Master of science (2 year) Full time

Rev som jakter skjære.

Rev som jakter skjære.


Interested in nature, biological diversity and natural processes? Ecologists play a key role in understanding how humans impact the environment, the consequences, and how to mitigate the effects.


See "Admission requirements".

Application deadline:

April 15th
International applicants:
December 1st

Study start
Autumn 2021
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Study advisor(s)
Contact study advisors
Contact info

Admission's Office:
Phone:  +47 67 23 01 11

Ecology deals with the relations of organisms to one another and to their physical surroundings. As a master’s student in ecology, you will study how nature and its processes work.

This knowledge is a prerequisite for combatting important environmental challenges such as habitat fragmentation, biodiversity loss, pollution and climate change.  

You choose between two specialisations:  

  • General ecology 
  • Tropical ecology and management of natural resources 

General ecology will give you a thorough understanding of central elements of ecology. You will be able to understand and recognize the complexity of ecosystems. You will gain an understanding of the ecological and evolutionary processes that have formed biological diversity and have an up-to-date knowledge about global change and its impact on organisms and ecosystems.  

The specialization in Tropical ecology and management of natural resources will give you solid knowledge about the biology and ecology of the tropics. It addresses current challenges in tropical ecology like habitat destruction and biodiversity decline. Here the interrelationships between poverty, land-use and nature conservation are central. You will learn about some of the most spectacular areas on earth, and will collect field data in Africa, Asia or Latin America. 

Job opportunities

You will be qualified for tasks related to environmental monitoring, biological conservation, research and education. 

Candidates work for a variety of employers, ranging from public government, NGOs, research institutions and the university sector. The programme has a strong research emphasis, and can be the basis for further PhD studies.

Interviews with finished candidates:

Learning outcomes

That depends on your chosen specialisation. Conservation biology and scientific methods are mandatory for both.  

General ecology:  
In this specialisation, the course “Global change ecology” is mandatory. In addition, you must choose at least one of the following courses:  

  • Behavioural and population ecology  
  • Ecology and management of rivers and lakes     
  • Ecological Entomology     
  • Environmental pollutants and ecotoxicology     
  • Landscape Ecology  
  • Photobiology     
  • Restoration Ecology     

Tropical ecology and management of natural resources:  
In this specialisation, the following are mandatory:  

  • Ecology and management of natural resources in the tropics 
  • Human wildlife interactions 
  • Restoration ecology 
  • Tropical rainforest ecology and conservation 

For both specialisations, learning methods are interactive and varied, and include presentations, short thematic reviews, term papers and discussion sections. 

Exstensive master's thesis
To facilitate more extensive field work and in-depth analyses, the entire second year is reserved for the master’s thesis (60 ECTS). If you choose the specialisation in Tropical ecology and management of natural resources you will collect field data in Africa, Asia, South America or Latin America. 

A detailed course structure can be found here. 

Admission requirements

A Bachelor’s degree, or its equivalent, in natural sciences, with solid knowledge of ecology and ecological processes.

Applicants must have obtained a minimum grade point average (GPA) of C (in Norwegian scale) or equivalent from the specialization in their degree.

Applicants must demonstrate English language ability in accordance with the NMBU regulations for programmes taught in English.

Students who have already obtained a master’s degree in Norway will not be prioritised

You can find general information on admission to NMBU here.

I cooperate with my colleagues on varied ecological research projects, which include field work, statistical analysis and writing reports and scientific papers.

Rannveig M. Jacobsen, Researcher, Norwegian Institute of Nature Research (NINA)