What is Petroleum Geoscience?

Petroleum Geoscience covers all aspects of upstream petroleum geoscience and related energy resourcesfrom initial exploration through to field appraisal, development and management.

Ranked #1 in Australia and #7 globally* the Australian School of Petroleum and Energy Resources is one of the largest petroleum-focused university schools in the Southern Hemisphere, and the only institution worldwide offering fully integrated research and teaching programs in petroleum geoscience, engineering and management.

Our petroleum geoscience degrees provide all-round multidisciplinary preparation for a wide-range of employment options in subsurface energy resource industries—ensuring you’ll graduate equipped with the knowledge, skills and expertise to thrive in one of the most dynamic, wealth-creating industries of the present and future.

* QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2020

Why study Petroleum Geoscience at Adelaide?

#1 in Australia and #7 globally for petroleum engineering (QS, 2020)

#1 in Australia, #7 globally

Our programs are ranked #1 in Australia and #7 globally*. We offer the only integrated petroleum geoscience degrees serving the Australian domestic oil and gas industry, and the geothermal, and carbon capture and storage geothermal fields.

* QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2020

Learn from industry professionals

Learn from industry professionals

Our close collaborations with international partners in both universities and industry provide opportunities for our research students to work on exciting, real-world projects with world-leading scientists and engineers.

Broaden your expertise

Broaden your expertise

Our industry relevant curriculum provides opportunities for you to develop discipline-oriented presentation, technical writing and team-based problem-solving skillsequipping you with a broad skillset which is in high demand by employers.

A group of students standing on rocks near the beach

We offer three Petroleum Geoscience programs at the Australian School of Petroleum and Energy Resources:

All of our degrees provide world-class training in the practical and technical skills required by the hydrocarbon exploration and production industry. Additionally, the points of difference between each of our programs have been designed to satisfy a particular industry niche. 

Development of our curriculum is guided by our board, which is populated by representatives from industry and state government regulators. This ensures our courses remain current, industry-relevant and balanced.

In addition to our main focus, we provide a broad curriculum featuring modules that cover petroleum engineering and decision making in the oil and gas industry. These offerings set our program apart from others in Australia and many others around the world.

While our graduates are highly sought after within the petroleum industry sector and beyond, our courses also provide a thorough grounding in research skillsgiving graduates the ideal foundation to pursue further research at PhD level.

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  • What you'll study

    Our degree programs in Petroleum Geoscience have been designed to accommodate students with a range of geoscientific backgrounds.

    Numeracy and standard computing skills will be required for undertaking coursework and research.

    Specific workplace skills trainingCV preparation, interview and presentation skills, technical writingis provided by ASPER and runs in parallel with technical curriculum components. Supplementary skills training can be accessed via general university skills training courses.

    In Semester 1, Graduate Certificate and Masters students share a classroom and undertake the same coursework schedule.

    Our graduate students often come to us with industry experience, and usually directly from an industry role. We encourage strong interaction between our degree program cohorts so students can share their experience of the realities of getting underway in the energy and resources industries. We also deliver our programs under the premise that you will interact extensively with your peers on technical course content during lecturing breaks, tutorials and practical sessions—helping prepare you for the team-based mode of working that you will later encounter within the industry.

    Your time with us will be ideal preparation for making the transition from education to employment.

    Semester 1 core courses
    Fundamentals of Petroleum Geoscience I Focusses on the interpretation of sedimentary rocks as hosts of conventional and unconventional petroleum resources using sedimentology, stratigraphy and well log analysis.
    Fundamentals of Petroleum Geoscience II Comprises an integrated set of modules focusing on structural geology and geomechanics, seismic data analysis, subsurface mapping and exploration management.
    Petroleum Resource Evaluation This course brings together disciplines of geology, geophysics, reservoir engineering and decision-making to provide an integrated approach to evaluating oil and gas fields.
    Petroleum Systems and Basin Evaluation This course covers a range of topics related to the key elements and processes of the petroleum system, including hydrocarbon generation, migration, accumulation and alteration.
    Semester 2 core courses
    Petroleum Geoscience: Honours Research Project
    (Honours degree program only)
    Projects will be in an agreed area of cutting-edge geoscience that is of relevance to the petroleum industry.
    Advanced Petroleum Geoscience I
    (MSc degree program only)
    Advanced stratigraphic and structural petroleum geology.
    Advanced Petroleum Geoscience II
    (MSc degree program only)
    Advanced seismic and FMI data acquisition and interpretation.
    Petroleum Geoscience: MSc Research Project  (MSc degree program only) Projects to characterise petroleum systems in Australian sedimentary basins.
  • How to apply

    The Honours Degree of Bachelor of Science with specialisation in Petroleum Geology and Geophysics is taught by the Australian School of Petroleum and Energy Resources, but administered by the Faculty of Sciences.

    To submit an expression of interest in the degree, please complete the Honours Expression of Interest form on the Faculty of Sciences website.

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    The Graduate Certificate in Geology and Geophysics and the Master of Science (Petroleum Geoscience) degree programs are both taught by the Australian School of Petroleum and Energy Resources and administered by the Faculty of Engineering, Computing & Mathematical Sciences.

    To submit an application for either, please visit the link below.

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  • For further enquiries

    Have a question about the course, available research projects or what you’ll study?

    For all questions related to specific details of the course, please contact Dr Mark Bunch.