Handbook valid until batch 2022/Class of 2026!
Earth and Environmental Sciences for a sustainable future!
The Earth and Environmental Sciences program, EES, combines geochemistry, geophysics, geology and oceanography with environmental and data science to provide a holistic understanding of the Earth. Students apply their skills to real-world challenges such as climate change, environmental degradation and the sustainable and responsible use of natural resources such as water, energy and all the other raw materials needed for high-tech industry. Cooperation with the life sciences and social sciences is strongly encouraged.
EES graduates are prepared for careers in academia, industry, government agencies and NGOs.
Enjoy interactive classroom insights as well as hands-on experience during laboratory courses, field camps, excursions, a research cruise and involvement in research projects.
Learn how to make our planet a better place and our future more sustainable in a program that has repeatedly been ranked the #1 geoscience program in Germany.
The three-year undergraduate program involves six semesters of study with a total of 180 ECTS credit points (CP). The curricular structure follows an innovative and student-centered modularization scheme - the 3C-Model - that groups the disciplinary content of the three study years according to overarching themes:
The ﬁrst study year is characterized by a broad offer in disciplinary education that builds on and extends the students’ entrance qualification. EES Students select introductory modules with a total of 45 CP from the CHOICE area of a variety of study programs, of which 15-30 CP will be from their intended major.
Students can still change to another major at the beginning of the second year of studies if they have taken the corresponding modules of the study program in the first year of studies.
EES students take the following discipline-specific CHOICE Modules (15 CP) in their first year of study:
- CHOICE Module: General Earth and Environmental Sciences (7.5 CP)
- CHOICE Module: General Geoscience (7.5 CP)
These CHOICE modules introduce the students in the 1st semester to the fundamentals of Earth and Environmental Sciences (e.g., the structure of the Earth, its major compartments, plate tectonics, time-scales, and the human impact on the natural environment), and in the 2nd semester provide more specific knowledge of geomaterials and geological phenomena and address the exogenic and endogenic processes that shape them.
In their second year, students take modules with a total of 45 CP from in-depth, discipline-speciﬁc CORE modules. These modules aim to extend the students’ critical understanding of the key theories, principles, and methods in their major at the current state of knowledge and best practice.
EES students take 30 CP from the following CORE modules:
- CORE Module: Environmental Science (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Geochemistry of Igneous and Aqueous Systems (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Earth Data Science (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Oceanography (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Mineral, Metal and Water Resources (7.5 CP)
- CORE Module: Geophysical Remote Sensing (7.5 CP)
15 CP in CORE modules can be selected in the second year of studies according to interest and/or with the aim to pursue a minor in a second field of studies.
During their third year, students prepare and make decisions for their career after graduation. To explore available choices fitting individual interests, and to gain professional experience, students take a mandatory summer internship.
The 5th semester opens also a mobility window for study abroad options. Finally, the 6th semester is dedicated to fostering the research experience of students by involving them in an extended Bachelor thesis and seminar module, which aims at data generation of publication quality.
EES students take major-specific advanced Specialization modules to consolidate their knowledge at the current state of research in areas of their choice.
EES students take at least 15 CP from the following Specialization Modules:
- Specialization: Advanced Oceanographic and Geological Field Lab (5 CP)
- Specialization: Global Change and Systems Thinking (5 CP)
- Specialization: Modelling of Earth System Data (5 CP)
- Specialization: Current Topics in Earth and Environmental Science (5 CP)
In addition to the advancement of disciplinary skills within EES, these specialization modules are also meant to bring together different disciplinary threads developed in the CORE area in an interdisciplinary context, thus realizing the idea of capstone modules in the third year of study.
As a core element of Constructor University’s employability approach students are required to engage in a mandatory two-month internship of 15 CP that will usually be completed during the summer between the second and third year of study. This gives students the opportunity to gain first-hand practical experience in a professional environment, apply their knowledge and understanding to a professional context, reflect on the relevance of their major in employment and society, reflect on their own role in employment and society, and find professional orientation. As an alternative to the full-time internship, students interested in setting up their own company can apply for a start-up option to focus on the development of their business plan.
The Jacobs Track, an important feature of Constructor University’s educational concept, runs parallel to the disciplinary modules across all study years and is an integral part of the study program. It reﬂects a university-wide commitment to an in-depth training in scientific methods, fosters an interdisciplinary approach, raises awareness of global challenges and societal responsibility, enhances employability, and equips students with extra skills desirable in the general ﬁeld of study. Additionally, it integrates (German) language and culture modules.
