This MSc provides a broad introduction to geohazards, together with advanced courses in seismology, volcanology, hydrogeological hazards and meteorology. A key goal is to provide an essential grounding in quantitative modelling that can be widely applied to several fields, from pure research to the commercial sector.
The programme provides an introduction to the spectrum and impact of geophysical hazards, and a focus on quantitative models for hazard forecasting and assessment. Selected case studies illustrate how these models are essential for improving decision-making during emergencies, for raising the awareness of vulnerable populations, and for evaluating and implementing mitigation strategies.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.
The programme consists of six core modules (120 credits) and a research dissertation (60 credits).
There are no optional modules for this programme.
All students undertake an independent research project in geophysical hazards, which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words.
Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, directed reading and practical exercises. There are excellent opportunities for field investigations in the UK and abroad. Assessment is through unseen written examinations, practical problem-solving exercises and essays. The independent research report is assessed through the dissertation and an oral presentation.
Field sites for field trips are normally in Italy. The department pays for accommodation and transport in the field. Students pay to get to the field and subsistence.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Geophysical Hazards MSc
On graduation from this programme about one-third of students have followed careers in global insurance and re-insurance and another third have pursued research with a PhD in hazard-related studies. The remaining third have developed careers in a wide range of sectors, from non-governmental organisations, through teaching, to the fields of emergency planning and environmental management.
Recent career destinations for this degree
The MSc in Geophysical Hazards will provide essential training for careers in hazard assessment and risk evaluation, including: industry, from engineering to insurance; academic research; civil protection agencies and government organisations; and NGOs related to aid and development.
Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.
UCL Earth Sciences is engaged in world-class research into the processes at work on and within the Earth and planets.
Graduate students benefit from our lively and welcoming environment and world-class facilities. The department hosts UCL Hazard Centre, Europe's leading multidisciplinary hazard research centre, and engages in extensive collaborative work with the Royal Institution and the Natural History Museum.
This MSc aims to include a short field trip to locations that illustrate the impact of natural hazards. Previous trips have included the Neapolitan volcanic district, the Italian Alps and the Po Delta, and the Cádiz region in south-western Spain.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Earth Sciences
92% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
The MSc Hazard and Disaster Management course will develop knowledge, technical skills, interpersonal and management skills, and experience. You will study a range of hazards using examples from the UK and other countries. This will provide you with the experience to assess risks and vulnerabilities from desk-based research, laboratory and field situations, consider hazard management and disaster risk reduction strategies, develop emergency plans, and critically review the concept of resilience along with techniques for its development.
You will consider the dynamic and multi-faceted nature of disasters and examine a range of aspects pertinent to the operational, political and socio-cultural issues involved in disaster relief, including aspects of international law. The course will ensure a sound working knowledge and experience with one of the mostly widely used GIS platforms, extensively used by many planning authorities, GOs and NGOs, and you will develop valuable skills in the acquisition and processing of spatial datasets with a wide variety of disaster management applications, along with the ability to visualise and depict spatial information.
Opportunities for study on residential field courses will include the use of field simulations either in Finland or in the UK, and the opportunity to examine environmental hazards and evaluate management strategies on an overseas residential field course. Currently, the field course takes place in Italy or Greece, to examine volcanic, seismic, landslide and tsunami hazards.
The Disaster Management course is designed in a modular format and will be offered on a full and part time basis. Delivery will be mixed-mode, with a combination of traditional lectures, practicals and distance learning with supporting tutorials. For full time students, study will take place over 14 months, and for part time students, study may typically take two to three years.
The MSc Hazard and Disaster Management begins with a two week Summer School in August, where you will meet other students, academic tutors and visiting experts. You will:
You will undertake a field course simulation training exercise, which will focus on survival skills. You will reflect on the experiences of victims of disasters, develop decision making through active participation and it will orientate you to the type of experiences that you may encounter in a disaster field situation.
