coastal view with views of houses, boats and mountains

Coastal and Marine Resource Management MSc

Do you have an ambition to combat the challenges facing our coastlines? Learn about solutions and develop your own strategies to manage our marine resources.

Key information

Accreditation:

This course is Accredited

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Showing content for section Overview

Overview

The Master’s in Coastal and Marine Resource Management looks in-depth at a range of challenges unique to marine and coastal environments, from the health of ocean ecosystems, to the conservation, preservation and sustainable development of coastlines.

You’ll study new techniques for mapping and modelling environments, planning and allocating resources, and developing and growing coastal communities and economies.

Studying in the historic naval and commercial port city of Portsmouth, you’ll be ideally placed to experience the busy Solent waterway, the Jurassic coasts of Dorset and the Isle of Wight and marine conservation zones in Hampshire and Sussex.

Coastal and Marine Resource Management at Portsmouth is ideally suited to people who are passionate about the planet and global issues such as sustainability and climate change.

Graduates from this course have gone on to work for organisations like The Environment Agency, Natural England, the World Wide Fund for Nature and the Marine Conservation Society as scientists, planners and policy makers.

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Course highlights

  • Learn how the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals can be incorporated in coastal and marine conservation and development
  • Understand the challenges and opportunities of marine policy, planning and conservation, and the Blue Economy – the biggest issues being tackled by researchers in our Centre for Blue Governance 
  • Take part in field trips and site visits in Hampshire, Dorset and Sussex, including a two-day residential course on the Isle of Wight and six-day residential course on Jersey in the Channel Islands
  • Learn the key theories and principles of Geographic Information System (GIS) data mapping and analysis
  • Regularly hear from guest speakers from industry
  • Make the most of the diverse marine and coastal environments, wildlife, urban development and maritime heritage in and around Portsmouth
  • Design and undertake your own advanced research project

Accreditation

This course is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Explore your MSc Coastal and Marine Resource Management degree

Hear from Dr Jonathan Potts

 

Find out more about what you'll experience on this MSc Coastal and Marine Resource Management degree from Course Lead, Dr Jonathan Potts.

Dr Jonathan Potts: What makes people want to study here? It's all about coastal marine issues so everything from marine plastics, to climate change, through to marine spatial planning, through to marine and coastal recreation. Getting lots and lots of guest speakers in many of whom are ex-students. They're working for all different types of organisations, whether it be overseas governments or whether it be local governments here in the UK.

Other students end up in jobs with the Environment Agency, Natural England, English Heritage — you name it. There's a breadth of jobs out there and we have a very, very good employability rate. I think the most important things are that you'll make a great range of people, there's a really good lecturing team, and you'll develop a range of academic and career-based skills that will never leave you. 

Contact information

Admissions

+44 (0) 23 9284 5566

Contact Admissions

Chat to your course leader

Whether you want to ask about modules, assessments or your career prospects come graduation, our academics are on hand to help. Book in a one-to-one session with your course leader and get your questions answered.

Book a session

Entry requirements

September 2024 / January 2025 start

  • A second class honours degree or equivalent in any subject. Professional experience and other qualifications may be taken into consideration for applicants not meeting this requirement.

Please get in touch if you're not sure if your undergraduate subject is relevant to this degree.

Equivalent professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered, such as previous study, employment, voluntary work and training courses, including courses and qualifications you didn't complete. Learn more about our Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

If you're applying as an international student with a non-UK degree, you’ll need to show you meet the UK entry requirements listed above.

To find out if your non-UK degree or other qualification is accepted, please visit our page for your country and view the UK equivalent of your qualification. 

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 (or equivalent) with no component score below 6.0.

You do not need an IELTS or equivalent certification if:

  • you have a UK degree
  • you have a degree from a majority English speaking country (not taught by Distance Learning)
  • you are a national of a majority English speaking country

Degrees taught solely in English from non-majority English speaking countries will be considered on a case by case basis. Find out more about our English language requirements.

