Humans have a substantial impact on the Earth’s environment. Such changes happen within a complex and challenging framework in which population growth, climate change, land use, and food security all play a vital role.
Based upon extensive knowledge of how the Earth as a system functions, it is possible to estimate the impact advances in technology, the economy, society, and changes in nature itself will have on the planet. Therefore, concepts of sustainability aimed at protecting the Earth are developed, which can be utilised to convince politicians and the general public that such measures are imperative. This innovative Master’s programme was conceived at the University of Hohenheim in order to accommodate such wide-ranging and complex demands. It is the only one of its kind in Germany. The course of study is also part of on-going international programmes in the field of weather and climate research.
- Degree: Master of Science
- Standard period of study: 4 semesters
- Language of instruction: English
- Number of places: 10
- Credits: 120 credits
- Application deadline for the first semester: May 15th
Goals of the study program
The programme in Earth and Climate System Science is both interdisciplinary and research-oriented. It combines primary with applied research. Aspects of natural science are linked to topics in the agricultural and business sciences.
Students acquire an understanding of the Earth as a system. In doing so, they are able to make their own contributions to Earth system research and to ecologically-sustainable developments in society.
Graduates learn the importance of the Earth to humanity by gaining a comprehensive understanding of the Earth system and the many factors influencing it They are able to assess the Earth system’s current status through the analysis of various indicators. Above and beyond that, students are able to analyse changes in the Earth’s condition, as well as to predict them.
Graduates stand out through their ability to be open-minded and flexible when it comes to applying scientific methods in their project work. They are also capable of objectively assessing their own methods and results and presenting them factually and clearly.
Structure of the program
In the first year
... of the program, our students are brought to the same level of knowledge in physics, chemistry, biology, and mathematics as well as economics. Our students acquire a comprehensive overview of the Earth and climate system and familiarize themselves with its basic functioning. During the course of the second semester, students develop transdisciplinary thinking skills essential to Earth system science by taking modules with cross-cutting topics, combining the natural and agricultural sciences with economics. This way they arrive at a unique perspective on our Earth.
Students also take measurements in the field, analyze and interpret their data, and start to apply computer models. With the completion of the first year, students are able to create a representation of the state of the Earth system at a given time by combining measurement data with physical process descriptions by means of data assimilation. Starting in the second semester and intensified in the third, our students have the opportunity to choose elective modules based on their personal and professional interests.
During the second year,
... you expand your expertise in creating models based on collected data by more strongly factoring in social and economic aspects. You are now able to create holistic models of the Earth system, enabling you to develop concepts of sustainability for its protection. Furthermore, the second year allows you to freely plan your studies according to your individual interests and preferred areas of specialization. The open structure of the third semester also provides you with an excellent opportunity to study abroad. Upon completion of the program, you will have acquired a comprehensive understanding of the Earth and climate system and knowledge of the various ways in which human behavior influences this fragile system.
A research-intensive Master’s thesis
... integrated into ongoing research at the Institute of Physics and Meteorology allows you to demonstrate your ability to conduct independent scientific work: you will be able to make your own contributions to earth system analyses and research as well as to ecologically-sustainable developments in society. You will stand out through your interdisciplinary thinking and flexibility when it comes to applying scientific methodologies in your work.
Our graduates make their own contributions to Earth and climate system analyses and research as well as to ecologically-sustainable developments in society. Their interdisciplinary thinking and flexibility prepares them especially well for positions of responsibility in the following areas:
- Research activities in the field of Earth and climate system science (meteorology, environmental science, geoscience, etc.)
- Consultancy in the public service, private business sector, and non-governmental organisations
- Development assistance
- Science journalism
- interest in natural sciences
- previous experimental and practical work in the laboratory and the field
- interest in interdiscplinary context
- Degrees: Bachelor’s degree in natural sciences, geoscience, or agricultural science (180 ECTS)
- Proof of English language skills (B2 level)
See admission regulations for English Master’s programmes of the Faculty for Natural Sciences >
Prof. Dr. Volker Wulfmeyer
Phone: +49 (0) 711 459 221 60
Dr. Andreas Behrendt
Phone: +49 (0) 711 459 221 60
For further information visit the following website.
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