MRes / MSc

Global Food Security and Development

Rice field
  • Level(s) of study: Postgraduate taught
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Part-time
  • Location: Brackenhurst Campus
  • Starting: September
  • Course duration: One year full-time, two years part-time

Almost one in eight people around the world are chronically undernourished. Recurrent food price spikes and socio-political unrest, climate change, land degradation and scarcity of natural resources - coupled with decline in rural communities and livelihoods - have placed food security high on the development agenda. This course is designed to meet the growing demands for professionals equipped with the knowledge, understanding, skills and attitude needed to deal with these challenges.

Why chose this course?

  • Your studies will be based at Brackenhurst campus within the School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences - a leading land-based education provider for over 60 years.
  • Staff have expertise in global agriculture, food security, environmental management, sustainability, international relations, and geography.
  • We have international links with organisations such as the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).
  • You will benefit from both academic rigour and comprehensive student support within a friendly family atmosphere.

What you'll study

This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to studying food security, using insights from agroecological sciences, geography, social and political sciences, and innovation studies. The course will use research-informed teaching to explore and analyse global food security issues, the factors that affect food security outcomes, and the planning and execution of food security interventions.

  • Modules

    Research Methods and Data Analysis

    (20 credit points)

    This module provides you with advanced skills in designing, planning and evaluating studies in research. You'll become familiar with qualitative and quantitative research processes, as well as the methods and statistical tools used in food security research.

    This module is assessed by coursework (100%)

    Food Security and Food Systems Analysis

    (40 credit points)

    This module introduces the concepts of food security, the theories regarding the causes of food insecurity, and the tools and methods for assessing food security. In addition, the module will explore the concept of food systems, the methods for analysing food systems, and the challenges and risks facing contemporary food systems. A special focus is placed on the links between the characteristics and dynamics of various food systems, and the achievement of food security outcomes at various levels, both in developed and developing countries.

    This module is assessed by a written assignment (70%) and an oral presentation (30%)

    Innovations for Food Security

    (40 credit points)

    This module explores innovation in the solution to food security problems. Topics will cover technological innovations in primary production (e.g. crop and animal varieties, including GMOs; farm machineries; soil and water management; and pests and disease control technologies), as well as in the processing, distribution, and retailing of agri-food products. The module also covers non-technological innovations, including policy and regulatory processes, and institutional arrangements in the agri-food sectors. A key aspect of this module will be to discuss the various approaches to promoting innovation and behaviour change relating to food and farming.

    This module is assessed by a written assignment (70%) and an oral presentation (30%)

    Food Security and International Development Cooperation

    This module will introduce the concepts of development and development cooperation. It explores the roles of international development cooperation in alleviating food insecurity in developing countries. Topics will include various forms of development assistance relating to food security provided by governments, international institutions and NGOs, along with assessing their effectiveness. This module will also discuss how to effectively plan and manage agricultural and rural development programmes, including such issues as situation analysis, planning, administration, and monitoring and evaluation.

    This module is assessed by a written assignment (100%)

    Research Project

    (MSc 60 credit points, MRes 120 credit points)

    Research in depth a chosen topic area related to food security. Design and implement a relevant research project with a strong aspect of originality. Communicate the findings to an informed audience in a comprehensive scientific report.

    This module is assessed by coursework (100%)
  • Deciding between an MRes and an MSc

    Our Global Food Security and Development course is offered at two levels - two Masters degrees (MSc and MRes).

    MSc

    The MSc comprises a taught programme of four modules, and a research project.

    MRes

    The MRes offers two taught modules, and provides the opportunity to undertake an extended research project.

    ModulesMResMSc
    Food Security and Food Systems AnalysisOptional*Included
    Innovation for Food SecurityOptional*Included
    Food Security and International Development CooperationNot includedIncluded
    Research Methods and Data AnalysisIncludedIncluded
    Research ProjectIncludedIncluded

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

We have international links with organisations such as the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO).

How you’re taught

You'll be taught through a mixture of interactive lectures, detailed case studies, tutorials, workshops, seminars, study visits, and placements. You'll also have opportunities to present your work to peers and academic staff.

Independent learning is required, and you'll undertake high-quality research for the Masters awards. You'll research your chosen topic in depth, then design and implement a relevant research project, before communicating the findings to an informed audience in a comprehensive scientific report.

