< Volcanology and Geological Hazards : MSc (Full Time)

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Volcanology and Geological Hazards

MSc (Full Time)

UCAS Code:none
Minimum Length:12 Month(s)
Maximum Length:12 Month(s)
Credit Points:180
Director of Studies:Dr H Tuffen

Educational Aims: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

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Subject Specific – Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

Key knowledge, understanding and skills that you will gain include:

Detailed knowledge of the nature of volcanic activity and volcanic hazards. Understanding of the physical processes that control volcanic activity. Insights into how field, experimental and modelling approaches contribute to volcanology research. The ability to recognise a broad spectrum of volcanic activity, relate this activity to fundamental physical processes, and think critically about objectives and outcomes of volcanology research.

 Knowledge of the nature and impacts of a wide range of other geological hazards, including earthquakes and landslides, and understanding of their controlling physical processes. Familiarity with important case studies of geological hazards, both nationally and internationally.

 Knowledge of the precursors to hazardous geological events, including volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and landslides, and the techniques used to forecast such events. Understanding of the origin of event precursors and how these are monitored using geophysical methods.

Knowledge of the principles of disaster management, and understanding of response, preparedness and communication issues. Understanding of the economic, social and environmental issues that must be addressed when designing and implementing effective hazard management measures.

General – Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

Broad understanding of how geological hazard management intertwines understanding of both physical processes and social contexts, and the techniques used to improve this understanding. Gain experience in effective use of case studies, statistical materials and primary research literature in formulating arguments and exploring the limits of current knowledge.

The ability to apply knowledge from various disciplinary backgrounds to the construction of clear and coherent arguments. Gain experience and expertise in communication of these arguments via text, oral presentations and debates.

Learning Outcomes: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

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On successful completion of this scheme of study students should be able to

  • Describe and explain the concepts and foundations of volcanic and other geological hazards
  • Apply and report on the methods of prediction and mitigation strategies of geological hazards
  • Gain a deep understanding of the effusive, explosive and intrusive processes that take place during volcanic eruptions
  • Use observations and knowledge of field relationships to reconstruct processes that occur during volcanic eruptions
  • Explain the problems of dealing with volcanic hazards on heavily populated active volcanoes
  • Demonstrate and elaborate an understanding of geological processes responsible for the occurrence, recurrence and magnitude of hazards
  • Apply simple prediction scenarios of geological hazard occurrence, using geological data sets
  • Describe the principal causes of environmental hazard, in the UK, Europe and elsewhere
  • Understand how hazard affects areas economically, socially, culturally and environmentally
  • Appreciate the difficulties and effects of planning for hazard at different scales

Structure, Features and Regulations: Compulsory and Optional Modules

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Compulsory modules

LEC.501 Dissertation Project

ENV.441 Geological Hazards

GEOG422  Disaster Management

LEC.424 Physical Volcanology

Optional modules

Select THREE optional modules.  Your number of credits across core and optional modules must total 180.  You should aim to balance your taught modules across each term OR take more in the earlier terms.

BIOL421  Data Analysis and Interpretation

ENV.404  Flood Forecasting and Flood Risk Management

ENV.405  Groundwater Resources and Protection

ENV.408  Modelling Environmental Processes

ENV.412  Environmental Radioactivity

ENV.457  Air Quality and Climate

GEOG413  Geoinformatics

GEOG414  Environmental Management

LEC.422  Data Assimilation and Integration

LEC.426  Environmental Applications of Isotope Geochemistry

LEC.429  Climate Change and Society

LEC.440  Numerical Skills (unassessed study module to be taken as required)

The most popular modules are Volcanic Process Field Course (a week in Sicily on the active volcano Etna), Environmental Management, Geoinformatics, Flood Forecasting and Flood Risk Management, and Data Assimilation and Integration. The latter four provide especially useful knowledge and transferable skills relevant to both geological hazards and other environmental disciplines.

Lancaster University
LancasterLA1 4YW United Kingdom
+44 (0) 1524 65201