The School is well supported and you will have the use of equipment and facilities appropriate to your work:
You will have access to the multiple clusters of PCs in the University Learning Centre and Library, and within the School. The MSc course in River Environments and their Management has its own dedicated room for teaching and study with 8 PCs for convenient access to email, web and on-line learning resources. The University based computers have an extensive range of software installed that covers the needs of students of all disciplines, including a variety of statistical packages for data analysis.
The School has specialized laboratories equipped for analysis of organic and inorganic environmental samples, as well as supporting experimental research. Within the Water Sciences and Freshwater Research Laboratories our analytical suite covers aqueous chemistry, from the major nutrients to organic pollutants and toxic heavy metals. Facilities include:
- Total Organic Carbon analysis
- Gas Chromatography
- Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry
- Ion Chromatography
- Luminescence and UV-visible spectroscopy
These facilities are complemented by Sediment Preparation Laboratories for material analysis including thin section prep, sediment extractions, pore size and surface area measurement and electron microscopy techniques.
The School’s Stable Isotope Laboratories are equipped for d18O, dD, d34S, d15N, d13C extracted from solid, aqueous and biological samples. For ecological work there are dedicated wet and dry microscope laboratories for sorting and identifying samples with a dedicated paleoecological laboratory for sample treatment and analysis. The Microbiological Laboratory is equipped for handling, incubation and sampling of bacterial cultures and sophisticated micro-analysis.
These facilities are available for your regular use, where you will benefit from working alongside Doctoral and Postdoctoral Research Fellows, and often contribute to major research projects within the School.
The School has field sites on and off campus for use by MSc students and research staff. Our on-campus urban study site is the Bournbrook which is instrumented for continual measurement of discharge, turbidity, water temperature and conductivity. A number of student projects and teaching are related to this facility. Our woodland study site is located in Staffordshire and is part of The Birmingham Institute of Forest Research (BIFoR). The forest is densely instrumented, amongst others with stream discharge, water quality, and groundwater measurement equipment. This site offers an exciting opportunity for students to learn about measurement techniques and for student dissertation projects.
The Water Sciences Research Group is well stocked with field equipment, which is used extensively in research projects, for teaching, and particularly on individual MSc projects. This equipment includes digital pressure transducers, data loggers, divers, dip meters, chemical sampling and tracer transport equipment (depth samplers, sampling pumps, tracer test equipment and field fluorimeter, hand held EC, pH and Eh meters, portable chemical lab kit) and ecological sampling (nets, trays, electro-fishing).
Fieldwork is supported by a well-equipped technical workshop.
We have a dedicated technician for support of projects related to the Masters in River Environments and their Management.