After the summer school, lectures and self-directed learning will take place in the Autumn and Spring terms. Teaching and training will also include fieldwork within the region as well as the option for overseas residential fieldwork.
Study will utilise a range of diverse learning approaches and activities to acknowledge the rich and diverse character and content of the body of knowledge that forms this Master’s degree course. It will include:
Each week, lectures and practicals will take place. This normally involves seven to 10 hours of class contact timetabled within two days of the week. In addition, through the week you will be engaged in distance learning tutorials and activities, background reading, and working on a wide range of assessments. Some weeks will also have additional field or simulation time. For a full-time course, a minimum of 37 hours of study time per week is expected.
The course will also require attendance at a Summer School (two weeks), on another overseas residential field course (about ten days), and will also provide options for other extended field- or work-placements. UK and EU students complete the Summer School at the start of their course in August and International Students complete it at the end of their course. International students therefore begin their course in September and not August. This is to allow enough time for you to get your visa.
With the eastern Mediterranean as our natural marine laboratory, the International M.Sc. Program in Marine Geosciences provides students with a unique opportunity to develop practical scientific experience at sea alongside a rigorous academic curriculum.
Established in 2007 as part of the multidisciplinary Leon H. Charney School of Marine Sciences, the Department of Marine Geosciences combines research and graduate studies of the marine environment in the following main disciplines: exploration geophysics, seafloor mapping, remote sensing, geodynamics, tectonics, marine and coastal sedimentology, geochemistry, chemical and physical oceanography.
The two-year MSc program will begin in October.
Topics to be covered include: the structure of the seafloor; the Earth’s crust below it and the search for energy sources (oil, gas, hydrates); the dynamics of the water body above it; sea level variations and their relation to tectonic and climate changes; coastline developments in present and past times; and, finally, present and past influences on human evolution. Students will have the opportunity to interact with central research institutions in Israel including the Israel Oceanographic and Limnological Research Institute, the Geological Survey of Israel, the Geophysical Institute of Israel and other industrial institutes.
Taught in English, the program can be completed in two years and begins every October. Coursework, field trips and an educational cruise are held during the first two semesters, the summer semester is dedicated to establishing a research proposal, while the second year is dedicated to conducting research. Students will be required to submit a research thesis at the end of the second year of the program. Upon completion of the program, students will be awarded a Master of Science in Marine Geosciences.
For a full and detailed list of the program curriculum, please visit here.
Full Scholarships for outstanding students from China and India!
Graduates of the program will be well-placed to pursue careers within government research agencies, onshore and offshore site investigation contractors or consultancy companies, and various branches of higher education and research.
Students will gain practical experience in marine geophysical survey work through hands-on field activities. The program includes educational research cruises to the deep sea, coastal and underwater field excursions, as well as geological field trips to marine structures currently exposed onshore. The research and educational cruises are carried out in water bodies in and surrounding Israel – the Mediterranean, the Dead Sea, the Red Sea and the Sea of Galilee.
For more information on the course curriculum and course description please click here.
Currently, the Department of Marine Geosciences faculty includes seven senior members and six adjunct faculty members. The department is currently under the leadership of Professor Uri S. Ten Brink whose fields include marine geophysics, tectonics, earthquakes, landslides and tsunami hazards.
For a full list of faculty staff and their specialisations please visit here.
This program is eligible for MASA scholarship.
A number of full-tuition scholarships for outstanding students from China and India are available.
Further information on scholarships and financial aid can be found here.
In the Master in Earth Structure and Dynamics programme, you will explore the composition, structure, and evolution of the Earth’s crust, mantle, and core. During this two-year programme, you will learn to link geological, geophysical, geochemical, and geodetic observations made at the Earth’s surface to physical processes operating within the planet.
The programme combines geology, geophysics, mathematics, physics, chemistry and field studies to address how the solid Earth works. It allows you to specialise in virtually any aspect of solid Earth science, ranging from theoretical geophysics to pure geology or geochemistry. Many students choose a combined geology-geophysics focus.
