Crisis and Disaster Management MSc
MSc Crisis and Disaster Management
Are you calm under pressure, capable of lead others in the face of a crisis, and ready for an interesting, rewarding career where you can make a difference? If that sounds like you, our MSc Crisis and Disaster Management degree course could be just what you're looking for.
On this course, you'll learn about topics such as hazards, vulnerability and the risk of disaster, crisis management and humanitarian responses, all underpinned by the practical aspects of an emergency situation, including planning and logistics.
You'll graduate with the skills you need for a successful career in the emergency planning and disaster management sector, either in the UK or overseas. You'll also get transferable skills in project planning, data reviewing and communication, putting you in a strong position to pursue a career in other industries.
On this course, you'll:
- Learn new skills including disaster risk reduction techniques, and mapping using GIS, GPS and remote sensing technologies
- Be supported by expert staff and researchers who are active in the field, with extensive industrial and consultancy experience working for government agencies, businesses and NGOs
- Complete a work placement with an emergency planning, crisis management or disaster response organisation and complete a personal project based on your work experience
- Take part in study visits and field training with UK emergency services, the military and NGOs
- Gain transferable skills such as project planning, data reviewing, report writing, team work and presentation
- Get to use field equipment including GPS survey kits, computer lab with Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and image processing software (QGIS, ArcGIS, ERDAS Imagine)
Work experience and career planning
We'll help you to identify placements, internships, voluntary roles and opportunities that will complement your studies.
When you finish the course, our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job that puts your skills to work in the field of crisis and disaster management, or elsewhere.
After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.
You'll get the opportunity to undertake voluntary work placements within emergency planning or disaster management organisations in the UK or overseas. In most cases these placements will form the basis of your research project. This will be beneficial to your studies, but it’s also a great way to gain valuable work experience.
Many students have undertaken their research project abroad, in destinations including the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, Montserrat, Sierra Leone, Tenerife, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey and the USA.
Careers and opportunities
When you graduate, you'll have the knowledge and practical skills needed for a career in the emergency planning, crisis management or disaster response sectors, both in the UK and overseas. Opportunities exist within sectors including:
- Humanitarian agencies and NGOs
- Emergency management
- Emergency logistics and contingency planning
- Flood management
- Military-civilian emergency liaisons
- (Re)insurance and risk management
- Utility companies
- Civil defence
- Disaster relief
The MSc Crisis and Disaster Management degree course also features research and analytical components, ideal if you are interested in pursuing further research at PhD level.
We'll give you as much support as possible in finding employment through close industrial contacts, careers events, recruitment fairs and individual advice.
The Crisis and Disaster Management course is endorsed by the Emergency Planning College (EPC) of the UK Cabinet Office.
If you've attended appropriate professional development short courses at the Cabinet Office Emergency Planning College (EPC) you may be eligible for exemption from attendance of up to two thirds of our degree programme. Accreditation of Prior Learning requires evidence of good practice in the topics of study, and of applying this appropriately in your workplace.
If you want to take advantage of this offer, after enrolment on the course a personal tutor will help you to submit your evidence.
- A 2:2 honours degree or equivalent, preferably with some relevant work experience in the emergency services or humanitarian sectors. Applicants with relevant professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered.
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.
Tuition fees (2019 start)
UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students
- Full-time: £7,500 (subject to annual increase)
- Part-time: £3,750 (subject to annual increase)
- Full-time: £14,700 (subject to annual increase)
- Part-time: £7,350 (subject to annual increase)
Additional course costs
These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.
Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.
You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.
You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.
The cost of travel or accommodation for compulsory fieldwork is included in the course fee, but you'll need to pay for meals and other costs.
Compulsory project work is normally carried out in the UK, and you'll be required to contribute to travel, accommodation and meals, usually in the region of £50 - £500 depending on the nature of the project.
You'll be provided with essential safety equipment for fieldwork and site visits (hard hat and reflective jacket). If you require additional field equipment you'll have to purchase these items. Total costs will be in the region of £145.
What you'll study
Core units in this year include:
- Disasters: Hazard, Vulnerability and Risk
- Emergency Management and Planning
- Disaster Management Techniques and Study Visits
- Research Project
Optional units in this year include:
- Crisis Management and Governance
- Humanitarian Emergency Response and Recovery
Changes to course content
We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.
As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).
ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:
- academic writing
- note taking
- time management
- critical thinking
- presentation skills
- working in groups
- revision, memory and exam techniques
Teaching methods on this course include:
- practical sessions
- simulation exercises
- study visits
How you'll spend your time
Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and an assessment period:
- Autumn teaching block – September to December
- Spring teaching block – January to Easter
- Assessment period – Easter to June
Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. There’s no teaching on Wednesday afternoons. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.
How you're assessed
You'll be assessed through:
- 3,000 word illustrated reports
- poster and oral presentations
- literature reviews and research proposals
- individual research project
Apply for this course using our online application form.
If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply directly to us or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region. To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section.