Semesters one and two
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, sol 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 one, and Hazards and Sustainable Engineering in Semester two.
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.
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.
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.
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 in the course catalogue
Geological Investigation and Characterisation
Engineering Geology: Dissertation Project
Hydrogeology and Contaminant Processes
Hazards, Resilience and Sustainable Engineering
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. You will also receive administrative support from SEE’s dedicated Student Education Support office.
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.
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.