Research course

Earth Surface Processes

Cardiff University · School of Earth and Ocean Sciences

Entry requirements

Suitable for graduates in Earth, Ocean and Planetary Sciences, Chemistry and Physics. A first or upper second class Honours degree or equivalent is required.

Months of entry

January, October, July, April

Course content

Cardiff's School of Earth & Ocean Sciences is the only one of its kind in Wales and has a large, internationally recognised research programme. The School provides training and a high level of support, and the postgraduate community makes a vital contribution to the University’s international reputation for research.

The Earth Surface Processes Research Group represents a research area within the Environmental Science and Policy research theme which encompasses the broad range of environmental and sustainability science and policy research within the school.

Our research group investigates the physical processes (including human activities) that create the environments and landscapes in which we live. Our work develops insight into the states, behaviours, and dynamics of the Earth's surface through a combination of field research, laboratory experimentation, and numerical modelling. Recent research by group members examines the dynamics of meandering rivers (Constantine, Lazarus); the role of vegetation in controlling mass movements (Hales, Constantine); the mechanical and physical properties of hydrophobic soils (Lourenco); and the controls on periglacial weathering in mountainous regions (Hales).

There is also a strong coastal component to the group, which includes research into developed shorelines as coupled human–landscape systems (Lazarus), and into policy mechanisms for integrated coastal and marine management (Ballinger). Formative research regarding the integrated management of the Severn Estuary (Ballinger) constitutes one of the School's key extra-academic impacts.

Applied research in environmental pollution and protection (Jones) comprises another component of the group, which maintains close links with industrial partners.

Information for international students

International students pursuing part-time programmes of study are not eligible for Tier 4 General Student) visas and must have alternative leave to remain in the UK if they intend to study at the University in person.

Qualification and course duration


part time
opportunities available months
full time
36 months


full time
24 months
part time
opportunities available months

Course contact details

Prof. Ian Hall
+44 (0)29 2087 4830