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What will I learn?

Explore the wonder of science: As a Bachelor of Science (BSc) student at Victoria, you’ll absorb knowledge, observe phenomena, experiment with ideas, and maybe even be part of making new discoveries. With a strong practical focus, a BSc will take you far beyond the lecture theatre. Apply your curiosity to the many laboratories, field trips, and summer scholar opportunities offered within this degree.

With this major you'll learn about the effects of shifting tectonic plates, how mountains are made and the power of volcanic eruptions. Work and research in the lab and out in the field to discover the origins of the solar system and how magma moves. You'll learn how and why rocks change in response to temperature and pressure, and look at fossils to understand the climate and environment of the past.

Course Structure

For this degree you'll need to:

Complete at least 360 points, of which:

  • At least 270 points must be from courses listed for the BSc
  • At least 210 points must be from 200 and 300-level courses, including:
  • At least 150 points must be from courses listed for the BSc
  • At least 75 points must be from 300-level courses listed for the BSc

Courses listed for other degrees may be counted as being BSc courses, including:

  • A maximum of 30 points if taken to satisfy a BSc major
  • A maximum of 60 points if taken to satisfy a second major from another first degree at this university
  • A maximum of 60 points across both these categories
  • Complete one course in MATH 100-399, PHYS 100-399, QUAN 100-399, STAT 100-399, ENGR 121-123 or Engineering Physics for Electronics and Computer Systems (ENGR 142)
  • Complete one approved course that demonstrates competency in oral and written communications

In addition to the degree requirements, for this major you'll need to complete:

Four courses at 100 level:

  • (GEOG 111) / The Earth System: An Introduction to Physical Geography and Earth Sciences (ESCI 111)
  • Fundamentals of Geology (ESCI 112)
  • One course in MATH, PHYS, QUAN or STAT

One further course from:

  • CHEM 113-115
  • MATH 141-177
  • Physics 1A (PHYS 114)
  • Physics 1B (PHYS 115)
  • Statistics in Practice (STAT 193)

Four courses at 200 level:

  • Sedimentology and Paleontology (ESCI 202)
  • Earth Structures and Deformation (ESCI 203)
  • Petrology and Microscopy (ESCI 204)
  • Introductory Field Geology (ESCI 241)

Five courses at 300 level:

  • Global Change: Earth Processes and History (ESCI 301)
  • Tectonics and Structural Geology (ESCI 302)
  • Either Petrology and Geochemistry (ESCI 303) or Exploration Geophysics (ESCI 305)
  • Sedimentary Field Geology (ESCI 341)
  • Structural Field Geology (ESCI 342)

At the end of your three-year BSc you can continue your learning with postgraduate studies. Give your career options a boost and choose from a range of postgraduate science programmes offered by Victoria University of Wellington.

Which department am I in?

Wellington Faculty of Science

Study options

Full Time (3 years)

Tuition fees
NZ$34,521.00 (US$ 24,679) per year
Approximate fee (120 points): NZ $34,521

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Application deadline

1 December 2021, 1 May 2022

More details

Start date

28 February 2022, 11 July 2022


Victoria University of Wellington

Kelburn Campus,

Level 2, Easterfield Building, Kelburn Parade,



6012, New Zealand

Entry requirements

For students from United States

High School Diploma, and a SAT score of 1200 or higher overall. For SATs taken prior to May 2016, a score of 1650 overall is required, with at least 500 in each of Reading, Writing and Maths. OR High School Diploma, and an ACT composite score of 24 or higher. IELTS (Academic): Overall band of 6.0 with no sub-score below 5.5 | TOEFL (iBT): A score of 80 on the internet-based test | Pearson Test of English (Academic): A score of 50 with a ‘Communicative’ score of not less than 42 | C1 Advanced (formerly known as Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)): A score of 169 or higher, with each skill score no less than 162 | C2 Proficiency (formerly known as Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE)): A score of 169 or higher, with each skill score no less than 162 | Victoria University of Wellington English Proficiency Programme (EPP) : A minimum of three ratings of 4 and one rating of 3.

For international students

Achieve the International Baccalaureate Diploma, or three GCE Advanced Level passes at C grade, or equivalent.

English language requirements

IELTS overall band of 6.0 with no sub-score below 5.5; TOEFL 80 on the internet-based test; A minimum of three ratings of 4 and one rating of 3 in the Victoria University of Wellington English Proficiency Programme (EPP) test; Pearson Test of English: score of 50 (with a ‘Communicative’ score of not less than 42).

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


About Victoria University of Wellington

Victoria University of Wellington is in the top 1 percent of the world’s 18,000 universities for 20 subjects and in the top 2 percent of universities.

  • 5+ stars from QS Stars Rating of Excellence 2019
  • Among world’s 1% to be triple accredited for business
  • First in New Zealand for intensity of high-quality research
  • Based in New Zealand’s vibrant capital city