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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Postgraduate Courses (School of GeoSciences)

Postgraduate Course: Managing Environmental Change Professional Placement (PGGE11258)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate)
Course typePlacement AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits60 ECTS Credits30
SummaryThis course is the final, overarching component of the MSc, and allows you to integrate knowledge and skills from the taught components into a 3 month long project. The focus of the project will be a real-world environmental management issue, where new research is needed. The project will normally be conducted as a placement with an external organisation, and will respond to their needs and policy/business context. It is also possible to conduct your project as part of a research group within the University.
Course description A key part of your MSc is a professional placement with an external organisation that works in the field of Environmental Change. This three month placement takes place after the Easter break, with the final report due in August, with considerable flexibility for part time students.

The main goal of the placement is to allow you to apply and develop your skills in using science and social science to inform the management of environmental change. This will take place in a supportive and ┐real-world┐ environment with both academic and non-academic guidance.

The placement and the topic are planned during the first and second semesters. Through the Centre for Sustainable Forests and Landscapes, you will develop connections to a wide range of organisations that work on environmental change. Placement projects be developed either from ideas suggested by the partner organisations, or from ideas that the student develops in collaboration with them.

The final output from the placement can take many forms including digital media. Examples might include web content, blogs, policy analysis reports, data analysis and decision support systems.

Current and previous partners include, IIED, SNH, The New Economics Foundation, National Trust for Scotland (Mar Lodge), The James Hutton Institute, RSPB, SWT, Woodland Trust, Edinburgh and Lothian Greenspace Trust, Forestry Commission/Forest Research, Corrour Estate, SEPA, John Muir Trust, LTS international, Ecometrica, The Plan Vivo Foundation.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand the current policy, business, and management context of a key environmental change issue
  2. Conduct research that informs policy, business or management
  3. Understand your strengths and weaknesses conducting independent project work
  4. Undertake concise writing for policy
Reading List
Brunner R. et al. (2005) Adaptive Governance: Integrating Science, Policy, and Decision Making. Columbia University Press.

McGuire C.J. (2012) Environmental Decision-Making in Context: A Toolbox. UCU Press.

Warren C. (2002) Managing Scotland┐s Environment. Edinburgh University Press.

Glass J. et al. (2013) Lairds, Land and Sustainability: Scottish Perspectives on Upland Management. Edinburgh University Press.

Schimel, J. Writing Science: How to Write Papers That Get Cited and Proposals That Get Funded. (Oxford University Press, 2011).

Strunk, W. Elements of Style. (Start Publishing LLC, 2012).
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills - Able to independently conduct high quality research
- Able to identify the needs of an organisation for information on environmental change and respond accordingly
- Skilled at data analysis, synthesis and visualisation
- High quality, concise, writing for a range of audiences
- Self-reflective learner
Keywordsprofessional placement
Course organiserDr Casey Ryan
Tel: (0131 6)50 7722
Course secretaryMs Kathryn Will
Tel: (0131 6)50 2624
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