Not sure which course to pick? All our courses emphasize research training and provide an excellent starting-point for a PhD. Some focus more on research and others more on applying your science to environmental challenges. However, students from every course go on to PhDs, to non-governmental organisations (NGOs), industry or consultancy, in a variety of roles. Compare them in the table below.
|Degree||Course title||Training aims||Project length (months)||Part-time option|
|MSc||Computational Methods in Ecology and Evolution||Quantitative skills in computing, statistics, and mathematical modeling to solve biological problems||5|
|MRes||Computational Methods in Ecology and Evolution||Quantitative skills in computing, statistics, and mathematical modeling to solve biological problems||9|
|MSc||Ecological Applications||Applications of ecological and evolutionary theory and skills to real world problems||5|
|MSc||Ecology, Evolution and Conservation||Broad research training: scientific principles, current research tools, and application to conservation||5||?|
|MRes||Ecology, Evolution and Conservation||Broad research training: scientific principles, current research tools, and application to conservation||2 x 5||?|
|MR es||Ecosystem and Environmental Change||In terdisciplinary research training in ecosystems and the environment, covering the physical, life and social sciences, and research with real-world impact.||9|
|MSc||Taxonomy and Biodiversity||Methods and concepts, quantitative and practical skills, computing, morphology, molecular techniques in systematics, taxonomy and biodiversity research||4|
|MRes||Biosystematics||Methods and concepts, quantitative and practical skills, computing, morphology, molecular techniques in systematics, taxonomy and biodiversity research||3 X 3|
|MRes||Tropical Forest Ecology||High-level research training in the latest developments in tropical forest ecology, covering physical and biological aspects||8||?|
MSc or MRes
MSc courses devote around 50% of the year to taught coursework, where you learn a range of new skills through lectures, practicals, group projects and workshops. These are an excellent way to gain an overview of the area, helping you to select topics to focus on for your project (which ranges from 40% to 50% of your year, depending on which course you choose).
MRes courses devote less time to taught coursework and more time to the research project. You gain core skills in around 8 weeks of coursework, followed by one, two or three research projects (see table below). You learn additional skills through your project work. Although most students on the MRes courses intend to progress to a PhD, many students on the MSc also go into PhDs. The difference is largely a matter of flavour: MRes students have strong interest in conducting longer or multiple research projects.
Our experience is that employers and supervisors do not discriminate between an MSc versus MRes.