Study close to nature in Norway

Johannes dreamt about studying earth science right outside the university. Master’s studies in Bergen made this possible.

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I really appreciate the good working climate and the high academic level. I wasn't aware of the fact that I would get my own desk, but I think that was really great!

– As a university city, Bergen has a unique status worldwide. Just a few hundred meters outside our department we can study geological phenomena that you must travel several hundred kilometres for at another university, says Johannes Wiest.

He has just finished his master’s degree in Earth science at the Department of Earth Science at the University of Bergen.

Why Bergen and Earth Science?

Johannes Wiest from Stuttgart in Germany was looking for an attractive city with good life quality and a place where he could follow his interests: hiking and climbing.

 – I’m used to seeing pictures of geological phenomena, but to experience them in real life you have to go on a field trip. I missed studying close to nature, he says.

The first week of his semester at the University of Bergen the German student started his field work not far from his department. He identified details at different rock types in the area around the mountain Lyderhorn in the western part of Bergen.

– It was a great experience to just go a few hundred meters outside my department and do these studies. I spent 35 days around this mountain and really enjoyed it.

Master's students have their own desk

– And how did you feel welcomed at your department?

– At the department I felt welcome at once, and I really appreciate the good working climate and the high academic level on both research and education. I was not aware of the fact that I would get my own desk as a master s' student, but I think that was a really great thing.

What is your best advice for people that want to do their master's degree at UiB?

– It’s worth to learn Norwegian before you arrive. Even if you manage totally fine at the university with English, speaking Norwegian will offer you a lot of possibilities and help you to get integrated.

One year master’s thesis

How did you learn about the master's degree programme at UiB?

– First I found information about different master’s programmes in Europe online. Then I got in contact with my future supervisor, who was my main source of information. What I really liked about the master's programme at UiB was the large master project that constitutes half of the two year programme. The flexible choice of courses and a number of known researchers at the department were important to me, he says.

How was your first time at UiB?

– I have to say that I didn't really feel welcome by UiB, but that is probably mainly because I arrived in Bergen already in July to work a lab assistant over the summer. Before the new semester starts and everything is shut down because of public holidays.

– How did you solve these startup problems?

– After some difficulties in the start I really enjoyed my stay at UiB, especially since I moved into a shared flat in the city centre. I got to know Norwegians and also got more into the Norwegian culture.

Wants to stay

What are your study or work plans for the future?

– I'm doing really well in Bergen, therefore I'm trying to get a PhD here.


1. Fjellhytten

2. Fiskesleppet (Tælavåg)

3. USF Verftet (cultural venue)and Nordnesparken (park)

4. Ujevnt (pub close to campus)

5. Tennebekktjørna (Kanadaskogen)