School of Biological Sciences

Master of Conservation Biology (MConBio)


A conservation class examines a seabird restoration site on the Kaikoura Peninsula

This professional Masters programme offers a unique programme of study. Conservation biology is rapidly becoming an area of key importance, particularly as the impacts of climate change become known. Human impacts, loss of biodiversity and a growing awareness of environmental change link the fields of conservation, ecology and biodiversity.

Students completing the course will be well equipped to make a valuable contribution to the conservation of the natural environment of their home or chosen country.

Study in New Zealand and Australia

The Masters programme draws on scientific expertise from Australia and New Zealand. Together, the two countries have an extensive range of terrestrial and marine environments that enable a comprehensive study of the important issues in conservation. Examples of best conservation practice being applied differently in these two countries, known internationally for their contributions to conservation, make informative case studies.

The programme is offered jointly by Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand’s capital city and The University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. The degree can be conferred by either of the two universities.

About the universities.

Programme Content

The degree programme explores the processes of conservation biology and looks at practical problems and solutions in examples from Australia and New Zealand. Skills in experimental design, collection and analysis of data and presentation of research results will be gained by students in conservation, ecology and biodiversity.

The MConBio programme consists of two separate five-month study blocks, taken at each university. The degree can be completed in a minimum of one calendar year, or extended to a maximum of two years if taken part time or with a gap between blocks. The New Zealand component is taught January-June and the Australian component July-December. Students may enter the programme at the beginning of either period.

More on Courses, Programme Information and Fees.

Intended Course Participants

The Master of Conservation Biology (MConBio) is designed both for international students and for New Zealand and Australian students who wish to gain a broad understanding of conservation biology. It is an ideal qualification for those seeking employment in a wide range of government, conservation and resource management agencies worldwide. It also prepares students for doctoral studies.

Frequently Asked Questions