What is Earth and Ocean Science?

Earth and Ocean Science is the study of the Earth, its oceans, rivers, lakes, atmosphere and biosphere throughout time.  Four subjects are taught in this programme: Environmental Geology; Geology; Geophysics and  Oceanography.

What is Environmental Geology?

Environmental Geology is the study of the the affects and controls the physical earth places upon society.  We must not assume that as we require more resources the Earth will continue to supply them without any cost to society.

Storms batter our coasts

What is Geology? 

Geology is the study of the planet Earth, its evolution, environments and resources throughout the 4,560,000,000 years of its existence.  It's our only planet, we must know how it works.
Lava Flow
Lava flow from Etna engulfs house 

What is Geophysics? 

Geophysics is the study of the earth, its atmosphere, oceans, seas and waters by measuring their physical porperties. It allows us to see beneath the surface. 

Earthquake recording

Graduate student recording earthquakes in Ethiopia

What is Oceanography?

Oceanography is the study of the chemistry, biology and physics of our oceans, seas and inland waters.  Ireland has some 525,000 square kilometres of continental shelf seas that we are only just beginning to understand.  This represents Ireland's frontier for which we are all responsible.


NUI, Galway researchers working offshore

Why study these subjects?

It's our planet! Society must understand how to develop and manage the resources of the Earth and its Ocean if it is to survive.

What must I have studied at school to take these degrees? 

There are no pre-requisites. All scientific disciplines are used to study the Earth and its environments during its journey through half of all of time.

Is there any field work? 

YES! These are field sciences and students are trained in all aspects of field work both at home and abroad

Who do I contact?

Departmental Administrator
Earth & Ocean Sciences,
National University of Ireland, Galway
Telephone 353 (091) 492126
Email: EOS@nuigalway.ie