Why choose this course
Nuclear science has a wealth of applications, but with its use comes a high level of environmental responsibility.
Established in 1972, our MSc in Radiation and Environmental Protection is one of the UK’s longest-running courses in the field of nuclear science and its applications.
Our course is taught by a combination of inspirational nuclear physics academics and pioneering experts from the UK’s radiological protection and nuclear industries.
What you will study
This course will give you a thorough understanding of the radiation and environmental protection aspects of nuclear physics.
This includes in-depth knowledge of radiation protection, showing you how the technical and organisational procedures of the discipline may be applied to the broader concept of environmental protection. The substantial practical element of this course enables you to relate taught material to industry-relevant applications.
Formal lectures are complemented with work in specialist radiation laboratories. These were recently refurbished as part of a £1m upgrade to our facilities. In these facilities, you will work with a wide range of radioactive sources and radiation detectors. There is also an extended project in the spring and an 11-week MSc dissertation project in the summer.
Study and work abroad
There may be opportunities to acquire valuable European experience by working or conducting research abroad during your degree or shortly afterwards. It is possible to do this in the summer period with an Erasmus+ grant working on your dissertation or as a recent graduate. In order to qualify your Erasmus+ traineeship must be a minimum of two months.
Careers and graduate prospects
We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.
Our course has produced more than 500 graduates, both in the UK and abroad, many of whom have gone on to well-paid positions in companies in the nuclear and radiation sectors. In the UK, we need to decommission old reactors and build new ones to provide a low-carbon source of energy.
This, together with, for example, the importance of radioisotopes in fields such as medicine, means that the career prospects of our graduates are excellent.
Academic year structure
If you wish to study full time, you’ll study our course over a one-year period starting in September. You can also take our course over two years. This would be on a day release basis while you continue to work at your current place of employment.
Our course consists of eight taught modules, and four of these are taught in Semester 1 during the autumn. You’ll also engage with another four during the spring semester. During the summer months, you will be focusing on your dissertation module.
Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.
The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. Modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits, and additionally for some masters dissertations, 90 credits.
The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:
Course timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators. View our Timetabling Policy (PDF).
A minimum of a 2:2 UK honours degree in either Chemistry, Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Physics, Radiography or Radiological Science, or a recognised equivalent international qualification. We'll also consider relevant work experience if you don't meet these requirements.
View entry requirements by country
English language requirements
IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in Writing and 5.5 in each other element.
View the other English language qualifications that we accept.
If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.
The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims.
Please see the code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.
- These fees apply to students commencing study in the academic year 2020-21 only. Fees for new starters are reviewed annually.
- If you are on a two-year or three-year part-time structured masters course, the annual fee is payable in Year 1 and Year 2 of the course.
There may be associated costs with this programme:
- Commuting (local travel expenses): Unable to specify amount - Potentially travel costs for the dissertation which may be reimbursable.
Grand total: Unable to specify amount.
You may be able to borrow money to help pay your tuition fees and support you with your living costs. Find out more about student finance.
Funding opportunities are also available for MSc Students with the Higher Education Sponsorship Scheme by the Society for Radiological Protection.
Scholarships and bursaries
We're committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.
Asylum Seeker Bursary
Application Deadline: 30.06.20
Find out more
Terms and conditions
When you accept an offer of a place at the University of Surrey, you are agreeing to comply with our policies and regulations, and our terms and conditions. These terms and conditions are provided in two stages: first when we make an offer and second when students who have accepted their offers register to study at the University. View our offer terms and conditions and our generic registration terms and conditions (PDF) as a guide as to what to expect.
Please note: our offer terms and conditions will be available in the September of the calendar year prior to the year in which you begin your studies. Our registration terms and conditions will vary to take into account specifics of your course.
This online prospectus has been prepared and published in advance of the academic year to which it applies. The University of Surrey has used its reasonable efforts to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content or additional costs) may occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for a course with us. Read more.