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General Information

Living and Studying at Cardiff

The Cardiff School of Earth and Ocean Sciences was established in 1891. The School has maintained its international rating in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise with 70% of the research being assessed as world-leading or internationally excellent. The School has two Fellows of the Royal Society and ranks seventh in the UK for research in Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences.

Cardiff University is one of Britain’s leading teaching and research universities. Founded in 1883, the University’s expertise encompasses: the humanities; the natural, physical, health, life and social sciences; engineering and technology; preparation for a wide range of professions; and a longstanding commitment to lifelong learning.

Cardiff city is popular amongst students. It is a lively, elegant, confident, and cosmopolitan capital city, offering everything from the excitement of a vibrant city life to the peace and tranquillity of the nearby coast and countryside

General Information - Cardiff School of Earth and Ocean Sciences
MSc students 2008-2009 

Overseas and EU Students

We welcome EU and overseas students (non UK/EU). Half of the teaching staff involved in the MSc course are international (have received non-UK education). We ensure a smooth transition to life and study in the UK, and certify that the programme requirements are clear from the start of the academic year. Please apply early to ensure sufficient time to obtain the visa. Check the following page for information

Accommodation and Living Expenses

The University halls of residence are within walking distance of the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences. Many students live at Talybont Court which is at 15 minutes walking from the School and includes high-speed internet access and en-suite facilities.

For 2011-12 the average student living expenses for the year including the cost of accommodation, food, books and other items is expected to be £8,500 for a full year (12 months) in addition to tuition fees

Fees and Support

The tuition fee for UK & EU students in 2013-14 is £7,080. The tuition fee for international students in 2013-14 is £16,000. Financial support is available. To be considered, apply to the MSc on or before 5th July 2013 and submit a scholarship application form by 2 August 2013. Details here

All students will be allocated a tutor, whom they can approach to discuss any issues related to their learning or personal problems. The University has help mechanisms for students undergoing financial hardship. There is also a Student Support Service which offers a full range of confidential help, advice and support from trained professional staff. Academic staff within the School maintain an open door policy where students can approach them at anytime.


Lectures are held on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. Most field work and visits take place on Wednesdays and occasionally on Fridays. Most lectures take place in a dedicated MSc teaching room (3.11). 

Working Space and General Facilities

Cardiff Earth and Ocean Sciences 

Students can use the School’s dedicated IT facilities for large group activities and a dedicated MSc room with PCs for individual coursework and revision. 

The Main Building, where the School is located, has the Science Library with most of the textbooks and journal papers required. Other relevant books can be found at the Trevithick Library at the School of Engineering. 

Programme Structure

The MSc programme comprises a six-month taught course (Stage 1) followed by five months (May-September) with an industrial partner undertaking project work for the dissertation (Stage 2). Stage 1 is assessed through examination and continual assessment, and all students must pass Stage 1 before moving on the Stage 2. A 20,000-word dissertation is submitted at the end of Stage 2.

Overseas and EU students can conduct the Stage 2 (Dissertation) in their home countries.

Entry Requirements

We accept students with a 2:1 in a relevant science or engineering subject. Candidates can exceptionally be accepted with a 2:2, subject to industry experience or an interview with the Director of Postgraduate Teaching (Dr Tim Jones). Student backgrounds are usually within geology, earth sciences, environmental sciences and physical geography. Students with a quantitative background are particularly welcome. The application process is available at the University web pages.

All teaching is in English. Our requirements for non-native speakers are: IELTS minimum score 6.5, or a TOEFL (paper-based) minimum score of 580 (with TWE of 4.0), or TOEFL iBT (internet-based test) minimum score of 90.