MSc(Agr) Environmental Resource Management

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

The MSc Environmental Resource Management is an established programme designed for those who wish to undertake advanced studies in the pursuit of a career in the environmental sciences.

Sustainable management of our environmental resources is at the heart of some of the key challenges facing humanity today; food security, climate change, biodiversity loss, and the protection of water and soil resources. During this MSc particular emphasis is placed on exploring these globally important environmental issues, in agriculture and other land use systems. Graduates will gain the knowledge necessary to address these needs through a combination of environmental science, policy and management expertise.

The programme fosters in its graduates the qualities of self-motivation and critical thinking. Core elements of the programme include: literature review and knowledge assimilation; core lab, field and IT skills including use of GIS and remote sensing software; experimental survey design, quantitative data analysis and communication skills.

Individual and group work assignments are designed to develop individual, teamwork and leadership skills. These skills will culminate and be tested further in the final semester, when students complete a supervised research project. Fieldwork is involved in many of the modules offered, including visits to leading extension, advisory and research programmes in the area of sustainable environmental resource management.

The minor thesis component offers a very broad choice of research topics that allows students to focus on a specific subject area of interest. Students are assigned an academic supervisor with research interests and expertise in the thesis subject area.

Careers & Employability

The career prospects for graduates from the MSc Environmental Resource Management are wide ranging, with environmental management increasingly fundamental to industrial, service and public sectors. Graduates secure roles in the private and public sector across government agencies, local authorities, county councils and others.

This programme has a successful track record with the Irish Aid Fellowships.

Graduate Roles

  • Environmental Consultancy
  • Environmental Advisory
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Regulatory Authorities
  • Policy
  • Research

Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

The MSc in Environmental Resource Management is designed for those who wish to undertake advanced studies in the pursuit of a career in the environmental sciences. Particular emphasis is placed on exploring globally important environmental issues, including climate change, and the sustainable management of soil, plant and water resources in agriculture and other land use systems. The programme fosters in its graduates the qualities of self-motivation and critical thinking. Scientific principles and the evidence base relevant to solving agri-environmental and wider environmental management concerns are provided, which in combination with understanding of effective policy-making, leads to sustainable management practice. The programme structure provides the opportunity to develop key skills across the agri-environmental sciences. Core elements of the programme include: environmental assessment; practical research skills; geographic information systems (GIS); ecosystem monitoring; experimental/survey design and quantitative data analysis; and communication for research. These skills will culminate and be tested further in the final trimester, when the student does an independent supervised project. 

  • Apply learned skills and competencies in environmental consultancy, evaluation and assessment
  • Appreciate the functional benefits of natural processes within managed rural ecosystems
  • Combine the use of core lab, field and IT skills in scientific study and evaluation
  • Devise and interpret environmental studies/evaluations involving the collection, appropriate analysis and reporting of resulting observations
  • Evaluate the wider environmental issues and challenges of food production and security, and appreciate the objectives of national, EU and international policy
  • Integrate scientific understanding in sustainable management and policy approaches
  • Interpret the ecological processes and cycles that underpin sustainable management of natural resources
  • Understand the key terrestrial ecosystem services such as climate and water regulation and nutrient cycling, and how they may be promoted by effective and sustainable land management practice

MSc(Agr) Environmental Resource Management (X089) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 10174.5
nonEU    fee per year - € 29100

***Fees are subject to change
Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website. Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree programme. For further information please see International Scholarships

  • Applicants must hold minimum lower second class honours Degree (NFQ Level 8), or international equivalent, in Biological Science, Environmental Science, Agricultural Science, Geography, Earth Sciences, Natural Sciences or cognate degree programme from a recognised higher education institution. Cognate degree programmes would include humanities, arts, business, law and engineering.
  • Mature candidates have previously been accepted on the basis of relevant experience and prospective candidates are encouraged to contact the Programme Director to discuss their eligibility.
  • The programme welcomes students from across the world.
  • Applicants whose first language is not English must also demonstrate English language proficiency of IELTS 6.5 (no band less than 6.0 in each element), or equivalent. Students meeting the programme’s academic entry requirements but not the  English language requirements, may enter the programme upon  successful completion of UCD’s Pre-Sessional or International Pre-Master’s Pathway programmes. Please see the following link for further information 

These are the minimum entry requirements – additional criteria may be requested for some programmes 

Graduate View 

Sinead Doyle, Inspector, Environmental Protection Association

For my undergraduate studies I completed an Arts degree in English and Geography graduating as a secondary school teacher. As I was completing my degree I knew my education journey was not complete and that I wanted to develop my skills further and complete an MSc. My interest was in

the area of environmental studies and after researching a number of programmes, I felt that the MSc Environmental Resource Management at the UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science was the right programme for me. I felt this MSc would complement my undergraduate degree and enable me to develop my professional career. I was particularly attracted to the high level of practical applied learning included within the programme and felt this would enhance my employment opportunities greatly.

I secured a role as an Environmental Technician with Carlow County Council immediately after completing the MSc. I currently work with the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) as an Inspector. Without completing my Masters degree I would not have secured these positions and would not be where I am today. I feel having completed the MSc gave me a distinct advantage over other candidates and I now work alongside two of my classmates from the MSc programme.

Graduate View 

Dr Brendan Dunford, Manager, Burren Programme & Co-founder Burrenbeo Trust

Having spent my twenties travelling around the world, I’d become increasingly interested in the relationship between people and their places, how communities shape their local environments and vice-versa, and what a precious resource a healthy environment is. I decided that I wanted to learn more and reconnect again with my own homeplace, so I returned to Ireland, ‘parked’ the

backpack and enrolled in the MSc Environmental Resource Management at UCD. I loved it! The mix of people in terms of age, academic background and nationality, the diversity of subjects available, the passion for learning and change among my new classmates, all made for a very inspiring experience. Having the course located within the UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science was a bonus as so much of the Irish landscape is shaped by farming and so much change has taken place in that sector of late.

The following entry routes are available:

MSc(Agr) Environmental Resource Management FT (X089)
1 Years
Full Time

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised