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Master's Programme Ecology and Biodiversity

Faculty Faculty of Biology
Duration / ECTS-Credits 4 semesters / 120 ECTS-Credits
Academic Degree
Master of Science (MSc)
Qualification Level
Master (Second Cycle)
ISCED-11: Level 7, EQF/NQF: Level 7
ISCED-F 0521 Environmental Sciences
Mode of Study
Study Code
UC 066 833
Curriculum Information on the Curriculum (2008W)*
Language of Instruction German
Admission Requirements
Relevant bachelor's degree or equivalent and Language Certificates

*Information on the Curriculum (2008W)

The complete version of the curriculum reflects the currently valid version of the curriculum. It is for informational purposes only and is not legally binding. The legally binding version of the curriculum, including any amendments, may be found in the University of Innsbruck Bulletins.

In order to determine which version of the curriculum is applicable in your case, see the Catalogue of Studies
  available at:
  Section: Current Curriculum version

University of Innsbruck Bulletins » (Click to open all University of Innsbruck Bulletins)


Relevant bachelor's degrees at the University of Innsbruck:

Proof of general university entrance qualification:

The general university entrance qualification for admission to a master's programme must be proven by the completion of a subject-related bachelor's programme, another subject-related programme of at least the same higher education level at a recognised domestic or foreign post-secondary educational institution, or a program defined in the curriculum of the master's programme. To compensate for significant differences in subject matter, supplementary examinations (maximum 30 ECTS credits) may be prescribed, which must be taken by the end of the second semester of the master's programme. The rectorate may determine which of these supplementary examinations are prerequisites for taking examinations provided for in the curriculum of the master's programme.

In the course of the proof of the general university entrance qualification, the completion of the following core areas within the framework of the completed bachelor's degree programme shall be examined in any case:

  • 4 ECTS-Credits Core Area: Basics of Ecology
  • 8 ECTS-Credits Core Area: Structure and Function of Ecosystems
  • 4 ECTS-Credits Core Area: Molecular Biology and molecular Ecology
  • 4 ECTS-Credits Core Area: Methods of Measurement and Ecological Project Study
  • 4 ECTS-Credits Core Area: Botanical and Zoological Forms

Recommended Course Sequence

The exemplary course sequence given below is recommended for full-time students beginning their study programme in the winter semester. The table shows one possible course sequence for the bachelor's programme and is not compulsory. Delays resulting from repeated examinations are not taken into account.

The standard duration of the study programme is 4 semesters or 120 ECTS-Credits, whereby according to the Universities Act of 2002, a workload of 1,500 (real) hours per academic year must be fulfilled, corresponding to 60 ECTS-Credits (one ECTS-Credit is equivalent to a workload of 25 hours).

First Semester »

1.5 ECTS-Credits: CM Selected Topics in Ecology (CM 1a and 1b)
27.5 ECTS-Credits: Elective Modules

Second Semester »

17.5 ECTS-Credits: Elective Modules
12.5 ECTS-Credits: Ecological Project Study

Third Semester »

15.0 ECTS-Credits: Elecive Modules
17.5 ECTS-Credits: Instructions for Scientific Working
                             Initiation Master’s Thesis » continue fourth semester

Fourth Semester »

 25.0 ECTS-Credits: Master’s Thesis
 1.0 ECTS-Credits: CM Selected Topics in Ecology (CM 1c)
 2.5 ECTS-Credits: Master's Thesis Defence

Graphic chart »


Qualification Profile and Skills

The goal of the Master's Programme Ecology and Biodiversity is the attainment of scientific knowledge and working methods for all ecologically-relevant disciplines and occupations.

The main emphasis is ­on the acquistion of knowledge in aquatic and terrestrial ecology, from molecular ecology to landscape ecology. The spectrum includes the relationships between organisms, populations, biocenoses and their environment, the structure and function of ecosystems and landscapes, and biodiversity and global change. Students treat research-related and application-oriented issues based on theoretical and experimental laboratory and field approaches. Much of the teaching content is closely linked to the key research areas "ecology of the Alpine region" and "mountain agriculture".

Expected Learning Outcomes

Graduates possess highly specialized knowledge in the fields of ecosystem and landscape ecology, limnology, and terrestrial animal and molecular ecology. They are able to demonstrate their abilities in fundamental research and applied science at the intersections of organisms, habitats and society through their capacity to formulate and susbtantiate arguments scientifically and to find innovative solutions to problems.

Future Prospects: Occupational Profiles and Career Opportunities

Career opportunities may include:

  • careers in research and application-oriented areas, such as activities as an expert or consultant in politics, administration and economics,
  • management positions and scientific work in private and public institutions (e.g. ecological risk management, nature and landscape conservation, biomonitoring, agricultural research, molecular ecological laboratories),
  • research and teaching positions at universities and other national and international research institutions.

The master's programme also prepares students for doctoral studies.

Postgraduate and further Studies at the University of Innsbruck

Supplementary Programme

Within the scope of the Study Programme, a Supplementary Programme corresponding to 60 ECTS-Credits may be passed. Admission to the Supplementary Programme requires the admission to or the having passed of one of the selected Study Programmes. Detailed information:

Information about examination regulations, assessment and grading

Examination regulations

The examination regulation is an integral part of the curriculum, detailed information can be found under the paragraph examination regulations.

Description of the applied grading system (including the grade distribution table) »

The grade distribution table is a statistical representation of the distribution of all successfully completed examinations in a given programme of study or subject (based on all registered students for the programme or subject). The grade distribution table is updated in regular intervals.

Austrian grading
 Outstanding performance

= 100%


 Generally good, but with some errors
 Generally sound work with a number of substantial errors


 Performance meets the minimum criteria
 Substantial improvement necessary; requirement of further work

December 2021

Overall classification of the qualification

Not applicable
Explanation: An overall classification (mit Auszeichnung bestanden/pass with distinction, bestanden/pass, nicht bestanden/fail) – is awarded only for examinations that conclude a programme of study and consist of more than one subject (an examination of this type is not specified in the curriculum of this programme of study). 

Information about the Programme (in German only)

Equivalence Lists (in German only)

Forms (in German only)

Contact and Information

Examination office
Standort Technikerstraße 17 Piktogramm barrierefreier Zugang

Dean of Studies
Ao. Univ.-Prof. Mag. Dr. Leopold Füreder

Further person to contact: 
Assoz.-Prof. Dr. Georg Wohlfahrt Information portal for Biology Students of the University of Innsbruck 

Information for students with disabilities

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