Two female students studying a rock



Please note the entry requirements stated for this course are indicative. The entry requirements for 2019 will be published by September 2018.

About this course

Entry year:
Course code:
Tariff points:
Geography and Environmental Management
Three years full-time; four years sandwich
Full-time; sandwich
Programme leader:
Dr Chris Spencer
Key fact:
Tailor this degree to your interests with options including geographic information systems (GIS) in geology, Quaternary geology, geotechnical hazards, fluvial and coastal geomorphology.

Page last updated 25 May 2018


Why study geology?

Geologists have a significant role to play in addressing many of the challenges facing society.

Industries dedicated to geotechnics, hazards and civil engineering are growing.

Studying geology gives you the skills and knowledge you need to advance in these fields. It also helps you develop analytical and communication skills, qualities sought after by employers across a wide range of industries.

Why UWE Bristol?

BSc(Hons) Geology will equip you with a solid understanding of the subject, with a focus on applying it across industries.

Study modules addressing hydrogeology, structural geography, geophysics, geotechnics and geological hazards. Develop valuable skills in laboratory and microscope work, field skills, geological mapping and computer-based spatial analysis, along with report writing and presentation skills.

Tailor the course to your interests with options includinggeographic information systems (GIS), applied sedimentology, Quaternary geology, and coastal and fluvial geomorphology.

Apply theoretical and field data in our well-equipped laboratories. Conduct assignments based on real-world issues and broaden your experience through local and international field trips.

Gain vital professional experience on a work placement and graduate ready to take your place in the industry.

Where can it take me?

You'll graduate ready for many of the typical areas of work for geologists.

Pursue a career in geotechnical engineering, engineering geology, environmental consultancy, hydrogeology, oil and gas industries, quarrying and mining. Alternatively, get involved in finance, education and research.



The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

Year one

You will study:

  • Dynamic Earth 
  • Earth Materials
  • Living Earth
  • Geological Field Skills
  • Geological Maps
  • Stratigraphy of the British Isles.

Year two

You will study:

  • Research in Geology
  • Hydrogeology 1
  • Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology
  • Geotechnics
  • Sedimentary Environments and Palaeoecology.

Plus one optional module from:

  • Understanding River Dynamics
  • Understanding Coastal Dynamics
  • Tectonic processes and landforms.

Placement year (if applicable)

If you study on the four year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work or study placement after year two.

Depending on which you choose, you'll either complete a placement learning or learning and development module.

See the Placements and Fees sections for more information.

Final year

You will study:

  • Final Year Project
  • Hydrogeology 2
  • Geotechnical Hazards
  • Structural Geology and Geophysics.

Or you will study (if a sandwich year has been completed):

  • Placement
  • Independent Project (Geology).

Plus one optional module from:

  • GIS and Remote Sensing Applications
  • Applied Sedimentology.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

Our lecturing staff achieve consistently high scores on the National Student Survey and provide a friendly environment for learning. They're active researchers or industrial consultants and stay aware of advances in the field.

Find out more about our department's approach to learning and teaching.

Learn through a blend of lectures, seminars, small group work, laboratory classes, fieldwork and workshops.

Attend presentations from visiting professionals to learn about industry challenges and decide which area to go into. Develop key analytical, communication and business skills that will help you succeed in the workplace.

Receive mentoring from more advanced students through our Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) scheme.

For more details, see our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Percentage of time spend in different learning activities, per year.

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study% check

Socialise and network

Meet students from Civil Engineering and Physical and Human Geography in our thriving Geography Society.


Modules are assessed through a combination of exams, essays, projects, presentations and field exercises.

You'll complete most coursework individually but there are some group assignments. Exams take place at the middle and end of each year.

Support is available if you have difficulties with numeracy, IT, literacy and study skills.

For more details, see our full glossary of assessment terms.

Percentage of time spend in different assessment methods, per year.

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment% check



Students who get work experience tend to graduate with better degrees. Experience also hones your skills, industry knowledge and professional network, making you a sought after graduate.

If you choose the four year (sandwich) course, you'll spend a year away from the University on a work or study placement after year two. Your second year studies will help prepare you for a placement.

Past students in the department have had placements involving recycling in Chile, ecological management in Australia and transport management in the UK. 

You'll get help to find your placement and support throughout from department staff and our award-winning careers service.


Field trips are an important part of this course and include day and residential visits.

Year one

Two week-long residential fieldtrips within the UK, studying geological skills and geological mapping. Various other day trips throughout the year.

Year two

Short trips will improve your field and research skills with a focus on geological mapping.

Two week-long fieldtrips, one in the UK and one international, for developing geological mapping and research skills.

Final year

Various day trips and short residential fieldtrips trying out applied geological skills as practiced in the world of work.

You'll study a range of environmental, social and economic issues at the expedition destination.

Study facilities

Learn in modern, well-equipped facilities, including our physical geography laboratories.

Investigate historic environments, test water quality and soil mechanics in our earth science and environmental change labs.

Study and collaborate on group assignments in our dedicated Project Room.

Conduct spatial enquiry and analyse data using industry-standard geographic information system (GIS) and statistical software in our computer labs.

This mix of traditional and highly creative learning environments enables you to learn essential knowledge and real-world skills, standing you in good stead for your professional career.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.


Careers / Further study

Studying geology leads to a range of career options. As a graduate, you could go into engineering geology, environmental consultancy, hydrogeology, oil and gas industries or quarrying and mining.

You may choose to use your skills and knowledge in logistics, business management or finance.

You could also teach geography or geology at secondary school level; this course is a good foundation for a postgraduate teaching qualification. 

Get inspired

Our award-winning careers service will develop your employment potential through career coaching and find you graduate jobs, placements and global opportunities.

We can also help find local volunteering and community opportunities, provide support for entrepreneurial activity and get you access to employer events.

Visit our employability pages to learn more about careers, employers and what our students are doing six months after graduating.


Supplementary fee information

Your overall entitlement to funding is based on how long the course is that you're registered on. Standard funding is allocated based on the standard number of years that your course lasts, plus one additional year.

You'll apply for funding each year that you study and Student Finance will take into account how long the course is in each year that you apply. So if you register for the four year course and then transfer to the three year course, the number of years you can apply for funding will change. Student Finance will reassess your funding based on how many years you have been in study, not just those years for which you received student finance.

Always seek advice before taking any action that may have implications for your funding.

Learn more about funding.

Additional costs

Additional costs are for items you could need during your studies that aren't covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, textbooks, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Learn more about costs.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 112
  • GCSE: For all applicants, Grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics, or equivalent. Please note the University does not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Numeracy and Literacy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • A-level subjects: You must have a minimum of two A-Levels, including one of the following: Geology; Biology; Chemistry; Environmental Science; Geography; Maths; Physics. Points from General Studies and AS-Level subjects (not taken onto full A-Level) can be included towards overall tariff.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: One of the following: Aeronautical Engineering; Applied Science; Construction and the Built Environment; Countryside Management; Electrical Electronic Engineering; Engineering; Environmental Sustainability; Information Technology; Manufacturing Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; or Pharmaceutical Science.
  • Access: Achievement of the Access to HE Diploma; to include 30 Level 3 credits at merit including Science and Maths.
  • Baccalaureate IB: To include one of the following at Higher level: Biology; Chemistry; Computer Science; Geography; Mathematics; Physics.

Entry requirements

We welcome applications from students without the conventional entrance requirements but who do have substantial relevant work or other experience and whose motivation and skills would enable success on the course.

Read more about undergraduate entry requirements.

UWE Bristol's International College

If you are an international student and do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course, you can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

How to apply

Read more about undergraduate applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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