Joint Master Degree in AquaCulture, Environment and Society (ACES)

Deadline: 19 February 2016
Open to: students from all over the world (EU and Non-EU)
Scholarship: participation costs, contribution to travel, visa, installation, monthly allowance


The Erasmus Plus Joint Master Degree in AquaCulture, Environment and Society is a 120-ECTS course that runs for two years. During the first 3 semesters of the programme, students will study in a different EU country. To ensure course and group integration, the entire cohort of students will re-locate to different universities and institutes during these semesters. Although students will spend Semester 4 in different locations (of their choice), they will celebrate the end of their studies as an entire group at a final student research conference and goodbye event.

The Erasmus Plus Joint Master Degree in AquaCulture, Environment and Society has been specifically designed to address the many major scientific, technological and social obstacles facing the sustainable development of the global aquaculture industry.

You can find out more about the modules taught during each semester, including teaching methods and assessments, by clicking on the following links:

  • Semester 1: SAMS, University of the Highlands and Islands, UK;
  • Semester 2: University of Crete, Greece – focus on finfish aquaculture;
  • Semester 3: University of Nantes, France – focus on shellfish aquaculture;
  • Semester 4: research projects in Oban, Nantes or Crete.

Final conference and goodbye event: SAMS UHI, Oban, UK.


This program is open for students from all over the world divided into two categories:

  • Category A is open to students who are not nationals of an EU country, Iceland, Norway or Lichtenstein. Students cannot be residents of these countries nor have carried out their main activity (studies, training or work) for more than a total of 12 months over the last five years in any of these countries;
  • Category B is available to all applicants that do not meet the criteria for Category A (this includes all nationals of the European Union, Iceland, Norway and Lichtenstein, as well as, people who have spent more than a total of 12 months in the EU over the last five years).

All students must meet the following criteria:

  • Bachelor degree (or equivalent) in one of the fields of environmental or social sciences. An appropriate background could include; Aquaculture-related studies, Marine Science, Aquatic Biology, Biology, Environmental Sciences or Marine Resources, Environmental Economics and Environmental Policy. You must have a bachelor degree at the time of application for the scholarship, by 19 February 2016;
  • English competence equivalent to 6.5 Academic IELTS (with a minimum of 6.0 in all four components);
  • They particularly welcome applications from mature students and/or those with practical working experience in the aquaculture industry.


The European Commission will provide scholarships to the best applicants on the basis of academic ability. Two scholarship packages are available depending on a student’s background:

Category A

  • Participation costs incl. insurance EUR 9,000 per year (fully covered);
  • Contribution to travel, visa, installation etc. EUR 2,000-3,000 per year;
  • Monthly allowance EUR 1,000 per month.

Category B

  • Participation costs incl. insurance EUR 4,500 per year (fully covered);
  • Contribution to travel, visa, installation etc. EUR 1,000 per year;
  • Monthly allowance EUR 1,000 per month.


The following documents should be emailed at as part of your application:

  1. Completed ACES application form (in Microsoft Word) in English, including a 350-word statement of motivation and 350-word essay reflecting on your professional experience and understanding of the issue facing the aquaculture industry;
  2. Completed UHI International Student Application Form (applicable for ALL students, including European). This is a standard UHI application form, which needs to be completed in English. However, for the Course Details section please insert UHI-SAMS; and please leave blank the Personal Statement in this form, as it will be included in the ACES application form above;
  3. Curriculum vitae (CV) in freestyle format;
  4. A professional reference;
  5. Copy of your passport;
  6. Copy of your degree certificate (plus certified translation into English if applicable);
  7. Copy of your transcript of marks (plus certified translation into English if applicable);
  8. Copy of your IELTS English language test result with validity until the end of Sept 2016 (You must have official proof of your English proficiency by the time you apply for the ACES course).

Please read more about statement and references.

Deadline for applying is 19 February 2016.

If you have any questions regarding the program please send e-mail at

For more information please visit the official website.

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