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.