UCL Earth Sciences


GEOL0062 Geological and Geotechnical Hazards

Earth and atmospheric processes; Geological hazards; Earthquakes; Volcanic eruptions; Landslides; Tsunami.

This MSc provides an introduction to geohazards, research methods and field techniques, together with advanced courses in seismology, volcanology, hydrogeological hazards and meteorology.

Coordinator: Dr Alexander Steele

Module Details
TitleGeological and Geotechnical Hazards
UG CodeGEOL0062
CoordinatorDr Alexander Steele
Other ContributorsDr Simon Day, Professor Adrian Chandler, Professor Joanna Faure Walker plus guest lectures
Written Exam70%
Maths & Stats Content and Requirement 
Total Number of Hours of Student Work200 hours
Hours of Lectures/Seminars56 hours
Hours of Study144 hours
Hours of Tutorials0
Days of Fieldwork0
  • Seismic risk: causes of earthquakes, measuring earthquakes, importance of geological data, earthquake hazards, building vulnerability and performance, anti-seismic design, hazard and risk assessment, zoning, monitoring and forecasting, loss modelling, earthquake bonds, risk to critical facilities
  • Volcanic risk: hazard types and mechanisms, monitoring and forecasting, mitigation and management, insurance aspects, medical issues
  • Landslides: mechanisms and hazard, monitoring and forecasting, engineering aspects, management and mitigation
  • Tsunamis
  • Climate change and geological hazards
  • Dam and reservoir safety
  • Radioactive waste issues
  • The ecnomic hazard of future oil supply 


Provide an introduction to geological and geotechnical hazards, their impacts and consequences, and the Earth processes and mechanisms that underpin them.


This course will provide students with a sound grasp of the characteristics of the full range of geological and geotechnical hazards, the mechanisms and processes associated with their formation and occurrence, and their potential impact on society, economies, and insurance portfolios.