Master in Earth, planetary and environmental sciences

Master in Earth, planetary and environmental sciences

Natural Geological Hazards and Risks 1st and 2nd year

Presentation and goals

Natural geological hazards (earthquakes, landslides, volcanoes, deformation of the earth's crust) are a major issue in our societies. This is reflected in a growing demand for understanding, controlling and managing telluric risks, both in France and internationally. The NATURAL GEOLOGICAL HAZARDS AND RISKS program was created to meet this need and trains students in the assessment of natural hazards using quantitative methods and geophysical tools. Students are prepared to work either for research (academic, semi-public or private), or for engineering offices in charge of natural hazard assessment or geophysical reconnaissance of surface terrain, or for local authorities.

The training is organized over two years and includes courses shared with the other programs of the master. It combines theoretical and practical approaches, and provides a range of cross-disciplinary skills for the various natural hazards. The first-year courses allow students to master the use of geophysical, seismological, remote sensing and numerical modeling tools. In the second year, the focus is on the use of these tools for the quantification of seismic, landslide and volcanic hazards and risks. In the second year, a large number of training hours are given in the form of projects (a mix of lectures, case studies and applications, evaluation on reports and oral presentations).

Almost every year, the classes include foreign students. Thus, the teaching is done in English.

The program is also associated to a Thematic Program (PT Risk), which brings together UGA students working on risks in general (technological, natural, etc.). This opening is offered to students on selection from the first year, in order to deepen their knowledge of risk management. To know more on this PT Risk, follow this link  or the teasers.

Training in the field, in companies or in research laboratories, plays a key role in this program. The end-of-master's internship (lasting between 4 and 6 months) takes place either in an engineering office, or in academic research (~25% of students), or in local authorities, in France or abroad (~20% of students each year).



Further information

This course is characterised by many digital educational activities, carried out in the form of practical assignments or projects. The principle is a strong emphasis on using the latest tools for quantitative exploration of the Earth and its environment. Geophysical measuring tools are supplemented by interpretation tools, such as numerical modelling, signal processing, remote sensing and seismic interpretation. The support of the OSUG@2020 excellence laboratory has been essential to implementing or renewing many of these tools.

Most of the "tools" modules (i.e. numerical modelling, remote sensing/GIS) are organised in the form of projects, enabling students to apply these tools to mini-problems that correspond to their choice of programme and their interests. Several disciplinary modules (UEs) also partly take the form of a supervised project, where students work in small groups to resolve a societal problem.

The modules in the semester 9 are taught in English, as is at least one module from the master 1st year. The policy is to offer teaching in English in the event that there are non-French-speakers among the students, both in 1st and 2nd years.

International dimension :

Internationally-oriented programmes

The program has a strong international focus, with teaching mostly in English and internship opportunities in companies or in a research laboratory abroad. Several foreign students are welcomed onto the program every year. Strong connections are shared with students from the University of Lebanon (UL), with several courses in common.

Partner laboratories



See the updated program in the French webpages:

Practica, projects, and missions

Internships in companies or laboratories are routinely conducted abroad.

Registration and scholarships

Registration and scholarships

Access condition

  • The 1st year is open to students who have obtained a national diploma equivalent to a bachelor degree (licence) in a field compatible with that of the master, or via a validation of their studies or experience
  • Entry to the 2nd year may be selective. It is open to candidates who have completed the 1st year of a Master in the field, subject to a review of their application

Public continuing education : You are in charge of continuing education :

  • if you resume your studies after 2 years of interruption of studies
  • or if you followed training under the continuous training regime one of the previous 2 years
  • or if you are an employee, job seeker, self-employed

If you do not have the diploma required to integrate the training, you can undertake a validation of personal and professional achievements (VAPP)

Candidature / Application

For candidates whose country of residence is not included in the "Studies in France" portal (PEF) scheme, the calendar for the eCandidat application campaigns is available here

You want to apply and sign up for a master ? Please be aware that the procedure differs depending on the diploma you want to take, the diploma you have already obtained and, for foreign students, your place of residence.Let us be your guide – simply follow this link


This course is intended for students in geosciences with a strong interest in working in the natural risks sector. Students have solid training in physics, geosciences and/or civil engineering. 

Target group

  • Students in initial training who have obtained a bachelor degree (licence) in Earth, physical, or mechanical sciences
  • Foreign students wishing to pursue their studies in the field of telluric risks in France
  • Students in continuing education wishing to pursue advanced studies in the field of telluric risks


Tuition fees 2020-2021: 243 €

And after

And after

Further studies

This course prepares students either to continue in the private or semi-state sector (consultancies, EPIC, local authorities), or to go on to do a doctoral thesis. The skills acquired in this course will provide the student with the experience needed to successfully pursue either of these two directions.

A reorientation to the Geophysics Programme is possible up to the end of the M1. Depending on the choice of UEs in semesters 7 and 8, reorientations to the Geodynamics or Georesources programmes are also possible.