MSc Green Infrastructure

Year of entry: 2021

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Degree awarded
Master of Science (MSc)
1 year
Entry requirements

We require a UK bachelor's degree with a First or Upper Second (2.1) classification or the overseas equivalent.

Degrees in Planning, Geography, Earth Sciences and Environmental Sciences are desirable, but not essential.

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply online

Course options

Full-time Part-time Full-time distance learning Part-time distance learning

Course overview

  • We're one of the top ten Geography departments in the UK (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021).
  • Work across a range of interrelated disciplines, including planning, hydrology, urban forestry, community engagement, development and infrastructure provision, environmental/ecological management, and local/national government.

Open days

We are carefully reviewing all of our recruitment events in light of the developing coronavirus outbreak. View the latest updates on measures we are taking.

As we're unable to host on-campus visits, or attend events like UCAS and overseas recruitment fairs at the moment, take a look at our virtual open day content to help you learn more about the University. You will be able to watch videos about the university, including accommodation, student finance and course-specific sessions. We'll update our website once plans for 2021 events are able to be confirmed.


For entry in the academic year beginning September 2021, the tuition fees are as follows:

  • MSc (full-time)
    UK students (per annum): £10,500
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £20,500
  • MSc (part-time)
    UK students (per annum): £5,250
    International, including EU, students (per annum): £10,250

Further information for EU students can be found on our dedicated EU page.

Additional expenses

Tuition fees cover the cost of the overseas fieldtrip in Semester 2.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).


We offer a number of postgraduate taught scholarships and merit awards to outstanding applicants and international students.

In addition, the Manchester Alumni Scholarship Scheme offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a first-class Bachelors degree within the last three years and are progressing to a postgraduate taught master's course.

For more information, see  Fees and funding  or  search the University's postgraduate funding database  .

Contact details

School of Environment, Education and Development
Contact name
School of Environment, Education and Development +44 (0) 161 543 4028
See: The School .

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

Academic entry qualification overview

We require a UK bachelor's degree with a First or Upper Second (2.1) classification or the overseas equivalent.

Degrees in Planning, Geography, Earth Sciences and Environmental Sciences are desirable, but not essential.

English language

Applicants whose first language is not English should meet the following language requirements:
  • IELTS (Academic) test score of 6.5 or more overall, with a minimum writing score of 6.5 and no other subsection below 6.0
  • TOEFL internet-based test score of 90 or more overall, with a minimum writing score of 22 and no other subsection below 20
  • Pearson Test of English score of 59 or more overall, with a minimum writing score of 59 and no other subsection below 59
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) overall score of 176 or above, with 176 in writing and no sub-section below 169 -OR- Grade C if taken before January 2015(Please note that the Cambridge First Certificate in English is not acceptable)

Pre-sessional courses

We will consider applicants who do not meet these scores but you may be required to complete a pre-sessional English language course at The University of Manchester prior to the start of the course.

To be considered for a pre-sessional English language course for this programme we require the following minimum IELTS (Academic) scores:

  • 10 week pre-sessional course: Minimum 5.5 overall with minimum 5.5 in each subskill
  • 6 Week Pre-Sessional Course : Minimum 6.0 overall with minimum 6.0 in writing, no more than one subskill of 5.5 and no subskill below 5.5

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Advice to applicants

Please submit the following documents with your completed application form:
  • copies of official degree certificates and transcripts of your previous study, showing the subjects taken and grades obtained. If these documents are in languages other than English please provide official translations;
  • two written academic references on official institution letterhead, signed, dated, stamped and containing the official university email address of your referees. Alternatively, your referees can send us the reference letters directly from their official university email address. If you have had a substantial period away from any formal learning, professional references may be considered. Professional references should be written on official company letterhead, signed, dated, stamped and containing the professional email address of your referees. Alternatively, your referees can send us the reference letters directly from their professional email address.
  • a personal statement (maximum 500 words) detailing why you wish to study the course, your experiences, what you can bring to the course and any other information that you see as relevant to your application;
  • your CV;
  • copies of English Language Certification, eg IELTS, TOEFL or Pearson test score report. 