If you do not meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees (September 2024 / January 2025 start)

  • Full time: £10,400
  • Part time: £3,470 in year 1 and £6,930 in year 2

(including Transition Scholarship)

  • Full time: £10,400
  • Part time: £3,470 in year 1 and £6,930 in year 2

  • Full time: £17,900
  • Part time: £5,970 in year 1 and £11,930 in year 2

University of Portsmouth graduates may receive a 20% alumni tuition fee discount

Fees are subject to annual increase. Read our tuition fees terms and conditions.

You'll be able to pay your fees in instalments. Find out how to pay your tuition fees.

Funding your studies

Explore how to fund your studies, including available scholarships and bursaries.

If you're a UK student, you may be eligible for a Government Postgraduate Master's Loan, which you can use to help with course fees and living costs.

International students may also be eligible for the School of the Environment, Geography and Geosciences (SEGG) Scholarship. Visit our page to find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Loans, scholarships and bursaries

Browse funding such as the Government Postgraduate Loan, our scholarships for new and returning students, and subject specific loans.

Female Master's student
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Funding for international students

Learn more about sponsorships, scholarships and loans for students applying from outside of the UK.

international business students
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Fees and funding for Master's courses

Explore Master's funding options, including loans, scholarships, bursaries and more.

Explore funding

Additional 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. Additional costs could include:

  • Accommodation: Accommodation options and costs can be found on our accommodation pages
  • Recommended reading: You can borrow key texts from the library and if you choose to purchase these texts they may cost up to £60 each.
  • General costs: such photocopying, memory sticks, printing charges, binding and specialist printing. We suggest budgeting £75 per year.
  • Field trips: The cost of transport and accommodation is covered as part of the course costs, but you may need to budget for food and drinks.
  • Final project transport or accommodation: where necessary, related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

Read more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

Modules

Full-time

All modules on this Master's course are core.

You’ll consider coastal management with a specific focus on resource management issues taking place within these environments. Examine the theory, concepts and frameworks of integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) and use topical issues as examples of practical application. You’ll also look at how and why coastal risk management is practiced and examine the effects of management upon "natural" systems. Learn how geomorphology can be applied to tackle "real world" problems and study case study examples to evaluate the viability of alternative management approaches.

You’ll look at a range of geographical scales, from global to local, and consider different approaches to the sustainable and integrated management of coastal and marine resources. You’ll examine policy and its importance, need and relevance, and the emerging marine planning regime in the UK, Europe and internationally. Finally, you’ll look into the history, current practices and future of marine conservation at a range of scales - local, regional and international.

You’ll become familiar with key technical issues such as map projections, coordinate systems, georeferencing and geoids. You’ll cover cartographic design principles, fundamental models of storing spatial information, and the suitability of vector and raster models to application areas. The module will include a practical "hands-on" use of GIS to illustrate the fundamental concepts through a series of practical exercises using GIS software.

You'll formulate hypotheses, collect and critique data, honing analytical abilities to generate original insights. Prepare a comprehensive literature review and critically evaluate and discuss the research literature in the context of your research project. You’ll build versatile skills for managing complex research investigations, finally reporting your scientific results through different media including a thesis report using publication-quality diagrams and figures.

You’ll explore examples of Sustainable Blue Economy strategies at different scales, including at the regional and national scales, as well as in Small Island Developing States. You’ll consider the range of sectors involved in the Sustainable Blue Economy, as well as their relationship to each other and to the underlying natural capital. You’ll also think about the relationship between Sustainable Blue Economy strategies and other ocean and coastal governance approaches, plus you’ll use examples to extract critical success factors for unlocking the Sustainable Blue Economy.

Part-time

All modules on this Master's course are core.

You’ll look at a range of geographical scales, from global to local, and consider different approaches to the sustainable and integrated management of coastal and marine resources. You’ll examine policy and its importance, need and relevance, and the emerging marine planning regime in the UK, Europe and internationally. Finally, you’ll look into the history, current practices and future of marine conservation at a range of scales - local, regional and international.

