Taught course

Agriculture and Development

University of Reading · Graduate Institute of International Development and Applied Economics - GIIDAE

Entry requirements

IELTS: 6.5 overall with no element less than 5.5 (or equivalent)

Normally a good undergraduate honours degree (ideally 2:2 or above), or equivalent from a university outside the UK. Applicants who have relevant career experience are also encouraged to apply. Knowledge of agriculture or horticulture is desirable.

Students may join immediately after their undergraduate degree, or after some years of employment to enhance career prospects by acquiring further skills.

For a list of requirements by country, please visit our Country-Specific Information page.

Your personal statement

In your personal statement, you will need to demonstrate motivation to contribute towards solving global problems linked to agriculture or food production. Knowledge of agriculture or horticulture is desirable. You may reflect on paid or unpaid experience in the field to help support your personal statement.

Your statement needs to demonstrate that you understand what the course is about, your motivation for studying, and what you would like to get out of your studies.

Language requirements

Applicants may need to provide evidence of their ability to study in English (if required by UK Visa and Immigration). Our online list of English language tests and qualifications is routinely updated, so please check to see if you already have an acceptable qualification or test, and for the most recent changes to language requirements.

If you have any questions about your evidence of English language proficiency, please email pgadmissions@reading.ac.uk.

Pre-sessional English language programme

If you need to improve your English language score, you can take a pre-sessional English course prior to entry onto your degree.

Months of entry


Course content

Examine the role of agriculture in international contexts with our MSc Agriculture and Development master’s degree, designed for those pursuing careers in rural development, agricultural extension, or research.

You will critically examine how agriculture – including horticulture – and agricultural research are addressing major challenges and opportunities in agricultural intensification and environmental sustainability, particularly in tropical and subtropical regions of the developing world.

With an emphasis on farming systems, you’ll explore:

  • the role and contributions of agriculture and horticulture to human development, food and nutritional security, livelihoods and ecosystem services.
  • the biophysical, economic and social environments in which agriculture is practised.
  • advances in agricultural technology, research and practise in response to challenges such as poverty, climate change and environmental sustainability.
  • how to enhance the relevance, quality and impact of agricultural research and farmer-led innovation processes.

Choose MSc Agriculture and Development at the University of Reading

You will:

  • join the highest-ranking UK university for Agriculture and Forestry (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2022 - Agriculture & Forestry). We’re ranked 11th in the world, and are the only UK university in the top 50.
  • develop skills in strategic thinking, quantitative and qualitative analysis, communication and teamwork in biological and social sciences.

Joining this programme means you’ll also be joining the Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics, based in the School of Agriculture, Policy and Development, where we are committed to empowering change through our teaching and research. Our academics tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues across their respective fields of expertise, and our mission is to make a difference in the context of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. Through the MSc Agriculture and Development programme, you’ll be particularly equipped to help implement the goals to end hunger and promote sustainable agriculture.

Fees and funding

New UK/Republic of Ireland students: £10,800

New international students: £22,350

Tuition fee information

The fees listed are for full-time study, unless otherwise stated. Fee information will be confirmed in offer letters sent out to successful applicants. You can find further information, including information for part-time study, through our dedicated fees and funding page.

EU student fees

With effect from 1 August 2021, new EU students will pay international tuition fees. For exceptions, please read the UK government's guidance for EU students.

Additional costs

Some courses will require additional payments for field trips and extra resources. You will also need to budget for your accommodation and living costs. See our information on living costs for more details.

Financial support for your studies

You may be eligible for a scholarship or bursary to help pay for your study. Students from the UK may also be eligible for a student loan to help cover these costs. See our fees and funding information for more information on what's available.

The Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics also offers a number of scholarships.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Global Recruitment Team