Ensure that you enclose all the necessary documents, as the delay caused in having to seek any missing documents from you might adversely prejudice your application.

How your application is considered

When assessing your academic record we take into account the grades you have achieved, your academic references and the standing of the institution where you studied your qualification.

If you do not meet our academic entry qualification criterion, your admission may still be approved if satisfactory evidence of postgraduate study, research or substantial relevant professional experience can be provided.


Deferrals are accepted.

Course details

Course description

The MSc Green Infrastructure aligns expertise from Geography with that from Landscape and Environmental Planning.

The course is the first of its kind to bring together the theory, practice and evaluation of Green Infrastructure.

The MSc provides the foundations to understand why we need Green Infrastructure, alongside an understanding of how we transition from design to implementation.

It is taught by nationally and internationally recognised experts in Green Infrastructure who will to deliver a course that trains graduates with the conceptual, practice-based, and evaluative skills needed to develop Green Infrastructure in real-world scenarios.

The course benefits from an integration of cutting-edge research by University of Manchester faculty who are working at the forefront of investment, design and management of urban greening, sustainable drainage, health and well-being, economic prosperity, policy-making and nature-based solutions to urban problems.

Manchester, and the north-west of England, also offers an excellent real-world 'laboratory' to test alternative approaches to Green Infrastructure.

You will engage with policy, practice and communities to gain an appreciation of the range of added-benefits that Green Infrastructure can deliver, and develop an understanding of the innovation solutions that it offers.

Working with, and being taught by, Green Infrastructure practitioners, also provides the course with a clear link between academic thinking and real-world application.

You will also attend an overseas fieldtrip to Berlin (or equivalent) to explore state-of-the-art green infrastructure schemes, and engage practitioners and policy makers.


  • Introduce the concept and principles of green infrastructure.
  • Develop a critical awareness of the values, benefits and functions of different types of green infrastructure.
  • Understand key policies relevant to formation and implementation of green infrastructure.
  • Understand the methods and approaches used to assess the performance of green infrastructure.
  • Gain practical experience in the monitoring and evaluation of green infrastructure.
  • Learn from real-world examples and practitioners of green infrastructure.
  • Benefit from a highly interdisciplinary and applied course.

Special features

  • Geography has been studied at Manchester for more than 125 years, and we're one of Europe's best-equipped universities for the subject.
  • We're home to world-class academics and the new Manchester Urban Institute (MUI).
  • Benefit from worldwide fieldwork opportunities and strong industry links.
  • 90% of our Geography research is rated as `world-leading' or `internationally excellent' in terms of impact (Research Excellence Framework 2014).
  • Join the  Manchester University Geographical Society (MUGS)  , a society run by Geography students for Geography Students.

Teaching and learning

A wide variety of teaching and learning methods are employed across the MSc, including, but not limited to, small group discussion, seminars, field visits, computer-based practical sessions, and one-to-one discussion with staff members.

The course will provide you with a variety of opportunities for active engagement and participation.

The MSc makes use of a range of e-Learning and web-based methods and activities to support and complement the traditional classroom-based learning.

A key focus of the MSc course is the linkage between staff research expertise and the teaching provision.

The School of Environment, Education and Development aim to run advertised fieldwork in the 21/22 Academic Year and we very much hope that students will be able to enjoy the fieldwork experience in the usual way.

The ability of fieldwork to proceed, and whether any changes to proposed fieldwork might be necessary, will remain subject to the current global situation and factors such as the:

  • rules and guidance on travel and activities implemented and published by the UK and overseas governments;
  • outcome of any risk assessments conducted by the University;
  • educational value and student experience of the fieldwork, if significant changes to the proposed fieldwork would be necessary;
  • availability of appropriate insurance cover; and
  • availability of appropriate travel and accommodation and any significant changes to their financial costs.

