Engineering Geology MSc

Year of entry

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Start date
September 2023
Delivery type
On campus
12 months full time
24 months part time
Entry requirements
A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) 2:1 or above in an earth science, engineering, civil engineering, mining or a related discipline.
Full entry requirements
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component
UK fees
£12,750 (total)
International fees
£28,000 (total)

Course overview

Masters in msc engineering geology

Engineering geologists have a unique understanding of the ground and geological processes, making them crucial to all construction and infrastructure projects. Without their expertise in these processes and the potential hazards, developments risk being safe — which is why this profession will always be in high demand.

Our Engineering Geology MSc provides you with the in-depth knowledge and skills required to embark upon a rewarding career in an industry which could take you across the globe, on a wide range of exciting projects, from sustainable infrastructure design to the assessment of environmental and geological risk.

Established over 50 years ago, our Engineering Geology MSc here at Leeds has strong links with industrial partners who are actively involved in ensuring course content is up-to-date and industry-relevant.

Engineering Geology is the largest employment sector of professional geoscientists, and our graduates have secured positions across the world working in various sectors within the industry, finding solutions to a wide range of problems.

Why study at Leeds:

  • Learn the latest innovations in engineering and geology from the impactful, world-leading research conducted right here in our School of Earth and Environment and the School of Civil Engineering which feeds directly into the course.
  • Advance your knowledge and gain a grounding in the application of geological principles to a wide range of fields appropriate to ground, civil, environmental and mining engineering, taught by the School of Earth and Environment, in partnership with the School of Civil Engineering.
  • Conduct your own significant individual dissertation project, often involving organisations outside the University such as consulting engineers, civil engineering contractors and the British Geological Survey.
  • Access research-grade equipment and specialist facilities including the RMEGG laboratories and dedicated Masters computing facilities.
  • Experience excellent practical and theoretical teaching delivered by a programme team made up of geoscientists and researchers from across two different Schools who specialise in industry-relevant areas like geo-engineering innovative design and sustainable geo-structure.
  • Study in a School that has been training Engineering Geologists for over 50 years and regularly hosts the Yorkshire Geotechnical Group (Institution of Civil Engineers) and is involved with the Yorkshire Regional Group of the Geological Society.
  • Enhance your career prospects and join our successful alumni who have pursued careers in related positions, working for reputable companies like Jacobs Engineering Group and ARUP.
  • Master the most up-to-date practices and techniques recognised in industry on a course that has been directly informed and advised by the Industrial Advisory Committee.
  • Join one of our societies, such as ROCSOC or SusSoc, where you can meet like-minded people at events such as comedy and film nights, trips and through sports. You could even be elected as a member of the committee, which is a great opportunity to develop your management and leadership skills.


The Engineering Council

The Geological Society of London

Joint Board of Moderators


When you choose a degree with accredited status, you can be assured that the teaching is of the highest standard.

This degree is accredited by the Joint Board of Moderators (JBM) comprising of the Institution of Civil Engineers, Institution of Structural Engineers, Institute of Highway Engineers, and the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired a partial CEng accredited undergraduate first degree.* See for further information.

The quality and relevance of our teaching has also been recognised by an independent body of academics and industrialists through our Geological Society of London Professional Accreditation.

If you have an appropriate degree, our Geological Society accreditation will reduce the amount of experience required for you to reach Chartered Geologist (CGeol) status, an important career step in Geoscience.

*It should be noted that candidates completing the MSc who hold an underpinning accredited IEng degree or a non-accredited bachelor degree will need to apply for an academic assessment to determine whether they will meet the educational base for CEng registration.

Course details

Semesters 1 and 2

You’ll take two terms of lectures (class and computer-based practical work) and laboratory classes, as well as a significant period of individual work, leading to the submission of a dissertation.

Taught modules cover the fundamental topics of the engineering geology discipline and will run over two semesters. The central modules covering ground investigating, soil mechanics and rock mechanics run across both semesters.

You’ll also take part in supervised field trips, and where opportunity allows, ground investigations and construction site visits.

Alongside these modules, you’ll study the more specialist subjects of Hydrogeology and Contaminated Land in semester 1, and Hazards and Sustainable Engineering in semester 2.

The second semester culminates in a field trip, during which you will put into practice all that you have learnt in the course so far.

