The person responsible for the implementation, development and quality of the study programme
Persons responsible for the profile courses of the study programme
The institution defines the learning objectives of the study programme such as student's abilities at the time of completion of the programme and the main learning outcomes.
A graduate of applied geophysics studies the structure and composition of the lithosphere using geophysical methods. Geophysical methods are based on the measurement and interpretation of natural and artificial physical fields, the parameters of which are influenced by the properties of the rock and soil environment. It is a typical frontier science - it is between geosciences and physics. A graduate of the Applied Geophysics PhD programme will acquire advanced knowledge and skills in the systematic understanding of the scientific principles used in the field of applied geophysics. This acquired knowledge and skills contribute to the ability to conceive, implement and modify the fundamental part of research with scientific integrity. The basic qualification of the graduate is to integrate the acquired knowledge and skills, to cope with the complexity of the problems to be solved and to formulate decisions even from incomplete information. Graduates are also able to critically analyse, evaluate and synthesise new and complex concepts - many of the scientific tasks in applied geophysics include these challenges, and each solved case needs to be approached individually. The emphasis in the study itself is on acquiring advanced methodological knowledge of the scientific principles of the various methods of applied geophysics, which have a wide range of applications in the study of the physical properties of rock and soil environments. Graduates can independently lead and manage professional and scientific research projects in this field and have the ability to take responsibility for complex solutions. During their studies, they will acquire the skills to creatively solve problems in broader contexts beyond their field of study - geophysics is predisposed to this thanks to its interdisciplinary nature. Graduates will be able to manage the preparation and implementation of fieldwork, executing measurements using geophysical equipment, work with measured data sets, their interpretation and the construction of graphs, maps and spatial models of the rock and soil environment. They will learn the fundamentals of programming, which will greatly expand their possibilities in solving scientific and professional problems - they are not reliant on working only with existing professional IT tools, but they are also able to complete several procedures on their own (using programming). Graduates are able to work independently and to publish the obtained outputs in domestic and foreign peer-reviewed scientific journals. They are encouraged to do this throughout their studies, as they have to provide several publications of their scientific results in peer-reviewed journals at the end of their studies. Graduates are able to clearly communicate conclusions, findings and justifications to professionals in the geosciences as well as to lay audiences. In communicating to the public, the involvement of students in the Faculty Open Day, where they have the opportunity to communicate more complex phenomena and procedures to high school students, is very helpful. The level of their professional qualification is demonstrated by the graduates when they pass the state dissertation examinations and especially when they defend their final (dissertation) thesis, which is judged by three independent opponents. The final thesis must be an original work in which the author discusses known facts and confronts them with new knowledge gained during its elaboration - either on a theoretical level (synthetic models of geophysical fields) or on a practical level (application-oriented theses).
Graduates of the Applied Geophysics study programme will receive an education that opens up great opportunities for them in both academia and practice: not only in the field of geoscience applications, but also in other scientific fields related to the study of the abiotic environment. They are able to promote scientific progress both in an academic and professional context.
The institution indicates the professions for which the graduate is prepared at the time of completion and the potential of the study programme from the point of view of graduate's employability.
In the case of the presented description of the PhD study programme Applied Geophysics, it is the only specialised third-level education of this kind in the Slovak Republic, focused on applied geophysics, its graduates have the opportunity to work in various geoscientific, geotechnical, environmental and other sectors. In most cases, it is a position of an independent scientist, of course working in a team of experts. We list here typical positions for geophysicists in various institutions and companies:
- Geophysicist in scientific research and educational institutions in the natural sciences;
- Geophysicist in exploration organisations and companies focused on the implementation of geological research and exploration;
- Geophysicist in exploration organisations and companies focused on monitoring of abiotic environment;
- Geophysicist in exploration organisations and companies focused on the mining of mineral resources;
- Geophysicist in project organisations, laboratories and companies focused on civil-geological works, water management, as well as pollution remediation and solving the environmental problems;
- Geophysicist in project organisations focusing on technical exploration work for capital construction;
- Geophysicist in research institutions focused on the study of the impact of the environment on the health and quality of life of the population;
- Geophysicist in project organisations and companies focused on unexploded ordnance detection and forensic analysis;
- Geophysicists in scientific research institutions and firms focused on archaeological exploration.
The employment after successful completion of the submitted study programme also applies to the occupation listed in the Register of Occupations of the Slovak Republic: Geophysicist (https://www.sustavapovolani.sk/karta_zamestnania-496022-32)
Graduates of the Applied Geophysics study programme have successfully found employment in academia: as independent researchers (Slovak Academy of Sciences: Institute of Earth Sciences and Institute of Archaeology) or as assistant professors, associate professors and professors (Faculty of Natural Sciences, Comenius University in Bratislava); in public administration, represented by institutions such as the State Geological Institute of Dionýz Štúr, the Water Management Research Institute, the Geodetic and Cartographic Institute. The graduates are in great demand and also work in the private sector - in companies with geological, mining, geotechnical, hydrogeological and environmental focus - such as Nafta a.s., Geocomplex a.s., ESPRIT s.r.o., AEGEO s.r.o. and many others. Several graduates work in renowned foreign companies, such as GEODATA ZT (Austria) and ROADSCANNERS OY. (Finland). In general, the graduates of the Applied Geophysics programme are important for the economy and society (often in leading positions), whether in the state, public or private sector. Graduates of the Applied Geophysics study programme receive level of education, which will allow them to take hold on universities and research institutions in central and also Western Europe countries.
For individual study plans, the institution states the requirements for completing the individual parts of the study programme and the student's progress within the study programme in the given structure:
- Number of credits for compulsory courses: 54,
- Number of credits for compulsory optional courses: 14,
- Number of credits for optional courses: 25,
- Number of credits for the dissertation exam and Number of credits for the dissertation defence: 15.