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Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Birkbeck, University of London

Welcome to Birkbeck

Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences

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Welcome to Birkbeck!

Our orientation programme for new students will help you get the most out of your time at Birkbeck.

Extensive fieldwork opportunities

We provide opportunities for students to participate in fieldwork at locations around the globe.

At postgraduate and MPhil/PhD level we support your independent fieldwork projects.

Geology at Birkbeck ranked in national top 10 by Complete University Guide

Planetary geology is a key part of our research

Our researchers are investigating the potential for mining the Moon, landing sites for the ExoMars 2018 mission and astrobiology, the search for life in the universe.

REF2014 research excellence

REF 2014 results ranked the department (in a joint submission with UCL) 6th in the UK. Research impact was considered outstanding and 90% of the department's research output was described as of high international standing.

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Distance learning degrees

We offer the only distance learning degrees (BSc Geology, BSc Earth Sciences, BSc Environmental Geology, BSc Planetary Sciences with Astronomy) and certificates supported by full lecture videos (streamed over the web) and digital lecture notes.
Sample our free online taster course: Structural Geology (module 1)

Research

We have 7 active research grants among our 13 academic staff. (1 NERC grant, 1 Leverhulme grants, 4 STFC grants, 1 Royal Society ) Find out more.

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Funding and awards

We are one of the research centres for the PhD London NERC Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) Applications for 2017 have now closed but further opportunities will be listed later in the year.

Emily Paige Short Pioneer Fund Financial assistance for students in their academic activities beyond normal study in the area of petrology and related fields.

Tim Newling Fund Funding for field classes for both undergraduates and postgraduates.

New technique for analysing Earth samples and Martian meteorites reveals planets’ origins

Finer analysis of magnesium isotope ratios gives insight into the link between the physical and chemical composition of planets in our solar system.

Could the planet recover from climate change?

Research from the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences’ Dr Philip Pogge von Strandmann found the Earth’s ‘natural thermostat’ could enable recovery from climate change – but this would take hundreds of thousands of years.

Professor Ian Crawford elected Vice President of the Royal Astronomical Society

Ian has long been a leading figure in planetary sciences and astrobiology, and has made many major contributions to his field.

Archaeology, classics and geology courses ranked in national top 10 by Complete University Guide

It is the first time that Birkbeck has appeared in the ranking, following the establishment of full-time undergraduate degree programmes

Jenna and Ross explain why studying at Birkbeck was a good career move and a great experience