Climate Change


Climate change is one of the most pressing and challenging issues facing humanity. Extreme heat, flooding, and rising sea levels are leading to a number of dangerous and irreversible impacts on societies and economies. Avoiding the worst impacts depends on decisions we make today to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and to find solutions to remove carbon from the atmosphere. A course in climate change has never been so important, as we attempt to tackle these fundamental issues facing humanity in the 21st century.

This highly interdisciplinary course offers a specialised knowledge of climate change from multiple perspectives, addressing many of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) around themes including climate science; impacts, adaptation and vulnerability; technological and nature-based mitigation; and the connections between climate change and human culture. Practical skills training is embedded in all modules and will provide vital hands-on experience in applying subject knowledge in the real world. There are also strong links with employers – notably through a careers module and an opportunity to undertake an employer-focused research project. This will ensure students graduate as the global citizens and leaders that society needs to help secure the future of our planet. This will open the doors to a wide variety of careers and pathways for future study – including the public sector (e.g. national meteorological and environmental agencies, and local councils), non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and charities; the private sector (e.g. environmental consultancies, energy and utilities companies, risk, finance and insurance providers); universities and research institutes; and many more.

Subjects taught

The information below is intended as an example only, featuring module details for the current year of study (2023/24). Modules are reviewed on an annual basis and may be subject to future changes – revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year.

Year 1

Core Modules

Culture and Climate Change (20 credits)

Careers in Climate Change (0 credits)

Living with Climate Change (20 credits)

The Science of Climate Change (20 credits)

Mitigating Climate Change (20 credits)

Optional Modules

Applied Renewable Energy and Low Carbon Technologies (20 credits)

Introduction to Renewable Energies (10 credits)

The Politics and Political Economy of Energy and Low Carbon Energy Transitions (20 credits)

Assessment of Environmental Impacts (20 credits)

Planning for Sustainable Communities (20 credits)

Environmental Interaction of Assessment of Marine Renewables (10 credits)

Urban Futures (20 credits)

Entry requirements

Normally a 2.1 Honours Degree (or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University) in any subject.

Applicants with 2.2 Honours degree (or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University) will be considered if they can demonstrate professional work experience in an environmental / sustainability role acceptable to the School. Supplementary form to be completed along with application.

The deadline for applications is normally 30th June 2024. However, we encourage applicants to apply as early as possible. In the event that any programme receives a high number of applications, the University reserves the right to close the application portal earlier than 30th June deadline. Notifications to this effect will appear on the Direct Application Portal against the programme application page.

Please note: A deposit will be required to secure a place on this course.


5 months (Full Time), 9 months (Part Time)

Enrolment dates

Entry Year: 2024/25

Post Course Info

Career Prospects

In addition to the subject-specific skills acquired on the programme, considerable care has been taken to ensure students are equipped with employability skills and are supported in their career development. Most notably, the programme includes a bespoke “Careers in Climate Change” module providing employability support and opportunities to network with employers in the climate change arena. Practical skills training is central in all core modules, ensuring students graduate with a range of technical hard skills (e.g. climate modelling, GIS, quantitative and qualitative data analysis) and transferable soft skills (e.g. presentations and report writing) that are highly valued by employers. The Research Project module includes an employer-focused option, involving a project co-designed and co-supervised by a member of staff from an external organisation. This is another way students can boost their career prospects, through working on a project of direct relevance and importance in the workplace, and by networking with staff within that organisation. Finally, students can avail of central University support through the QUB Careers, Employability and Skills department.

Employment after the Course

Where could you be in five years?

• Developing climate and flood risk scenarios in the public sector at national meteorological and environmental agencies such as the Met Office or Northern Ireland Environment Agency

• Formulating climate adaptation strategies and sustainability policies within local governments / councils

• Implementing conservation and climate action within NGOs and charities like Friends of the Earth or Greenpeace

• Leading change within the private sector at environmental consultancies such as Atkins or RPS; energy and utilities companies such as SSE Airtricity or Thames Water; and risk, finance and insurance providers such as AXA or the World Bank

• Working as a Scientific Officer within research institutes such as the Agri-Food Biosciences Institute or the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology

• Pursuing further study at PhD level in various areas relating to climate change

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Certificate at UK Level 7

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Part time,Daytime

  • Apply to

    Course provider