From the Fall Semester 2015, ARCEx and the Department of Geology at UiT The Arctic University of Norway launches a new Master’s specialization in Petroleum Geoscience.

The Master’s specialization is designed for students with an interest in petroleum related topics, and who want to write their thesis in a petroleum related direction. The candidates will be involved with ARCEx research activities and will be provided with a multidisciplinary understanding of challenges related to energy and the environmental and climatic aspects of this. The research areas of ARCEx include Basin Analysis, Petroleum Systems, Eco- Safe exploration and Technology related to Petroleum Exploration in Arctic areas.

The Master’s thesis will be focused on one of the centre’s research directions. Candidates from the Master’s in Petroleum Geosciences can write their Master’s thesis with supervision among the leading competence in Petroleum Geoscience research in Norway.

ARCEx is a consortium with 10 research partners and 9 industry partners. This allows for a broad spectrum of possible topics for the thesis. New courses in Petroleum Geoscience are also under establishment.

The Master’s Programme for Petroleum Geoscience is presented below.

Two courses are mandatory for all students in the Master’s Specialization in Petroleum Geoscience. These are the courses in Petroleum Prospecting (GEO-3119) and Petroleum Geology (GEO 3115).

The Master’s Specialization in Petroleum Geoscience is based on a Bachelor’s degree in Geology.

Master's degree in Petroleum Geoscience

 Table 1. Master’s program in Petroleum Geoscience.


GEO-3119 Petroleum Prospecting (10 ECTS)
After completing Petroleum Prospecting (GEO-3119) the students shall:

  • Be able to do a general independent interpretation of conventional logs used in the petroleum industry
  • Be able to carry out standard prospect evaluation and be able to identify the main geological and operational risk elements
  • Have knowledge about the application and award processes on the Norwegian Shelf
  • Have knowledge of the online resources of the Norwegian Petroleum Directory as a source for information
  • Have knowledge about the process and requirements in connection with a drilling operation
  • Have knowledge of the terminology from the petroleum industry, i.e. prospect evaluation, logging and drilling operations.

The course responsible is Adjunct Associate Professor Erik Henriksen, North Energy.

To find out more about GEO-3119, visit:

The course is given in the fall semester.


GEO-3115 Petroleum geology (10 ECTS)

Petroleum Geology (GEO-3115) gives an evaluation of conditions and processes involved in the generation and transformation of organic material in source rocks and the migration of these hydrocarbons to reservoir rocks. Geological conditions that are important for determining the location and production of petroleum are illuminated using actual examples.

During the course the students shall obtain knowledge on:

  • Main elements involved in Petroleum Geology
  • Reservoir, what controls the quality
  • Geochemistry – source – liquids
  • Traps, timing, structural geology
  • Main fields along the Norwegian shelf – Be able to do a prospect evaluation
  • Hydrocarbon indicators and risk evaluation.
  • Concession processes
  • Test and production / economy within projects

The course also includes a two-day visit to Statoil’s offices in Harstad, with state of the art presentations.

The course responsible is Adjunct Associate Professor Bjarne Rafaelsen, Statoil.

To find out more about the course, visit:

The course is given in the spring semester.


Optional courses

The following courses are optional courses for the master specialization in Petroleum Geoscience.

Suggested courses for your specialization will be discussed with your supervisor.

  • GEO-3122 Micropalaeontology (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3121 Marin geology (ECTS 10)
  • GEO-3123 Marine geophysics (ECTS 10)
  • GEO-3126 Practical seismic processing (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3127 Three-dimensional seismic interpretation (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3104 Advanced structural geology (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3106 Tectonics (ECTS 10)
  • GEO-3112 Sedimentary processes and products (ECTS 10)
  • GEO-3113 Field course in exogene geology (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3118 Environmental geology (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3128 Marine geohazards (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3129 Drilling and production of oil and gas (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3144 Arctic marine geology and geophysics cruise (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3145 Arctic marine geology and geophysics workshop (ECTS 5)
  • GEO-3151 Geoseminar i energi og klima (ECTS 10)
  • Geology Project GEO-3221 (ECTS 5) or GEO-3222 (ECTS 10)

Find out more about the optional courses on: