Petroleum Geochemistry MSc

12 months full time


Fees per academic year 2014-15

UK and EU: full time £6,000
International: full time £15,490

More information is available about Tuition Fees and discounts.

Programme Overview

This programme is suitable if you are a graduate who wants to pursue a career in petroleum exploration and its related service industries or further academic research in this area. The programme is accredited by the Geological Society of London and Joint Board of Moderators (JBM).

You are provided with advanced knowledge and understanding of the:

  • origin of petroleum source rock and processes of oil and gas generation in sedimentary basins
  • processes influencing petroleum migration and trapping
  • geochemistry of petroleum reservoirs
  • geochemistry of molecular marker compounds in sediments and crude oils and their uses and limitations
  • role played by the petroleum geochemist in the oil and gas industries, especially in petroleum systems analysis and appraisals of hydrocarbon prospectively
  • principles, applications and limitations of the main analytical techniques used in petroleum geochemistry
  • theory and practice of microscopy in the study of sedimentary organic matter and its value and limitations

You gain the intellectual and practical skills enabling you to:

  • critically assess the quality of data generated by analytical geochemical techniques
  • present and summarise such data in graphical and tabular form, and critically appraise its significance, using statistical techniques where applicable
  • understand the principles, applications and limitations of the main analytical techniques used in petroleum geochemistry
  • acquire practical experience of modern organic geochemical techniques
  • plan, execute and present a research project

Studying Petroleum Geochemistry at Newcastle University you benefit from a a teaching style which changes through the course in order to help you adjust and adapt to self-management and independent learning. You will also benefit from a programme which is research informed whilst remaining industrially focused, this enables us to teach cutting edge solutions that will broaden your employment prospects.

This degree is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired an Accredited CEng (Partial) BEng (Hons) undergraduate first degree or an Accredited IEng (Full) BEng / BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree.  


Students complete a compulsory taught course followed by a summer research project written up as a dissertation.

Find out more detailed information about the programme modules.

+Entrance Requirements

A lower-second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, in an appropriate discipline such as earth sciences, oceanography, geology, chemistry, biochemistry, reservoir engineering, chemical engineering, petroleum engineering, or petroleum geochemistry. We will also consider applicants on an individual basis with lower or non-standard qualifications who have relevant industry experience.

Applicants whose first language is not English require IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6.0 in all sub-sections), TOEFL 90 (Internet-based), Pearson's PTE Academic Test 62 or equivalent.

Our INTO Newcastle University Centre can provide extra tuition to help you meet the University's English language requirements.

The UK Border Agency (UKBA) has rules for international students regarding minimum English language requirements.

+Scholarships and Other Sources of Funding

The School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences offers Research Studentships.

International Students, consult your own government for funding. The University offers International Scholarships, and there are funding opportunities by external organisations available.

More information on scholarships, studentships, bursaries and other funding is available from our database.

+How to Apply

Visit our postgraduate application site.

There is no closing date for this programme. However, international students applying for September 2013 entry should apply by Friday 12 July 2013 to ensure that they have time to put appropriate arrangements in place.

Please note: As a formal condition of the offer to study at Newcastle University, students from outside the UK/EU are required to pay a deposit of £1,500 or submit an official letter of sponsorship for their chosen programme. The deposit payment is non refundable, but will be deducted from tuition fees upon registration.

+Further Information

The programme has a five-day residential field course in the Wessex Basin (Dorset), which typically costs an extra £300 for meals and accommodation.

For further information please contact:
Academic Secretary (Geochemistry)
School of Civil Engineering and Geosciences
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6605

Subject Overview

This programme is within the subject area of Geochemistry.