Undergraduate

BSc Earth and Environmental Science

From climate change to clean water, geohazards to green energy: sustainability is at the core of this degree. And at Hull, you get a world of opportunities to learn first-hand on field trips. So by the time you graduate, you’ll be ready to tackle Earth’s biggest challenges.

Key information

Study mode

Full-time

Course length

3 years

Typical offer

120 points

A Level grades: BBB

UCAS code

F640

Choose an option

Start date

Course overview

Understanding how the Earth works, the forces that shape it and how we can use its resources in a sustainable way is crucial to the future of our planet.

From day one, you’ll be trained to become a sustainably-minded geoscientist. Using your passion to drive an environmentally-sensitive world, we'll empower you to join us in helping to build a fairer, sustainable, carbon neutral future.

Not only that - you'll develop skills in observation and analysis in order to understand Earth and environmental processes across a range of timescales, both locally and globally. 

Learning by doing is an important part of the course, whether you’re getting your hands dirty in the labs or treading the soil in Spain. And the best bit is, all your core field trip costs are included in your tuition fees.

Our staff are at the forefront of research in their field, with solid connections to policy makers and industries that can drive real change.

As we speak, they’re out studying the latest solutions to climate change, geological hazards, mass extinctions and volcanism. And they bring all this knowledge back to you through research-led teaching.

Once you graduate, you’ll be qualified to pursue geological careers in environmental consulting, remediation, renewable energies, exploration geology, surveying and engineering.

Or you can put the transferable practical, research and numerical skills you’ll develop to good use in a wholly different way: teaching, finance, data analysis, and more.

How will you help to protect the Earth? Start your training today.

Learn more about your course in our subject sessions

On-demand session

Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

geography-geology-environmental-science-subject-session

Six reasons to study Earth Sciences at Hull

  1. Study global issues such as sustainability, climate change and pollution
  2. Hands-on field trips to places like Spain or Scotland, with no extra cost for core trips
  3. Study abroad, placement year and foundation year options
  4. Learn from experts who are leading researchers in their topics
  5. Help us to build a fairer, sustainable, carbon neutral future
  6. Ranked top 10 for Graduate Prospects †

What you'll study

The course consists of 120 credits per year. Most modules are 20 credits, meaning you’ll study six modules each year. Some longer modules, such as a dissertation, are worth more (e.g. 40 credits). In these cases, you’ll study fewer modules - but the number of credits will always add up to 120.

First year modules

  • Compulsory

    Planet Earth

    A look at the planet we live on and its constituent systems and processes: oceans, atmosphere, biosphere and tectonics.

    Exploring Worlds Around Us

    You’ll find out about many different ways of studying the world around us by exploring a specific field trip location.

    Rocks, Minerals and Fossils

    Learn how Earth works by getting hands on with rocks, minerals and fossils in the lab and in the great outdoors in spectacular geological locations. By the end of the module you will be able to explain the origins of rocks, minerals and fossils and interpret the various geological environments that they represent, on ancient Earth’s surface and in its interior.

    Interpreting Environments

    This module introduces you to some key tools we use to interpret the environments around us, such as computer mapping and data analysis. 

    Introduction to Environmental Science

    Discover the fundamental principles of environmental systems and the interconnectedness of humankind with the environment.

    Earth in 3D

    How does Earth actually work under your feet? Find out what rocks do inside the Earth’s, and why that is important for a whole range of industries. Learn how to analyse and interpret subsurface features in order to understand how Earth works in 3D.

Second year modules

  • Core

    Geoscience Field Skills

    This module will enable you to use learning by doing and research-based learning in the laboratory and in a spectacular geological field location in order to develop your skills for independent work in your dissertations. You will develop understanding of how to analyse a wide range of unfamiliar rocks and features and gain confidence in deploying your own skills in an area of major geological activity and significance.

    Geographical Information Systems

    Develop your understanding of the principles and processes behind GIS, the nature and use of spatial data and the application of GIS on this practical module.

    Field Study (Environmental Science)

    Seeing features from this and previous modules come to life. You will learn how to test theories of landform development yourself with new data collection techniques you will explore in groups in a setting carefully selected for its physical geographic features.

    Global Challenge: Living in the Anthropocene

    You'll consider profound questions about the scale of the impact of human activities on our planet and the prospects for sustainable global environmental stewardship. 

    Frontiers in Environmental Science

    ​Gain practical experience of working in small groups to design and carry out research investigations, to prepare you for designing and planning your dissertation project. 

  • Optional

    Geohazards

    Explore what constitutes a geohazard, and the specifics of a range of natural hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, flooding, and climate-related hazards.​

    Sustainable Futures

    Study key issues relating to the concept of sustainability and attempts to create more sustainable ways of living. 

