This Masters course in Quantitative Climate and Environmental Science will give students

  • deep knowledge in all scientific areas related to climate change and environmental degradation,
  • knowledge and practical experience in climate and environmental modelling, an awareness of the impacts and possible solutions to climate change.

The QCES programme consists of a combination of taught classes, including hands-on training in field data collection, laboratory methods, and computation, and an individual research project.  


The taught element of QCES comprises lecture-based classes and hands-on practical sessions. There are two types of classes in QCES: core classes which cover essential aspects of modelling and measuring the climate and the Environment, and options classes which deepen knowledge in climate and environmental science.

QCES also features non-assessed content designed to broaden the students’ knowledge.  This may take the form of short modules on specialist topics, communication workshops, a weekly seminar series and modules on real-world applications led by our partners.  

Four Core Classes

Required for both Part III and MPhil students, the core classes are: 

  • Fundamentals of environmental modelling
  • Atmosphere, ocean, and cryosphere
  • Laboratory and numerical methods
  • Environmental data acquisition and analysis 

Options Classes

Part III students take 3 advanced options classes.

MPhil students take 2 advanced options classes.

Examples of options classes include (please note that this list is subject to change): 

  • Atmospheric Chemistry and Air Pollution (IDP1 – offered in NST by Chemistry)  
  • Climate change and the Carbon cycle (IDP2 – offered in NST by Earth Sciences)  
  • Fluid Dynamics of Climate (offered in DAMTP)  
  • Fluid Dynamics of the Solid Earth (offered in DAMTP)  
  • Computational methods in Fluid Dynamics (offered in DAMTP)  
  • Carbon Capture and Storage (offered in NST by Earth Sciences)  
  • Ice Core Science (offered in NST by Earth Sciences)  
  • Nuclear Materials and the Energy Transition (IDP3 – offered in NST by Physics and Materials)
  • A QCES-specific options reading group with student-led presentations


Part III Research

Part III students will complete an independent research project, culminating in a report due at the start of Easter term, along with a research presentation. Read more…

MPhil Research

MPhil students will spend 6 months (Jan-July) completing research projects, which will be individually supervised by a member of the University of Cambridge or the British Antarctic Survey. The research projects will culminate in a presentation and a dissertation. Read more…

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