Course details

Study options

Full-time: 3 years, Part-time:

UK fee

£9,250 per year (2024/25)

International fee

£14,900 per year (2024/25)

UCAS points

112-120 (September 2024 entry)

UCAS code


Course level



BSc (Hons)

Start date



Kedleston Road, Derby Campus

The Earth Sciences are critical to the sustainable future of our planet and society, allowing us to develop deep understandings of natural hazards, climate change, Earth processes, green energy, sustainable development, natural resources, and more. By nature, our exciting Earth Sciences course is diverse, encompassing interdisciplinary knowledge from geology, geography, climatology, hydrology, chemistry, physics, alongside the natural, environmental, planetary, and social sciences. As an applied subject, you will gain practical knowledge and skills, leading you directly into a rapidly growing UK and international Earth Science job sector.

Practical based learning will enhance and reinforce your understanding of Earth processes at the planetary to atomic scale, as well as exploring complex relationships between Earth and society, such as how to ensure effective climate change mitigations alongside affordable clean energy. You will develop an evidence-based understanding of how to manage, mitigate, and adapt to natural hazards, such as volcanic eruptions, flooding, climate change, and earthquakes. All of this builds on the comprehensive Earth Science competencies we nurture in our students. From oceans, climate and volcanoes, to minerals, evolution and fossils - we make you experts in understanding how your planet works.

Field, laboratory, and software skills are essential tools for the Earth Scientist. During your degree you will become proficient and confident in the application of a range of traditional scientific approaches and cutting-edge technology. Throughout your degree, we adopt a holistic approach to learning, guiding you through the Earth Science practices you will need as a confident Earth Scientist professional.

People walking on Rainbow Mountains.

Global reach

This course is aligned to global commitments to enhance sustainable development and decarbonise and restore the natural environment which will place new expectations on industrial sectors, infrastructure projects and government policies. You’ll develop the expertise required to meet the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and other international agreements and policies like the Paris Agreement.  

This ensures you learn the skills and values required by society for sustainable and inclusive access to water and energy, as well as the responsible use of critical minerals required for green technologies. You will learn the next-generation approaches required to combat climate change, protect life and the planet, and build sustainable cities, such as carbon sequestration, sourcing responsible critical minerals for green technologies and net-zero approaches to geoenergy provision.

Once you complete this degree, you will have great knowledge of how the Earth works, understanding its interactions with the atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere, as well as the underlying chemical, physical, and biological processes involved. Learning from the past, you will understand the present, and be able to influence the future. With your new appreciation for past events from deep time, abilities to gain powerful insights from modern big-data, and a diverse transferrable skillset, you will graduate with the knowledge and skills you need to address societies’ biggest challenges today, and in the future, allowing you to work anywhere in the world. 

Volcano exploding

Graduate with confidence

Throughout your degree with us, you will participate in day and residential fieldtrips to be trained in industry-required skills such as mapping, surveying, coring, resource exploration, fossil interpretation, field observation and water quality analysis. Building on the industrial experience of our academics, you will develop a range of applied industry-focused skillsets essential to employment. Authentic exercises and opportunities to engage with industry allow you to achieve a greater understanding of sectors within the Earth Sciences, including the role they play for society and the environment. These opportunities give you the chance to discover potential careers.

Someone walking in an ice cave.

What you will study


You'll study modules such as:

  • Critical Resources
  • Earth Materials
  • Climate Oceans and Atmosphere
  • Evolving Earth
  • Earth Scientist's Toolkit
  • Structural Analysis
  • Volcanic and Metamorphic Systems
  • Applied Sedimentology
  • Introducing to Remote Sensing and GIS
  • Sustainable Water Resources
  • Sustainable Geological Resources
  • Sustainable Energy
  • Independent studies or Industrial Placement
  • Imaging the Earth
  • Modelling Earth Energy Systems
  • Climate Change
  • Environmental Management and Risk Reduction
  • Geohazards
  • Engineering Geology

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

Kedleston Road, Derby Campus entrance

Undergraduate Open Days

The best way to find out if studying at Derby is right for you is to experience an Open Day. Get a feel for the city and campus, tour our first-class facilities and see where you could be living.

Book your Undergraduate Open DayBook your Undergraduate Open Day

How you will learn

You'll be taught by a range of staff who are experts within their fields and research-active, incorporating their passion and enthusiasm for their specialism into their teaching and research-led learning. 

Teaching for this programme is designed to be on campus through lectures and practical laboratories. Where appropriate, teaching will also be delivered through tutorials and computer laboratories to encourage discussions and industry-specific software training.  

Each module will have associated directed study such as further reading, preparatory work, group activities and finishing exercises. Fieldwork will be embedded throughout the degree programme for you to develop imperative observation, interpretation and field skills required for future careers. This will be in the form of day trips utilising the fantastic locations here in the Midlands, such as the Peak District, the variety of industry in the area and residential field camps. 

You’ll also learn to analyse and interpret big data including climate sciences, critical mineral exploration and the green energy sector using global geophysical, geochemical and climatic datasets. 

How you are assessed 

There will be a wide range of assessments including coursework, presentations, assessed practicals and exams. 

Personal academic tutoring

Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.

Find out more about personal academic tutoring

Entry requirements

2024 entry

These are the typical qualification requirements for September 2024 entry. Contextual offers may apply to students who meet certain criteria.

RequirementWhat we're looking for
UCAS points112-120
A LevelBBB-BBC - with at least a grade C in Geology, Geography, or Environmental Science, but sciences and mathematics (or equivalent qualifications) will be considered
T LevelMerit in Science
GCSEGCSE Maths and English Grade 4/Grade C (or above) or equivalent qualification
Access to HEPass Access to HE Diploma with 60 credits: 45 at Level 3 with a minimum of Distinction: 15, Merit: 24, Pass: 6. Must include passes in compulsory Level 3 subjects

English language requirements

IELTS: 6.0 (with at least 5.5 in each skills area)

Fees and funding



£9,250 per year

£1,155 per 20 credit module


£14,900 per year


Further information about our fees and support you may be entitled to.

How to apply

Please look at our application deadlines before you apply.

UK students

If you are in Year 13 and applying for a full-time undergraduate course (including our joint honours courses), we recommend that you apply through UCAS.

Apply through UCAS

If you are applying to study part-time, or already have your qualifications, or wish to join at Year 2 or 3, you should apply directly to the University.

Apply directly to the University


Due to the transferable nature of the skills you’ll learn, such as verbal and written communication, critical analysis, independent thought and problem solving. Your new, solution focused expertise will strongly position you to pursue a wide range of careers upon graduating. 

Careers in the Earth Sciences cover a wide range of industry sectors including: 

You can also go onto further study and enrol onto our MSc GeoEnergy course, where you will learn transferable skills to actively contribute to the global energy transition, advanced climate change mitigation, and gain expertise to integrate emerging and conventional technologies in the critical GeoEnergy sector. 

Careers and Employment Service  

Our Careers and Employment Service can help you boost your employment skills by connecting you with employers for work placements, part-time jobs, and volunteering. They can also offer guidance on career options, CV writing, or starting your own business. 

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

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Additional information about your studies

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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