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B.Sc. Earth and Environmental Sciences

Earth and Environmental Sciences Program, Department of Physics and Earth Sciences, Jacobs University Bremen, Campus Ring 1, 28759 Bremen, Germany

+49 (0)421 2003564

E-mail address

Type of course

Language of tuition

Length of course
3 years

Date of commencement

Class size
7 – 30

Cost / fees
20 000 € per annum

Student grants / Financial assistance
Student grants available

Campus-University, accommodation in residential colleges

Major recruiters of graduates of our programmes
UStanford, UBerkeley, UYale, MIT, UWashington-Seattle, Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst., UMaine, ColumbiaU, UDelft, UCambridge, UOxford, DLR, ETH-Zürich, MPI-Astro, NOC, UBremen, UTübingen, UKiel, UAmsterdam, UUppsala, UBergen, UCopenhagen, Columbia Uni, NY, USC Los Angeles, McKinsey, Statoil, Wintershall, IES, RWE, Schlumberger, EADS

Exchange partner schools
Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Max PIanck Institute (MPI) for Marine Microbiology, Universität Bremen, Amsterdam University, Gdansk University of Technology, Instituto de Empresa, Kadir Has University, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, Sciences Po, St. Petersburg State University, Università degli Studi di Cagliari, University College Utrecht, University of Aberdeen, University of Edinburgh, University of Oslo, Uppsala University, Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, Lafayette College, New York University, Rollins College, Universidad de San Andres, University of Pennsylvania, Washington State University, University of Johannesburg, etc.

Student profile
1. Ratio of National / Overseas students 20-30 % national/70 – 80 % overseas, 1250 students from 114 nations including 150 Masters students and 405 PhD students
2. Ratio of Men / Women: ≈ 50/50
3. Age range 18 - 22

Admission requirements
SAT or ACT test required. An applicant's English proficiency level may be demonstrated by means of score reports.

Programme Director
Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Dieter Rombach Prof. Michael Bau

Jacobs University

Bachelor's program in Earth and Environmental Sciences

The Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES) program is an interdisciplinary environmental science major and provides an understanding of the natural functioning of our planet and the consequences of human impact. It combines traditional geoscience disciplines like Geochemistry, Geophysics, and Oceanography with Environmental Sciences and Social Sciences.

EES prepares our graduates for topical challenges and research questions such as the management and sustainable exploration of natural resources, the study of Earth’s climate and oceans. Participation in field and laboratory work as well as teamwork in multidisciplinary and multicultural groups are an important part of the studies. The program itself can be adjusted to accommodate students with particular career goals in mind. During their first three semesters of study, our students get a solid education in the various disciplines of Earth and Environmental Sciences plus a sound background in the natural sciences. Specialization starts already in the third semester. We currently offer the following

Specialization Areas:

Geophysics and Oceanography
Resources and Environment

Common methodology in Earth and Environmental Sciences

Contrasting natural systems studied within EES are observed, analyzed, and modeled using comparable methods and tools. Processes at work from the deep ocean to the high atmosphere are explored in-situ with unmanned probes. Images and spectra of Earth and the atmosphere are typically obtained by orbiting spacecraft following general remote sensing principles. ESS students are introduced to the processing, analysis, and visualization of data from such observations. Computational models applied within the various disciplines of ESS often rest on general fluid dynamics concepts.

Our ESS study program is ideally suited to you if you are searching for:
  • a bachelor program with Geology
  • a bachelor program with Environmental Sciences
  • a bachelor program with Oceanography
  • a bachelor program with Geophysics
  • a bachelor program with Geochemistry
Students learn about the sustainable exploration and management of natural resources, the evolution of the Earth’s crust, climate and oceans, and the anthropogenic impact on natural systems. Practicals, international field excursions, involvement in ongoing research projects, and internships are integral parts of the program. And don’t worry: you will get a broad but detailed education which will enable you to proceed in any graduate program related to these bachelor themes. See the whereabouts of our Alumni.

