What Will You Study

Volcanoes threaten millions worldwide and improved hazard mitigation is a high priority. Our well-established MSc allows you to study alongside leading volcanologists in one of the largest groups of environmental scientists in the UK.

This MSc is ideal preparation for PhD research or work in the environment sector, and is suitable for students with a wide range of first degrees including Geography, Geology, Environmental Science and Physics.

As well as gaining a strong theoretical grounding, you will spend time in the laboratory and in the field, including field trips to study volcanic rocks in the nearby Lake District and a highly popular field module on Mount Etna.

You will study six taught modules which include core modules on volcanic and other geological hazards and optional modules which provide broader learning and practical skills in areas of particular benefit to aspiring volcanologists. Modules are taught by world experts from Lancaster Environment Centre and our partner institutions.

You will join our active volcanology group and conduct an independent dissertation research project under supervision from an internationally recognized researcher, taking advantage of our well-equipped experimental and geochemical laboratories. Within our group there are additional opportunities to participate in seminars, workshops and discussions.

Examples of previous dissertation topics are:

  • Lava delta formation at Thorolfsfell basaltic tuya, South Iceland
  • Analogue modelling of volcanic edifice deformation
  • Lava flow modelling at Nyiragongo, Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Regimes of explosive volcanism in the solar system
  • Textural evolution of tuffisite veins
  • Sill-sediment interactions at Honister, Cumbria and generation of peperitic textures