You are viewing this course for September start 2024
Taught by research-led staff, in a supportive learning environment, you will develop an understanding of computing including: operating systems, telecommunications, database management, HCI, Agile methodologies and object orientation - alongside the physical processes shaping the earth, from sea to rivers, glaciers to volcanoes, and landscapes from the arid to the Arctic.
You will be given the option to travel on an International Field Trip in your second year of study. The combination of these two disciplines will equip you with a unique skill-set to solve complex problems, in particular in Geoinformatics.
This BSc joint honours degree programme in Computer Science and Physical Geography offers a stimulating combination of two highly complementary scientific and technological disciplines, balancing theoretical study alongside practical application.
Why study Computer Science and Physical Geography at Aberystwyth?
Our computer science courses are accredited by the British Computer Society (BCS) on behalf of the Engineering Council, which means that they meet industry standards and requirements, giving you a head start when you enter the competitive jobs market.
The Department of Computer Science is also designated a Centre of Excellence by the Welsh Assembly Government’s Department of Enterprise, Innovation and Networks. In the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (2014), 100% of research impact assessed was rated as being world-leading or internationally excellent.
Many of our Computer Science staff are working at the frontiers of their disciplines and have significant experience in industry, often working in co-operation with major international companies, so you can confident that you will be learning the very latest concepts and working with cutting-edge technologies.
As you would expect from a major research department, the facilities available to you are excellent. As well as teaching laboratories equipped with high-performance multimedia workstations supported by powerful central servers and a Digital Systems laboratory, the Department of Computer Science has an extensive range of equipment used primarily for research, which is available to final year students who choose to undertake projects in these research areas. These include industrial robots, experimental mobile robots, a number of vision and motion tracking systems and many pieces of specialist software such as virtual reality environments.
The Department of Geography and Earth Sciences at Aberystwyth is one of the oldest and most well-respected departments of its kind in Britain. As one of the largest and most dynamic Geography communities in the UK, we are able to offer you an extremely broad range of geographical specialisms, ranging from concerns over climate change, the environmental impact of volcanic eruptions, and current trends in geohazards to urban sustainability, regional development and the future of the nation state, amongst others.
Many of our lecturers are active researchers working at the cutting edge of their disciplines, and you will benefit from being taught the latest geographical theories and techniques. In the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (2014) 78% of research submitted by the Department was rated as being world-leading or internationally excellent.
The teaching and research laboratories are equipped with an impressive array of analytical equipment such as mass spectrometers and core scanners, and an extensive range of equipment is available for fieldwork, such as surveying, remote sensing, and water and sediment sampling. Other resources include a digital map library, access to census data, and recorders and transcribers for social survey work. Our computer provision is second to none, with superb web-based support available.
Almost all of the Department of Computer Science lecturers are qualified to PhD level, and those who are not have considerable research or industrial experience. All new lecturers are required to obtain the PGCTHE, and hence are Senior Fellows or Fellows of the Higher Education Academy. The department also employs a number of part time demonstrators and tutors and some student demonstrators, who are selected from our undergraduate and postgraduate students. Research fellows and research assistants (mostly PhD qualified) may also be involved in delivering occasional teaching when it is appropriate.
Department of Geography and Earth Science: lecturers are all qualified to PhD level or working towards a PhD.
Modules September start - 2024
Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.
|Earth Surface Environments
|How to Build a Planet *
|Living in a Dangerous World
|Introduction to Programming *
|Programming Using an Object-Oriented Language *
|Fundamentals of Web Development
|Problems and Solutions
|Physical Geography and Environmental Science Research Design and Fieldwork Skills
|Software Engineering *
|Catchment Systems *
|Chemical Analysis of Natural Materials
|Geographical Information Systems
|Physical Analysis of Natural Materials
|Quantitative Data Analysis
|Reconstructing Past Environments
|The Frozen Planet
|Algorithm Design and Data Structures
|Geography Joint Honours/Major Project *
|Minor Project *
|Applied Environmental Management
|Glaciers and Ice Sheets
|Monitoring our Planet's Health from Space
|People, Climate and Environment: a Palaeoenvironmental Perspective
|Volcanic Activity: Hazards and Environmental Change
* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh
A degree in Computer Science and Physical Geography will be particularly valuable in employment situations that are in the area of geoinformatics. The Computer Science component will prepare you for a variety of careers in software design, communications and networking, computer applications, web development, IT consultancy and management, systems analysis and development, computer sales and marketing. The Physical Geography component will prepare you for a variety of careers in cartography, environmental consulting, surveying, geographical information systems, town planning and development.
Studying for a degree in Computer Science and Physical Geography will equip you with a range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. These include:
- research and data analysis skills
- enhanced mathematical and computational skills
- effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills
- facility to deal with abstract concepts
- thorough grounding in information technology skills
- the ability to work independently
- time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines
- the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form
- self-motivation and self-reliance
- team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement.
Year in Employment scheme (YES)
The University operates a Year in Employment Scheme (YES), which offers you a fantastic opportunity to take a year out between your second and third year to work in an organisation in the UK or overseas. YES provides a very rewarding and worthwhile experience, both personally and professionally, and can help you to stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market. The University’s Career Service will help you to explore your options and secure a suitable work placement.
GO Wales is administered by the University’s Career Service, working with local businesses to create paid work placements of a few weeks’ duration for students. It gives you the opportunity to gain valuable work experience which will enhance your CV and make you more attractive to potential employers.
Personal Development Plan
You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.
Teaching & Learning
A dual focus on teaching and research creates a vibrant, welcoming environment in which to study. Teaching is delivered through lectures and practical studies, supplemented by smaller tutorials, and assessment is made through both coursework and examination.
The staff are friendly and approachable, and committed to equipping you with the skills needed for success during and after your studies.
Your personal tutor
Throughout your time in Aberystwyth, you will have the chance to meet regularly with a personal tutor, who can provide assistance with any difficulties you might have with the degree or with university life.
Typical Entry Requirements
UCAS Tariff 120 - 96
A Levels BBB
GCSE requirements (minimum grade C/4):
English or Welsh and Mathematics
BTEC National Diploma:
DDM - MMM
English Language Requirements:
See our Undergraduate English Language Requirements for this course. Pre-sessional English Programmes are also available for students who do not meet our English Language Requirements.
Country Specific Entry Requirements:
International students whose qualification is not listed on this page, can check our Country Specific Entry Requirements for further information.
The University welcomes undergraduate applications from students studying the Access to Higher Education Diploma or T-level qualifications, provided that relevant subject content and learning outcomes are met. We are not able to accept Access to Higher Education Diplomas or T-levels as a general qualification for every undergraduate degree course.
Our inclusive admissions policy values breadth as well as depth of study. Applicants are selected on their own individual merits and offers can vary. If you would like to check the eligibility of your qualifications before submitting an application, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for advice and guidance.