The Master of Science in Geography allows to specialise in three fields: Urban Studies, Geomorphology and Management of Mountain Regions, and Development Studies.

The programme offers:

  • an interdisciplinary programme at the interface of Geosciences and Environmental Sciences;
  • a general reflection on the organisation of territories, of technical networks and of spatial, natural and human systems on different spatial scales;
  • an in-depth reflection on the transformations of urban spaces in a perspective of sustainable development: eco-urban planning, city policies, urban planning;
  • an in-depth study of the natural dynamics of the Alpine environment and its evolution linked to climatic changes, socio-economic changes and territorial development;
  • an emphasis in teaching on the use of quantitative methods (Spatial Analysis, Geomatics, Geovisualisation).

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline 30 April. Candidates needing a visa to study in Switzerland: 28 February.
Tuition fee
  • EUR 545 Semester (Non-EEA)
  • EUR 545 Semester (EEA)

CHF 580 per semester

Start date
Credits (ECTS) 120 ECTS
Duration full-time 24 months
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

The first three semesters are dedicated to training and the start of research work. After a period of general preparation, the training continues in the specialisation module in the second and third semesters.

The subject area Urban Studies is based largely on human geography. It includes two optional subjects. On the one hand, the sub-ject «Sustainable Town Planning and Urban Projects» is based on a study of the envi-ronmental challenges of sustainable urban development and analysis of urban projects viewed from the perspective of ecological town planning. On the other hand, the subject «City Systems and Spatial Analysis» broadens theoretical and practical knowledge of spatial analysis and analysis of geographical informa-tion networks and systems (GIS).

The “Geomorphology and Management of Mountain Regions”orientation, with a strong grounding in Geomorphology and a focus on the study of environmental dynamics in high mountain regions, concentrates in particular on the reaction of permafrost to climatic changes and the evolution of alpine landscapes due to the combined effects of environmental and socioeconomic changes.

The “Development Studies” specialisation is orientated towards the study of economic, social, political and ecological transformation in the countries of the south. Development is described in rural and urban contexts, especial-ly in Africa and Asia. Apart from the scientific analyses, training emphasises apprenticeship in the instruments used in international coopera-tion. The fourth semester is devoted essentially to writing the dissertation in the subject of the chosen orientation. The last two semesters can lead to more specific training as part of a work placement or an international placement certificate (practical training).


Various evaluation methods are used. Practical tests, seminars and ongoing checks are carried out in principle during course periods. Written and oral examinations are held during the Faculty’s scheduled examination sessions. The Master’s dissertation is a personal research activity carried out under the responsibility of a Faculty teacher. This activity is the subject matter of a written document (dissertation). The Master’s diploma is awarded following its oral presentation and defence.


Candidates must be holders of a Bachelor of Science in Geosciences and Environment degree awarded by the University of Lausanne, or of a Bachelor’s degree in Geography, Environmental Studies or Earth Sciences awarded by a Swiss university. Another degree or academic title may be judged equivalent and give access to the Master’s degree course, with or without further conditions

Teaching language: French, some courses in English. Recommended level: C1.

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

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University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Switzerland Founded in 1537, the University of Lausanne is composed of seven faculties where approximately 11,500 students and 2,200 researchers work and study. Emphasis is placed on an interdisciplinary approach, with close cooperation between students, professors and teaching staff. The UNIL campus is spread across three locations, the largest of which is in Dorigny, on the shores of Lake Geneva.

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