The School of Geography, Geology and the Environment at Keele University deals with topics ranging from the physical structure of the planet to the organisational structures of human activity. Whether you are interested in global environmental change, cultural dynamics or natural hazards and resources, our courses offer you the opportunity to explore the aspects of geography, geology, environmental science, sustainability and natural sciences that most appeal to you. Our teaching will help you to develop subject-specific skills for career areas such as scientific research, environmental management, resource development or local planning. Our training in observation, data analysis, fieldwork and communication will give you an excellent grounding for a wide range of career paths. Alongside our environmental and BA Geography programmes we run a range of earth science degrees to study. More information on our earth science degrees can be found below.
The Geology course at Keele examines the Earth, its structure, formation, composition, history, processes, resources, hazards and materials. It looks at rocks, minerals and fossils, how they were formed, how they can be exploited as a resource, and what they can tell us about the history of the Earth and its past environments. Investigation of geological processes such as plate tectonics and exploration for geological resources such as oil, gas, metals and minerals are all part of our course. You will also study broader subjects such as geoscience and society, forensic geoscience and Earth systems. Single honours students will explore the interactions between the geosphere, hydrosphere atmosphere and biosphere – this integrated approach to studying our planet can help explain big scale phenomena like global change and mass extinctions.
There is a strong emphasis on fieldwork and applied problem-solving laboratory classes in the course, with field courses both in the UK and overseas. A pathway through your degree is available where field course transport and accommodation costs for compulsory fieldwork are covered by the University. Find our more here.
New: From 2021 we are introducing a number of specialist pathways to single honours geology. These pathways utilise our teaching and research strengths in geography, geology and the environment and they offer students the opportunity to specialise in an area of geology. These specialist pathways share a lot in common with the BSc single honours Geology degree, however they each have a bespoke set of modules related to the title of the degree.
BSc Geology – Applied Geophysics
This course examines the geological and geophysical aspects of the Earth, its structure, formation, composition, history, processes, resources, hazards and materials. It looks at rocks, minerals and fossils, how they were formed, how they are found and exploited sustainably as a resource, and what they tell us about the history of the Earth. It also covers geological and geophysical processes such as earthquakes, volcanoes and plate tectonics. Geophysics is a practical subject with applied problem-solving laboratory classes and field courses where you will learn how to collect, process and interpret geophysical data, and explore for future geological resources. This course focuses particularly on applied geophysical research skills and you will learn to carry out your own research using specialist geophysical software and equipment. Furthermore, you will complete a comprehensive and integrated UK and overseas fieldwork programme. All of our single honours students are offered a work placement module in year 2. Find out more here.
BSc Geology – Environmental Geoscience:
This Environmental Geoscience pathway through the Geology degree combines the study of the geological aspects of the Earth, including its structure, formation, composition, history, processes, hazards and materials, with key topics in environmental science, including climate change, contaminated land and remediation, water, soil and air quality, and the sustainable use of resources. Environmental Geoscience is a practical subject with an emphasis on critical analysis and problem-solving. The learning environments we use include the traditional lecture setting, but you will spend more time with hands-on learning in labs, practical classes and on fieldwork using a wide variety of equipment and software. A diverse range of specialist topics are covered, and you will conduct your own research projects. All of our single honours students are offered a work placement module in year 2. Find out more
BSc Geology – Applied Geoforensics:
This course examines the geological aspects of the Earth, its structure, formation, composition, history, processes, resources and hazards. There is particular emphasis on the geoforensic analysis of earth materials and how it can be applied to a range of criminal, civil and environmental criminal applications. You will learn how geoforensic trace evidence can be used to link material or an offender to a crime scene. The course also includes how to undertake a multi-phased geoforensic search for missing persons, suspected murder victims, environmental / wildlife crime and to recover items of forensic interest. Geoforensics is a practical subject requiring the use of applied problem-solving, laboratory and field skills where you will learn how to collect and analyse geoforensic data, and conduct geoforensic search for a range of items of forensic interest. This course provides a diverse range of specialist options. We focus particularly on applied research skills and you will learn to carry out your own research using specialist software and equipment. All of our single honours students are offered a work placement module in year 2. Find out more.
BSc Geology- Volcanology:
This course is based on the Single Honours Geology course combined with a range of compulsory volcanology modules. You will share the excitement of delving into the inner workings of volcanoes, from magma generation in the deep Earth to the amazing variety of volcanic eruptions, and learn about the effects of volcanoes on society from hazards to climate change. Furthermore, you will undertake a residential field course to an area where active magmatic and volcanic processes can be observed. Geology examines global change over the whole history of our planet, and understanding these changes is relevant in our present time more than ever to ensure a sustainable future for the human population on Earth. You will learn about the fundamental processes shaping our planet, from the formation of minerals and rocks to the occurrence of natural resources. In our comprehensive and integrated fieldwork programme, you will learn how to map and interpret geological features. Problem-solving laboratory classes will provide you with essential skills in identifying Earth materials and interpreting geological data as well as skills in communication and presentation. This course particularly focusses on volcanology, and you will learn to carry out your own research using specialist field techniques, equipment and software. All of our single honours students are offered a work placement module in year 2. Find out more.
BSc Geology and Physical Geography:
The course includes a balance of physical geography and geology topics, as well as material from complementary disciplines such as geophysics, meteorology, geomorphology, and environmental science. You will learn about the history of the Earth, its past and present environments, and the planet’s resources and hazards. We look at the Earth as a global system, including the causes and effects of global environmental change. There is strong emphasis on developing both laboratory and fieldwork skills, with field courses in the UK as well as overseas (current students have visited Spain and Iceland).
Combining fieldwork, practical classes, tutorials and lectures, this course provides a diverse range of specialist options. You will focus particularly on research skills: you will learn to collect, analyse and interpret different types of data, and to carry out your own research using specialist software and equipment. Find out more
Geology with Integrated Master’s:
This course adds an additional master’s level year to our three-year major route Geology (with a science subject) and Geology bachelor’s degree programmes, during which there is a strong emphasis on developing the vocational and research skills you will need to work in industry or advance in academia. You will continue to develop your breadth and depth of knowledge in the geosciences, as well as extending your research and data handling skills. The focus of the final year is a major research project on a topic of your choosing. The master’s level field course simulates a real world geological industry scenario to help develop your employability skills. Find out more
BSc (Hons) Geography at Keele allows you to focus specifically on your preferred area of Physical Geography, or to explore Geography as an integrated discipline concerned with people and their environment. Our focus on climate change, global responsibility, sustainability, and the application of professional geographical skills to real-world situations will prepare you for a wide range of careers and for life as a responsible global citizen. We place great importance on employability and on your future as a responsible global citizen. The course includes training in professional and research skills, and opportunities for either a module or a whole year of work placement. Our study-abroad option is a great opportunity to broaden your horizons and establish international networks that can also enhance employability. Find out more.