Earth sciences

Beautiful first light from sunrise on Mount Kanchenjugha, Himalayan mountain range, Sikkim, India. Orange tint on the mountains at dawn. Image courtesy of Getty Images.

About us

Plymouth is the perfect place to study for an Earth science degree owing to our collegiate and supportive atmosphere, expert staff covering the full range of geological disciplines, and the fantastic geology on our doorstep. 

Approval by the learned society for Earth sciences provides assurance that our teaching is of the highest standard and meets rigorous quality criteria. 

We pride ourselves on the consistently outstanding feedback we receive from our graduates via the National Student Survey (with, for example, our BSc (Hons) Geology course achieving a 100% student satisfaction rating in 2016).

Our students discover how the Earth works as a system through understanding its physical, chemical and biological processes. Our recently renovated laboratories, state-of-the-art computing facilities and personal tutor system provide the ideal environment and support for learning. 

Fieldwork is at the heart of any Earth science degree, and all our degree pathways include substantial amounts of residential and day field trips to spectacular locations in the UK and abroad such as Death Valley, Morocco, Sicily and Cyprus.  
As well as delivering excellence in teaching and learning, our staff engage in international, cutting-edge research within our Centre for Research in Earth Sciences (CRES). We also lead the way in science outreach and geo-communication, including flagship TV programming by Professor Iain Stewart.


The School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences offer scholarships for outstanding achievement. 

As part of our Potential High Achievers Scheme, we want to encourage you to continue to work hard for your exams, which are so important for your future career. 

We will reward those applicants who achieve the highest grades in their exams and demonstrate a commitment to the University of Plymouth by awarding them £1,000 when they enrol. 

We would encourage this scholarship to be spent on the final year optional field trip or towards study costs.

Students on a 2016 fieldtrip to Belize

Girls into geoscience

This exciting one day workshop, with additional optional field trip to Dartmoor, will introduce female A level students to the Earth sciences and demonstrate the world of careers open to Earth science graduates today. 

With seminars from women working in geology, and hands on workshops looking at GIS, microfossils and planetary geology, this year’s girls into geoscience event isn’t one to miss. 

Geology isn’t just for the boys – find out more!

Graduate profile

Plymouth was one of the best places to study Earth Sciences due to both location and a great team of staff

Having gained her degree with Plymouth, Danielle has since found success in her role as an Engineering Geologist.

Danielle Pullen's profile


Our world-class research keeps staff at the cutting edge of recent scientific developments within the field.

Explore the interdisciplinary research carried out within Earth sciences.

Find out more about our research


Our graduates leave with a highly desirable suite of skills for all types of organisations and careers.

Find out about the career possibilities accessible with a geology degree.

Find out more about careers in geology

Earth sciences outreach

We have a programme of outreach activities working with schools and teachers through visits to local schools, in house events, or wider promotion of the subject via national societies.

Find out more about our outreach activities

Academic staff