We will therefore assess on a regular basis the viability of any travel and fieldwork and communicate any decisions to our students at the earliest possible opportunity. Any fieldwork that does go ahead will be subject to a rigorous risk assessment process and the implementation of any protective measures identified by the risk assessment to ensure the health and safety of all of our students and staff.  If the fieldwork does not go ahead as planned then the School's focus will be on seeking to offer a suitable alternative and ensure that the Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) of the programme are met.

Coursework and assessment

You must accrue 180 course credits to achieve the required standard for recommendation to the degree of MSc.

The dissertation, based on an original research project of your own design, accounts for 60 credits.

The remaining 120 credits are based on five compulsory and three optional 15 credit course units.

All assessment for the compulsory course units is coursework-based, with no unseen written exams.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Dissertation Support GEOG60662 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Principles, Policies and Practice 2 ¿ Field class GEOG64002 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Performance, Evaluation and Monitoring GEOG64011 15 Mandatory
MSc Green Infrastructure Dissertation GEOG74000 60 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure and Sustainable Cities PLAN60852 15 Mandatory
Green Infrastructure: Principles, Policies and Practice 1 PLAN64001 15 Mandatory
Environmental Remote Sensing GEOG60941 15 Optional
GIS and Environmental Applications GEOG60951 15 Optional
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Practice GEOG70552 15 Optional
Applied Study Unit GEOG70560 15 Optional
Environmental Monitoring and Modelling Concepts GEOG70581 15 Optional
Issues in Environmental Policy GEOG70911 15 Optional
Political Ecologies GEOG70952 15 Optional
Spatial Ecology GEOG71921 15 Optional
Climate Change, Disasters and Responses MGDI60552 15 Optional
Planning and Managing Development MGDI70992 15 Optional
Professional Placement PLAN60070 15 Optional
Design for Healthy Places PLAN60111 15 Optional
Environmental Impact Assessment PLAN60411 15 Optional
Concepts in Environmental Law PLAN60442 15 Optional
Strategic Environmental Assessment PLAN60461 15 Optional
Planning for Environmental Change PLAN60771 15 Optional
Displaying 10 of 22 course units


We are one of Europe's best-equipped universities for geography, with numerous laboratories. These include the main teaching laboratory, microscopy laboratory, and sediments and project laboratories.

You can also learn professional skills such as coding and programing specialist, industry-standard software such as image processing, GIS, GPS and cartographic representation.

The University's Main Library is the largest university library system in the UK apart from the copyright libraries and has a number of different working spaces. It is home to the University Map Collection, which comprises about 100,000 map sheets of every part of the world.

We also have our very own Kantorowich Library, which contains many of the teaching and learning materials that you will need, from books and journals to DVDs and past dissertations.

For more information, see  Facilities

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email:

CPD opportunities

The Planning and Environmental Management Placement course unit will be offered as an optional course unit.

You will also be engaging with practitioners to gain experience of Green Infrastructure practice, which may lead to CPD opportunities.

The course will also work with careers staff to provide advice/guidance and opportunities to engage with practice via open days and other career development programmes.


Career opportunities

Studying MSc Green Infrastructure provides opportunities to work across a range of interrelated disciplines.

These include planning, hydrology, urban forestry, community engagement, development and infrastructure provision, environmental/ecological management, and local/national government.

Graduates will be well placed to enter the job market due to the integration of planning, design, management and policy evaluation embedded within the course. In addition, the soft skills gained on the course include: 

  • interpersonal communication;
  • negotiation;
  • problem solving;
  • field work;
  • interaction with practitioners/communities;
  • project management.

Careers support

The University has its own dedicated Careers Service that you would have full access to as a student and for two years after you graduate. At Manchester you will have access to a number of opportunities to help boost your employability .

Associated organisations

The course draws upon working relationships with local/regional bodies working on Green Infrastructure, and those who have relationships with The University of Manchester. This will include potential engagement with:

  • City of Trees - Manchester;
  • Mersey Forest;
  • Manchester City Council;
  • Greater Manchester Combined Authority;
  • Environment Agency;
  • Natural England, TEP;
  • Arup;
  • NHS England;
  • Forestry Commission.