The course

Full-time, Part-time, Per course
Course type
Entry date


  • Contact

    Postgraduate enquiries (EPS)

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 131 451 3023

  • Email


Sustainability Engineering concerns responsible use of the world's finite natural resources in a manner which will not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. This requires Engineers to make optimum use of energy and materials, to mitigate any associated environmental impacts, and to fully embrace concepts such as life cycle analysis, disassembly and recycling within the design process.

This programme will produce well-balanced fully aware sustainability management and development practitioners who are able to analyse and assess the essence of sustainability issues and to formulate the required strategy to implement practical sustainable development solutions in business and society.

Industry requires a practical framework to meet the challenge of achieving sustainable development. This course aims to provide that framework by:

  • providing an overview of methodology, technology and management tools that could be used to narrow the 'sustainable gap'
  • developing an overall awareness of the real causes of environmental degradation
  • developing the awareness of the relevant scientific and engineering principles fundamental to the understanding of the problem and solution to this environmental degradation.

In the MSc dissertation, students either conduct “in-house” laboratory-based projects or are placed in an industrial or commercial setting where they undertake environmental management system assessments or technical design analyses. Companies that have participated in student placements include McFarlan Smith, Hinicio, William Grant & Sons, The Scotch Whisky Research Institute, Caledonian Alloys, Nextek Ltd, FEAT Enterprises, United Wire Ltd, and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency.

Programme duration

  • One year (MSc)
  • 9 months (Diploma)
  • 6 months (Certificate)

May also be available part-time over 2 years.

Course content

   Detailed course guide

The MSc course is offered on a full-time basis over one year and part-time over two years. The course will:

  • Introduce, develop and reinforce a working knowledge of the relevant science and technology within a holistic framework (Environmental Science and Engineering, Energy, Recycling, Sustainability Management, Environmental Economics).
  • Foster an awareness of the context and of the ’behind the scenes’ framework within which the environmental degradation and sustainability problem and solution are enacted.
  • Break down the barriers between and within disciplines and to promote the required synergy and mutual understanding between the various braches of learning so that a holistic view of problems and solutions can be developed.
  • To introduce, develop and explore a Total Sustainable Management programme methodology, which can be practically applied within a business framework.

Core courses

  • Foundations of Energy
  • Process Engineering 1
  • Environmental Foundation Science
  • Economics of Renewable Energy
  • Principles of Recycling
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Sustainable Processing
  • Critical Analysis and Research Preparation
  • Sustainability Dissertation