Environmental Earth Science

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You are viewing this course for September start 2024

The BSc in Environmental Earth Science at Aberystwyth University will provide you with a detailed insight into Geological and Environmental Earth Science topics. The Department of Geography & Earth Sciences is one of the most established and experienced departments of its kind.

You will study the core skills in geology and apply these to a wide range of environmental problems including climate change, living with geohazards, and the energy transition. You will study how the Earth works, the processes that shape its surface, and how our planet has changed over geological time. You will be taught field and laboratory skills that can be applied to solving some of the big issues facing our society, such as sustainable resource extraction and environmental pollution and remediation. This degree will train you to be a part of the solution to the planet’s most significant challenges.

Course Overview

Why study Environmental Earth Science at Aberystwyth University?

  • Aberystwyth University offers you the unique opportunity to study Environmental Earth Science in one of the most picturesque locations in Europe. Set on the coast of Cardigan Bay and surrounded by a great diversity of beautiful environments, including marine, moorland, mountain and grassland, our department is uniquely placed to make the most of the stunning landscapes that surround it, providing you with a fabulous variety of fieldwork and recreational opportunities.  
  • You will explore and receive a detailed insight into geological and environmental Earth science topics from leading researchers in these fields.
  • You will have field courses in each of the three years of your degree, enabling you to apply the knowledge you have developed in the classroom to real-world examples.
  • This course will help you develop a deeper understanding of climate change with a focus on the scientific knowledge underpinning it, and its context in the history of the planet.
  • You will understand the impacts of volcanic eruptions on people and the environment and learn about future adaptations to environmental and anthropogenic hazards and issues.
  • Your tutors and lecturers will provide training in using remote sensing and GIS tools, and their professional application. 
  • You will develop a solid understanding of contemporary environmental issues such as pollution and waste disposal and be trained in the cutting-edge laboratory skills used to monitor and remediate environmental contamination.
  • Our world-class facilities are recognised by NERC (Natural Environment Research Council).
  • You can choose to study some of your degree through the medium of Welsh. Check out the module tab for more information. 
Our Staff

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.


Module Name Module Code Credit Value
An introduction to Earth Materials GS12520 20
Earth Surface Environments GS10520 20
Fieldwork Skills GS11320 20
How to Build a Planet * GS11520 20
Life on Earth GS10720 20
Researching the World: data collection and analysis * GS13020 20

* Also available partially or entirely through the medium of Welsh


What can I do with a degree in Environmental Earth Sciences?

Our graduates have, for example, found employment in environmental consultancy, geotechnical engineering, civil service, technology, and in geological and environmental surveys amongst many other things.

Employability is embedded within all courses provided by us. Our degrees provide a solid foundation for a vast array of careers across a range of environmental sectors and beyond. In a rapidly shifting global economy, our graduates are adaptable and able to draw on a range of transferable skills, ensuring that they are always in demand.

The skill sets include:

  • practical laboratory and fieldwork skills
  • enhanced mathematical and computational skills
  • effective problem solving and creative thinking skills
  • ability to work across a range of spatial and temporal scales
  • information technology skills
  • the ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • time-management, organisational skills
  • communication skills, both written and oral
  • self-motivation and self-reliance
  • ability to work across multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary topics.

What work experience opportunities exist whilst studying? 

If you're interested in taking part in a Year in Industry, then you may be interested in our sister course Environmental Earth Science with Integrated Year in Industry (F643). The syllabus is identical to this course (F640), however you undertake a work placement in between your second and final year of studying. 

International Exchange Opportunities

If you would like to study abroad with one of our partner Universities within Europe and the rest of the world, then the course Environmental Earth Science with integrated year studying abroad may appeal to you (F642). This course is identical to F640, however you will study abroad in between your second and final year.

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

The breakdown below will provide you with an illustration of what you may study during the three-year degree scheme.

In your first year you will be introduced to:

  • primary and secondary environments: solid earth and earth surface processes
  • past and present environmental change
  • potential for predicting future changes in our climate and environment
  • field and laboratory skills spanning geology, geography and environmental science.

In your second year you will discover:

  • geochemistry
  • the methods of geological and chemical analysis of natural materials
  • global challenges such as Earth resources and environmental impacts
  • quantitative and qualitative data sets.

In your third year you will undertake:

  • an independent research project or dissertation
  • optional modules including: Environmental Biogeochemistry and Health, Earth Observation, Applied Environmental Management, and Volcanic Activity, among many others.

How will I be taught?

Our courses are taught through lectures, seminars, workshops, laboratory and computer practical classes, small group tutorials, field courses and individual supervision of project work.

How will I be assessed?

We assess our students through a different range of methods. Some modules are assessed in part through traditional exams, but most have elements of coursework. We also have some modules that may require you to produce practical reports, oral presentations, the design of web pages, production of short films, or contribution to online discussion forums. Some modules, notably the tutorials and field courses, are assessed entirely through coursework. 

Student Testimonials

Environmental Earth Science offers a unique look at the environmental geology of the universe, with topics ranging from planetary formation to hydrochemistry to lab techniques. You can be sure of never being bored! Pendle Hill

Environmental Earth Science is a course that gives you all that you need to have a great time at university. The lectures are amazing, the lecturers are awesome and the work is engaging. From the first day you are made to feel that you are valued as a student and as an Earth Scientist. The work, while hard, is always interesting and you get the chance to meet some amazing people along the way. The course fully stands up to the expectations I had when I applied. Sebastian Charles Taylor

I chose to study Environmental Earth Science at Aberystwyth University because of the multidisciplinary approach of this degree, which incorporates aspects of geography, geology, geochemistry and environmental science. I wanted to focus more on the environmental aspects of resource exploitation and other human activities rather than just understanding the fundamentals of geology. I love being outside and it was important to me to do a practical degree where I could learn more about adapting to reduce our environmental impact. Catherine Fletcher

Great facilities, great lecturers, great course all round! Ben Auton

Typical Entry Requirements

UCAS Tariff 120 - 96

A Levels BBB-CCC to include a science subject

GCSE requirements (minimum grade C/4):
English or Welsh and Mathematics

BTEC National Diploma:
DDM-MMM with a specified subject

International Baccalaureate:
30-26 with 5 points in a science subject at Higher Level

European Baccalaureate:
75%-65% overall with 7 in a science subject

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.

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