Dissertation project

From April to August you will then undertake an independent research project, often involving external collaboration

Upon completion of the taught component of the course, you will undertake a substantial research project that will enable you to put into practice many of the aspects you have learnt on the course. For the final third of the course, there is usually no other activity than the project which allows the tackling of some complicated and highly relevant topics.

Many of these projects involve direct collaboration with industry working on large-scale active projects and can involve both laboratory and fieldwork.


Fieldwork forms an integral part of this course and is directly linked to learning outcomes in the classroom.

An introductory trip will be held during induction week, serving as an excellent introduction to the field of Engineering Geology. You will also take a weeklong trip around the Easter period which is a more focused trip and gives the opportunity to put into practice everything you have learned in the first two terms.

There are also a number of potential one-day trips throughout the year to visit active construction sites. The timings and details of these will vary from year to year, but they are always a beneficial window into the world of professional practice.

Course structure

The list shown below represents typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our terms and conditions.

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Engineering Geology MSc Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information and a full list of typical modules available on this course, please read Engineering Geology MSc Part Time in the course catalogue

Year 1 compulsory modules

Module Name Credits
Geological Investigation and Characterisation 30
Soils Engineering 30
Rock Engineering 30
Engineering Geology: Dissertation Project 60
Hydrogeology and Contaminant Processes 15
Hazards, Resilience and Sustainable Engineering 15

Want to find out more about your modules?

Take a look at the Engineering Geology module descriptions for more detail on what you will study.

Learning and teaching

As outlined in the course content section above, you will be taught via lectures, individual and group class-based practicals, laboratory practicals, field courses and independent project work.

You’ll be assigned a personal tutor, who will maintain contact with you throughout the year and offer pastoral guidance. They will help you to settle into the university and clarify any procedures, as well as helping you prepare for employment on graduation.

Specialist facilities

Our course benefits from a dedicated computer cluster, where you will become familiar with the use of numerous industry-standard numerical modelling, visualisation and data management software packages.

Engineering Geology students also have access to our Rock Mechanics Engineering Geology and Geotechnical laboratories, allowing you to collect and interpret data related to the geotechnical and mining sectors around the world.

Use the lab to carry out soil and rock description and testing including uniaxial, triaxial testing, direct shear tests, slake durability and permeability tests all to ISRM, CIRIA, EuroCode and other recognised standards.

For your independent project work you will have the opportunity to access state-of-the-art methods for establishing the composition of rocks and soils through thin section analysis, X-ray diffraction, Scanning Electron Microscopy and other advanced techniques.

Our Virtual Learning Environment will help to support your studies: it’s a central place where you can find all the information and resources for the School, your programme and modules.

You can also benefit from support to develop your academic skills, within the curriculum and through online resources, workshops, one-to-one appointments and drop-in sessions.

Programme team

Dr. Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou, the Programme Leader, is a Tunnel Geo-Engineer who joined Leeds in 2017 to teach engineering geology and geotechnics-related courses after studying in Greece, Canada, and Switzerland. Her current research deals with geo-engineering innovative design, resilient and sustainable geo-structure & infrastructure while looking at their societal impact, initiating collaborations at national and international level. Dr. Chrysothemis Paraskevopoulou also works as a consultant and in the past as Geotechnical Engineer in both private and public sector.

The wider programme team is made up of geoscientists and researchers from across the School of Earth and Environment, as well as colleagues from the School of Civil Engineering, featuring specialists in Rock Mechanics, Soil Mechanics, Ground Investigating, Hydrogeology, Contaminated Land and Remote Sensing.

On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.


You’ll be assessed on your practical, written and oral assignments, these include a range of activities from laboratory reports to examinations. Throughout the course, there are opportunities for formative feedback on assessments ahead of summative assessments. Reflecting professional practice some modules are assessed entirely by project-based coursework, while the integrity of the accreditation is maintained through more structured assessment of the technical elements.

Developing effective team working skills is key to working as an engineering geologist where you often work as part of large multi-disciplinary projects, and to reflect this some of these assessments are undertaken as group work to offer an authentic experience of the diversity of a professional team.

The project module tests your ability both to undertake and effectively communicate a science project with an emphasis on critical analysis of your own work.


Entry requirements

A bachelor's degree with a 2:1 (hons) in an earth science, engineering, civil engineering, mining or a related discipline.

