Postgraduate Earth Sciences students

Duration: 1 year full-time
Start date: October 2017
LocationSouth Kensington
ECTS: 90 credits

This course is now open to applications for 2017 entry.

This programme will train you to understand and effectively utilise the workflow concepts now prevailing in the oil industry, and prepare you to work in multidisciplinary teams.

About the course


This MSc is a one-year, full-time course that trains petroleum engineering professionals to understand and effectively utilise the workflow concepts now prevailing in the oil industry, and prepares them fully for work in multidisciplinary teams.

The programme provides a 12-month conversion from other engineering and science-based foundations into the specialties of petroleum engineering, and is designed for both those with industrial experience and recent graduates.


Modules shown are for the current academic year, and are subject to change depending on your year of entry.

The course begins in early October. Formal lectures, problem classes, laboratories and computer exercises take place on a full-time structured basis from October to March, during the academic terms, and cover a total of 390 hours.

The course curriculum is organised around five teaching modules. All modules feature petroleum engineering laboratories, a field trip, seminars with industry and communication skills classes.

Core modules

  • Fundamental knowledge of reservoirs, fluids, production mechanisms and basic equations of flow through porous media
  • Reservoir characterisation process and integration of knowledge from various types of data into a reservoir model
  • Well engineering and well performance prediction (drilling, completion, NodalTM analysis, stimulation)
  • Simulation of the behaviour of the reservoir model and the prediction of reservoir performance
  • Surface facilities and field development

Group project

This integrated study uses the latest industry standard software and hardware to undertake the evaluation and development of a North Sea hydrocarbon field. The objective is to interrelate separate subjects taught in formal lectures:

  • Characterisation
  • Drilling
  • Well and reservoir optimisation
  • The design of surface facilities
  • Economic forecasting
  • Application to regulatory authorities

Data for the project is then integrated into a development proposal. The petroleum geoscience and petroleum engineering areas cooperate closely, the objective being to create a common culture enabling professionals from the various disciplines to understand their own potential contribution, particularly to the reservoir characterisation process, as well as that of others. To that end, the reservoir characterisation phase of the group project is carried out in multidisciplinary groups, which reproduce the make-up of an asset team.

Individual projects

The individual project provides the opportunity to study a particular aspect of petroleum engineering in depth, thus expanding the knowledge acquired in the taught modules. In many cases, the project is undertaken in collaboration with industry and you will be offered a choice of industrial placements in the UK and abroad.

Entry requirements

Minimum academic requirement

First class (1st) Honours degree in a science or engineering subject.

Professionals with other qualifications but a minimum of three years’ relevant industrial experience are also encouraged to apply.

International qualifications

The academic requirement above is for applicants who hold or who are working towards a UK qualification. 

We also accept a wide variety of international qualifications. For guidance see our Country Index though please note that the standards listed here are the minimum for entry to the College.

If you have any questions about admissions and the standard required for the qualification you hold or are currently studying then please contact the relevant admissions team.

English language requirements

All candidates must demonstrate a minimum level of English language proficiency for admission to the College.

For admission to this course, you must achieve the standard College requirement in the appropriate English language qualification. For details of the minimum grades required to achieve this requirement, please see the English language requirements for postgraduate applicants.

How to apply

All applicants must apply onlineFor full details on the online application process, or to start your application, please visit the How to Apply section of our website.

You can usually apply for up to two courses, although your second choice will only be considered if your first-choice application is unsuccessful.

Most of our postgraduate courses don't have a formal closing date, but popular courses close when they are full. We therefore recommend applying early to avoid disappointment, especially students who will also be applying for funding or applying for a visa.

You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.

Offer holders will need to pay a deposit to secure your place. This will be deducted from the balance of your tuition fees.

ATAS Certificate
An ATAS certificate is required for overseas students applying for this course. Your Tier 4 visa application, or extension of stay, will automatically be refused if you need an ATAS certificate and cannot provide one.

For further guidance on obtaining an ATAS certificate please see the information on our International Student Support team website.

Fees and funding

Home and EU students

2017 entry:


Islands and overseas students

2017 entry:


Government funding

The level of tuition fees you pay is based on your fee status, which we assess based on UK government legislation.

If you are a Home or EU student who meets certain criteria, you can apply for a Postgraduate Master’s Loan of up to £10,000 from the UK government for programmes beginning in October 2016. The loan is not means-tested, and you can choose whether to put it towards your tuition fees or living costs. 

Funding from Imperial


We offer a range of scholarships for postgraduate students to support you through your studies. Try our scholarships search tool to see what you might be eligible for.

For more information on the Postgraduate Master's Loan scheme and other funding opportunities that are available, please visit our Fees and Funding website.