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Heriot-Watt University: Applied Petroleum Geoscience

Institution Heriot-Watt University View institution profile
Department Petroleum Engineering
Telephone 0131 451 3729
Study type Taught


The Applied Petroleum Geoscience (APG) MSc at Heriot-Watt University is one of the top training programmes for geoscientists working in the oil and gas industry. With strong links to our Reservoir Evaluation and Management, Petroleum Engineering, Mature Field Management and Subsurface Energy Systems programmes, this programme is unique, offering a fully integrated understanding of the oil and gas industry, from exploration to production.

Programme content The Applied Petroleum Geoscience programme has been redesigned in 2019, with a number of exciting new courses and field trips, including an integrated exploration and development field trip to the Spanish Pyrenees. The programme is focused on geoscience (including petrophysics, geophysics and geochemistry), but we also equip students with a working knowledge of other disciplines, including reservoir engineering and petroleum economics. Students will benefit from engagement with our industry partners and access to high-performance computers, as well as extensive in-house geoscience and engineering expertise, with many of our staff having worked previously in the oil and gas industry.

The programme is deliberately intensive, typically consisting of working a full five days a week of lectures and practical work, including labs or tutorial exercises designed to teach practical skills in addition to learning theory. We have a strong emphasis on group work, whether in the field, the classroom, or in our computer labs. This culminates in an extended (seven-week) group project, where we simulate a real exploration assessment of the Wessex Basin, incorporating field observations, seismic interpretation, well integration and non-technical issues, such as land rights and stakeholder engagement.

Our students Our students come from a wide variety of backgrounds in terms of both experience and nationality. Some come directly from undergraduate degrees, and others have years, or even decades of experience of working in industry. We have had over 30 different nationalities on our programmes over the last few years.

Flexible study options This course can be studied full-time or part-time on campus. It can also be studied via online learning, ideal for those in employment or with other commitments, providing flexible study options that fit around work or family.

Accreditation The programme is accredited by the Geological Society of London.


Heriot-Watt University



Heriot-Watt is one of the world’s leading universities with strong links to international business and industry driven by our established reputation as a top research-led institution.

With a rich heritage stretching back to 1821, we are a truly global university bringing together scholars who are leaders in ideas and solutions delivering innovation, educational excellence and ground-breaking research.








Courses and Subject Areas
We offer over 180 Postgraduate courses that will provide you with the knowledge to solve real world challenges.  There are around 2,400 postgraduate students studying at our Edinburgh Campus. It is a friendly, welcoming place, where you …

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