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Department of Earth Sciences



The MASt in Earth Sciences is a taught master's level course—candidates study alongside fourth-year (part III) students taking the undergraduate MSci Earth Sciences course. 

Our MASt course offers an Earth Sciences education up to active research level, and is aimed at students who already hold a three-year undergraduate degree in Earth Sciences, and are likely to want to subsequently pursue a research degree. The course is also appropriate for students who want the intellectual challenge of an advanced course in Earth Sciences.

Course structure

There are three principal components to the MASt in Earth Sciences course:

  • A research project
    The centrepiece of the course—students are required to address a particular research question for the duration of Michaelmas and Lent terms. They submit a report demonstrating their ability to generate new observations, data, and ideas.
  • Option modules
    At least 12 (usually more) four-week option courses are offered in Lent Term, from which students select six. Easter Term exams will be individually tailored to each option, but they all will be looking for an advanced near-research level of understanding.
  • Seminars and the Easter field trip
    The Department hosts a broad range of seminars over the year—students are encouraged to attend as many as possible. A short seminar series at the beginning of Easter Term will address topics and research that are broadly connected to the Easter field trip (usually South East Spain).

For more detailed information on the course structure, please see our current postgraduate student pages.

Course Assessment: The research project (40% of total grade) is assessed by a project report and an oral examination at the end of Easter term. Option modules and seminars are assessed by written examinations at the end of Easter term.

Entry requirements

Applicants for the MASt in Earth Sciences course should have a qualification comparable to a first-class UK Honours Degree in Earth Sciences. International applicants should check the University of Cambridge International Qualifications page to see if they have the required equivalent qualifications.


The course for the MASt in Earth Sciences starts each year in October. The deadline for applications is in early January of that year (i.e. about 9-10 months in advance). Applications open in September of the previous year and can be submitted through the University's Applicant Portal.

If you have any questions, please contact our .