The modular structure of the EES undergraduate programs allows students to gain first-hand experience and a sound background in the fields of Earth and Environmental Science, Chemistry and Physics during the first year of studies. If within the first year a student feels that she/he would rather prefer to proceed to a B.Sc. in Chemistry or Physics, a change of the major is possible without major problems (though in the past this was highly unusual: only less than 2% of the students decided to do so). During the second year, students can get experience in the social sciences and economy, in addition to their Earth and Environmental Science courses. They might want to get an introduction to environmental policy and global economics, sustainable development, natural and human-driven environmental change, or social entrepreneurship – all areas into which some ESS alumni have moved after graduation.

The broad education at Jacobs ensures that potential employers can be confident that graduating students are capable of easily adopting to an interdisciplinary working environment. A broad background is particularly relevant when dealing with the complex environmental challenges of today’s world. In the EES program, students gain the skills and ability to think outside the box of a focus discipline. The intercultural aspect of studying at Jacobs University is also important.

There are few other universities where you can live and study as closely with students from more than 100 countries.

Research Foci

Environmental Sciences, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Oceanography, Marine and Terrestrial Resources (biological and geological), Climate Change, Water Quality, Remote Sensing, Space Sciences, Energy Geopolitics, Environmental Politics and Policy

Special features of the program
  • Very high success rate: >90% of students graduate within 6 semesters
  • Small classes, seminars and excursions (student:faculty ratio of 11); informal contact with all faculty members
  • Internationally- and nationally acclaimed reputation for excellent education (No1 in German CHE Uni-Ranking)
  • Teaching subject-specific knowledge and transferable skills, offering a range of careers (from petroleum industry to environmental protection)
  • Opportunities for extended field work and more than 30 days of field trips to Scandinavia, Ireland, Italy and onboard of research vessels
  • Taking advantage of the international network of faculty from research collaborations
  • Early involvement in research projects, including the possibility to participate in field campaigns and research cruises (often the most rewarding aspects of an undergraduate's career)
Long standing academic collaborations: UBremen, MARUM-Bremen, AWI-Bremen, MPI-Bremen, ZMT-Bremen, DLR-Bremen, DFKI-Bremen, UOldenburg, Helmholtz-Institut Freiberg, BGR (Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources), UWashington/Seattle (USA), National Oceanographic Centre (UK), NIOZ (Nl), UVictoria (Ca), U.S. Geological Survey, Santa Cruz, USA, UOtago (NZ),USanta Maria (Brazil), UBrasilia (Brazil), UJohannesburg (ZA) Natural History Museum Stockholm, (S), UCopenhagen (DK), Brock University (USA), Centro de Astrobiologia (ES), IRSPS (It), ISS Bucharest-Magurele (ROM), involved in the MARUM Excellence Cluster and in the ROBEX Helmholtz Alliance

Industry partners: Schlumberger, Statoil, EADS, Airbus, VW, RWE, Eon, Wintershall, IEDS

Alumni: UStanford, UBerkeley, UYale, MIT, UWashington-Seattle, Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst., UMaine, ColumbiaU, UDelft, UCambridge, UOxford, DLR, ETH-Zürich, MPI-Astro, NOC, UBremen, UTübingen, UKiel, UAmsterdam, UUppsala, UBergen, UCopenhagen, Columbia Uni, NY, USC Los Angeles, McKinsey, Statoil, Wintershall, IES, RWE, 3Sat, Schlumberger, ESTEC, EADS, Eurocopter,

Salaries for our graduates at academic institutions vary between 8,000 to 25,000 $ for Master´s students, 15,000 to 30,000 $ for PhD students. Salaries in careers in industry vary between 50,000 $ (Data analyst) to 100,000 $ (Modeling). Those of our bachelor students who pursue a career in the US often start with a salary of 20,000 to 25,000 $ for their Master´s project including a tuition fee waiver. Similar stipends exist in Europe. It is an early opportunity to pay back your student loan. Be aware that you can pursue your career in the US and Canada, although you did not study four years and thus saved one year of tuition fees.

