Postgraduate Studies in Environmental Science

At Victoria University of Wellington you can study postgraduate Environmental Science by undertaking either the Master of Environmental Science (1 year of study), the Master of Science (majoring in Environmental Science: 2 years of study) or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Environmental Science (3 years of study). Please refer to VUW’s guidelines for entry requirements.

We have designed these programmes to equip you with the skills and knowledge desired by potential employers.

The Master of Environmental Science is a 180 point programme, taken over 1 calendar year (3 trimesters of study). The first 2 trimesters of study involve coursework. Through guest lectures and seminars you will meet environmental scientists and potential employers from many external agencies including GNS Science, NIWA, Zealandia, Greater Wellington Regional Council, Wellington City Council, Department of Conservation and the Ministry for the Environment. In addition to the mandatory courses in Environmental Science, you supplement your degree with courses from across the Faculty of Science e.g. biology, ecology, chemistry, marine biology, physics, physical geography, earth sciences, geophysics, mathematics, statistics, GIS, climate change science and policy. The third trimester of your programme will be either a 60 point placement or a 60 point research project. The placement will be with a relevant external agency, and is a great opportunity to experience working as an environmental scientist while networking with potential employers. The research project option will be an original piece of work, potentially suitable for publication. You will be supervised by a VUW academic, with the option for co-supervision with an external agency depending on the project.

The Master of Science (Environmental Science) is a 240 point programme, taken over 2 academic years (4 trimesters of study). The first year of the programme is almost identical to the Master of Environmental Science, which means you have some flexibility to switch between the two if need be. During trimester 2 of your first year you will have the opportunity to take an internship with an external agency. The second part of the programme is a 120 point thesis. You will conduct an original research project in environmental science, supervised by expert staff at VUW and external agencies. If you are considering further study in the form of a PhD, you will need to undertake this thesis to meet entry requirements.

The Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programme is undertaken over 3 years. You will complete a piece of original research in the field of Environmental Science, supervised by experts in the field.

VUW offers a number of scholarships for postgraduate study. For information regarding international students, check out Victoria International.