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Ocean and Earth Science, National Oceanography Centre SouthamptonPostgraduate study

MRes Marine Geology and Geophysics - 1 yr(s)

This is a programme designed for graduates in the physical or environmental sciences, mathematics or engineering.

Introducing your course

This is the course page for MRes Marine Geology and Geophysics at the University of Southampton. Find out everything about Marine Geology and Geophysics and what studying here involves.

In this course page we explain a range of key information about the course. This includes typical entry requirements, modules you can take and how assessment works. We also suggest career opportunities open to you as a University of Southampton graduate of MRes Marine Geology and Geophysics.

If you still have questions, please get in touch and we’ll be happy to answer any enquiries. See our contact us page for our telephone, email and address information.

Programme Overview

MRes students spend two thirds of their year on their research project and the rest of their time taking taught modules. You can choose from a range of flexible pathways depending on your research interest. These currently include Exploration, Geodynamics, Coastal Processes, Palaeoceanography and Micro-palaeontology. You will develop specific knowledge and skills through your selection of modules and choice of subject for your research project.

The programme is taught by staff from across NOCS who draw on their cutting edge research to create a challenging and stimulating degree programme. You will also be encouraged to attend our research seminars, some delivered by leading visiting scientists.

View the programme specification document for this course

To Apply

You can apply through the University of Southampton's online postgraduate application system. For more background information, see How to Apply.


For all enquiries, email or telephone +44 (0)23 8059 8310.

Programme tutor: Dr Nick Harmon

Programme Structure

The full-time programme lasts one year. The research component is undertaken throughout the year and finishes with the submission of your dissertation by the end of September.

The part-time programme lasts between two to five years. Students normally undertake the taught component over two years. The research component is undertaken throughout your period of study. You will have until the September of your fifth year in which to complete your research and submit your dissertation.

Key Facts

Thumbnail photo of Francesca Pascolietti

“As an MRes student I had a great opportunity to be part of a very high quality academic program and to work with leading professionals in the field of marine and submarine geology. ”

Francesca Pascolietti - MRes Marine Geology & Geophysics

Entry Requirements

Typical entry requirements

Entry requirements

You must have a good (2:1) second class Honours degree, or equivalent, in Physical or Environmental Sciences, Mathematics or Engineering.


English Language

If your first language is not English, we need to ensure that your listening, written and spoken English skill would enable you to enjoy the full benefit of your studies. For entry onto our courses, you will need an acceptable English Language qualification such as IELTS 7.0 overall, with minimum of 6.5 in writing, 6.5 in reading, listening and speaking, or equivalent in other approved English language tests.


Selection process

Intake: 10

Average applications per place: 2

Applications are considered throughout the year; most candidates will be invited to interview to discuss the programme in more detail.

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.


Typical course content

The structure shown below is for full-time students. Delivery for part-time students is agreed on an individual basis.

Year 1

All students complete a common introductory module, Contemporary topics in ocean and earth science. You also take a mix of further introductory and speclalist modules in Semester 1, making a total of four. In Semester 2 you take a further specalist module. The choice of modules depends on your background and chosen pathway. You will also be working on your research projects through the year.

Semester One

Semester 1 modules are delivered in a 'long thin' format. They usually comprise 2 lectures and 1 practical per week over a 10-12 week period.

Contemporary Topics
MRes research project
Coastal sediment dynamics
Applied and marine geophysics
Introduction to physical oceanography
Introduction to Chemical Oceanography
Introduction to Marine Geology
Microfossils, environment and time
Computational data analysis for geophysicists and ocean scientists
Geodynamics and solid Earth geophysics
Basin analysis
Semester Two

Semester 2 modules are delivered in a 'short fat' format. They usually comprise 2 or 3 lectures and 1 practical per day, condensed into a 3 week period.

MRes research project
Seafloor exploration and surveying 2
Global climate cycles
Imperial Barrel Award

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Study locations

NOCS (National Oceanography Centre Southampton)

Ocean and Earth Science is based at the world-renowed National Oceanog...Find out more

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