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Course Overview


By combining our expertise in the disciplines of geology and physical geography, the BSc Geoscience is designed to give you a broad, multidisciplinary, understanding of the major environmental challenges we face today, including climate change, natural hazards, population, energy and natural resources, and the impact of humans on the environment.

Through lectures, coursework, field study and access to geographical information systems, this programme covers the fundamentals of geoscience, from the origin and formation of the Earth to the causes of climate change, to equip the next generation of experts with a deep appreciation of the science behind the way the Earth works.

You will acquire a deep understanding of the formation of the Earth along with an understanding of the major issues associated with environmental change, resources and prospects for development (sustainable or otherwise). In addition, students also acquire practical field skills in the main geosciences techniques including mapping, field geology, remote sensing and GIS, to apply to your research and future career.

This programme emphasises the multidisciplinary nature of earth sciences, offering you the opportunity to specialise in the areas that interest you the most, through your choice of optional courses and your final year research project.

LEARNING MODE On Campus Learning
DURATION 48 months

Compulsory Courses

Global Worlds, Global Challenges (NT1008) – 15 Credit Points
The Earth Through Geological Time (NT1005) – 15 Credit Points
Global Worlds, Local Challenges (NT1510) – 15 Credit Points
Earth’s Materials (NT1505) – 15 Credit Points
Professional Skills Part 1 (NT1001)

Optional Courses

Select 60 credit points from courses of choice.

Compulsory Courses

Physical Environments (NT2013) – 15 Credit Points
Stratigraphical Principles (NT2014) – 15 Credit Points
Petrology & Mineralogy (NT2015) – 15 Credit Points
Skills and Techniques in Geosciences (NT2508) – 15 Credit Points
Mapping and Monitoring the Environment (NT2510) – 15 Credit Points
Introduction to Field Geology (NT2510) – 15 Credit Points

Optional Courses

Select 30 credit points from courses of choice.

Compulsory Courses

Remote Sensing and Geographical Information Systems (NT3069) – 15 Credit Points
Field and Mapping Techniques (NT3026) – 15 Credit Points
Volcanology (NT3030) – 15 Credit Points
Techniques in Physical Geography (NT3575) – 15 Credit Points
Research Design (NT3574) – 15 Credit Points

Optional Courses

Select 45 credit points from courses of choice.

NOTE: Students are required to gain at least 210 credits from Honours courses in Geography/Geosciences across levels 3 and 4.

Compulsory Courses

  • Project (NT4001) – 30 Credits
  • Laboratory data acquisition and analysis (NT4002) – 15 Credits
  • Project (NT4501) – 30 Credits

Optional Courses

Select a further 45 credits including 30 credits from Geography/Geosciences courses.

Assessment Methods

Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:

  • coursework such as essays and reports completed throughout the course;
  • practical assessments of the skills and competencies learnt on the course; and
  • written examinations at the end of each course.

The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, year of study and individual courses.

Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.

Why Study Geoscience?
  • You will be well equipped to pursue careers across the breadth of Geoscience and Geography disciplines.
  • Fieldwork is an important element of this degree, we make the best use of our location in Scotland – close to many great areas for fieldwork.
  • Fieldwork locations include – Arran, Skye, NW Highlands and other areas throughout the UK.
  • Northampton  is geographically perfect for the study of Geoscience, having some world-class field sites close at hand which can be conveniently visited on day courses. Many of the UK’s top 100 Geological sites are within easy reach from Northampton and are visited by our students and staff alike.
  • Many past graduates continue to work in the city. Links with industry are, therefore, very strong with high levels of employability from our graduates.


The study of geoscience provides access to a wide variety of careers, including:


Entry requirements


SQA Highers

Standard: AABB*

Applicants who have achieved AABB (or better), are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/ Advanced Highers may be required.

Minimum: BBB*

Applicants who have achieved BBB (or are on course to achieve this by the end of S5) are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will normally be required.

Adjusted: BB*

Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one of the widening participation criteria are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will be required.

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.


Standard: BBB*

Minimum: BBC*

Adjusted: CCC*

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

International Baccalaureate

32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL*.

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

Irish Leaving Certificate

5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB*, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

English Language Requirements

English Language Requirements

To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Northampton University it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:


IELTS Academic:

OVERALL – 6.0 with: Listening – 5.5; Reading – 5.5; Speaking – 5.5; Writing – 6.0


OVERALL – 78 with: Listening – 17; Reading – 18; Speaking – 20; Writing – 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL – 54 with: Listening – 51; Reading – 51; Speaking – 51; Writing – 54

Cambridge English Advanced & Proficiency:

OVERALL – 169 with: Listening – 162; Reading – 162; Speaking – 162; Writing – 169

How to apply


This programm by online learning has start dates in September and January of each academic year. 

We recommend that you apply as early as possible; this is particularly important for applicants who may need to allow sufficient time to take an English language test

Documentation required

Applications are made online via the University Application Service, EUCLID.

Please follow the instructions carefully and make sure that you have included the following documentation with your application:

  • Degree certificates showing award of degree.
  • Previous academic transcripts for all past degree programmes.
  • A reference in support or your application. The reference should be academic and dated no earlier than one year from the start of study on the LLM programme.
  • Evidence of English language proficiency, if required.

If you are currently studying for your degree or you are not in a possession of an English test result you may still apply to the programme. Please note that it is your responsibility to submit the necessary documents.

After you apply

After your application has been submitted you will be able to track its progress through the University’s applicant hub.

Application processing times will vary however the admissions team will endeavour to process your application within four to six weeks of submission. Please note that missing documentation will delay the application process.

You will be informed as soon as possible of the decision taken. Three outcomes are possible:

  • You may be offered a place unconditionally
  • You may be offered a conditional place, which means that you must fulfil certain conditions that will be specified in the offer letter. Where a conditional offer is made, it is your responsibility to inform the College Postgraduate Office when you have fulfilled the requirements set out.
  • Your application may be unsuccessful. If your application has not been successful, you can request feedback from us or refer to our guidance for unsuccessful applicants, which explains some of the common reasons we why we reach this decision.
    View the University’s guidance for unsuccessful applicants
Terms and conditions of admissions
  • The University’s terms and conditions form part of your contract with the University, and you should read them, and our data protection policy, carefully before applying.

    Northampton University admissions terms and conditions