This course is one of the premier international applied petroleum geoscience courses. Since the inception of the course in 1985 its graduates have an unparalleled employment record in the petroleum industry both in the UK and worldwide. In addition our graduates are highly sought after for further PhD research in the petroleum geosciences.
● Recognised by NERC - 5 MSc studentships each year covering fees, fieldwork and maintenance.
● Recognised by Industry - Industry scholarships
● We offer highly focused teaching and training by internationally recognised academic experts as well as by visiting staff from the petroleum industry.
The course covers the applications of basin dynamics and evolution to hydrocarbon exploration and production. The course is modular in form providing intensive learning and training in geophysics, tectonics and structural geology, sequence stratigraphy and sedimentology, hydrocarbon systems, reservoir geology, remote sensing and applied geological fieldwork.
The MSc course provides ‘state of the art’ training in -
● 3D seismic interpretation and 3D visualization;
● Fault analysis and fault-sealing;
● Seismic sequence stratigraphy;
● Applied sedimentology;
● Well log analysis;
● Remote sensing analysis of satellite and radar imagery;
● Analysis of gravity and magnetic data;
● Numerical modelling of sedimentation and tectonics;
● Applied structural geology;
● Geological Fieldwork.
● Transferable skills learned during the course include
project planning, presentation techniques, report writing and compilation, team working skills, spreadsheet and statistical analyses, GIS methods as well as graphics and visualization techniques.
● The full time MSc course runs for 50 weeks. The first half comprises one and two week course modules as well as group projects and fieldwork. The second half of the MSc course consists of an individual research project usually carried out in conjunction with the petroleum industry or related institutions such as international geological surveys.
● Part time study over 24 months is also available
● Each year independent projects are arranged with new data sets from industry – some students work in the offices of the company whereas other may use our excellent in-house facilities. All independent projects are supervised by faculty members with additional industry supervision where appropriate.
Facilities include –
● Dedicated Modern Teaching Laboratories
● 14 Dual Screen Unix Seismic Workstations
● PC and Macintosh Workstations
● Internationally Recognised Structural Modelling Laboratories
● Advanced Sedimentological Laboratories
The MSc course also greatly benefits from dynamic interaction with internationally recognised research groups within the Geology Department including –
● Project EAGLE – Evolution of the African and Arabian rift system – Professor Cindy Ebinger
● Southeast Asia Research Group – Tectonic Evolution and Basin Development in SE Asia – Professor Robert Hall
● Numerical Modelling Research Group – Numerical Modelling of Tectonics and Sedimentation – Dr Dave Waltham
● Fault Dynamics Research Group – Dynamics of Fault Systems in Sedimentary Basins – Professor Ken McClay
The 2005 MSc graduates went on to employment with Shell, BP, Amerada Hess, Gaz de France, OMV (Austria), Star Energy, First Africa Oil, Badley Ashton, ECL, PGS, Robertsons, PGL, Aceca, and to PhD research at Royal Holloway and Barcelona.
Since 2001, 85% of our graduates have gone in to work in the oil industry, 10% into geological research and 5% into environmental/engineering jobs.
Accommodation is available on campus in en-suite study bedrooms grouped in flats of eight, each with a communal kitchen and dining space.
Subsistence Costs ~£9,000 pa (including Hall of Residence fees of c. £4,500 for a full year)
APPLICATIONS can be made on line at http://www.rhul.ac.uk/Registry/Admissions/applyonline.html
Geophysics is the remote study of the Earth's interior through physical techniques – principally analysing seismic data, but also applying gravity, magnetic, electrical and electromagnetic methods.
It is a key element of oil, gas and mineral exploration, environmental and archaeological assessment, and engineering site investigation.
This course prepares you to embark on a career in resource exploration, environmental and engineering geophysics.
Running continuously for over 50 years it is very firmly established and has strong links to industry. It provides you with a broad range of practical skills, underpinned by a theoretical understanding that equips you to become a professional in your chosen field.
You will also undertake a four-month individual project, mostly in association with an external company or institute and often in their offices.
Demand for geophysicists continues to be high and this well-established course has an exceptionally good record of job placement for both UK/EU and overseas students.
You will study 8 taught modules and an individual project.
Taught modules cover a broad range of geophysical disciplines as applied to resource, environmental and engineering industries.
The individual project is the most challenging and exciting part of the course. It runs from May to September and tests your skills in applying the experiences acquired over the year to a specific problem.
Most projects have an association with an exploration company or other external organisation and you could work alongside geoscience professionals in the offices of industrial partners.
Projects typically include investigations of specific geological prospects, comparisons of novel seismic processing algorithms and integrated geophysical investigations from basin to quarry scale.
Be taught by leading academic geoscientists, with input from industry experts throughout the course.
Learn through field-based and practical-based (individual and group) training, while your lectures and seminars are supplemented by desk-based and workstation-based practicals and fieldwork.
The School's £23m building gives you access to world-class research, teaching and laboratory facilities.
As a Masters student you will have access to specific facilities as well as the general facilities available through the School and the University.
