This understanding is represented in the form of models that allow informed management decisions to be made. However, these models must take into account data gathered through observation and monitoring of the phenomena concerned. Otherwise, the information they provide will be of little real value.
The Master of Science in Environmental Geosciences provides not only an adequate scientific grounding, but also an understanding of the fundamental links between the observation, modelling and monitoring of environmental phenomena, as each of these aspects enhances the credibility and quality of the other two. This combination also provides a deeper understanding of the phenomena themselves.
The teaching programme focuses on areas of study affected by both physical and chemical processes (for example, water tables, landslides, landfills, diffuse or concentrated pollution), as well as the interactions between environmental disruptors and living organisms. Through this interdisciplinary approach, future professionals are trained to acquire the capacity to confront the increasingly complex interactions between the critical zone, ecosystems and human activities.
The aim of the syllabus is to train students to describe, understand and model physical and chemical processes of both natural and anthropogenic origin. For this purpose, they will need to master and know how to use quantitative methodologies in environmental science (field measurements, laboratory work and data analysis), as well as how to choose appropriate techniques for the evaluation and monitoring of environmental problems. They will have to address the issues related to a theme on the theoretical and empirical foundations of natural science, while taking into account the complexity, uncertainties and limits of knowledge concerning environmental processes.
Moreover, university studies develop a great many transverse skills such as: oral and written communication, critical, analytical and summarising faculties, abilities in research, the learning and transmission of knowledge, independence and the ability to make judgements in the field of specialisation and overlapping areas. This panoply of skills, combined with specialist knowledge acquired in the course of studies, is excellent preparation for a wide range of employment opportunities such as those mentioned in the «Career prospects» section.
The common module comprises introductory courses with a cross-disciplinary dimension. Through transverse activities and teaching it gives students insight into the multidisciplinary nature of the environment.The specialisation module allows the student to choose one of the following subject areas:
Physical and Chemical Processes of the Environment
Risk Analysis, Monitoring and Representation
Environmental Social Issues.This module includes compulsory blocks, optional blocks, and finally the possibility of a free choice of course credits. The dissertation constitutes the final course module.
Evaluations may take the form of written or oral examinations, practical work, discussions, field trip reports or conference organisation.
Subject to the prior agreement of the mobility Commission, students enrolled on a Master’s cycle may study for one or two semesters in an institution recognised by UNIL while con-tinuing to be registered with the University of Lausanne.
University studies develop, in addition to spe-cific academic skills, a great many transverse skills such as: oral and written communication, critical, analytical and summarising faculties, abilities in research, the learning and trans-mission of knowledge, independence and the ability to make judgements in the field of specialisation and overlapping areas.This panoply of skills, combined with specialist knowledge acquired in the course of stud-ies, is excellent preparation for a wide range of employment opportunities such as those mentioned in the «Career prospects» section.
Common courses off campus
Joint environmental project
20 ECTS credits
One free-choice area of specialisation
60 ECTS credits
1. Physical and Chemical Processes of the Environment
Stable Isotopes as Environmental Markers
Air, Soil and Water Pollution
2. Risk Analysis, Monitoring and Representation
Quantitative Advanced Risks and Vulnerability
Risks and Dangers Associated with Landslides
Analysis of Environmental Data
3. Environmental Social Issues
Representation and Social Construction of Risks
Analysis of Environmental Controversies
Ethics of the Environment and Sustainable Development
Territorial Risk and Policy
Within each specialisation there are optional blocks which allow the completion of compulsory courses
Methods and Risks
40 ECTS credits
Dates reflect the university's timezone.
Candidates must be holders of a Bachelor of Science in Geosciences and Environment degree awarded by the University of Lausanne, or of a Bachelor’s degree in Geography, Environmental Studies or Earth Sciences awarded by a Swiss university. Another degree or academic title may be judged equivalent and give access to the Master’s degree course, with or without further conditions.
Teaching language: Mainly French, with a few courses in English. Recommended level: C1. The dissertation may be written in English.
The award recognises studying abroad as a positively life changing experience for many students as well as promoting intercultural understanding and tolerance. Successful candidates will receive up to £10,000 to be applied toward the cost of tuition fees.
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