Course options

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

Make sure you check on the university, college or conservatoire website for any updates about course changes as a result of COVID-19.

Course summary

Overview On this course, you'll learn about the hazards, vulnerability and the risk of disaster response, crisis management and humanitarian aid, including planning and logistics. You’ll develop your skills as a confident, professional emergency response planner, able to manage people and situations in the field. Uniquely to Portsmouth, students take part in SIMEX – the UK’s largest annual international disaster response simulation exercise – for responders and agencies to practise and learn from disaster response and recovery plans. You'll graduate with the skills you need for a successful career in the emergency planning and disaster response management, either in the governmental or non-governmental sectors, anywhere in the world. Earth systems and environmental sciences at the University of Portsmouth is ranked 4th of all post-1992 universities for research quality in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021. The School of Environment, Geography and Geosciences offers a limited number of scholarships for international postgraduate students. Eligibility This course accepts UK, EU, and international students. Course highlights

  • Learn new skills including disaster risk reduction techniques and mapping using Geographical Information Systems (GIS), GPS and remote sensing technologies
  • Be supported by expert staff and researchers who are active in the field, with extensive industrial and consultancy experience working for government agencies, businesses, the United Nations and NGOs
  • Have the opportunity to complete a work placement with an emergency planning, crisis management or disaster response organisation and complete a personal project based on your work experience
  • Take part in study visits and field training with UK emergency services, the military and NGOs
Careers and opportunities When you graduate, you'll have the knowledge and practical skills needed for a career in the emergency planning, crisis management or disaster response sectors anywhere in the world. The research and analytical components of the course, will support you in applying research positions, for example at PhD level. Graduates of this course have gone into areas such as:
  • Humanitarian agencies and NGOs
  • Emergency management
  • Emergency logistics and contingency planning
  • Flood management
  • Military-civilian emergency liaisons
  • (Re)insurance and risk management
  • Utility companies
  • Civil defence
  • Disaster relief
  • Epidemiology
Graduates of this course have gone onto roles such as:
  • Built environment lecturer
  • Auditor
  • Technical adviser
  • Emergency planning and resilience officer
  • Business resistence executive
  • Catastrophe analyst
  • Civil contingencies officer
  • Emergency planning and resilience officer
  • Policy and international engagement advisor
Career outcomes shown are sourced from the latest available graduate outcome surveys. The data shows career outcomes at 15 months after graduation. During your course you'll have expert career support from your tutors and our Careers and Employability Centre – which you can access for up to 5 years after you graduate. Course structure Full-time We recommend that full-time students allocate around 37 hours per week to their studies – equivalent to a full-time job. Approximately:
  • Two days per week of on-campus, in-person teaching (Tuesdays and Wednesdays)
  • Three days per week of self-directed study time
Part-time We recommend that part-time students allocate around 18 hours per week to their studies – equivalent to a part-time job. Approximately:
  • One day per week of on-campus, in-person teaching (Wednesdays in Year 1, Tuesdays in Year 2)
  • One-and-a-half days per week of self-directed study time
There are some additional days of field work during the Spring term.


On this course, you'll study four core modules and one optional module. Core modules:

  • Disaster Management: Techniques and Study Visits – 30 credits
  • Disasters: Hazard, Vulnerability and Risk – 30 credits
  • Emergency Management and Planning – 30 credits
  • Research Project – 60 credits
Optional modules:
  • Humanitarian Action and Respose – 30 credits
  • Crisis Management and Governance – 30 credits
Changes to course content We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies. Therefore, course content is revised and regularly reviewed. This may result in changes being made in order to reflect developments in research, learning from practice and changes in policy at both national and local levels.

Assessment method

You'll be assessed through:

  • 3,000 word illustrated reports
  • poster and oral presentations
  • literature reviews and research proposals
  • individual research project
  • peer reviews
- critical assessments

Entry requirements

A second-class honours degree or equivalent, preferably with some relevant work experience in the emergency services or humanitarian sectors. Applicants with relevant professional experience and/or qualifications will also be considered. English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.5 with no component score below 6.0.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £8500 Year 1
England £8500 Year 1
Northern Ireland £8500 Year 1
Scotland £8500 Year 1
Wales £8500 Year 1
Channel Islands £8500 Year 1
Republic of Ireland £8500 Year 1
International £17900 Year 1

Additional fee information

Students who are resident in EU countries: please note that the net fee is inclusive of the Transition Scholarship. Fees are accurate at the time of publishing and are subject to change at any time without notice. Fees may also go up in later years, in line with inflation. For more information about fees, go to
Crisis and Disaster Management at University of Portsmouth - UCAS