Ongoing investment in leading geophysical survey equipment means that you can effectively demonstrate and practise a range of techniques in the field including shooting seismic reflection surveys.
Equipment includes seismic, gravity, magnetics, GPR, resistivity/IP, EM, GPS/positioning. These datasets are subsequently used in your classroom/computer exercises to establish a practical link between field practice and data quality and interpretability.
A dedicated computer lab containing a suite of high-powered computers enhances your learning experience by providing you with access to a comprehensive range of industry-standard geophysical processing and interpretation software packages, e.g. MESA, SeisSpace/ProMAX®, KINGDOM, Petrel™, Geosoft and RokDoc.
You can use these for individual projects, or in workstation-based teaching sessions. The software will also facilitate your individual and team-based exercises designed to simulate industry practice, e.g. processing a reflection seismic line, assessing a hydrocarbon prospect for a drilling/ license bid.
You will be assessed on your written exams, coursework (both in-class and independently completed), project report writing and group presentations.
Strong links with industry reinforce this vocational Masters degree, helping you to develop a grounded perspective, as well as providing you with recruitment possibilities.
In addition to the industrial experience of many School staff and contributions from University of Leeds geoscience spin-out companies, you will have numerous contacts with industry representatives throughout the year.
We have many visits from energy, geophysical acquisition, processing and software companies, primarily to engage with you and recruit Masters students throughout their degree. These visits include recruitment information, technical showcases and case studies of integrated geoscience in practice, as well as opportunities for you to network with geoscience professionals.
You will have the opportunity to attend the EAGE (European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers) annual meeting in May/June. This provides you with a chance to find out about the latest technological developments and to meet industry experts, including potential employers.
Your summer project is mostly carried out either with collaborating companies or institutes. These projects are linked to current activities, representing actual problems for which a research or business outcome is sought. Some are field-based: with placements often overseas, while others result in journal publications or conference presentations. The projects finish with an Open Day where you will present your work to a range of industry visitors.
Demand for geophysicists has always been high. A Masters is generally considered an appropriate level to embark on a career in resource exploration and the course at Leeds has an exceptionally good record of job placement for both UK/EU and overseas students.
Many energy, and service-sector companies target the course directly for recruitment with numerous company visits through the year. Other opportunities arise from project placements, the EAGE, or the September Open Day of project seminars and presentations, with which the programme closes.
Most students join energy or minerals companies, or geophysical acquisition, processing, interpretation or software companies.
The only applied structural geology Masters in the UK. Providing you with advanced training in the practical application of structural geology, preparing you either for employment in the hydrocarbon or mining industries or for postgraduate study (PhD).
You’ll gain a skillset combining advanced structural techniques and interpreting seismic data, an understanding of structural systems in time and space, and an appreciation of both the geological and geophysical constraints of seismic interpretation and model building.
This will enable you to use a combination of structural and geophysical techniques to solve geological problems. As a capable seismic interpreter you’ll be able to contribute in an industry role from day one.
Our teaching is research led, with direct links to active applied research. You’ll be taught by a range of research and industry experts, as well as through industry-led workshops. Strong industry links are a feature of this course.
The following fieldwork to the UK and overseas is free, and forms an integral part of the course. It is directly linked to learning outcomes in the classroom.
Develop personal skills and a professionalism that will make you employable, as well as increasing your knowledge and technical ability.
You will take 9 months of taught classes, followed by approximately 3 months of independent research and dissertation writing in association with industry or research collaborators.
Carry-out free fieldwork, which forms an integral part of the course, and is directly linked to learning outcomes in the classroom. Besides local visits, there is a 6-day trip to South West England and a 12-day visit to the Spanish Pyrenees.
Some of the modules you will study are spread over 2 semesters, while most are short and intensive. They are devised to develop your advanced understanding of key topics (including large scale tectonics, basin evolution and reservoir scale deformation) and your technical ability through the use of industry-leading software.
Begin, by reviewing the fundamentals of structural geology, maps, and mathematics before moving onto the more advanced modules.
You’ll receive advanced training in structural geology and tectonics, in geological model construction, and the practical application of structural geology. And gain training in interpreting seismic data and the principals underlying data acquisition and processing.
You’ll also undertake professional and research level training in structural geology and basin evolution from regional, to basin, to reservoir/deposit scale.
In semester 2, you can choose from hydrocarbon or mining modules.
Teaching is varied, with some of your modules being very practical based e.g. fieldwork, presentations, learning new software. While other methods are tutorial or lecture based. You will also have the opportunity to work individually or as a group. Regardless of method, you will be supported by substantial online learning material.
The School of Earth and Environment’s £23m building gives you access to world-class research, teaching and laboratory facilities. As a Masters student, you will have access to a 3D visualisation suite, and to your own dedicated computer facilities, which runs industry standard software.
Industry standard software:
Given the variety of learning outcomes and teaching methods, you will be assessed differently between modules but generally assessed on a combination of presentations, practicals and/or formal examinations.
We have very strong links with industry, which you’ll benefit from throughout the year. This includes the provision of scholarships, data for dissertation projects, teaching of short courses and free licenses for industry standard software.