You’ll explore examples of Sustainable Blue Economy strategies at different scales, including at the regional and national scales, as well as in Small Island Developing States. You’ll consider the range of sectors involved in the Sustainable Blue Economy, as well as their relationship to each other and to the underlying natural capital. You’ll also think about the relationship between Sustainable Blue Economy strategies and other ocean and coastal governance approaches, plus you’ll use examples to extract critical success factors for unlocking the Sustainable Blue Economy.

All modules on this Master's course are core.

You’ll consider coastal management with a specific focus on resource management issues taking place within these environments. Examine the theory, concepts and frameworks of integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) and use topical issues as examples of practical application. You’ll also look at how and why coastal risk management is practiced and examine the effects of management upon "natural" systems. Learn how geomorphology can be applied to tackle "real world" problems and study case study examples to evaluate the viability of alternative management approaches.

You’ll become familiar with key technical issues such as map projections, coordinate systems, georeferencing and geoids. You’ll cover cartographic design principles, fundamental models of storing spatial information, and the suitability of vector and raster models to application areas. The module will include a practical "hands-on" use of GIS to illustrate the fundamental concepts through a series of practical exercises using GIS software.

You'll formulate hypotheses, collect and critique data, honing analytical abilities to generate original insights. Prepare a comprehensive literature review and critically evaluate and discuss the research literature in the context of your research project. You’ll build versatile skills for managing complex research investigations, finally reporting your scientific results through different media including a thesis report using publication-quality diagrams and figures.

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. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

How you'll spend your time

We recognise that you'll probably be juggling more demands when you do your Master's degree, as you may be working or you may have family responsibilities.

We'll give you as much indication here as we can of how much time you'll need to be on campus and how many hours you can expect to spend in self-directed study, but please note that these indications are always subject to change. You should receive your full timetable several weeks before you start with us.

Course structure

This Master's degree runs full time over 12 months, part time over 24 months from September to September.

Courses beginning in January have the same amount of teaching hours as September-start courses, but they normally run over a longer time period.

  • Full-time students attend in-person, on-campus teaching on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in Teaching Block 1, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Teaching Block 2
  • Part-time students attend in-person, on-campus teaching on Tuesdays in the first year and Thursdays in the second year

Master's study is deeper and more specialised than an undergraduate degree. This means you'll focus on something that really matters to you and your career as you work closely with academics committed to the subject.

You'll spend more time in independent study and research than you did for your undergraduate degree, but the majority of your teaching time will be in-person and face-to-face.

Field work

There are a number of field trips and site visits as part of the course in Hampshire, Dorset and Sussex, as well as a two-day residential on the Isle of Wight and six-day residential course on Jersey in the Channel Islands. The cost of transport and accommodation is covered as part of the course costs, but you may need to budget for food and drinks.

Assessment

You'll undertake regular assessments, including:

  • verbal presentations
  • poster presentations
  • theoretical essays
  • issue-based essays

Teaching staff

These are some of the expert staff who'll teach you on this course:

Jonathan Stephenson Potts Portrait

Dr Jonathan Potts

Programme Lead (Post Graduate Taught)

Jonathan.Potts@port.ac.uk

School of the Environment, Geography, and Geosciences

Faculty of Science and Health

PhD Supervisor

Read more
Stephen Fletcher Portrait

Professor Steve Fletcher

Theme Professor (Environment and Sustainability)

Steve.Fletcher@port.ac.uk

School of the Environment, Geography, and Geosciences

Faculty of Science and Health

PhD Supervisor

Read more

Term dates

September start

The Master's academic year runs from September to the following September. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter. Over the summer you'll be writing your project / dissertation.

January start

Courses that start in January have the same amount of teaching as September-start courses, and normally run from January to the following January. There are breaks at Christmas, Easter and in the summer. In the last few months you’ll be writing your project / dissertation.

