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Course summary

Environmental conditions on our planet are rapidly approaching a critical state and we are facing issues including global climate change, deoxygenation and acidification of our oceans, pollution in various environments, and environmental degradation. What is environmental geoscience? Environmental geoscience provides a holistic understanding of factors influencing environmental conditions on Earth. Environmental geoscientists play a vital role when assessing environmental challenges from local to global scales. This expertise is crucial within the framework of a sustainable environment. You will explore the conditions of Earth's past so you can protect its future, evaluate the risks related to critical environmental issues of global importance, and use your expertise to inform discussions on addressing acute environmental challenges. What will I learn? This degree prepares you for a wide range of careers within environmental geosciences and beyond. It carefully balances data science, programming, and computing skills with traditional field and laboratory skills, along with understanding the functioning of the Earth's environment. You will study a comprehensive range of topics related to the environment, and factors shaping environmental conditions on Earth. We will address physical, chemical and biological processes that control the world's oceans, atmosphere and ecosystems paying particular attention to processes that connect the various environmental settings. You will develop crucial skills needed to address important challenges, including:

  • how we predict and mitigate the effects of global climate change
  • what tools we can use to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • why our planet can sustain life
  • how we can reduce the effects of environmental pollution
  • whether changes in seawater properties will affect the ocean's role as a food source
  • how the increased CO2 concentration in seawaters affect life in the ocean
Many of your activities will simulate those that professionals perform in the real world. You will also learn sought-after computational analysis and quantitative skills that are in demand across a range of employment sectors, such as:
  • acquiring, analysing, assessing and presenting a wide range of data
  • computing skills including programming and use of specialist software
  • computer modelling
  • Geographical Information Systems (GIS).
  • using a range of specialist laboratory techniques
  • applying observational and sample collection techniques in the field
We have an extensive network of experts contributing to this degree. Together, we help ensure your degree has real-world relevance and make you highly sought after by employers. Our links provide you with valuable networking and potential employment opportunities and you will be able to meet and interact with professionals from various sectors. This degree offers you flexibility in your studies. You'll be able to build your degree around topics you are curious or passionate about. Open to a world of possibilities We are one of the largest and most successful groups of Earth and environmental scientists and geographers in the UK. Many are world experts in their field. Our staff incorporate the latest research in your teaching, and share discoveries with you.
  • We have pioneered research proving human-caused greenhouse gasses are warming our planet, helping to underpin the 2015 Paris Agreement.
  • We are working with major space agencies to monitor the environment using satellite data.
  • We are 16th in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2022.
  • We are in the world's top 50 and the UK's top 10 universities for natural sciences, environmental sciences, geology, geophysics, earth and marine sciences (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021).
  • Get advice and guidance with our dedicated Careers Service.

How to apply

This course has limited vacancies, and is no longer accepting applications from some students. See the list below for where you normally live, to check if you’re eligible to apply.






Northern Ireland

Republic of Ireland

Application codes

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Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Standard Qualification Requirements

Direct entry to second year is available. Detailed entry requirements, including typical offer levels, and information about other qualifications we accept, are available on the University of Edinburgh’s website. You’ll also find important information on how to apply. You must submit a fully completed UCAS application that includes details of the qualifications you are taking, including full predicted grades for qualifications not yet completed, your personal statement and your reference.

Please click the following link to find out more about qualification requirements for this course

Minimum Qualification Requirements

Please click the following link to find out more about minimum qualification requirements for this course

English language requirements

TestGradeAdditional details
IELTS (Academic)6.5Total 6.5 with at least 5.5 in each component.
TOEFL (iBT)92Total 92 with at least 20 in each component (including Home Edition). We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
Cambridge English AdvancedTotal 176 with at least 162 in each component.
Cambridge English ProficiencyTotal 176 with at least 162 in each component.
Trinity ISEISE II with distinctions in all four components.
PTE Academic62Total 62 with at least 54 in each component.

You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence. For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher: SQA National 5 at C; SQA Standard Grade at 3; GCSE at C or 4; Level 2 Certificate at C or IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry). We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests. English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, Trinity ISE, or PTE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.

Full details of our English language requirements can be found on our website:

Unistats information

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Student satisfaction
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
Go onto work and study

The student satisfaction data is from students surveyed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of student respondents and response rates can be important in interpreting the data – it is important to note your experience may be different from theirs. This data will be based on the subject area rather than the specific course. Read more about this data on the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Channel Islands £9250* Year 1
Republic of Ireland £9250* Year 1
Scotland £1820* Year 1
England £9250* Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250* Year 1
Wales £9250* Year 1
EU £32200* Year 1
International £32200* Year 1

*This is a provisional fee and subject to change.

Additional fee information

Scotland (to be confirmed) In 2022-23 the fee level set by the Scottish Government was £1,820. The 2023-24 fee rate is expected to be confirmed by the Scottish Government in early 2023. Students must apply to the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) for payment of their tuition fees. England/Wales/Nothern Ireland - The Rest of UK (RUK) rate is yet to be confirmed and was £9,250 for 2022 entry. For 2023 entry this may increase in line with inflation and will be subject to government limits. Full time international and EU students will pay a fixed annual fee rate for the duration of their programme. The amount for 2023 entry will be confirmed in Summer 2022.
Environmental Geoscience at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS