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What will I learn?

The Master’s programme in Earth Surface and Water involves the study of natural and human-induced physical and geochemical processes, patterns, and dynamics of the Earth’s continental and coastal systems. This two-year programme provides you with knowledge that is essential to manage the planet sustainably, guarantee the availability of resources for future generations, and understand and avert natural hazards.

The main subject areas you will study consist of the dynamics of coastal and river systems, (geo-)hydrological processes, groundwater remediation, land degradation in dry lands and mountainous regions, natural hazards, and delta evolution on centennial and longer time scales.

You can choose one of four tracks based on your interests in the field:

Geohazards and Earth Observation

Land-degradation processes and natural hazards in and on the Earth's surface

Coastal Dynamics and Fluvial Systems

Natural and human-induces processes, patterns, and products in the world's coasts and rivers

Hydrology

Movement, distribution, and quality of water on Earth

Environmental Geochemistry

Processes that control the functioning of natural environments at the Earth's surface

Core areas of research

The Earth Surface and Water programme trains students to quantitatively study the natural and human-induced physical and chemical processes, patterns, and dynamics of Earth’s continental and coastal systems as well as their responses to global change. Students explore and understand the modelling capabilities of the past, present, and future as well as the evolution of Earth’s environment, including human impact on this evolution.

Programme Objective

Physical geographers, geochemists, and hydrologists are necessary to identify nature’s actions in our modern world, especially with society’s ever-increasing pressure on the natural environment. The Earth Surface and Water programme therefore focuses on imminent societal problems, such as society’s increased vulnerability to climate and environmental changes and to natural hazards such as flooding, storms, and mass movements. It also addresses the threats and opportunities resulting from human activity on our physical environment, including the hydrological cycle.

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Geosciences

Study options

Full Time (2 years)

Tuition fees
€20,473.00 (16,53,716) per year
Start date

Expected September 2022

Venue

Utrecht University

Heidelberglaan 8,

Utrecht Science Park / De Uithof,

Utrecht,

3584, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

MSc Track: Knowledge/ competence in the field of European law and a bachelor degree in Economics or sufficient knowledge of economics including knowledge/competence in the fields of: Microeconomics; Mathematics; Industrial organization and Competition Policy; Corporate Finance; Econometrics or Advanced Statistics. English language requirements: IELTS, Academic Module. Minimum score: 7.0 overall band, at least 6.0 for all components. TOEFL, iBT. Minimum score: 96, at least 23 for writing and 20 for the other sections. Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English, at least a B grade. Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English, at least a C grade.

For international students

The programme Earth Surface and Water is open to students with a Bachelor's degree in a relevant subject (e.g. earth sciences, natural sciences, physics, physical geography, civil engineering, applied mathematics).

Other English language requirements: Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English, at least a B grade; Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English, at least a C grade.

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.

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