    Environmental Change

    Investigate how the environment, especially the climate, changes in the past, present and future through a combination of lectures and practical activities. 

Year abroad modules

You spend Year 3 studying abroad at a partner university of your choice. During this year, you will follow a programme of study that will be agreed between yourself and the department prior to your departure. You will take all assessments set by the host university while you are overseas, for which marks will be awarded and a final transcript released.

Placement year modules

Your placement is your opportunity to get some real-world work experience under your belt.

Just like in the real world, you’ll be responsible for finding and applying for opportunities, with the added benefit of help and support from university services.

The Centre for Professional Success is a dedicated team within the faculty who provide tailored support to students who are seeking a placement or internship. You'll also benefit from the University's Careers and Employability service based in Student Central.

Final year modules

  • Core

    Earth and Environmental Science Dissertation

    Make an in-depth study of a topic of your choosing. With the support of a supervisor familiar with the topic, you will design and carry out a piece of original research in a topic key to the broad field of Earth and Environmental Science. Your project can include fieldwork in spectacular locations of outstanding geological or environmental significance, and laboratory work that will enable you to develop key skills for the discipline.

    Advanced Field Study

    You’ll research first-hand the challenges of harnessing human and physical resources in a developing country to meet the needs for sustainable development.

  • Optional

    Sustainable Earth Resources

    Develop your understanding of both traditional aspects of Earth’s resources (economic minerals and elements plus hydrocarbon resources) and exciting new frontiers that place Earth and Environmental Science at the heart of the world’s Energy Transition. You will use real-world techniques in the laboratory and in the field to gain experiences geared towards employment in the Earth Resources sector and associated industries such as remediation.

    Advanced GIS

    Develop your geospatial analysis and modelling skills with GIS. This will provide you with key expertise when you enter the GIS job market.

    Teaching Project

    If you think you might like to be a teacher, this is just the module for you! With guidance from the University, you will have the chance to experience school from a teacher perspective. This module will help you get the experience needed to apply for a teacher training course to follow on from your degree.

    Adapting to Climate Change

    Investigate climate change, its impact on us and our adaptions to it, as well as future climate change scenarios. This module uses a combination of lectures, PC practicals and seminars.

    Environmental Pollution

    Evaluate the different types of pollutants impacting the land, atmosphere, freshwater and marine system. Learn how we assess the risks and develop remediation strategies to minimise the effect.  

    Rivers and Management

    A practical look at how we manage rivers, both in terms of the water they carry and their influence of a changing landscape.

    Volcanoes and their Hazards

    Explore the key themes and current research-led understanding of volcanological processes and hazards, volcanic monitoring and management of volcanic crises around the world.

    Environmental Impact Assessment and Monitoring

    Examine the need for and context of field-based environmental monitoring strategies for both habitats and species. By taking part in fieldwork and research, you'll monitor a range of species, habitats and environmental factors. Choose from mammals, birds, herpetofauna, insects, terrestrial vegetation, freshwater monitoring and monitoring of marine communities.

    Professional Consultancy Project

    Carry out an independent research project with an organisation as you gain workplace experience.  If you like the idea of working as a consultant, this would be an ideal opportunity, but you will also gain an insider view of organisation hosting you. The module provides an opportunity to hone your skills at presenting yourself to gain a placement, negotiating a project topic, carrying out and writing up research.

All modules are subject to availability and this list may change at any time.

How you'll study

Throughout your degree, you’re expected to study for 1,200 hours per year. That’s based on 200 hours per 20 credit module. And it includes scheduled hours, time spent on placement and independent study. How this time’s divided among each of these varies each year and depends on the course and modules you study.

Overall workload

If you’re enrolled on a full-time programme of study, you’ll be expected to complete about 40 hours of academic work each week.

How you’ll learn

Indicative assessment proportions

8%
92%
  • Examination

    Written assessment typically includes exams and multiple choice tests.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Overall workload

If you’re enrolled on a full-time programme of study, you’ll be expected to complete about 40 hours of academic work each week.

How you’ll learn

Indicative assessment proportions

7%
93%
  • Practical

    Practical is an assessment of your skills and competencies. This could include presentations, school experience, work experience or laboratory work.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Overall workload

If you’re enrolled on a full-time programme of study, you’ll be expected to complete about 40 hours of academic work each week.

How you’ll learn

Indicative assessment proportions

100%
  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Overall workload

If you’re enrolled on a full-time programme of study, you’ll be expected to complete about 40 hours of academic work each week.

How you’ll learn

Indicative assessment proportions

Overall workload

If you’re enrolled on a full-time programme of study, you’ll be expected to complete about 40 hours of academic work each week.

How you’ll learn

Indicative assessment proportions

12%
88%
  • Practical

    Practical is an assessment of your skills and competencies. This could include presentations, school experience, work experience or laboratory work.

