International collaboration

Cornwall's important mining heritage was recognised in 2006 when it was granted World Heritage Site status by UNESCO.

About us

Camborne School of Mines (CSM), a department in Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences (EMPS), was founded in 1888 and has an international reputation. Our research and teaching is related to the understanding and management of the Earth's natural processes, resources (minerals, hydrocarbons, energy) and the environment.

Our portfolio of undergraduate, postgraduate and research degree programmes span mining and minerals engineering, geology, environmental management, geotechnics, surveying and renewable energy. They provide an excellent basis for careers, in the UK or overseas, within the Earth resources, civil engineering, environmental and energy sectors. The vast majority of our graduates are employed in areas related to their degree.


During the the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, Cornwall was one of the most important and influential metalliferous mining regions in the world. CSM was founded in the late Nineteenth Century to meet the needs of this local industry. However, copper production had already dramatically decreased and the remaining tin mining industry was to facing a serious downturn.

For many, employment overseas was the favoured option and by the beginning of the Twentieth Century, graduates were already be found in most of the world's major mining areas such as Southern Africa, Malaysia, Australia, South America, Mexico, USA and Canada. The relevance of the practical training imparted at Camborne was immediately recognised and a reputation for producing technically capable graduates was rapidly established, thus ensuring further demand back in Cornwall.

CSM adapted readily to globalisation within the minerals industry and throughout much of the Twentieth Century was perhaps better known overseas than in the UK as it consolidated its position as a leading international educational institution.

Relocation and expansion

CSM was located in the centre of Camborne for almost a century but, following major investment by the international mining industry and others, relocated in 1975 to purpose-built facilities mid-way between Camborne and Redruth.

Around this time, the Associateship of the Camborne School Mines (ACSM) qualification was formalised into an accredited BEng (Hons) in Mining Engineering and a separate degree in Minerals Engineering was introduced. Research began in 'Hot Dry Rock' geothermal technology that burgeoned into a £40m project over the following 16 years and also achieved widespread popular national recognition.

Significant expansion and diversification of teaching and research provision occurred during the 1980s and early 1990s, including the development of undergraduate and taught postgraduate degree programmes in geology, environmental science and surveying.

CSM joins The University of Exeter

In 1993, CSM was incorporated into the University of Exeter. Initiatives by the University of Exeter and others to expand Higher Education provision in Cornwall came to fruition in 1999 with the launch of the Combined Universities in Cornwall (CUC) Initiative.

Tremough, just outside Falmouth, was selected as the site for the CUC 'hub' and following the £50 m Phase 1 build programme was transformed into the Tremough Campus. As part of these developments, an undergraduate degree programme in Renewable Energy was introduced in 2003 and CSM relocated to Tremough during summer 2004 and benefited from significant capital investment in its teaching and research facilities.