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A BA (Geology) in 3 years or an MEarthSc in 4 years
UCAS code: F642 (Geology)
F644 (Earth Sciences)

Course statistics for 2013 entry

Interviewed: 94%
Successful: 31%
Intake: 34

Tuition fees for 2014

Home/EU: £9,000/year
No upfront costs: you can get a loan for the full amount
Grants, bursaries and scholarships available

More information
+44 (0) 1865 272040

Open days

2 and 3 July, and 19 September 2014


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Earth Sciences (Geology)

Courses tab icon About the course Course outline Entrance requirements How to apply

A typical weekly timetable

During years 1–3, your work is divided between lectures (about ten a week), tutorials (one or two a week), and practical classes, occupying about a third of your week. In year 4 you have the opportunity for independent work on special topics or in a research laboratory.

Fieldwork/international opportunities

The Earth Sciences course includes a number of excursions. These are designed to link closely to material covered in lectures, and to convey the practice of geology, geophysics, geochemistry, and palaeontology in the field environment. This work culminates in an independent project to study and map an area chosen by the student (with advice from lecturers). Many of the field excursions take place out of term time, so students on the course must be available outside of term.

1st year

Students take all courses in five parallel streams:

  • Planet Earth

  • Fundamentals of geology I

  • Fundamentals of geology II

  • Physics, chemistry and biology for Earth Sciences

  • Mathematics for Materials and Earth Sciences

Field Courses

  • Pembroke Field Course (pre-session)

  • Arran Field Course (Introduction)

  • Local field courses 


First University Examinations
(Theory and Practical)

2nd year

Students take all courses in five parallel streams:

  • Earth deformation and materials

  • Palaeobiology

  • Petrology

  • Geochemistry and ocean chemistry

  • Mathematical and geophysical tools

Field Courses

  • Dorset Field Course

  • Assynt Field Course (Mapping)


Part A1 Examinations (2nd year, Theory and Practical)

3rd year

Students take a combination of core and optional papers from the following:

  • Natural resources

  • Sedimentary basins

  • The oceans

  • Palaeoclimate and sea level

  • Seismology and earth structure / Continental deformation

  • Volcanoes and environment / Igneous processes and petrogensis

  • Evolutionary turning points / Vertebrate palaeobiology

  • Earth materials, rock deformation and metamorphism

  • Mathematical and geophysical methods

Field Courses

  • South-east Spain field trip
  • Independent field mapping project (conducted over summer break between 2nd and 3rd years)
Extended Essay



Part A2 Examinations (3rd year, Theory, Practical for Field Course)
BA Hons (Geology)

4th year


Students choose four options, generally two in each term (four / eight–ten):

  • Anatomy of a mountain belt

  • Planetary chemistry

  • Seismology

  • Records of major environmental change in Earth’s history

  • Palaeobiology

  • Environmental, rock and palaeo-magnetism

  • Topics in oceanography

  • Topics in volcanology

Field Courses
Optional field courses as announced each year

Independent work
Research project over 2.5 terms 


Part B Examination (Theory)
MEarthSc Hons (Earth Sciences)