Anglia Ruskin University

Sustainability MSc

Anglia Ruskin University
In Cambridge

Price on request
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Important information

Typology Master
Location Cambridge
Duration 12 Months
  • Master
  • Cambridge
  • Duration:
    12 Months

This course is run by our Global Sustainability Institute in partnership with the Eden Project and Change Agents UK. You’ll learn first-hand from sustainability researchers, experience inspirational practitioners and apply your new skills and knowledge in a work placement. Our course will help you become an agent for positive change.

We’ll give you the knowledge and skills you’ll need to lead the way to a more sustainable future in business, government and society.

In the first part our taught modules give you an up-to-date knowledge of key sustainability challenges, and of the scientific findings and policy issues that underlie them. You’ll develop your ability to understand complex environmental, economic and social systems and apply this knowledge to help create a more sustainable future. Residential workshops in Cambridge and Peterborough are complimented by online learning including discussions and webinars.

In the second part you’ll learn how to apply this knowledge as a sustainable business and for a sustainable economy. You’ll spend time learning and living at the Eden Project in Cornwall experiencing first-hand how it functions as a world-renowned visitor attraction and as a sustainable business. Finally, you’ll get the chance to practice what you have learned in the workplace, gaining valuable work experience and rehearsing your future as a ‘catalyst for change for sustainability’. You’ll also undertake your own piece of research, a Major Project on a sustainability topic of your choice.

Facilities (1)
Where and when
Starts Location
On request
Cambridge Campus, East Road, CB1 1PT, Cambridgeshire , England
See map
Starts On request
Cambridge Campus, East Road, CB1 1PT, Cambridgeshire , England
See map

To take into account

· What are the objectives of this course?

Our course will prepare you for many roles, including sustainability consultant to businesses, governments or NGOs, education, or founding your own sustainable business. You’re also in the perfect position to continue your academic career and move up to our Sustainability PhD.

· Who is it intended for?

Our course is open to graduates from all disciplines and attracts students with backgrounds in the arts, science and business. Some go on to become sustainability specialists whilst others return to their discipline or previous career sector to ‘do things differently’ using the knowledge and skills they’ve developed to change business practice, communities and policy.

· What marks this course apart?

This course offers you flexibility to continue working in your current job anywhere in the world. Even if you choose to study full-time you’ll only be required to attend five weeks of residential visits between September and March. The rest of your course is supported via online learning. See the 'Where you’ll study' section below for dates.

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Course rating
Centre rating

Reviews on this course

5.0 05/07/2017
What I would highlight: The college itself is really great. There are a few sustenance spots, and toilets in each building. There could be more PCs and spaces for study outside of the library where its allowed to talk however is still agreeable. The wifi isn't terrible, it has its bit.
What could be improved: N/A.
Would you recommend this course?: Yes
Did this opinion help you? Yes (0)
4.0 02/07/2015
What I would highlight: Its organized, uptodate and fair in directing your transferable aptitudes into this present reality (without it being excessively overwhelming). The library is great and, I think, the best thing is that the University has associations everywhere throughout the city so you are ready to encounter as much as you prefer, with individuals who have the same instructive or recreational interests.
What could be improved: No negative aspects.
Would you recommend this course?: Yes
Did this opinion help you? Yes (0)
Reviews gathered by Emagister & iAgora

Achievements for this centre


How do you get the CUM LAUDE seal?

All courses are up to date

The average rating is higher than 3.7

More than 50 reviews in the last 12 months

This centre has featured on Emagister for 9 years

What you'll learn on the course

Environmental Law
Risk Assessment
Environmental Health
Pollution Control
Environmental Impact
Environmental Quality
Renewable Energy
Solar Energy
Environmental Regulation
Environmental Sustainability
IT Management
Environmental Awareness
Skills and Training

