Menu

Taught degree

Geophysical Hazards MSc

This MSc provides 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.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 1 year
  • Part-time: 2 years

Tuition Fees (2015/16)

UK/EU:
£8,755 (FT) £4,375 (PT)
Overseas:
£22,350 (FT) £11,125 (PT)

Application deadlines

All applicants:
1 July 2015

Entry Requirements

Normally a minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants whose qualifications are of a lower standard may be admitted if evidence of an adequate academic background and appropriate field experience can be shown.

English language requirement: Standard

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

International equivalencies

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

The programme introduces the spectrum and impact of geophysical hazards, before focusing on quantitative models for hazard forecasting and assessment. Selected case studies illustrate how the 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).

An exit-level Postgraduate Diploma is offered (120 credits).

Core Modules

  • Meteorological, Climate and Hydrogeological Hazard
  • Earthquake Seismology and Earthquake Hazard
  • Physical Volcanology and Volcanic Hazard
  • Meteorological Hazards
  • Research Methods
  • Geological and Geotechnical Hazards

Options

  • There are no optional modules for this programme.

Dissertation/report

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.

Funding

UCL offers a selection of scholarships for supporting postgraduate studies.

Brown Family Bursary

Value:
£15,000
Duration:
1 year
Eligibility:
Prospective full-time Master's students within the Faculties of the Built Environment, Engineering Science and Mathematical & Physical Sciences.

Dennis Curry Scholarship in Micropalaeontology

Value:
£4,000
Duration:
1 year
Eligibility:
For prospective UK-resident entrants taking the Micropalaeontology route through the MSc in Geosciences, and who are not already receiving full financial support (fees and living costs) from other sources.

More scholarships are listed on the scholarships website

Careers

The MSc programme 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. About one-third of previous graduates have continued with further research (PhDs), one-third have entered the insurance industry, and one-third have pursued careers in other fields.

Top career destinations for this degree

  • Brit Insurance, Catastrophe Modeller, 2011,
  • Geophysical Institute, Volcao Seismologist, 2011,
  • ERT Search and Rescue, Commander of UK Emergency Response Team, 2011,
  • Risk Management Solutions, Risk Assessor, 2009,
  • ERM, Project Co-ordinator, 2009,

Employability

From the MSc in Geophysical Hazards, 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 developed careers in a wide range of sectors, from Non-Government Organisations, through teaching, to the fields of Emergency Planning and Environmental Management.

Why study this degree at UCL?

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 the Aon Benfield UCL Hazard Centre, Europe's leading multi-disciplinary 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 southwestern Spain.

Student / staff ratios › 37 staff › 40 taught students › 53 research students

Department: Earth Sciences

Degree reviews

Student review

"I have found the staff extremely supportive and they have provided opportunities that I would not have received elsewhere. This has particularly been the case in choosing topics for the independent research project for which we were encouraged to think about our own research interests and supported to find ways to make the projects viable."

Lara Smale

Subject: Geophysical Hazards MSc

Application and next steps

Applications

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

The programme will be particularly attractive to those seeking or advancing a career in hazard or risk science - including hazard and risk management, environmental monitoring, emergency planning, and catastrophe-related finance - and to academics and professionals considering a career move into the hazard and risk science field.

Application deadlines

All applicants
2015-07-01

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Geophysical Hazards at graduate level
  • why you want to study Geophysical Hazards at UCL
  • what particularly attracts you to Geophysical Hazards programme
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree; for example, are you interested in pursuing a career in research, or in applying your knowledge to the commercial or humanitarian sectors?
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

Contact Information

UCL+

  • Register interest in your chosen subjects
  • Receive notice of graduate open days, events and more
Register now

Life at UCL

At UCL we're proud of our pioneering history, our distinguished present and our exciting future. UCL is a great place to be a student.

  • World-leading reputation and connections
  • We attract the best and brightest staff and students
  • Significant funding
Find out more