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Department of Earth Sciences


Earth Sciences B will introduce you to the physical and chemical principles that ‘solid Earth’ mineralogists, petrologists, geophysicists and geochemists use to understand how the Earth works, formed and differentiated; and how it has subsequently evolved. This is a self-contained course and you will find that, as the year goes on, there are important links between the different elements that are taught in each term. Earth Sciences B will provide you with some of the background that you will need for Part II & III Earth Sciences, and in particular for any advanced courses in metamorphic and igneous petrology; volcanology; mineralogy, geophysics and tectonics.

Introduction to Part IB Earth Sciences B

An overview of all the modules taught in Part IB Earth Sciences B.

Part IB ESB—Course Guide on Moodle

A detailed guide to all aspects of the Part IB ESB course, including the Department, teaching, examinations, lab safety, and part II mapping projects can be found on Moodle.

Field trips


Ten-day mapping field course in Cumbria at the end of September before second year.

South West England

Ten-day field trip exploring the SW coast during the Easter break.


Twelve-day mapping field course in Scotland immediately after Easter term of second year, in preparation for independent mapping projects (if you are continuing to Part II Earth Sciences).

For more information on field trips, please refer to the course guide.

Part II mapping project

Students who continue onto Part II Earth Sciences will have to do a mapping project in the summer between Part IB and Part II, and should begin planning their project in Michaelmas Term. Useful information for mapping is available in:


Supervision and Workload hours

Recommended supervision norms from the Senior Tutors' Committee.

More information

If you have any questions, please contact our .

Useful links

Term dates






All course materials can be found on the Earth Sciences Moodle course pages.

Log on to Moodle


Health & safety

Whether in the lab or out on fieldwork, you need to be aware of your health and safety, and what responsibilities you have to look after yourself and your colleagues. Please refer to the Safety Handbook.

Safety Handbook

Writing Fellow

Do you need help with any aspect of writing from generating ideas, planning and structure, to clarity and editing? Our Writing Fellow can help.