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Forest Sciences and Forest Ecology (M.Sc.)

Looking at the forest from various perspectives: forest management, conservation, timber, forest ecosystem analysis and tropical forestry – you can specialise in one of these five foci as your individually chosen forestry topic. In addition to the compulsory modules, you can extend your course of studies thanks to a large set of options, internships and international visits.
This degree programme qualifies the student for a career in forestry and wood management as well as in the areas of environmental protection and conservation.

Programme name: Forest Sciences and Forest Ecology
Degree: Master of Science (M.Sc.)
Standard period of study: 4 semesters
Starting semester: Winter and summer semester
Admission: limited admission (application to the University)
Terms of admission: B.A. (obtained within a programme consisting of at least 6 semesters) in a relevant subject area
Language requirements ’Tropical and International Forestry: English (Verification required)
Application: Information
Application deadline: Winter semester: June 15th for EU citizens and March 15th for Non-EU citizens; summer semester: December 15th for EU citizens and September 15th for Non-EU citizens
Language of the programme: German

Course description
Sustainable Management, ecology and nature conservation as well as the role of the forest for recreational activities are integrated components of modern forest management. The mitigating effects of forests contribute essentially to climate protection. Also, wood is an important renewable resource, which is more and more employed in bio-technological processes. In the combination of all these factors consists the great challenge of today’s forest management. Due to this development, the areas of responsibility and possible professions for university-educated foresters have become broader and more diverse.

In the Master Programme the students specialise in a field of choice. There are five specialization fields (programmes) the students can choose from:

  • Forest Management and Utilisation
  • Forest Conservation
  • Wood Biology and Wood Technology
  • Forest Ecosystem Analysis and Information Processing
  • Tropical and International Forestry (English language programme)

The studies convey scientific contents and methods as well as professional skills for subsequent occupational activity. These skills comprise competences in problem solving, capacity for teamwork, know how with project management and interdisciplinary thinking and working.

Study contents are quite different, depending on the specialization field:

Master programme “Forest Management and Utilization”
The Master Programme “Forest Management and Utilisation” conveys required knowledge and abilities for the implementation of a sustainable, multifunctional and efficient forest utilization and protection within the framework of modern forest management. In addition to the basics of forestry and modern methods of forest enterprise management, the programme teaches resource management, marketing and policy, silviculture, harvesting, and forest protection. The programme enables graduates to take up leading positions in management and administration of not only forest enterprises, but also within related industries.

Master programme “Forest Conservation”
The Master Programme “Forest Conservation” covers most topics required for careers in biological aspects of bio-ecology and nature conservation, but also gives an explicit insight in the ecology and function of forests as part of the landscape. Good knowledge of local fauna and flora are substantial.

Master programme “Wood Biology and Wood Technology”
This multifaceted programme covers topics around the processing of wood and renewable resources. Technologies for the manufacturing and processing of wood into sawn timber, engineered wood products and wood composites are especially given attention. Students are also introduced into methods of wood bio-technology and the energy recovery of wood.
In addition students from this programme visit the production sites of many well-known wood and paper technology companies. Students have the possibility to produce paper, plywood, medium density fibreboards and chipboards themselves in the laboratories of the university.
The programme endows the students with the knowledge required for employment in companies and agencies of the wood industry, and in wood science research.

Master programme “Forest Ecosystem Analysis and Information Processing”
The programme focuses on up-to-date basic knowledge of forest and other ecosystems combined with modern methods of analysing and modelling biological data. Special attention is given to techniques of information processing and the application of mathematical statistical processes.
By linking the knowledge of forest ecosystem analysis and information processing, the student will be able to carry out system analyses and solve problems in modelling and regulation of ecosystems using mathematical, statistical, and IT based methods, as well as present the results in a media-friendly form.

Master programme “Tropical and International Forestry”
Sustainable management and protection of tropical and subtropical forests with regard to socio-economic realities in developing countries are the main focus of this programme. For detailed study contents look to the link list right.

In addition to the programme-specific compulsory courses a number of optional courses, covering 30 credit points, can be selected from course offerings by the Faculty of Forestry, by other faculties of the University of Göttingen and from international partner universities.

Professional opportunities
Depending on the area of specialization, the programmes qualify and enable students to pursue a professional career in the following fields:
Public and private forest administration and enterprises, timber trade and wood industry, consultancy and planning agencies (forest planning, nature conservation), nature conservation agencies and organizations, universities and research institutes, international organizations, international development cooperation, forest services and freelance work.