Since 2008, the University of Melbourne has organised a field study subject for students in the Master of Forest  Ecosystem Science to Laos and Vietnam. The subject explores the relationships between people and forests in the Asia Pacific region. The subject has also been taken by students in the Master of Environment and other programs. In November 2015, with the support of Vice Chancellor's Fellow Professor Kate Auty, filmmakers Belinda Ensor and Joel Checkley joined part of the program and made a short film. It explores the experiences of past and current students and staff and highlights the importance of field-based learning in academic study.

Upon completion of this course, students should have:

  • Advanced skills and knowledge in the design and implementation of forest ecosystem management;
  • A thorough knowledge of forest systems as a basis for recommending sustainable forest management practices, and the ability to effectively communicate the future effects of climate change and its relevance to forest science disciplines;
  • Understanding of the biological, economic, social and environmental factors that shape the development of forest and natural resource management enterprises both in Australia and internationally, including recent developments in biodiversity conversation, climate change science and water resource management;
  • Advanced knowledge and analytical capabilities that enable novel solutions in forest ecosystem management including planted and natural forest settings;
  • Ability to independently critically analyse, integrate and interpret forest science data generated through novel research as a basis for recommending sustainable forest management actions;
  • Ability to effectively communicate, to a range of audiences, the environmental and functional values of forest ecosystems in the maintenance of healthy and vibrant human communities.

Course Description

Forested landscapes play a critical role in sustaining human and other biological communities. They provide wildlife habitat, biodiversity, timber, clean water and other ecosystem services - and play a central role in mitigating rapid climate change.

The Master of Forest Ecosystem Science offers the knowledge, skills and analytical capabilities to shape the development of forest and natural resource management enterprises world-wide. Students will learn about climate change science, water resource management and biodiversity conservation and develop the ability to conduct crucial experimental work in the field.

Students will benefit from connections and experiences with forest, land and fire agencies and non-governement organisations (NGOs), and share the broad range of local and international working experiences and contacts of our academics and students. The Master of Forest Ecosystem Science will prepare students for management positions within the forest and natural resource management sectors.

Students will be situated at the Creswick campus, the southern hemisphere’s largest and best-equipped forest science teaching and research facility.


Career outcomes

As a graduate of this program, you may enjoy a rewarding career in:

  • Forest and environmental management
  • Research and development
  • Ecological consulting
  • Timber management and processing
  • Land-care and wildlife conservation
  • Climate change science and policy
  • Forest carbon investment and accounting
  • Banking and other primary industry investment
  • Aid and development agencies in Australia and overseas

Next : See what subjects you’ll be studying

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