On average 21 graduating EES students per year

About Jacobs University

Get your education in a Research University!

Jacobs University is a private English-language residential university, distinguished by its international orientation and highly selective admission based on the candidates’ academic and personal potential. Our goal is to prepare the leaders of tomorrow to responsibly meet global challenges.

We are committed to:
  • high academic standard and the creation of knowledge
  • transdisciplinary research and teaching
  • ethnic, socio-economic and gender diversity
  • intercultural respect and global citizenship
  • environmental responsibility and sustainable campus practices
  • promoting an entrepreneurial spirit
  • paving the way for careers in the private sector, public service and academia
  • creating a worldwide community of lifelong learners
High selectivity and transdisciplinarity

Our students are selected in a highly competitive process, and the university attracts exceptional faculty and staff from inside and outside Germany.

For Jacobs University, highest standards in teaching mean strong professor-student interaction, and challenging curricula. Students are encouraged and expected to interact with their instructors and fellow students, discussing material and deepening their understanding of the field while working both independently and in groups. This enables them to push the cutting edge of scientific knowledge. Our transdisciplinary approach is mirrored in all focus areas of our reseach and teaching:
  • MOBILITY (of people, goods, and information)
  • HEALTH (focus on bioactive substances)
  • DIVERSITY (of modern societies)
We acknowledge that these challenges are frequently interconnected and require approaches from multiple scientific disciplines. Therefore, the university combines a high standard in the fields with a strong emphasis on transdisciplinarity. Through the structure of curricula and interdisciplinary courses, students are challenged to look beyond the confines of their chosen major and to work together in research groups that cut across academic fields.

Diversity and Community

Jacobs University is one of the most diverse universities worldwide. More than 75% of our students come from outside of Germany. This plurality allows our community to break down cultural barriers and create a community where no one group constitutes a majority. Instead, students from all over the world live and study together on our 100-acre campus.

Understanding the importance of role models who are as diverse as our student body, Jacobs University is committed to the development of a diverse international faculty and staff. Jacobs University does not discriminate on the basis of national or ethnic origin, color, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, or disability.

The university community encourages students to show pride in their cultures and provides venues for sharing their heritage with the Jacobs community, their host families, and the local neighborhood. At the same time, the Jacobs University culture emphasizes a strong sense of community and connectedness among its students, alumni, faculty and staff.

An important part of community spirit at Jacobs University is student life in our residential colleges. Students of different cultures live together in shared apartments and become active members of a multi-national college community that enables them to identify with one another and with the distinct character of their college. Members of the Jacobs community come together to celebrate university traditions and participate in athletic, social and cultural activities.

Leadership and Values

An outstanding academic education is not enough to address present and future global concerns. Initiative, creativity, responsible leadership, social awareness and a passion for lifelong learning are essential traits that Jacobs University seeks to nurture.

Jacobs University’s values guide each decision of the governing bodies of the university and are affirmed in the Code of Community, our blueprint for living in community.

The core of the Jacobs spirit is the importance of mutual respect and understanding of the many cultures that come together on our campus. All members of our community are engaged in creating an atmosphere that promotes pride in our diversity and honors our differences. Every person in our community has the ability and responsibility to instigate positive change by being pro-active. Self-initiative and courage are essential for creating the lives we aspire to live.

Social entrepreneurs are important agents of change in a globalized society. Jacobs University encourages students to recognize problems and use entrepreneurial principles to organize, create, and manage ventures that bring about change, and to measure success in terms of impact. Members of the Jacobs University community have a strong commitment to environmental responsibility as an important institutional value. Environmental stewardship and the promotion of sustainable practices are threaded through all facets of campus life.

Research and education at the university go hand in hand with a thorough instruction in ethics and values. Honesty and integrity guide our academic, social, and interpersonal endeavors.