Integrate field and laboratory studies to understand how the Earth works.
3 years full-time
Please note: Courses may be affected by Covid-19 and are therefore subject to change due to the ongoing impact of Covid-19. Applicants will be informed of any changes which we are required to make to course entries as a result of Covid-19.
The degree courses offered by the Department of Earth Sciences are intended to give you as much flexibility as possible while retaining the core Earth Science subjects. Individual degree courses are comprised of modules, and you will take a total of six modules (120 credits) in each academic year. This allows you to follow your own interests, as they develop.
In the first year, you will be introduced to major topics in Earth Sciences, developing the practical skills required to study rocks and fossils in the field. In Year 2 you will deepen your understanding of these topics. A key part of this year is to gain the knowledge and skills required to undertake your Dissertation. In Year 3 a mix of compulsory and elective modules allow you to specialise and study topics at the cutting-edge of Earth Sciences.
The MSci Earth Sciences course allows those with an aptitude to make the first steps to a research career. The majority of our degrees are accredited by the Geological Society of London, this gives you the assurance our teaching is of the highest quality, has been approved by an independent body of academics and industrialists and provides a fast track to Chartered Geologist status.
Our graduates secure employment in the fields of mineral exploration and petroleum geology, engineering geology, environmental and hydrogeology consultancies, GIS companies, geological surveys, as well as securing places on Masters and PhD courses. Numeracy, critical thinking and problem solving skills developed on the course are highly valued in a wide range of non-geoscience careers, including teaching, business management, insurance and accounting, banking and finance.
The course is mainly delivered through a mixture of lectures, practical classes, tutorials and fieldwork. Typically lectures provide key information on a particular area, and identify the main areas for discussion and debate. Practical classes and fieldwork allows you to gain direct experience of practical and interpretative skills in Geology while tutorials address specific transferable skills and allows you to raise particular problems.
The balance of these types of activities changes over the course of the degree, as you develop your knowledge and your abilities as independent learners. This is one of the key attributes that you will develop (thereby preparing you for work or further study once you have completed the course).
In the first year you will typically attend six hours a week of lectures, and 12 hours of practical classes. You are also required to attend six tutorial sessions during the academic year. Outside timetabled contact hours, you are also expected to undertake your own independent study to prepare for your classes and broaden your subject knowledge. You are expected to attend a one-week field course in the Lake District during the Easter vacation.
The balance starts to shift in the second year, as you develop your abilities as an independent learner. Lectures still play an important role in supporting you in developing your knowledge and skills, with an average of six hours a week, and you will participate in six two-hour practical classes per week across the academic year that both introduce you to, and give you the chance to practice, geological research methods. You are required to attend three one-week field courses, to Assynt, Almeria and Arran.
This move towards greater emphasis on independent learning continues in the final year. You are required to carry out a six-week mapping dissertation during the summer. You will be assigned a tutor appropriate for your dissertation. Support for the dissertation will take the form of one-to-one tutorial sessions. This provides you with the opportunity to engage with academic issues at the forefront of geological research, in a learning environment that is very much focused on discussion and debate of these issues. This places a premium on preparing effectively for classes.
This emphasis on using the independent study and research skills developed in earlier years is continued through the dissertation that you will undertake. Under the supervision of a member of academic staff with whom you will typically have three or four one-to-one supervisory meetings, you will undertake a detailed study of a particular area resulting in a significant piece of independent research. At Level 3 you are required to attend a one-week field trip to Cyprus, and there is the optional module which requires you to attend a field trip to Tenerife.
Throughout the course, you will also have access to an academic tutor who will provide you with academic support and guidance. Typically you will meet with your tutor six times a year, in addition to which all members of teaching staff have an open door policy and are available to meet with you on a ‘drop-in’ basis. The Department also has an exciting programme of weekly one-hour research seminars which you are strongly encouraged to attend, and there is a seminar programme run throughout the year by the student-led Arthur Holmes Society.
A level offer – AAB including two sciences from Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Geology, Geography, Economics, and Biology or Psychology.
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma/OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma – DDD plus two science A levels from list above.
IB Diploma score – 36 with 665 in higher level subjects, including two science subjects from list above.
In addition to satisfying the University’s general entry requirements, please note:
Applicants taking Science A levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This applies only to applicants sitting A levels with an English examination board.
International students who do not meet direct entry requirements for this degree might have the option to complete an International Foundation Year.
|Home students||£9,250 per year|
|EU students||£28,500 per year|
|Island students||£9,250 per year|
|International students||£28,500 per year|
Please be advised that there is an additional fee of £130 to cover first-year fieldwork. Fieldwork costs for subsequent years are dependent on dependent on degree route and modules chosen.
The tuition fees shown for home students are for one complete academic year of full time study and are set according to the academic year of entry. Fees for subsequent years of your course may rise in line with an inflationary uplift as determined by the government.
The tuition fees shown for overseas and EU students are for one complete academic year of full time study, are set according to the academic year of entry, and remain the same throughout the duration of the programme for that cohort (unless otherwise stated).
Please also check costs for colleges and accommodation.
We are committed to supporting the best students irrespective of financial circumstances and are delighted to offer a range of funding opportunities.Find out more about Scholarships and Bursaries
(Source: HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey. The survey asks leavers from higher education what they are doing 15 months after graduation. Further information about the Graduate Outcomes survey can be found here www.graduateoutcomes.ac.uk)
Earth science is a quantitative, multidisciplinary subject, which examines our planet from the surface to the core. Earth science draws upon elements of physics, chemistry, mathematics, biology and physical geography. You will look at climate change, the formation of the oceans, mass extinctions, the nature of rocks and minerals, and the structure and chemistry of the Earth. Earth science embraces the entire planet from the surface to the core, and also contributes to our understanding of other planets in our solar system and beyond.
For more information see our department pages.
The Earth Sciences building is laid outÃ¢â¬Â¯across three floors, providing focused spaces for research, support, teaching and specialised equipment. Ã¢â¬Â¯Academic staff, PDRAs, and PhD students are located on Level 3, providing a mutually supportive research environment. Research support and administrative staff are accommodated on Level 2, which includes four large teaching and seminar spaces, whilst technical staff are housed on Level 1 where the main research equipment facilities are located in purpose-built laboratories.
More information on our facilities and equipment.
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