Master of Sustainability

Our program aims to facilitate society’s transition towards sustainability by offering high-quality graduate education. Enriching research and applied experiences, and engagement in problem-solving through innovative pedagogy.

The Sustainability Science and Society (SSAS) graduate program offers students two paths to study environmental sustainability. Students can tailor their program to specific career and research interests through enriching classroom learning with practical experience (Scheme A) or intensive research experience (Scheme B).

Program Highlights:

  • Students can complete a Master of Sustainability in 16 or 24 months.
  • The SSAS graduate program is transdisciplinary and emphasizes overcoming barriers among traditional disciplines and sectors.
  • Faculty members involved in the SSAS graduate program are leading scholars in many fields. Their expertise spans the natural and social sciences and share a commitment to integrative inquiry. Exciting opportunities exist to joining cutting-edge programs of research.
  • Students can engage in intensive and enriching research that they are passionate about. Faculty members mentor students in undertaking their research. Student research may take place here in Niagara or anywhere in the world.
  • Students can apply classroom learning and gain work experience through co-op as part of their academic program to enhance their employment potential. Brock University’s Co-op Programs Office offers exciting & rewarding opportunities with some of Canada’s top employers.

Here are some reasons why we think you should study sustainability at Brock:

  • Students can tailor their program to specific career and research interests through enriching classroom learning with practical experience or intensive research experience.
  • Students may elect the Co-op option to enhance their academic learning and employment potential through by linking work-experience with their education. Co-op students will complete a workshop series while gaining work experience.
    • Brock University’s Co-op Programs Office offers exciting and rewarding opportunities with some of Canada’s top employers.
  • Faculty members involved in the SSAS graduate program are leading scholars in many fields. Their expertise spans the natural and social sciences and share a commitment to integrative inquiry. Exciting opportunities exist to joining cutting-edge programs of research.
  • The SSAS graduate program is transdisciplinary in orientation and emphasizes overcoming barriers among traditional disciplines and sectors.
  • Brock University is one of only a few Canadian universities to be located in a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve.
  • Environmental Sustainability Research Centre (ESRC) is the home unit of the SSAS graduate program and offers an enriching environment with opportunities to engage in a variety of activities and direct interactions with Faculty and Affiliates.

Here’s what our students have to say:

  • “Having professors from different disciplines really broadened my interest areas and knowledge in sustainability science.” – Erin Duffy
  • “Brock was definitely the best choice for me. Coming from the Maritime’s I was nervous about coming to a bigger school, but the SSAS program is so close knit and immediately offered me many opportunities both academically and personally. The people I have met have become my fast friends, and I’ve enjoyed all of the opportunities for personal and professional development through the program. ” – Natalie Gillis
  • “Brock provided me with a balance of research, collaboration, hands-on experience, career preparation, and extra-curricular activities for a well-rounded graduate experience” – Sarah Holmes
  • “During the completion of my undergraduate degree at Brock University, I became increasingly aware of the University’s respected and growing reputation for scholarship, teaching, and learning. In addition, Brock’s unique location within a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the ESRC’s transdisciplinary approach to sustainability education and the generous graduate student funding makes Brock University the ideal location to study a Master’s of Sustainability.” – Brodie Hague
  • “The diverse and transdisciplinary course offerings allowed me to experience new perspectives surrounding issues of sustainability.” – Erin Duffy
  • “I chose the SSAS program because of its transdisciplinary focus. The study of sustainability is not solely concerned with natural systems or social systems. Instead, it explores the interactions between these linked systems. Learning to move beyond disciplinary boundaries is imperative to exploring potential solutions to complex problems and thus, moving toward a more sustainable future.” – Katrina Krievins
  • “I knew SSAS was right for me because it offered me a balanced education with coursework, hands-on experience, and research” – Samantha Stea
  • “Having the ESRC as the home unit for the SSAS program has provided a variety of opportunities for academic and professional development through a variety of engagements with their Members, Associates and Affiliates.” – Tanya Woodhead
  • “SSAS is a great program with a nice balance of course work and research opportunity”- Tyler Prince
  • “The transdisciplinarity of this program is most certainly one of its biggest strengths. Our research experiences, class discussions, and work experiences were always unique, enriching, and thought-provoking.” – Samantha Morris
  • “Brock has incredible funding opportunities and the opportunity to work with distinguished faculty that are leaders in their respective fields” – Brodie Hague
  • “The co-op component of this program provided me with real world experience in the field of sustainability.” – Erin Duffy
  • “This program combines incredible faculty members with interesting and relevant course material while providing real world experiences and challenges” – Sarah Holmes
  • “The transdisciplinarity of the program contributed to really interesting discussions in courses and helped me consider my research from different perspectives that I may not have thought of myself.” – Erin Duffy
  • “I would highly recommend the Master of Sustainability program at Brock to anyone who is thinking about graduate school. The combination of course work, research experience, co-op opportunities, and extra-curricular opportunities has prepared me well for a future in the sustainability field.” – Samantha Morris
  • “this program offers a unique experience where I was able to learn more about sustainability science through course work, apply this knowledge in a co-op placement, and contribute to the field of sustainability science through my own research project. This combination of components, in addition to the excellent instructors and funding opportunities, are a few reasons why I enjoyed this program.” – Erin Duffy
  • “I chose Brock because it’s a big University with a small town feel” – Samantha Stea
  • “I was able to explore my interest in Corporate Social Responsibility through both my major research project and also my co-op placement. I believe this combination of research and practical experience is what makes this program unique.” – Erin Duffy
  • I want to build on my undergraduate degree in a program that allows me to cross traditional disciplinary boundaries to study the environment.
  • I want to apply what I learn in class and gain practical work experience in the context of a research program.
  • I want to gain new skills and knowledge that can help me to advance in my current career.
  • I want to gain knowledge and advanced research experience under the guidance of cutting edge Faculty to prepare myself for an exciting career.
  • I want to study in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.
  • I am passionate about the environment and want to make a difference while also having a meaningful career.
  • I want to study in a flourishing transdisciplinary research Centre.
  • I want to gain new skills to help my company become more sustainable.

If any of the above statements apply to you, we encourage you to consider applying for the SSAS graduate program!

Admission Criteria:

  • 4 year Bachelor’s degree, or its equivalent, from an accredited university
  • Minimum 75% (mid-B) average over the last two years of full-time undergraduate study
  • Proficiency in English (the minimum TOEFL score of 700 (IELTS 7.0) or equivalent is required)
  • In keeping with its transdisciplinary character, the program welcomes students from a variety of academic backgrounds including, but not limited to:
    • Applied Health
    • Biological Sciences
    • Canadian Studies
    • Development Studies
    • Earth Sciences
    • Economics
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Environmental Management
    • Environmental Science
    • Environmental Studies
    • Geography
    • Planning
    • Political Science
    • Public Administration
    • Rural Studies
    • Tourism
    • Women and Gender Studies

If you meet the above criteria and are interested in pursuing your Master of Sustainability, we welcome you to apply today!

Brock University offers competitive guaranteed funding to individuals enrolled full-time in research-based graduate programs. Students in the SSAS graduate program (both Schemes) are eligible for full-time funding from the University.

Financial support

There are several opportunities for students to receive additional financial support during their studies:

How much will graduate school cost?

For information on graduate tuition and related fees at Brock University, visit: https://brocku.ca/finance/students/graduate.

In this video, Dr. Ryan Plummer answers the question “What’s the difference between MS, MA, and MSc?” for the Master of Sustainability Q&A Series.

These seminars are held bi-weekly through the academic year as part of the Master of Sustainability SSAS 5P04 course. Anyone is welcome to attend.