Course programme

Modules & assessmentCore modules
  • Introduction to Sustainability and SystemsSets the scene for the rest of the course. And addresses the questions; 'What is sustainability?', 'What are its components?' and 'Why is it so important?' The importance of a systems-based approach to addressing sustainability and its epistemology will be discussed and you will examine a range of current concepts and models of sustainability (including 'circular economy', 'five capitals', 'natural step', 'one planet living' etc) and their usefulness in increasing our resilience to environmental, social and economic change.
  • System PressuresFocus on the scientific underpinnings of some of the main global challenges we face. You’ll assess the approaches we can use to address these risks, including mitigation, adaptation and resilience and the potential outcomes of these interventions, including positive outcomes. You’ll cover the major global challenges of climate change, resource use and population growth. We change some of out topics from year to year, in response to global events. Our topics may include energy use and biodiversity loss, social inequality and the links between environmental resource use and the performance of global and local economies. We’ll also share with you some of the most recent data and thinking coming from the GSI and Eden Project on topics such as resource constraints, conservation and behaviour change.
  • Measuring and MonitoringThis module addresses the importance of a quantitative basis for the informed management of sustainability in a number of contexts and at global and smaller scales. A number of specific techniques will be discussed including measures of resource use (Hubbert Peaks, Life Cycle Analysis) and consumption (Footprinting), indicators, benchmarks (biodiversity indicators) and audits, (e.g. Environmental and Energy Management Systems). The aim is not to explore individual techniques in depth, but rather to understand how they function, and their advantages and shortcomings in managing sustainability in their respective context. These techniques will also be reviewed in the context of resource waste and energy hierarchies (reduce, reuse, recycle/ demand reduction, energy efficiency, low carbon production). Teaching is delivered via a blend of face to face and supported online learning. It will include two week-long intensive residential sessions which will focus on discussion and critique, and provide an opportunity for an examination of good practice and case study. You'll be expected to come to these sessions prepared for this discourse. Each week long session will run concurrently with a 'sibling' module providing an opportunity to explore the linkages between modules, in particular the application of metrics to key system pressures.
  • Governance and Behavioural ChangeYou'll consider how and what can be done to deliver the changes required. You'll explore the drivers for behaviour change and assess some of the top-down (eg legislation, incentives and deregulation) and bottom-up approaches to governance using global (eg Avaaz), national (eg Cuba and Costa Rica) and local (eg Transition Towns, indigenous action, etc.) case studies as well as evaluate what it takes for an individual to become a successful change agent.
  • Better BusinessFocus on the growing business case for sustainability and examine the role of leadership, purpose, innovation and culture to create an organisation which 'does business better'. You'll chart progress and examine good practice towards more environmentally, socially and economically responsible business practice and the emergence of social enterprises and values-led businesses and its articulation through concepts such as cradle-to-cradle, biomimicry and circular economy. We'll examine The Eden Project itself, to help you understand its characteristics, culture and ethos and you will assess the transferability of some of key principles to other organisations - for example, the power of vision, collaboration and effective engagement techniques.
  • Working Towards ChangeTest and reflect upon the material covered during your class based modules by undertaking practical and supported work-based learning. Your work placement will combine your knowledge and understanding of sustainability with the practicalities and compromises of a business, as well as your requirements for personal learning and development. You’ll gain an insight into the challenges and opportunities of learning and driving change and critically analyse your own strengths and weaknesses through a programme of reflective learning and feedback. During your placement you’ll also be developing a range of work-based skills, recognised as vital by employers.
  • Research MethodsGain the support and foundations in the research skills for your Master’s level dissertation. You’ll investigate generic research activities, including project management and dissertation preparation. Your topics could include the consideration of suitable content, planning, and the use of project management software.
  • DissertationYou'll chose an independent research topic from an area of expertise within our department (subject to availability of suitable supervision) and will conduct a significant research project in that area which may involve a literature review, data collection, analysis and a write-up.

You’ll be assessed through reports, essays, journal articles, presentations, outline plans and designs, and your dissertation.

Additional information

Course duration: 12 months full-time or 28 months part-time.

Please note that this course is unavailable for students on Tier 4 visas. International students can apply for a short-term study visa as your study in the UK will be less than 6 months. 

Course fees:  UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year) £7,100

UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year part time) £3,550

International students, 2016/17 (per year) £11,700

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