The natural and human environments form the basis for sustainable development and human well-being. They are critical for the realization of the Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) especially poverty alleviation, food security, human health, water and sanitation, energy supply and economic development. The natural environment provides industrial raw materials such as minerals, fishery and forestry resources that are utilised for the production of goods throughout the world.

Human activities occur on a geographic stage of great diversity and constant transformation, and these activities depend on the increasingly fragile natural environment and ecosystems. These complex interactions require a critical understanding, analysis and sustainable management. The Geography and Environmental Studies programme adopts a multidisciplinary approach that enables learners to understand and analyse the location, distribution, association and variation of biophysical and human phenomena in space and time (locational and spatial-temporal analysis).

The programme has the following three (3) specialization:

  1. Natural Environment and Development

  2. Human Geography

  3. Development and Environmental Studies

Philosophy of the programme

The philosophy of this programme is to bridge the social sciences, humanities and natural sciences; to offer innovative postgraduate training and research in the diverse fields of geography and environmental studies for sustainable development; and response to the professional needs of public and private sectors.

Rationale of the programme

This programme is cognizant of the need to protect natural and human environments to maintain the ecological balance and sustainability of the ecosystem that forms the basis for human well-being. To understand the complexity of spatial distribution, association and variations of phenomena and their interactions with the environment, there is need to equip learners with better knowledge, skills, attitudes and competencies.

The programme provides the scientific knowledge geared towards contributing to the achievement of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), African Union Agenda 2063 and Kenya’s development goals and agendas.


Objectives of the program

The objectives of the program are to;

a) Equip the learner with desired values, attitudes, knowledge, skills and competencies to analyse the complex and dynamic social, economic, environmental and spatial challenges; provide innovative, creative and sustainable solutions; and build a resilient and just world.

b) Enable the learner gain a better understanding and appreciation of the complex and dynamic bio-physical, human and socio-economic environments in global, regional, national and local contexts.

c) Enable the learner to better understand and analyse the ever-changing bio-physical environment, human-environment interactions, and the complex realities of the earth to make informed and critical decisions for a resilient and just world.

d) Equip the learner with knowledge, skills and competencies in geography and environmental studies which are relevant in a wide range of career opportunities and sectors of the economy.


Mode of delivery

The program will be offered on the following modes

a) Face-to-Face Mode

This will be offered through didactic lectures, case studies, tutorials, seminars, class discussions and presentations, and fieldwork.

b) Open Distance and e-Learning Mode

This will be offered using a multi-media approach that includes self-instructional print and electronic study materials. This will include interactive study materials and both synchronous and asynchronous modes of learning. Online teaching and learning shall be offered through the Learning Management Systems (LMS) of the University of Nairobi.

c)Blended Learning Mode

This will combine both face-to-face and online learning approaches.


Schedule of intakes

The programmes will be admitting applicants once per year during September intake as per the faculty of Arts and Social Sciences guidelines

Detailed application information is provided in the university of Nairobi website


Contact Information

The Chairman, Geography Population & Environmental Studies

P.O. BOX 30197 – 00100 Nairobi, Kenya

Tel: +254-020-4918222


Exams Regulations

a) Course work

           (i)        Each course shall be examined by a 1 x 3 hour written examination.

           (ii)       End of semester examination shall constitute 70% while continuous
assessment shall constitute 30% (of the marks in each course).

           (iii)      Continuous assessment shall be evaluated in each course on the basis of
seminar papers, tutorials, essays, practical exercises and assignments.

           (iv)      The pass mark shall be 50% in each paper.

           (v)       Candidates who fail to satisfy the examiners in any course may on the recommendation of the Institute Board of Examiners and approval by Senate be allowed to take up to two resit examinations during the next ordinary examination time within the stipulated study period.

           (vi)      A pass obtained in the resit examination shall be recorded as 50% in the candidates' academic record.

           (vii)     Candidates who fail to satisfy the examiners in the resit examination in any course or fails to complete their study within the stipulated period shall on recommendation of the Institute Board of Examiners and approval by Senate to discontinue.


 b) Research Project

 (a)     The supervisors should help students to identify possible areas of research during the second semester of the study.