Methods and Skills modules
Methods and skills such as mathematics, statistics, programming, data handling, presentation skills, academic writing, and scientific and experimental skills are offered to all students as part of modules within the Methods and Skills area. Students are required to take 20 CP in the Methods/Skills area.
EES students take the following Methods modules (15 CP):
- Methods Module: Mathematical Concepts for the Sciences (5 CP)
- Methods Module: Chemistry for Natural Scientists (5 CP)
- Methods Module: Physics for Natural Scientists (5 CP)
One module can be chosen freely among offered Methods Modules.
Big Questions modules
The modules of the Big Questions area intend to broaden the students’ horizon with applied problem solving between and beyond the disciplines. The offerings comprise problem-solving oriented modules that tackle global challenges from the perspectives of different disciplinary backgrounds and that allow, in particular, a reflection of the acquired disciplinary knowledge in economic, societal, technological, and/or ecological contexts.
EES students select 2-4 modules (10 CP) from a broad portfolio of Big Questions modules.
Community Impact Project
In their 5th semester, students are required to take a 5 CP Community Impact Project (CIP) module. Students engage in on-campus or off-campus activities that challenge their social responsibility, i.e., they typically work on major-related projects that make a difference in the community life on campus, in its neighborhood, in Bremen, or on a cross-regional level.
Constructor University supports its students in acquiring and improving these skills by offering a variety of language modules at all proﬁciency levels. Emphasis is put on fostering German language skills of international students as they are an important prerequisite for non-native speaking students to learn about, explore, and eventually integrate into their host country and its professional environment.
All students take four language courses in the first and second year.
The curriculum of the study program is outlined in the schematic study plan:
- Our applied geophysics area currently focuses on Petroleum Systems Modelling, Seismic Exploration, Gas Hydrate research and Marine Geophysics.
- Research activities in Space Physics include auroral plasma physics, analysis of multi-spacecraft observations in geospace, and the study of how geomagnetic variations affect System Earth.
- Research areas for Planetariy Geology include various aspects of Comparative Planetology, such as: aeolian, fluvio-lacustrine, glacial fluid escape processes, impact cratering and the study of Terrestrial (geological) analogues for better interpreting space-based data and planning future exploration. (Big) data discovery, access and analysis for planetary science is also covered.
- Environmental Geochemistry
- Marine Geochemistry
Oceanography at Constructor University is divided into four areas of emphasis:
- Biological Oceanography: examines the processes governing the distribution, abundances, and production of plants, animals, and nutrients in the oceanic ecosystem. Emphasis is on investigations of bacteria, phytoplankton, zooplankton, and benthic organisms. Progress entails identifying the patterns of variability in space and time, determining the processes producing and maintaining the patterns, then quantifying the processes.
- Chemical Oceanography: investigates the complex chemistry, distribution and cycling of dissolved substances, nutrients, and gases in seawater, the mechanisms controlling them and their origins and fates.
- Marine Geology & Geophysics: studies marine sediments (their formation, transport, and deposition); ocean basin formation (plate tectonics); processes governing shoreline formation; and the origin, structure, and history of the oceanic crust and upper mantle.
- Physical Oceanography: endeavors to understand and predict motion in the sea. Scales of motion range from millimeters through tidal and current scales to the great ocean gyres. The distribution of physical properties (temperature, salinity, sea ice) and air-sea interaction and its implications for climate are fertile areas of research.
Around 30 Constructor students and scientists had the chance to do research on Planetary Sciences, Geophysics and Oceanography during their exciting ROBEX Summer School on the Italian island Vulcano in June 2018. The excursion was part of the research alliance „Robotic Exploration of Extreme Environments”, together with the DLR (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt).
More about the project: http://robexsummerschool.de/
This study program is part of the School of Science.
The School of Science focuses on multidisciplinary research and teaching to enhance the quality of life, health, and longevity through science and technology. Different approaches are used to study novel bioactive substances and functional materials at the molecular and nanoscale as well as to advance quantum technologies and exploit resources and energy in a sustainable manner.
Key disciplines in the school include Mathematics, Physics, Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Cell Biology, Chemistry, and Earth Sciences.
Become part of a global community
Constructor University Students come from all over the world to live and learn at Constructor University. Our student body represents 110 nations. They form an ambitious campus community whose internationality is unprecedented in Europe. Constructor University’s green and tree-shaded 80-acre campus provides much more than buildings for teaching and research.