Earth System Science

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 803 Foreign:$ 803  
StudyQA ranking:3471 Duration:4 semestrs

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The focus of this programme lies on the analysis of the processes and interactions of the Earth systems various components. This requires the study of human activities, population growth, food production and security, land use and management, as well as climate change.

The analysis and simulation of related phenomena, such as feedbacks in the soil-vegetation-atmosphere system and their impacts on the regional climate, allow for the creation of models which provide useful insights into Earth system functions. Coupling climate models with agricultural and economic models provides a broader view of the Earth system and aids in creating concepts of sustainable development for all aspects of human life on Earth.

In the first year of the programme, our students are brought to the same level of knowledge in physics, chemistry, biology, and mathematics as well as economics. Our students acquire a comprehensive overview of the Earth system and familiarize themselves with its basic functioning. During the course of the second semester, students develop transdisciplinary thinking skills essential to Earth system science by taking modules with cross-cutting topics, combining the natural and agricultural sciences with economics. This way they arrive at a unique perspective on our Earth. Students also take measurements in the field, analyze and interpret their data, and start to apply computer models. With the completion of the first year, students are able to create a representation of the state of the Earth system at a given time by combining measurement data with physical process descriptions by means of data assimilation.

Starting in the second semester and intensified in the third, our students have the opportunity to choose elective modules based on their personal and professional interests.

During the second year, our students expand their expertise in creating models based on collected data by more strongly factoring in social and economic aspects. Students are now able to create holistic models of the Earth system, enabling them to develop concepts of sustainability for its protection. Furthermore, the second year allows students to freely plan their studies according to their individual interests and preferred areas of specialization.

The open structure of the third semester also provides students with an excellent opportunity to study abroad. Upon completion of the programme, our graduates have acquired a comprehensive understanding of the Earth system and knowledge of the various ways in which human behaviour influences this fragile system.

Module structure


Prospective students with higher education in natural sciences, geology or agricultural sciences.

* Degrees: Bachelors degree in natural sciences, geoscience, or agricultural science (180 ECTS) * Proof of English language skills



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