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Course summary

If you have a curiosity about how our planet works, a love of the outdoors, and an aptitude for science, then geophysics and geology may be for you. Through geophysics and geology, you can study our planet's fascinating history to predict and protect its future. You will learn:

  • how old the Earth is and how it was formed
  • how our planet has changed over time
  • about the processes that shape our planet and how that affects the life upon it
  • about how these processes interact within the Earth system
  • how understanding the past can help us interpret the current Earth and make future projections
Join us as we explore our magnificent planet, from its hot core through to its crust and oceans, atmosphere and beyond. What will I learn? The Geophysics and Geology programme will develop and combine your understanding of:
  • the inner workings of planet Earth, its composition and structure
  • the origin of our world and how it has evolved through time
  • physical processes such as gravity, seismology and magnetism
Many people confuse geology and geophysics - this degree offers you the best of both subjects. Both geologists and geophysicists are geoscientists who study the Earth and how it works. For example, they both explore the mechanisms behind plate tectonics. Geologists focus on the materialistic surface of the Earth and its evolution. Geophysicists are mainly concerned about the physical processes of the Earth, such as:
  • its internal composition
  • the planet's atmosphere
  • magnetic, gravitational and electrical forces
By studying both approaches, you will gain deeper insights into each subject. It is this integrated understanding that underpins research on global change and some of the world's most pressing environmental challenges. You will have access to a range of cutting-edge research facilities throughout your studies. In addition, programme academics will incorporate the latest research in the teaching you receive, and share their discoveries with you. As a student in geology and geophysics, you will have the opportunity to learn about:
  • all aspects of the Earth, from its formation to the evolution of life
  • the present-day planetary surface and environmental processes
  • the impact of global climate change on our world
You will be equipped with the skills and knowledge necessary for employment in a diverse range of areas such as:
  • sustainable exploration
  • environmental protection
  • the management of our natural resources
You will also have access to an extensive range of specialist facilities including:
  • geophysics field equipment
  • airborne drone imaging
  • geochemistry laboratories
  • high-performance computing
Why study in Edinburgh? By studying geophysics and geology at the University of Edinburgh, you will:
  • join one of the top-ranked universities in the world
  • become part of an academic community in one of the leading geosciences departments in the UK
  • enjoy access to a world of experience with our research and industry networks
  • learn from leading geologists and Earth scientists at the forefront of their fields, undertaking world-leading research in a wide range of areas
By studying this degree, you can play a vital role in our transition into a more sustainable society.

How to apply

You can no longer submit a new application for courses starting in 2022.

If you already have a 2022 application and are in Clearing, you can add this course as a Clearing choice – contact the university or college first to check they have places.

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

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)6.56.5 overall with 5.5 in each component.
TOEFL (iBT)9292 or above with 20 in each section (including Special Home Edition). We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
Cambridge English Advanced176 overall with 162 in each component.
Cambridge English Proficiency176 overall with 162 in each component.
Trinity ISEISE II with a distinction in all four components.

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; SQA Intermediate 1 at A; SQA Intermediate 2 at C; GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4; Level 2 Certificate Grade 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, or Trinity ISE, 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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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

England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
Channel Islands £9250 Year 1
Republic of Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £1820 Year 1
EU £30400 Year 1
International £30400 Year 1

Additional fee information

Scottish students must apply to the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) for payment of their tuition fees. EU On 9th July 2020 the decision was made by the Scottish Government to end free university tuition for European Union (EU) students starting in 2021-22. Funding policy for EU nationals and associated groups starting a course of study in academic year 2022-23 or later will be in line with international fees. Full time international and EU students will pay a fixed annual fee rate for the duration of their programme.
Geophysics and Geology with Professional Placement at The University of Edinburgh - UCAS