The EU's Best Universities for an Oil Career

Article title
Rigzone takes a look at seven EU universities that offer degree courses designed to help young people achieve a career in the oil and gas sector.

One of the benefits of the European Union is that it is relatively straightforward for citizens of one particular EU country to study in another EU country. This means that young EU nationals with a burning desire to get into the oil and gas sector can choose to attend one of several universities that specialize in oil and gas-related degrees even if they come from a country with no oil and gas industry of its own.

Another bonus is that, thanks to EU law, EU nationals generally only pay the tuition fees that local students would pay – so, for example, studying for a degree in the Netherlands would be a lot cheaper (typically $2,600 per year) than attending a university in England (up to $15,000 per year).

Here, Rigzone takes a look at a number of universities that an aspiring oil and gas engineer or petroleum geologist can attend within the EU.

This list is by no means exhaustive. We have focused on universities whose oil and gas-related courses are taught in English and which have close links with the industry.


Austria has a number of world-class universities offering oil and gas-related degrees courses such as engineering and geology, but these programs are nearly always taught in German. An exception is Montanuniversität Leoben, which has recently expanded its petroleum engineering offerings:

Leoben University

Montanuniversität Leoben

Austria's Montanuniversität Leoben last year became the beneficiary of a $13.5-million per year initiative with OMV, the country's leading oil and gas producer. The initiative has helped the university double its investment in oil and gas-related research and teaching as well as establish an International Petroleum Academy.

OMV is hungry for top graduates in oil and gas-related disciplines as it expands its exploration and production activities in the North Sea, Black Sea and elsewhere, so young Europeans looking for a career in the sector could do worse than to get themselves onto Montanuniversität Leoben's bachelor's or master's programs in 'petroleum engineering'.

Both degree courses are taught in English, with the bachelor's program lasting for seven semesters and the master's program taking three.


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A former engineer, Jon is an award-winning editor who has covered the technology, engineering and energy sectors since the mid-1990s. Email Jon at


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Generated by readers, the comments included herein do not reflect the views and opinions of Rigzone. All comments are subject to editorial review. Off-topic, inappropriate or insulting comments will be removed.
Bernardo | Jul. 24, 2014
Not to forger Subsea Msc at Aberdeen University, it is a fairly good programme with good industry connections

Peter Schwarz | Jul. 11, 2014
The University of Stavanger is considered one of the best places to study petroleum engineering in Norway, located in the undisputed oil capital, Stavanger. The university has approximately 10.000 students, 10 percent having international background. The university is renowned for its close contact with the oil and gas industry, with the headquarters of 26 international oil and gas companies in the region. The university offers English Master’s programmes in a wide range of courses, including Offshore Technology, Environmental Technology, Petroleum Engineering, and Petroleum Geosciences Engineering. It was recently chosen by the Norwegian Government to host Norway’s new cutting-edge petroleum research centre for Improved Oil Recovery, based on a national competition evaluating scientific quality and collaboration with industry. The degree in Petroleum Engineering has been offered since 1977 and is at the forefront of petroleum engineering education worldwide. It offers three specializations; Well Engineering, Reservoir Engineering and Natural Gas Engineering. The degree in Offshore Technology is focused on industrial asset management, risk management and issues related to the design of offshore installations for the oil and gas industry. This programme incorporates three streams of specialization; Industrial Asset Management, Marine and Subsea Technology and Risk Management. The degrees have an international profile and accommodates both Norwegian and international students.

Alan MacLennan | Jul. 8, 2014
Robert Gordon University also offers MSc Information Management by distance learning. Its a profession increasingly in demand in the O&G industries, as we know from our friends (and graduates) in the industry who advise us on course content.

Rob Townsend | Jul. 7, 2014
In the UK there are several Geological Society of London accredited courses that have not been mentioned here. A recently accredited course that is worthy of mention would be that of the University of Derby with its MSc in Applied Petroleum Geoscience.

Vutescu Cristian | Jul. 7, 2014
University Oil and Gas Ploiesti Romania. In Ploiesti, the capital of the Oil industry in Romania. From this University, at this moment, many engineers are working around the word for the most important Oil Companies.

Joel Couse | Jul. 5, 2014
Im stunned to see that Frances IFP (Institut Français du Pétrole) gets no mention in your list. Its certainly the equal of any of the schools mentionned in the last, and is backed by a very large research activity.

Wale olojo | Jul. 5, 2014
If you read the write up from the start you would realise he said the list is not exhaustive and also that if you wanted cheap tuition but quality education. Im sure thats why hes not mentioned Heriot watt.

Olarinre Salako | Jul. 4, 2014
I want to believe this survey is incomplete. This is because Heriot Watt Institute of Petroleum Engineering is well known all over the world. It is a leading centre of excellence in petroleum engineering and petroleum geosciences teaching, training and research with strong links to industry worldwide. It has graduated many Petroleum Engineers, Reservoir Managers and Geoscientists who are doing very well in the industry. The institute has gotten 5-star awards for third time running ahead of Imperial College

Andrew Faulkner | Jul. 2, 2014
I find it extraordinary that Heriot Watts department of petroleum engineering gets no mention. it is considered ( by employers) one of the best in the world let alone Europe or is this survey based purely on recent grant awards?


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