Careers and employability

Your future career

The course has been designed to meet the demand for well-qualified specialists to meet the challenge of ensuring global food security. Successful completion of the course will create employment opportunities for students in a broad range of organisations such as:

  • United Nations institutions and programmes such as the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), United Nations Development Department (UNDP), World Food Programme (WFP) and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
  • government departments for agriculture, food or rural development such as the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) in the UK
  • international door agencies such as the Department for International Development (DFID) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID)
  • national and international NGOs (non-government organisations) such as the Soil Association, Oxfam, CARE international and Action Aid
  • charitable organisations such as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Rockefeller Foundation
  • private sector agribusiness corporations and consultancies such as Syngenta and ADAS (UK)
  • policy and think tanks such as International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

You will posses a wide range of academic and transferable skills including critical evaluation and communicating clearly to a wide variety of audiences.

Placement opportunities

During your course there will be opportunities to take part in placements and study visits.

95% of NTU postgraduates are employed or in further study within six months of graduating (DLHE, 2014/15).

Entry requirements

For 2018 entry you will need:

MRes

  • A minimum of a 2:1 or equivalent  in a relevant science, humanities or business honours degree

MSc 

  • A minimum of a 2:2 or equivalent in a relevant science, humanities or business honours degree

We accept degrees in Geography; Agriculture and Land Management; Earth Sciences; Environmental Sciences and Ecology; International Relations; and Political, Legal or Business Studies. Students with an interdisciplinary background in natural and social sciences are particularly welcome to apply.

We specify these minimum entry requirements, but we will assess you  individually on your ability to benefit from the course. We sometimes offer  places on the basis of non-standard entry qualifications, and industrial or  professional experience. Entry requirements may be relaxed for students with  considerable work experience.

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200

We accept qualifications from schools, colleges and universities all over the world for entry onto our courses. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

Pre-masters and foundation courses

If you need to do a foundation course to meet our course requirements please visit Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC). If you’re already studying in the UK at a school or college and would like to know if we can accept your qualification please visit our pre-masters and foundation courses page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please email our international team for advice.

How to apply

Ready to join us? Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow our step-by-step guide. You can apply for this course throughout the year. Most of our postgraduate and professional courses are popular and fill up quickly though, so apply as soon as you can.

Writing your application

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. Make sure you include as much information as possible, including uploading evidence of results already achieved, as well as a personal statement.

Keeping up to date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process - so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU in our postgraduates’ guide. Here you’ll find advice about how to write a good personal statement and much more. Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Apply directly to the University online using the NTU online application portal.

Apply as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies. If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

Keeping up to date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process - so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Fees and funding

Course fees for September 2018 entry are:

Study routeHome (UK/EU students)International
Full-time (1 year)£7,800£13,900
Part-time£3,900 (for Year One*) 

*please note that if you are considering a course that runs over more than one year, the tuition fee stated is for the first year of study. The course fee for the second year may be subject to annual review.

Funding your studies

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there's no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding page will answer all your questions.

Scholarships

You might be able to get a scholarship to help fund your studies. We award scholarships to those students who can demonstrate excellent achievement, passion and dedication to their studies.

Alumni Discount

We're happy to be able to offer a 25% alumni discount to most current NTU students and recent NTU alumni. This discount is currently available for those starting an eligible postgraduate taught, postgraduate research or professional course.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service on  +44 (0)115 848 2494 or for Scholarship help please contact us on +44 (0)115 848 4460.

Course fees for September 2018 entry are:

Study routeHome (UK/EU students)International
Full-time (1 year)£7,800£13,900
Part-time£3,900 (for Year One*) 

*please note that if you are considering a course that runs over more than one year, the tuition fee stated is for the first year of study. The course fee for the second year may be subject to annual review.

For a list of international fees for all courses and study routes in the School of Animal, Rural and Environmental Sciences please visit our postgraduate fees and funding page.

When and how to pay your fees

For advice and guidance on making secure international payments to the University, please visit our international fees page.

Scholarships and other funding

If you're an international or EU student holding an offer to study with us, you can apply for one of our international scholarships.

Please visit our international scholarships page for details.

You'll also find information about EU tuition fee loans and external scholarships to study in the UK on these pages.

Advice and guidance

If you have any questions about international fees, scholarships and other funding please contact the International Development Office at international@ntu.ac.uk or +44 (0)115 848 8175.

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418