M.Sc. Climate & Environmental Sciences (Germany) Deadline: Jan. 31, 2020

FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg

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Starting on

April 1, 2020


Four Semesters

Tuition Fees

No Tuition Fee

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Program Details

The Institute of Geography at FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg invites applications for the Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Climate & Environmental Sciences. 

Environmental processes and dynamics are driven by the diverse properties of physical systems on global, regional, and local scales. Accelerating climate change affects the underlying processes and thereby landscape dynamics and socio-ecological systems. These changes impose fundamental research challenges and consequently increase the volume of spatial data. At the Institute of Geography in Erlangen, climatic changes and their effects are studied from different research perspectives with a (non-exclusive) focus on high-mountain environments.

The M.Sc. programme offers the opportunity to specialise in one major subject area of Physical Geography by giving students the opportunity to take advantage of an individually tailored Master’s programme. This will enable a specific qualification in a chosen field of interest. In-depth modules and the possible topics for the Master’s thesis mirror the three research pillars at our institute in Erlangen, which include the following:

  • Climate Research
  • Geoinformatics
  • Environmental Analysis

Each of these pillars is studied from different perspectives, for example, glaciology, physical climatology, and paleoclimatology in climate research; soil science, biogeography, and dendroecology in the case of environmental studies; and hyperspectral and radar remote sensing in the GIS area. Besides the generation of empirical data with state-of-the-art laboratory and measurement techniques, modelling and simulation approaches are part of the training. Theoretical seminars as well as practical courses convey the knowledge and skills to analyse and assess the processes and effects of (climatic) changes. This aims to synthesise various aspects of change for different environmental contexts, which is an essential approach in Physical Geography.

Successful applicants must prove good basic knowledge in Physical Geography or a related subject as well as basic technical skill sets, e.g., GIS or programming/scripting. Note that the examination regulations require you to have at least 30 ECTS in one or more geography-related subjects. Such subjects can be ecology, climatology/meteorology, GIS, soil science and geomorphology, hydrology, forestry, and environmental physics. 

Eligibility/ Requirements

Applicants are required to have a Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent qualification) in Physical Geography or an adjacent scientific discipline (e.g., biosciences and environmental sciences, climate sciences, meteorology, geoinformatics, landscape ecology, ecosystem research and ecosystem management, agricultural sciences, or forestry). However, for a successful application, a documented basic knowledge of physical geography is required. The Bachelor’s degree must have been awarded with “good” or “very good”.

The level of English required is “vantage or upper intermediate” (level B2) according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages or an equivalent score in an internationally recognised test. The proficiency of a basic knowledge of German (A1) has to be proven within the first academic year.

Applications that do not include a specific motivation letter as well as applications received from applicants with too little geography-related background or a background entirely in technical subjects (e.g., mechanical engineering) will be dismissed. Please be aware of the minimum Bachelor’s entry grade of at least 2.3 or better (without additional exam) or 2.3-2.5 (with additional exam). Grades below this threshold will be excluded from further review. Grades refer to the German higher education system or equivalent.

Application Process

Applications for the M.Sc. Climate & Environmental Sciences have to be submitted online. All documents required for the application must also be sent by mail to the Master’s Office.

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