The Master's degree in EMA provides a scheme which combines the practical elements of Environmental Earth Science and Physical Geography. The emphasis of this course is on techniques, methods and applications, rather than on theoretical knowledge. Several courses include laboratory and field sampling and analysis, which provide you with an excellent training for employment in an environmental field. Former graduates for this course work in private environmental consultancies, the Environment agency and other government bodies and water authorities, as well as many continuing on to study for PhDs. The geochemistry group at Aberystwyth has 5 well equipped laboratories housing 2 ICP-MS mass spectrometers for trace and ultra trace element analysis, a laser ablation system coupled to one ICP-MS system for in situ trace element analysis, 3 atomic absorption spectrometers for minor an trace metal analysis and two Dionex chromatographs for the analysis of anions in waters, as well as all the usual sample preparation and digestion facilities.
In recent years it has become increasingly apparent that there is a need for an interdisciplinary approach to the environment as a whole, an approach where the traditional discipline boundaries are dismantled. The M.Sc. in EMA addresses this interdisciplinary approach and we welcome graduates from the range of science disciplines including physicists, chemists, biologists and computer scientists, as well as geologists, geographers and environmental Earth scientists.
Structure of the course
Semester 1 (60 credits)
In the first semester students take 3 core modules which provide knowledge of a wide range of techniques which will be of use in environmental employment, or as a foundation for academic research. Successful completion of this semester would result in award of a University Certificate.
Semester 2 (60 Credits)
The choice of second semester modules (three from eight) will enable students to undertake further specialisation leading, on successful completion of Semester 2, to a University Diploma.
There are two core modules in aspects of analytical and environmental geochemistry, and third, optional module is selected from a range of Masters modules on offer in IGES, for example fluvial processes, water quality, GIS or glacial processes.
Semester 3 Dissertation (60 Credits)
The production of a dissertation in the third semester, generally relating to part of one of the Semester 2 modules will lead to the M.Sc. degree.
In the past titles have included
- The environmental impact of Roman mining and smelting in Jordan.
- Heavy metal loading and sediment contamination in the Avoca River, Ireland
- Geochemistry of amorphous Fe-Mn coatings on river pebbles in former mining areas
- Studies of weathering processes in metal mine waste from Mid-Wales.
- Variations in exposed riverine sediments in major Welsh rivers.
- Heavy metal loading in the Ystwyth catchment
- Domestic water supply in the Aberystwyth area.
- Heavy metal contamination as a legacy of Pb-Zn mining, Strata Florida, West Wales.