  • Coursework

    Coursework typically includes essays, written assignments, dissertations, research projects or producing a portfolio of your work.

Almeria field trip
Elliott, Te’Jay and Tino Geology

Our field trip to Almeria in Spain

Watch video

Entry requirements

Typical offer

  • A level grades BBB

  • BTEC grades DDM

  • Points required 120

Work out your estimated points

Don't meet our requirements?

We offer a Foundation Year to boost your skills and knowledge – it’s a great way to make your way into higher education.

Switch to the foundation year

Points can be from any qualifications on the UCAS tariff, but must include at least 80 points from

  • A levels
  • BTEC Subsidiary Diploma, Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma, Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • CACHE Diploma or Extended Diploma
  • Irish Leaving Certificate
  • Scottish Highers
  • Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma
  • or a combination of appropriate Level 3 qualifications
  • Applicants should have one of the following A levels at Grade C or above: Geography, Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Environmental Science, Maths or Physics (or have merit or above from BTEC in Applied Science). Applicants taking the reformed A-level must also Pass the practical element. Please note the reformed subjects only apply to Biology, Chemistry and Physics.

Alternative qualifications

  • IB Diploma: 30 points including 5 in one HL Science subject (Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Maths or Physics.)
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass Access to HE Diploma in a suitable science based programme with 23 credits at merit.

Worried you don’t quite meet our entry requirements?

We consider experience and qualifications from the UK and worldwide which may not exactly match the combinations above.

But it’s not just about the grades – we’ll look at your whole application. We want to know what makes you tick, and about your previous experience, so make sure that you complete your personal statement.

If you have any questions, our admissions team will be happy to help.

Don't meet our requirements?

We offer a Foundation Year to boost your skills and knowledge – it’s a great way to make your way into higher education.

Switch to the foundation year

If you require a student visa to study or if your first language is not English you will be required to provide acceptable evidence of your English language proficiency level.

This course requires academic IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in each skill. See other English language proficiency qualifications accepted by this University.

If your English currently does not reach the University's required standard for this programme, you may be interested in one of our English language courses.

Visit your country page to find out more about our entry requirements.

Fees and funding

UK

£9,250 per year*

EU/International

£18,300 per year

International applicants may need to pay a tuition fee deposit before the start of the course. Visit our tuition fee deposit page for more information.

*The amount you pay may increase each year, in line with inflation - but capped to the Retail Price Index (RPI).

UK students can take out a tuition fee loan to cover the cost of their course and a maintenance loan of up to £9,706 to cover living costs.

Substantial discounts are available for International students.  

More information on fees can be found in the Money section of our website.

Your tuition fees will cover most costs associated with your programme (including registration, tuition, supervision, assessment and examination).

There are some extra costs that you might have to pay, or choose to pay, depending on your programme of study and the decisions you make. The list below has some examples, and any extra costs will vary.

  • Books (you’ll have access to books from your module reading lists in the library, but you may want to buy your own copies)
  • Optional field trips
  • Study abroad (including travel costs, accommodation, visas, immunisation)
  • Placement costs (including travel costs and accommodation)
  • Student visas (international students)
  • Laptop (you’ll have access to laptops and PC’s on campus, but you may want to buy your own)
  • Printing and photocopying
  • Professional-body membership
  • Graduation (gown hire and photography)

Remember, you’ll still need to take into account your living costs. This could include accommodation, travel and food – to name just a few. 

An affordable city for students

From bills, to meals, to pints – you’ll find that your money goes a lot further in Hull.

Your future prospects

  • Earth/environmental scientist
  • Geoscientist
  • Scientific officer
  • Engineering geologist
  • Contaminated land specialist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Renewable energy expert
  • Conservationist

Studying this degree with us will make you highly employable, both in the earth and environment sector and in the wider employment market - not only will you gain subject-specific knowledge and skills in areas like climate change, environmental remediation and GIS, but you’ll also develop a wide range of general skills, such as working in a team and data analysis.

We will help you to develop your employability skills through helping you with your CVs, bringing in recent graduates to talk to you about the world of work, and giving you the opportunity to get work experience in a third year module or with an entire year in industry.

Open Day at University of Hull

Ready to apply?

You can apply for this course through UCAS. As well as providing your academic qualifications, you’ll be able to showcase your skills, qualities and passion for the subject.

APPLY NOW VIA UCAS HOW TO APPLY
Not ready to apply?

Visit our Open Day

Book a place

This. Is. Hull.

A place where we stand up to kings, do deals with the world and take a wrecking ball to the slave trade. A place where culture stands out and the phone boxes are a different colour. A place where we're free-thinking, independent and proud of it.

† (Joint 7th) The Guardian University Rankings 2023