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Course Structure

Polar and Alpine Change (“PAC”) students complete 180 compulsory credits of study over one year (Full Time), or two years if Part Time. Four modules are taken. Their titles, credit ratings and the semesters in which they run are indicated below.

The two Autumn modules are delivered through a mixture of lectures, seminars, workshops and independent study. The Field Course, while designated a Spring-semester* module, takes places in the mid-summer.

In the Research Project, students decide their research topic in the first part (the first 6-8 weeks) of Semester 1, when they conduct pilot research to aid this conception, and are allocated their supervisor(s) during this process. Research continues throughout the year, leading to oral presentation of mid-project findings in a mini-conference around May in the department and submission of their Project Report in the summer, followed by a poster presentation of project findings. This module is fundamental to our programme, given its aim to train researchers. Its level and style of research interactions, and the expected levels of independence, competence and commitment required of the student, thus resemble those at PhD level. Consequently, the scope of the research topic chosen by each student also shapes his/her expertise and the flavour of his/her MSc(Res) training.

Assessment methods include essays, research proposal, project reports, oral presentations and poster presentation. There are no exams.

Module title Semester Credits
Research Design in Analysis of Environmental Systems Autumn 15
Current Issues in Polar and Alpine Science Autumn 15
Arctic/Alpine Field Course Spring* 15
Polar and Alpine Change Research Project All Year 135

*The Field Course, while designated a Spring-semester module, takes places in the mid-summer