The main subject areas you will study consist of seismology, tectonophysics, mantle dynamics, structural geology, metamorphism, magmatic processes, basin evolution, hydrocarbon and mineral deposits, and the properties of Earth materials. You will examine processes ranging from slow geodynamic processes – such as mantle convection, plate tectonics, sedimentary basins formation and evolution, and mountain building – to those that can have an impact during a human lifetime. These include active crustal deformation, seismicity, and volcanism as well as subsidence, uplift induced seismicity and geo-resources.
In the programme, you will address questions such as:
You can choose one of three specialisation tracks based on your interests in the field:
The international master program in Geophysics at KIT is research-oriented, has a strong focus on exploration and earthquake seismology and brings together theory and field experiments. This provides our students the opportunity to cover the full range of geophysics from data acquisition to modelling, inversion and interpretation. The program is taught entirely in English.
Students studying in the international master program in Geophysics benefit from the strong expertise in exploration and earthquake seismology for which the Geophysical Institute of KIT is known worldwide for more than 50 years.
In the international research-oriented master program we bring together our knowledge in theory as well as in field experiments and give our students the possibility to understand the full picture from data acquisition to modelling, inversion and interpretation.
Students take part in compulsory and elective courses within their 1st year covering different topics of seismology and proximate subjects. During their 2nd year, students will be fully integrated in one of the research groups working on their theses in order to have an optimum preparation for their future work in science and industry. For more details on the program structure see program structure above.
Recently, the concept of in situ lecturing was successfully established at KIT. In situ lectures are taught at the place which is being studied giving students the possibility to fully understand the dimensions and observe the whole range of parameters involved in the subject. Within the last years, in situ lectures have led our students to the Aeolian Islands, deep into potash mines in Thuringia, to the Gotthard base tunnel while it was built, and to seismically active regions in Germany and the Czech Republic.
International summer schools are conducted in cooperation with Bandung Institute of Technology and Australia National University. Since KIT is part of the Eucor universities
Students can also choose lectures offered by our European partners.
Compulsory courses in the 1st year include Theory of Seismic Waves, Seismology, Physics of Seismic Instruments, Seismic Imaging, Seismic Modelling as well as Inversion and Tomography. In order to specialize, students can choose electives from Geophysics or proximate subjects. Lectures on Array Processing, Full Waveform Inversion, Geological Hazards and Risk, Induced Seismicity, Hazard and Risk Assessment of Mediterranean Volcanoes and a Winter School at the Black Forest Observatory are regularly offered.
During the 2nd year of the program students will be integrated in one of the research groups working on their thesis. We consider it as important to fully immerse into a project and work on it deeply over a longer period so that our students have an optimum preparation for their work in science and industry.
Qualification for university entrance (e.g. Abitur, high school diploma, national test for university entrance, ...)
The Bachelor degree has to be completed with a minimum of 180 ECTS points or within a regular period of study of at least three years. If the Bachelor degree has not yet been conferred by the closing date for applications, but will be completed before the registration, you can apply with a preliminary transcript of records.
Profound knowledge of Geophysics, Mathematics and Physics (usually a minimum 20 credits each during the Bachelor studies). Missing credits in Geophysics can individually caught up for during the 1st year. For immediate success students without background in Geophysics can take part in an interactive convergence course covering the most important topics from Seismology and Seismics.
On request the following proofs can also be accepted: Bachelor degree of a university program taught in English University entrance qualification received in an English program Bachelor thesis written in English.
Applications for the winter term (beginning in October) can be submitted until 15 July (Non-EU-Applicants) and until 30 September (German and EU-Applicants).
Due to the modular structure of the program, a start in the summer term (April) is also possible, but not recommended for students from abroad or students who do not hold a Bachelor degree in Geophysics.