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Course options

  • Qualification

    MSc - Master of Science

  • Location

    University of Birmingham

  • Study mode

    Full time

  • Start date


  • Duration

    1 year

Course summary

The Birmingham Hydrogeology MSc is the longest-running groundwater MSc course in the UK. Our alumni comprise a large proportion of the groundwater professionals in the UK and many more in another 50 or so countries, all contributing significantly to both human and environmental well-being.

Our course provides students with a comprehensive education in the fundamentals of groundwater science and engineering, together with considerable industry involvement, thus equipping graduates with the skills to tackle any groundwater problem they may be faced with, anywhere in the world.

Why is hydrogeology important?

Hydrogeology is the study of groundwater. Groundwater represents by far the largest volume of freshwater on Earth at any one point in time. It plays a vital role in the environment, provides a major – often the only - water resource for a significant proportion of the world’s population, and often is the dominant factor in determining rock and soil engineering strength. Hence, groundwater is an essential component for national infrastructure globally. All major civil engineering and environmental projects require the input of hydrogeologists. It is also becoming increasingly important in the context of geoenergy. This vital resource requires management and protection, not least from over-abstraction, contamination, and emerging problems including climate change. Employment is available in the UK and overseas, often with consultants, governments and regulators, and research organisations. Jobs are varied and challenging.


Throughout the world, the issues of water scarcity, water security, water economics, water health and sanitation, engineering, and geoenergy all rely on high-quality hydrogeology knowledge. Hence graduates with an MSc in Hydrogeology are in significant demand. In the UK, for example, Hydrogeologists are on the Tier 2 Shortage Occupation List.

Employment Record of the Course and Destinations of Graduates

The employment record for the Course is excellent. We would normally expect all students to obtain employment in the groundwater industry. Graduates take up careers mainly in groundwater or engineering consultancy companies, in the UK and abroad. Some join regulators (e.g. in England, the Environment Agency), or government scientific services (e.g. in the UK the British Geological Survey). Many take up PhD opportunities and move into research. Others obtain employment within humanitarian aid organisations or energy companies.

Graduates provide a vital role in the development, protection, and remediation of groundwater, and in the management of groundwater in engineering and energy contexts. They include many with senior industrial, academic, and governmental positions, in the UK and overseas. A number have won national and international awards for their contributions to the understanding of groundwater. Many volunteer to contribute their expertise and get involved with the Course each year.

Application deadline

10 September 2021

Tuition fees

Students living in United States
(international fees)

£ 24,480per year

Tuition fees shown are for indicative purposes and may vary. Please check with the institution for most up to date details.

University information

University of Birmingham

  • University League Table


  • Campus address

    University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, Birmingham, B15 2TT, England

A member of the Russell Group, Birmingham is a research-intensive institution. Its world-leading academics have included 11 Nobel Prize winners.
A diverse and global community, with over 8,500 international students from approximately 150 countries.
In the glorious heart of England, Birmingham is a diverse, modern and exciting city with a long cultural and intellectual heritage.

Subject rankings

  • Subject ranking

    10th out of 30 5

  • Entry standards

    / Max 240
    141 64%


  • Graduate prospects

    / Max 100
    85 85%


  • Student satisfaction

    / Max 5
    4.10 82%



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