MRes Applied Sciences

This Masters by Research Applied Sciences degree is a unique, fifteen month, student-oriented programme, designed to introduce you to high level science research. By the end of the course it is expected you will be able to carry out advanced level research leading to a PhD or undertake cutting-edge industry led research.

You will receive training in a wide range of research techniques to build up a substantial profile of experimental skills to be used in future employment. A major part of this MRes is to complete an individual project of your choice, led by staff who are experts in their field.

Graduates of this course could extend their current research to PhD at USW, or venture into the jobs market with a strong degree which gives them the necessary skills for commercial research.


2022/23 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for delivering our courses in the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to change during the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. Whether you’re on-campus full time, part-time with online study, or full-time online, USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 15 Months September Glyntaff A
Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 15 Months September Glyntaff A

The MRes Applied Science course will run over 15 months, or four terms. During the first term, students will focus on three common modules:

Project Management and Techniques

This module will teach you how to critically appreciate the latest methodologies and techniques for project management in a variety of contexts. By the end of the module, you will be able to completely evaluate the processes associated with controlling, executing and commissioning a specific project.

Research Communication

You will learn how to effectively communicate research ideas and findings using media approaches. You will develop skills in effective communication of subject specific research and wider public engagement and foster a reflective approach to research communication while developing self-awareness as a research communicator. 

Research Methods and Experimental Design

This module will focus on critical methodologies to develop a high level research project. You will learn a comprehensive set of analytical and technical tools for data collection and analysis tailored for extended research projects. You will also gain skills in research governance. 


Advanced Research Project

The final module on the MRes Applied Science, is a 120 credit research project. You will be expected to actively engage in the planning, investigation, implementation and critical evaluation of scientific research at a professional level, providing an insight in to the career of a modern research scientist. You will be able to choose a field of interest to base your project on. 


You will learn through lectures, tutorials, seminars, workshops and practical classes. 

As part of the course, you will study independently and undertake a named research project, with the support of a project supervisor. This will involve regular meetings to discuss project design and progress. This will take the form of 1-2-1 meetings and meetings with research groups within the School.

A major part of this MRes degree is completed through independent study and research. You will undertake a named research project, with support from a project supervisor. This will involve regular meetings to discuss project design and progress, through one-to-one meetings with your supervisor and with research groups in the School of Applied Science. 

Students at USW have access to a wide range of academic and pastoral support. This includes easy access to lecturers via their ‘open door’ policies, Disability Services, the Centre for Health and Wellbeing and the Chaplaincy.



Assessment for this course is based entirely on a variety of coursework.

  • Project Management and Techniques – assessed as written assignments around case studies.
  • Research Communication – assessed as a communication event and a portfolio of workshop outputs, and reflections.
  • Research Methods and Experimental Design – assessed as a portfolio of exercises including a report and presentation.
  • Advanced Research Project – assessed as a series of outputs, including a dissertation and a research poster.


This is a school wide course, so aside from the usual computer and teaching labs, library and study spaces, students will have access to any of the other facilities we have which include SEM, NMR, ICP, DGPS, specialist software etc. depending on their project of choice.

Featured Lecturer:
Professor Richard Dinsdale

Professor Richard Dinsdale

Professor Richard Dinsdale's research activities are directed at optimizing microbial cultures for the production of energy either in the form of methane, hydrogen or as electricity directly from bioelectrochemical systems as well as other chemical products such as bioplastics, single cell protein and lipids from low grade biomass resources. This includes either liquid or solids wastes as well as from CO2, H2 and CO gases. He is also interested in the development of novel instrumentation and its implementation in control systems for bioprocess optimization. In recent years Prof Dinsdale has been concentrating on the development of biolectrochemical systems (BES).

RAE Chair in Emerging Technology

Professor Richard Dinsdale is one of nine academics in the UK to be awarded £22m from the Royal Academy of Engineering to advance emerging technologies and benefit society through research. The Royal Academy of Engineering aim to make the UK the leading nation for Engineering innovation and businesses, address the engineering skills crisis and position Engineering at the heart of society. With the help of research funding, Prof. Dinsdale will be able to develop his ideas and progress them from basic science through to full deployment and commercialisation.

He aims to develop and commercialise microbial bio-electrochemical systems for waste treatment and resource recovery, an innovation that will make the industrial processes more efficient. It is this kind of industry-leading research that count could enhance wastewater treatment, improve metal recovery and help convert carbon dioxide into renewable green platform chemicals.


This course is taught by members of staff across the faculty. The Advanced Research Project module will be supervised by at least two members of staff who are experts in your chosen field.  The course leaders are:


We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

Candidates should usually have a first-class or upper second-class Honours degree in a relevant subject including Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Forensic Science or Geography.

International Entry Requirements

International students are very much welcome and part of student life at the University of South Wales.

To fully benefit from your studies here it is a requirement that you have a minimum written and spoken level of English at IELTS 6.0. For International students, a Tier 4 visa may be required.


The Centre for International English offers academic and pre-sessional English language programmes at a range of levels. These courses help international and EU students develop a wide range of skills, academically and socially, within the university environment.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2021 - July 2022 Fees

  • Full-time UK:  £7500

  • Full-time International:  £14500 

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

August 2023 - July 2024 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Bench Fee * £1500
Kit / Equipment
Students are encouraged to equip themselves with a suitable cotton laboratory coat, suitable for working in a chemical laboratory, and a pair of personal protective laboratory goggles, although the School does provide these items. Students who are successful in securing an industry-based project may, in a small number of cases, be required to purchase additional personal protective equipment as specified by the specific organisation or company.
Students who successfully secure a placement in industry to complete their project would be expected to pay their own travel costs to and from the venue during the period of placement. The cost of this will of course vary and some students have also paid for accommodation close to their place of work for the duration of their placement.

Apply directly to the University for this course.   

Admissions statement

Graduates of this course will be equipped to carry out high level research in a number of different sectors. This degree provides comprehensive preparation for students who wish to progress in to a research career as well as education. The MRes also builds on students transferable skills including, high level team work, communication and project management skills. Examples of employment industries include:

  • Academic
  • Commercial
  • Project management
  • Science communication and research management
  • Environment

Graduates can also progress to a PhD with us.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW engineering student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.