme, you will not have the right to undertake any work, paid or unpaid, in the UK. Therefore, the Internship (Environment & Society) module is only available to full-time overseas students but not part-time overseas students, as the UK government considers it unpaid work. The Internship module is also available to full- or part-time home students. In addition, for both Science and policy Pathways, students are required to take 60-70 credits of optional modules, which may typically include:

Climate: Science and Society (15 credits)
Earth Observation and Remote Sensing for Sustainability (15 Credits)
Environmental Dynamics in the Anthropocene (15 credits)
Environmental Science and Policymaking (15 credits) (Required for Policy pathway, Optional for Science pathway)
Environmental Science for Sustainability
Fundamentals of Environment, Politics and Development (15 credits)
GIS and Spatial Data Science (15 Credits)
Internship (Environment and Society) (15 credits)
Resilience, Adaptation and Development (15 Credits)
Risk Analysis: Science and Applications (15 Credits)

Other Optional Modules Available to Students on this Programme: 

  • Any Level 7 (Masters) modules offered in the Department of Geography, including those listed above.
  • Global Law of Climate Change (15 credits) (King’s Dickson Poon School of Law) subject to approvals.
  • Green Finance: Regulation and Governance (15 credits) (King’s Dickson Poon School of Law) subject to approvals.
  • Up to 20 credits of Level 7 (Master’s) modules from other King’s Departments or Institutes outside of Geography, subject to approvals

Part-Time Students

  • Part-time students on both pathways are advised to take 75-90 credits of taught modules in their first year. Students on the Science Pathway are advised to take Modelling Environmental Change, Environmental Data Analysis, and Fundamentals of Climate Change their first year, and Research Design and Project Management their second year. Students on the Policy Pathway are advised to take Environmental Science and Policymaking and Fundamentals of Climate Change their first year, and Practising Social Research and Research Design and Project Management their second year. Should students have strong reasons to deviate from this schedule, they should consult with and have the agreement of their Programme Director.

Part-Time International Students and paid or unpaid work

  • Please note that for international students, UK Government guidelines are currently more restrictive for those holding part-time visas than full-time visas. If you hold a student visa for a part-time programme, you will not have the right to undertake any work, paid or unpaid, in the UK. Therefore, the Internship (Environment and Society) module is only available to full-time overseas students but not part-time overseas students, as the UK government considers it unpaid work. The Internship module is also available to full- or part-time home students.

King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

Employability

Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc graduates have secured careers in national and international consultancies and NGOs, governments, charities, research organisations, journalism and teaching. Many graduates have also gone on to undertake doctoral research at King’s and other universities in a broad range of Climate Science related topics.

Tuition Fees

UK:

Full time: £11,040 per year (2022/23)

Part time: £5,520 per year (2022/23)

International:

Full time: £24,660 per year (2022/23)

Part time: £12,330 per year (2022/23)

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

Deposit

When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

The UK deposit is £500.

The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

  • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

Additional Costs

In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies
  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions
  • Library fees and fines
  • Personal photocopies
  • Printing course handouts
  • Society membership fees
  • Stationery
  • Graduation costs
  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses
  • Some modules include the option to undertake other short day-trip fieldwork. These fieldwork options will enhance the modules, but they are not assessed as part of the module. The additional costs for short day-trip fieldwork would typically not exceed £50 per year.
  • Costs may be incurred for dissertation work if fieldwork and/or laboratory materials are needed for the chosen study topic, but such work is not mandatory and would not impact academic success if an alternative approach to dissertation research is taken.

Funding

This Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc is unique because it approaches the topic from both a science and policy perspective, which means you’ll learn more about applied physical science that's policy-relevant. It’s also the only MSc where you can choose to study climate change with a focus on science or policy - or you can opt for a more comprehensive understanding of both disciplines. With 50 modules to choose from, this Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc is a rare opportunity to get truly interdisciplinary teaching. You’ll complete compulsory modules on the Fundamentals of Climate Change and Environmental Science and Policymaking or Modelling Environmental Change, to develop your cross-disciplinary outlook. You’ll get the chance to learn from researchers who have, and are currently, contributing to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, as well as staff providing expert advice to the UK Government on a wide-range of pressing policy matters. You’ll also have the freedom to pick from a large number of optional modules from across all our Geography programmes, including the Environmental Internship where students gain hands-on experience of formulating and implementing actions on behalf of an environmental actor. Students can also take one module outside Geography such as the Global Law of Climate Change. You’ll be taught by physical and social scientists, and gain an in-depth understanding of the scientific and policy basis of a series of global environmental change issues.

Base campuses

strand-quad
Strand Campus

Located on the north bank of the River Thames, the Strand Campus houses King's College London's arts and sciences faculties.

waterloo-banner
Waterloo Campus

Waterloo campus is home of the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing & Midwifery and facilities for other faculties

Regulating bodies

King's is regulated by the Office for Students

Loading...

Teaching methods - what to expect

Curious to find out more? Access on-demand content including taster lectures and talks, and meet our current staff and students on our subject hub page.

We will use a delivery method that will ensure students have a rich, exciting experience from the start. Face-to-face teaching will be complemented and supported with innovative technology so that students also experience elements of digital learning and assessment.

We will teach you through a combination of lectures and seminars, and typically 20 hours per module. We also expect you to undertake 130 hours of independent study for each module.

