Master of Science (Geography)

Course MC-SCIGEO (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Year and Campus: 2011 - Parkville
CRICOS Code: 062189B
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Level: Graduate/Postgraduate
Duration & Credit Points: 200 credit points taken over 24 months full time. This course is available as full or part time.


Dr Wayne Stephenson


Melbourne Graduate School of Science
Faculty of Science
The University of Melbourne

T: +61 3 8344 6128
F: +61 3 8344 3351


Course Overview: The Master of Science - Geography is one of the research training streams of the Master of Science. The research training streams give students the opportunity to undertake a substantive research project in a field of choice as well as a broad range of coursework subjects including a professional tools component, as a pathway to PhD study or to the workforce.


At the completion of this course, students should:

  • be familiar with current debates in their chosen field of geographic inquiry;
  • be able to develop research questions from a critical reading of a body of literature;
  • be able to design a field or laboratory based research project; and
  • gain an understanding of major conceptual debates in physical geography, and their implications for research methodology.
Course Structure & Available Subjects:

Students must complete a total of 200 points comprising:

  • 75 points of discipline subjects including Advanced Reading in Geography;
  • 25 points of professional tools subjects; and
  • a 100 point Research Project.

This course is only available on a full-time basis commencing in semester one. Students will complete the discipline subjects and the professional tools subjects in year one and the research project in year two.

Discipline subjects (50 points)

Students must take:

  • 207-519 Advanced Reading in Geography

Students must take 37.5 points selected from:

  • 121-512 Integrated River & Catchment Management
  • 121-529 Social Impact Assessment and Evaluation
  • 121-532 Environmental Impact Assessment
  • 121-537 Heritage and Cultural Environments
  • 121-548 Climate Change Politics and Policy
  • Hazardous Coasts
  • Environmental Reconstruction

Elective discipline subjects (25 points)

  • 207-505 Global Environment and Sustainability
  • 451-610 Foundations of Spatial Information
  • 600-604 Environmental Risk Assessment
  • 625-634 Climate Affairs

Professional tools (25 points)

Business Tools

  • 600-614 Business Tools: Money, People and Processes
  • 600-622 Business Tools: The Market Environment

Science Tools

  • 615-668 Critical Analysis in Science
  • 615-505 eScience
  • 600-617 Systems Modelling and Simulation
  • 600-618 Ethics and Responsibility in Science
  • 600-615 Thinking and Reasoning with Data

Communication Tools

  • 600-616 Science in Context
  • 600-619 Science and Communication

Research Project (100 points)

Students must comple a 23,000 word thesis due at the end of semester 2 (100%).

Students will select an approved Geography topic/research project in consultation with the supervisor/s. Student must also write a research proposal, give an oral presentation on the proposed research and an oral presentation towards the end of the project summing up the results of the research.

The thesis should demonstrate a critical application of specialist knowledge and make an independent contribution to existing scholarship in the area of research.

Subject Options:

Discipline subjects

Students must take 207-519 Advanced Reading in Geography.
Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:

Elective discipline subjects

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Semester 2

Professional Tools

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Not offered in 2011
Not offered in 2011
Not offered in 2011
Entry Requirements: Bachelor degree with a major in an appropriate discipline with at least an H3 (65%) average in the major or equivalent.
Core Participation Requirements: It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable steps will be made to enhance a student’s participation in the University’s programs. Students who feel their disability may impact upon their active and safe participation in a course are encouraged to discuss this with the relevant course coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.
Further Study: The Research Training programs offer a pathway to a PhD.
Graduate Attributes:

Graduates will:

  • have the ability to demonstrate advanced independent critical enquiry, analysis and reflection;
  • have a strong sense of intellectual integrity and the ethics of scholarship;
  • have in-depth knowledge of their specialist discipline(s);
  • reach a high level of achievement in writing, research or project activities, problem-solving and communication;
  • be critical and creative thinkers, with an aptitude for continued self-directed learning;
  • be able to examine critically, synthesise and evaluate knowledge across a broad range of disciplines;
  • have a set of flexible and transferable skills for different types of employment; and
  • be able to initiate and implement constructive change in their communities, including professions and workplaces.
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