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UCL Home  /  Geography  /  Study  /  Graduate Taught  /  MSc Environmental Modelling

MSc Environmental Modelling


The MSc Programme Environmental Modelling equips students with a well-rounded training in the role, implementation and application of models in environmental science. It is aimed not only at environmental science students, but also to those with a background in other sciences or engineering, who wish to develop their skills in an environmental science context.

The UCL MSc Environmental Modelling Programme is a multidisciplinary degree that provides rigorous technical and scientific training for the next generation of environmental modelling professionals. There is a growing need for these skills, not just within the scientific community but also from those managing our environments. There is a pressing national and international need to understand the nature and consequences of climatic change and to develop strategies to help the world adapt. Students will acquire knowledge and understanding of the Earth System (atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, lithosphere) as well as the nature and causes of climate variability and change.

The Programme draws upon the unrivalled strengths of UCL Geography in modelling across a broad range of environmental science disciplines. Our expertise includes:

  • State-of-the-art global and regional general circulation and ocean modelling
  • Advanced hydrodynamic and hydrological simulations
  • Palaeoclimate reconstruction over geological to recent historical timescales
  • Earth observation-derived vegetation and carbon cycle modelling

We also focus on model-based assessments of climate change impacts on coastal, estuarine and freshwater systems.


You can complete this programme full time over one year taking four core modules in the first (autumn) term to build a solid skill set in the design and application of environmental models. In term two (spring), you will choose four advanced modules from a range of options focusing on a specific subdiscipline. After completing your modules, you will then undertake a piece of original research leading to a dissertation of up to 12,000 words (worth 60 credits) with the support of an academic supervisor.


Module codeModule titleUCL Credit value
GEOG0109 Models in Environmental Science 15 credits
GEOG0110 Analytical and Numerical Methods 15 credits
GEOG0111 Scientific Computing 15 credits

In addition to the three compulsory modules listed above, students choose one module from:

Module codeModule titleUCL Credit value
GEOG0118 Climate Dynamics 15 credits
GEOG0044 Mitigation and Adaptation to Environmental Change 15 credits
Module codeModule titleUCL Credit value
GEOG0105 Research Project and Dissertation (Terms 2 and 3) 60 credits


You will normally, but not exclusively, select your four optional modules from the following list. Due to sabbaticals and staff changes, not all modules are available every year meaning module availability is subject to change. If you have questions relating to a specific optional module available in the coming year, please contact the course convenor.

Module codeModule titleUCL Credit value
GEOG0035 Environmental GIS 15 credits
GEOG0067 Surface Water Modelling 15 credits
GEOG0101 Ocean Circulation and Climate Change 15 credits
GEOG0112 Climate Change Impacts to Hydro-ecological Systems 15 credits
GEOG0113 Terrestrial Carbon: Modelling and Monitoring 15 credits
GEOG0121 Climate Modelling 15 credits

As part of this Programme, you will carry out a Dissertation (worth 60 credits) from May to September. Thanks to our strong links with key industry figures, many of these projects are done in collaboration with organisations outside the college. Plus, with the wide range of expertise both within the Department and across UCL, you will have a very wide variety of potential topics to investigate.

Fees and scholarships information can be found on the main UCL website.


      You can apply for a place on this Programme via UCL Admissions.

      Potential applicants are expected to have a First or Upper Second-class Honours degree in a relevant discipline (e.g. oceanography, marine studies, geography, civil engineering, geology, mathematics, and physics) from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard.

      Applicants with relevant professional experience in environmental science or environmental management will also be considered.

      Formal qualifications in mathematics are not a prerequisite for entry to the programme but students are expected to have an aptitude for mathematical studies and, if necessary, to undertake revision prior to the start of the programme. Academic enquiries may be emailed to the Geography Department.

      International applicants will need a Level 4 or equivalent recognised English language qualification. Visit the UCL Graduate pages for information on UCL’s English Language Requirements. To find out if your degree is recognised by UCL please contact UCL Admissions.





      The careers our graduates go onto from this Programme are diverse and include environmental consultancy, catastrophe modelling, government planning and PhD research. Take a look at our Careers page to see where some of our students have gone on to work.


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