Nature Society and Environmental Governance

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 21 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 28.3 k / Year(s) Deadline: Nov 18, 2024
1 place StudyQA ranking:5741 Duration:2 years

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The MPhil in Nature Society and Environmental Governance is grounded in the conviction that responses to political and environmental challenges requires researchers and practitioners trained in the social sciences, with the ability to think flexibly across disciplinary and sectorial boundaries. 

Graduate destinations

NSEG alumni are pursuing careers with a wide range of organisations, with a third or more entering MPhil or doctoral programmes in Oxford and elsewhere.

Examples of the organisations include government departments (eg US Department of Energy, National Water Services Agency Singapore), non-governmental organisations (eg OXFAM, Birdlife International), business organisations (eg Confederation of British Industry, Financial Services Authority) and international agencies (eg Food and Agriculture Organisation, United Nations Environment Programme).

The department's Alumni Office helps alumni keep in touch with each other and organises alumni events.

It will enable you to develop a theoretically sophisticated and empirically grounded understanding of the dynamic relations between environment, society and policy. The second year is devoted to researching and writing a thesis of 30,000 words.

The MPhil is a two year course. In the first year, you will take the coursework associated with the MSc in Environmental Change and Management. The rate and complexity of environmental change poses profound economic, social and political challenges for contemporary society. Developing ways to address these challenges demands intellectual rigour, innovation and flexibility, as well as the capacity to think across existing disciplinary boundaries.

This course aims to help you develop a theoretically sophisticated and empirically grounded understanding of the dynamic relations between environment, society and policy. To this end the course draws on the methods and approaches from across the social sciences, including fields such as human geography, anthropology, environmental economics, science and technology studies, and corporate environmental management. It also facilitates dialogue between researchers and practitioners concerning contemporary issues of environmental policy and politics.

The specific objectives of the course are:

  • to provide broad and critical engagements with key debates in the environmental social sciences, focussing on the relations between nature-society, science-politics and economy-development
  • to foster an understanding of the applied practices of environmental policy and the challenges of real-world environmental governance
  • to develop your conceptions of, and skills in, the methods and practices of contemporary environmental social sciences, providing critical foundations for further study by research
  • to integrate you into world leading research in the School of Geography and the Environment by providing core teaching and supervision by research-active staff
  • to enhance your personal and professional development.

There are nine core modules organised under three themes: policy and governance, theory and analysis, and research skills. Teaching takes place through lectures, seminars and workshops which provide in-depth exploration of key environmental issues. The elective modules offer a tutorial-style teaching and discussion environment within smaller groups, based on a suite of contemporary research themes that reflect the specific interests of core faculty and visiting research associates.

The teaching aim is to foster discussion and debate between academic staff and students to identify and explore theory, methods and practice in an academic space that encourages a critical dialogue. In the second year you will work on your thesis project with the support of a specialist supervisor.

Field trips and external visits are an important component of the teaching delivery and include an induction field course in the UK and a three-day European field course.

At the end of the first year you take the examinations associated with the MSc in Nature Society and Environmental Governance. You must pass the examinations taken at the end of the first year in order to proceed into the second year. In the first year there are two assessed essays linked to elective courses.

The second year is devoted to researching and writing a thesis of 30,000 words. The research topic will be devised in your first year and, once approved; a supervisor will be allocated to you. The thesis accounts for half the marks for the degree. In addition, in the second year you will take a further elective course, assessed by a submitted essay. 

Applicants are normally expected to be predicted or have achieved a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours (or equivalent international qualifications), as a minimum, in any discipline.

For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.7 out of 4.0.

If you hold non-UK qualifications and wish to check how your qualifications match these requirements, you can contact the National Recognition Information Centre for the United Kingdom (UK NARIC).

No Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or GMAT scores are sought.

  • Official transcript(s)
  • CV/résumé
  • Personal statement: 2,500 words
  • Written work:One essay of 2,000 words 
  • References/letters of recommendation:Three overall, generally academic

ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

Higher level

Test

Standard level scores

Higher level scores

IELTS Academic 
Institution code: 0713

7.0 Minimum 6.5 per component  7.5  Minimum 7.0 per component 

TOEFL iBT 
Institution code: 0490

100

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
110

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

  • Global Education
  • Hill Foundation Scholarships
  • A number of Research Council awards are available each year from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).
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