 (b)     The actual research projects should commence at the beginning of the fourth semester of the study.

  (c)     The students will be required to present before staff and other fellow students their prepared/complete research proposals during the third semester of the study but not later than the beginning of the third semester examinations.

                                  (d)     The entire fourth semester will be devoted to the project work.

                                  (e)     The students will at the end of the fourth semester be required to submit with approval of their supervisors a duly approved completed research project.


c)    Examination of the Project

  1. The supervisor and an internal examiner will examine the entire project
    report. This will account for 70 per cent of the total marks.
  2. The candidate will give a 30-minute seminar to be assessed by two internal
    examiners. This will account for 30 percent of the total marks.

(i)        The common Regulations for the Masters degree in all Faculties shall be applicable.

(ii)       The following shall be eligible:

 (a)        holders of a Bachelor's degree of the University of Nairobi with at least an upper Second Class Honours, or other candidates with equivalent qualifications recognised by senate.

 (b)       holders of Lower Second Class honours degrees or equivalent and a diploma in population studies or at least 2 years work experience in population-related field.

(c)        holders of a pass degree and a post-graduate diploma in population studies with at least three years of work experience in a population related field.

(d)       holders of a pass degree with a distinction pass in post-graduate certificate in population and at least five years of work experience in population related field.



Students Obligations

The student shall be required to attend all the scheduled lectures and tutorials for the registered course units.

Lecturer Obligation

The course lecturer shall be required to deliver the curriculum to the learners as per the teaching timetable, apply problem-based learning approaches, align the curriculum to learning needs and outcomes, be available for consultation by students, and assess learners based on the curriculum and aligned learning outcomes.



Application Information

Applications for admission are open throughout the year through the online platform. The requirements for submitting your application are detailed in the link provided

Career prospects

Our graduates apply their skills and competencies in a wide range of public and private sectors, both nationally and globally. They have been employed in government ministries, departments and agencies; local and international organizations; civil society organizations; and community and non-governmental organizations

The program will produce experts in the following.

Environmental practitioners

Environmental lead experts

GIS and remote sensing experts

Natural Resource management experts

Food security experts



Attachment Opportunities

Attached opportunities are available at government institutions such as National Environmental Management Authority(NEMA), Kenya wildlife services(KWS), Kenya Forest Services(KFS), TARDA, LBDA, CDA, KVDA among others. At international level attachments are available at UNEP Kenya, Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development(RCMRD) , NGOs dealing with environment and conservation


Notable Alumni

1.Dr. Matheaus K. Kauti. Senior Lecturer Department of Environmental Science & Land Resources Management South Eastern Kenya University

2. Dr. Thandiwe Chikomo Program Director WWF Power of Voices The Netherlands

3.Martha Nziza Munyao Biodiversity Resource Planner Kenya Wildlife Service

4.Antony Oduya Ndubi Remote sensing & GIS Analyst FAO Somalia Programme

5.Osuman Kiazolu Manager Project Development and Monitoring Unit Forestry Development Authority Monrovia, Liberia (International student)

6.Dr.Budi Miriti, Chairman of Council, Cooperative University of Kenya

7. Sr. Maryanne Kamau, Lecturer in Canada

8.Priscilla Muchibwa, UN HABITA, Nairobi

9. Isaac Mazonde, PhD Professor of Economic Geography, University of Gaberone, Botswana



Fees Structure





Semester 1

(4 Units)

Semester 2

(4 Units)

Semester 3

(4 Units)

Semester 4

(4 Units)


  1. Tuition (@27,000/= per unit)






  1. Examination (@1,000/= per unit)






  1. Medical Fee (per year)






  1. ICT Services (per year)






  1. Caution (Once)




  1. Library (per year)






  1. Activity (per year)






  1. Registration (@2,250/= per semester)






  1. ID Card (per year)






  1. Student Organisation (per year)






  1. Project/Thesis Examination