Master's in Climate Sciences

Climate and climate change are associated with great challenges. Climate impacts on the natural and managed environment, on our life-support systems, economy, and society are of pressing concern ; they demand for scientists, experts and professionals with a holistic view on the climate system. The Master of Climate Sciences program at the University of Bern offers an adequate and innovative educational scheme and a curriculum outside the traditional disciplines to provide you with the scientific basis and the necessary skills.

The Master in Climate Sciences program provides a broad range of courses and training opportunities for the future climate scientist and climate professional. It facilitates both a general qualification in the field of climate sciences and a sound expertise in an elective climate-related topic.

The Master in Climate Sciences program promotes interdisciplinary cooperation and teamwork and combines education and research in an excellent network of units and faculty members. Studying Climate Sciences at the University of Bern has an international flavor; more than thirty percent of the students have an international background and the courses are held in English. The master's degree in Climate Sciences opens the door for a scientific or a professional career.

As a student of Climate Sciences, you become part of the Graduate School of Climate Sciences, which is operated by the Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research. You assemble your curriculum from a broad range of elective courses in the fields of climate and atmospheric sciences, economics and social sciences. In addition, you can take selected courses at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH Zurich). You carry out your master thesis project at one oft he research units affiliated to the Graduate School of Climate Sciences. Your tailor-made curriculum and the master thesis will lead to one of five specializations.

The Master of Climate Sciences brings together dedicated individuals with different expertise and scientific background. You are invited to join us for this challenge and to learn with us.

Master Klimawissenschaften
Basic information
Degrees:

Master of Science in Climate Sciences, Universität Bern, with special qualification in:

  • Climate and Earth System Science
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Economics
  • Ecology and Agriculture
  • Social Sciences
  • Humanities
Number of credits: 120 ECTS credits
Degree programs:

Mono 120 ECTS credits with special qualification in:

  • Climate and Earth System Science
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Climate and Environmental Economics
  • Ecology and Agricultural Sciences
  • Social Sciences
  • Humanities
Duration: 4 semesters
Languages: Courses and performance assessments are generally conducted in English. German or French can also be chosen as language of instruction, if all students of a class agree.
Beginning studies: Preferably in the fall semester, spring semester possible
Master Klimawissenschaften
 
Prof. Dr. Thomas Stocker about the Graduate School Climate Sciences
Alena Giesche, Master Climate Sciences, about the Master program of the Graduate School

The curriculum of the Master in Climate Sciences program comprises 120 ECTS and equals the workload of 4 semesters full time study. A Bachelor of Science, a Bachelor of Arts or a higher academic degree are the precondition for admission to the program.

Your curriculum and master thesis may lead to one of the six specializations:

  •     Climate and Earth System Science
  •     Atmospheric Science
  •     Climate and Environmental Economics
  •     Ecology and Agricultural Sciences
  •     Social Sciences
  •     Humanities

For further information about the detailed curriculum with courses, please consult the Graduate School of Climate Sciences website, specifically the website about the Master in Climate Sciences program.

The  Master of Climate Sciences curriculum consists of 120 ECTS. Of these, a number of 8 ECTS are compulsory courses, 52 ECTS are elective courses to be taken at the University of Bern or at the ETH Zurich, and 60 ECTS are reserved for the master thesis. The program equals the workload of 4 semesters (2 years) full-time study.

Alternatively, you may wish to write a master thesis of 30 ECTS at the University of Bern and  complete an external internship of 30 ECTS (see specific guidelines on the Graduate School Climate Sciences website).

Application and admission

You may apply for the MSc program as soon as you have completed 150 ECTS credits (5 semesters). Your bachelor training must be completed before the first semester of the MSc program starts. Successful admission is conditional on a positive evaluation of your application dossier and a personal (or video) interview. Depending on your scientific background additional course requirements (up to a maximum of 60 ECTS credits) can be imposed. More information about all general steps for acceptance can be found on the Graduate School of Climate Sciences website.

To be admitted to the MSc Climate Science program, you need to register with the University of Bern, and you need to submit an application dossier. The specific procedures are described below for students with a  bachelor degree from the University of Bern, from a Swiss or from an international University, respectively.

For all questions and advice regarding admission, please contact the studies coordinator of the Graduate School of Climate Sciences:
Peter Stucki, phone +41 31 631 31 46, peter.stucki@oeschger.unibe.ch

Applications by current UniBE students

You are currently a BSc / BA student of the University of Bern, wishing to change from bachelor studies to the MSc in Climate Sciences program. Your application encompasses the following steps:

Applications with a Swiss degree

You hold or will soon hold a BSc / BA degree from a Swiss University, and wish to apply for the MSc in Climate Sciences program. Your application encompasses the following steps:

Applications with an international degree

You hold or will soon hold a diploma / bachelor degree from an international University, and wish to apply for the MSc in Climate Sciences program. Your application encompasses the following steps:

Application schedule

  Fall intake;
preferred start of the MSc training
Spring intake
Application deadlines for new students April 30 December 15 of the preceding year
Personal interview ongoing ongoing
Deadlines for late applications * August 31 January 31
Beginning of semester Mid-September Mid-February
* An application received late costs an additional fee of CHF 100; late applications from candidates who require a visa in order to enter Switzerland are excluded and will be transferred to a later semester.

The Master in the Climate Sciences program is designed to train specialists for economic, research and administrative tasks related to climate and climate change. The tailor-made curriculum gives you the required scientific knowledge and personal skill to take leadership in these areas.

Career opportunities and potential employers can be found in the finance, insurance and energy sectors. You are qualified for positions in consulting firms, planning offices or public administration.

The Master of Science in Climate Sciences degree also creates opportunities in research and academia. For instance, it may be conducive to a PhD project in Climate Sciences in one of the research units associated with the Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research.