 
Module Lectures, seminars and feedback Self-study
Per 15-credit taught module 16-30 hours 120-134 hours (some modules may involve lab work or e-learning which would require less self-guided learning)
Dissertation module Usually 5 contact hours of one-to-one or group consultation with supervisors 595 hours of self-study and project work

Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

Assessment

  • Coursework
  • Written Examinations
  • Practical Examinations
  • Essays
  • Oral Presentations
  • Lab Work
  • Examinations
  • Dissertation

Your performance will be assessed through a combination of coursework and written/practical examinations. Forms of assessment may typically include essays and other written assignments, oral presentations, lab work and occasionally an examination, depending on the modules selected. All students also undertake a research-based dissertation of 12,000 words.

Structure

Required modules

You are required to take the following module:

Dissertation (60 Credits)

Science Pathway If you choose the Science pathway, you are also required to take the following modules:

Fundamentals of Climate Change (15 credits)
Environmental Data Analysis (15 credits)
Modelling Environmental Change (15 credits)
Research Design and Project Management (15 credits)

Policy Pathway If you choose the Policy pathway, you are also required to take the following modules:

Environmental Science and Policymaking (15 credits)
Fundamentals of Climate Change (15 credits)
Practising Social Research (15 credits)
Research Design and Project Management (15 credits)

Optional modules

Please note that for international students, UK Government guidelines are currently more restrictive for those holding part-time visas than full-time visas. If you hold a student visa for a part-time programme, you will not have the right to undertake any work, paid or unpaid, in the UK. Therefore, the Internship (Environment & Society) module is only available to full-time overseas students but not part-time overseas students, as the UK government considers it unpaid work. The Internship module is also available to full- or part-time home students. In addition, for both Science and policy Pathways, students are required to take 60-70 credits of optional modules, which may typically include:

Climate: Science and Society (15 credits)
Earth Observation and Remote Sensing for Sustainability (15 Credits)
Environmental Dynamics in the Anthropocene (15 credits)
Environmental Science and Policymaking (15 credits) (Required for Policy pathway, Optional for Science pathway)
Environmental Science for Sustainability
Fundamentals of Environment, Politics and Development (15 credits)
GIS and Spatial Data Science (15 Credits)
Internship (Environment and Society) (15 credits)
Resilience, Adaptation and Development (15 Credits)
Risk Analysis: Science and Applications (15 Credits)

Other Optional Modules Available to Students on this Programme: 

  • Any Level 7 (Masters) modules offered in the Department of Geography, including those listed above.
  • Global Law of Climate Change (15 credits) (King’s Dickson Poon School of Law) subject to approvals.
  • Green Finance: Regulation and Governance (15 credits) (King’s Dickson Poon School of Law) subject to approvals.
  • Up to 20 credits of Level 7 (Master’s) modules from other King’s Departments or Institutes outside of Geography, subject to approvals

Part-Time Students

  • Part-time students on both pathways are advised to take 75-90 credits of taught modules in their first year. Students on the Science Pathway are advised to take Modelling Environmental Change, Environmental Data Analysis, and Fundamentals of Climate Change their first year, and Research Design and Project Management their second year. Students on the Policy Pathway are advised to take Environmental Science and Policymaking and Fundamentals of Climate Change their first year, and Practising Social Research and Research Design and Project Management their second year. Should students have strong reasons to deviate from this schedule, they should consult with and have the agreement of their Programme Director.

Part-Time International Students and paid or unpaid work

  • Please note that for international students, UK Government guidelines are currently more restrictive for those holding part-time visas than full-time visas. If you hold a student visa for a part-time programme, you will not have the right to undertake any work, paid or unpaid, in the UK. Therefore, the Internship (Environment and Society) module is only available to full-time overseas students but not part-time overseas students, as the UK government considers it unpaid work. The Internship module is also available to full- or part-time home students.

King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

Employability

Climate Change: Environment, Science and Policy MSc graduates have secured careers in national and international consultancies and NGOs, governments, charities, research organisations, journalism and teaching. Many graduates have also gone on to undertake doctoral research at King’s and other universities in a broad range of Climate Science related topics.

Tuition Fees

UK:

Full time: £11,040 per year (2022/23)

Part time: £5,520 per year (2022/23)

International:

Full time: £24,660 per year (2022/23)

Part time: £12,330 per year (2022/23)

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

Deposit

When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

The UK deposit is £500.

The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

  • If you receive an offer on or before 31 March, payment is due by 25 April 2022.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 April and 30 June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 July and 31 July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer between 1 August and 21 August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.

  • If you receive an offer from 22 August onwards, payment is due within three days of receiving the offer.

If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

Additional Costs

In addition to your tuition costs, you can also expect to pay for:

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies
  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions
  • Library fees and fines
  • Personal photocopies
  • Printing course handouts
  • Society membership fees
  • Stationery
  • Graduation costs
  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses
  • Some modules include the option to undertake other short day-trip fieldwork. These fieldwork options will enhance the modules, but they are not assessed as part of the module. The additional costs for short day-trip fieldwork would typically not exceed £50 per year.
  • Costs may be incurred for dissertation work if fieldwork and/or laboratory materials are needed for the chosen study topic, but such work is not mandatory and would not impact academic success if an alternative approach to dissertation research is taken.

Funding

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