We require Mathematics or Physics to AS level (pass grade) or international equivalent, but this requirement can be waived on an ad-hoc basis given appropriate mathematical content of your first degree or industrial experience.

Applicants with a 2:2 will be considered on a case-by-case basis where applicants can demonstrate significant relevant work experience in a relevant specialist field.

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information please contact the Admissions Team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for this programme may be able to study our postgraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.

This pre-sessional course is designed with a progression route to your degree programme and you’ll learn academic English in the context of your subject area. To find out more, read Language for Engineering (6 weeks) and Language for Science: Engineering (10 weeks)

We also offer online pre-sessionals alongside our on-campus pre-sessionals. You could study a part-time online course starting in January, or a full-time course in summer. Find out more about online pre-sessionals.

You can also study pre-sessionals for longer periods – read about our postgraduate pre-sessional English courses.

How to apply

Application deadlines

Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

30 July 2023 – International applicants

10 September 2023 – UK applicants

The ‘Apply’ link at the top of this page takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.

If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

Admissions policy

University of Leeds Taught Admissions Policy 2023

This course is taught by

School of Earth and Environment
School of Civil Engineering

Contact us

School of Earth and Environment Postgraduate Admissions Team



UK: £12,750 (total)

International: £28,000 (total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Part-time fees
Fees for part-time courses are normally calculated based on the number of credits you study in a year compared to the equivalent full-time course. For example, if you study half the course credits in a year, you will pay half the full-time course fees for that year.

Additional cost information

Travel, accommodation and subsistence costs associated with compulsory field trips are covered by the university.

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs.

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Our Engineering Geology course has strong industry links which typically offer a number of scholarships to students of outstanding ability, achievement and potential.

Career opportunities

There is a strong and continuing demand for engineering geologists. The extensive skill set and advanced knowledge you’ll learn on our Engineering Geology MSc will be highly sought after in many industries.

From surveying to consultancy and management, your technical abilities and professional acumen in this field could lead you into many different career paths in construction — and beyond.

Also, a Masters qualification is generally regarded as an essential requirement in the ground and civil engineering sectors as it significantly shortens the time in which an engineer can become chartered.

Plus, University of Leeds students are among the top 10 most targeted by top employers according to The Graduate Market 2023, High Fliers Research, meaning our graduates are highly sought after by some of the most reputable companies in the field.

Here’s a snapshot into some of the job positions and organisations previous graduates from this course have secured:

  • Consultant Geotechnical Engineer, Jacobs Engineering Group
  • Associate, ARUP
  • Director, Denis McNicholl Technology Ltd.
  • Consulting Engineer, AECOM
  • Consulting, Amey
  • Design and Consultancy, Arcadis
  • Consulting Engineer, ARUP
  • Consulting Engineer, Atkins
  • Consulting Engineer, Golder Associates
  • Consulting, Hyder
  • Consulting Engineer, Mott MacDonald
  • Engineering and Environmental Consultancy, RSK
  • Geotechnical Contractor, Soil Engineering
  • Consulting Engineer, Wardell Armstrong
  • Consulting Engineer, WSP

Careers support

At Leeds, we help you to prepare for your future from day one — that’s one of the reasons our graduates are so sought after by employers. The University’s Career Centre is one of the largest in the country, providing a wide range of resources to ensure you are prepared to take your next steps after graduation and get you where you want to be.

  • Dedicated Employability Officer — gain quality advice, guidance and information to help you choose a career path. From CV and cover letter writing to supporting you with job applications, our School’s dedicated Employability Enhancement Officer is on hand to help maximise your capabilities through a process of personal development and career planning.
  • Employability and networking events — we run a full range of events, including the School of Earth and Environment Careers Fair, with employers who are actively recruiting for roles and a dedicated Industry Recruitment Day, giving you the opportunity to network with industry sponsors. 
  • MyCareer system — during your course and after you graduate, you’ll have access to a dedicated careers portal where you can book appointments with our team, get information on careers and see job vacancies and upcoming events.
  • Opportunities at Leeds — there are plenty of exciting opportunities offered by our Leeds University Union, including volunteering and over 300 clubs and societies to get involved in.

Find out more at the careers website.

Alumni profile: Wong Ho Yin Dennis

The course curriculum covered all the essential topics and assisted me in building the strong knowledge foundation that was required to become a professional practitioner.
Find out more about Wong Ho Yin Dennis's time at Leeds