See key dates

Graduation Class of 2021

Joining us as an international student

You'll feel at home in our international community and our diverse city. You'll be joining over 5,000 international students from more than 150 countries who are studying with us.

Learn more about international student life and how we can help you with visas, applications, arrival and settling in. 

Information for international students

Career development

Careers this Master’s prepares you for

Once you've completed this course, you'll be well positioned for a career in policy, planning or management.

You may also choose to work in industry, with community groups, for landowners or in a consultancy role. Alternatively, you might wish to pursue a career in research or education.

We'll provide you with as much support as possible in finding the right job, through our industrial contacts, careers events, recruitment fairs and individual advice.

Graduates of this course have gone onto roles such as:

  • Property Manager
  • Operational Meteorology Technician
  • Scientific Officer
  • Coastal Engineer
  • Coastal Technician
  • Senior Change Analyst 
  • Planning Policy Officer

Graduates of this course have gone on to work for companies such as:

  • Met Office
  • Central Government
  • Local Authorities
  • Royal Haskoning DHV
  • Just One Ocean

Career outcomes shown are sourced from the latest available graduate outcome surveys. The data shows career outcomes at 15 months after graduation.

9 reasons to do a Master's

Career planning

During your course you'll have expert career support from your tutors and our Careers and Employability Centre – which you can access for up to 5 years after you graduate.

Female student standing at careers and employability help desk

Career support

You'll benefit from:

  • Networking events
  • Applied projects with employers
  • 1-to-1 appointments
  • CV and cover letter advice
  • Interview preparation and practice
  • Workshops to enhance your employability skills
  • Recruitment events including the Student and Graduate Opportunities Fair
  • Support starting your own business

Learn more about your career support

Placements and industry connections

There are no formal work placements as part of this course but we encourage and actively support you in seeking out work experience opportunities.

We regularly invite guest speakers from industry to present their work – many of whom are alumni who've gone on to work in areas such as coastal geomorphology, marine management, conservation or consultancy for organisations such as:

  • The Environment Agency
  • Natural England
  • Crown Estate
  • Worldwide Fund for Nature
  • Government Organisations
  • Local Authorities

Supporting you

Master's study is more focused on independent learning than undergraduate study, but you'll get lots of support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:

Types of support

Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to postgraduate study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your Master's.

As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next meeting.

You'll have help from a team of faculty learning support tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.

They can help with:

  • improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
  • understanding and using assignment feedback
  • managing your time and workload
  • revision and exam techniques

As well as support from faculty staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK) for one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to:

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from the faculty librarian for science.

The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.

If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.

The Maths Café offers free advice and assistance with mathematical skills in a friendly, informal environment. You can come to our daily drop-in sessions, develop your maths skills at a workshop or use our online resources.

How to apply

Unlike undergraduate applications, which go through UCAS, applications for this Master's course are made directly to us.

There's no deadline for applications to this course. We accept applications right up until the start dates in September and January, as long as there are places available. If you wait until your start month to apply, you may find that the course is full. 

If you're applying as an international student, remember that you'll need to leave plenty of time to get your visa organised.

You can find more advice about applying in our Master's application checklist. International students and current students and recent graduates of the University of Portsmouth also have some different application options, which are detailed below.

Extra information for international students

If you're an international student, you can apply directly to us using the same application form as UK students.

You could also 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.

If you don’t meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.

Ready to apply?

I'm a current Portsmouth student, or a recent Portsmouth graduate

If you're currently in your final year of study at Portsmouth, or you graduated since July 2023, you're eligible to make a fast track application. You'll have:

  • a shorter application form to complete
  • access to the 20% Alumni fee discount
  • a guaranteed conditional offer, for most Master's courses 

Learn more about fast track

After you apply

Once we receive your application, we may ask you for further information. We will then either make you an offer or suggest alternatives if your application is unsuccessful.

You'll usually get a decision within 10 working days, so you shouldn't have to wait too long. Some courses have an interview stage – we'll let you know if you need to prepare for one.

Learn more about how we assess your application.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.