After obtaining a Geology BSc from Bristol University and a PhD in Sedimentology from Leeds University, Jan Alexander became a lecturer in the Geology Department of University College Cardiff (which became Cardiff University).  In 1996, Jan was appointed Senior Lecturer in Sedimentology at UEA and promoted to Professor of Environmental Earth Science in 2009.  

Jan's early research concentrated on tectonic controls on sedimentary processes (e.g. how rivers or ocean floor processes respond to tectonic activity), controls on sediments accumulation over long periods of time and the three-dimensional architecture of sedimentary rock types.  Recently she has mostly concentrated on how sediment is eroded, transported and deposited in extreme events (floods and sub-aqueous gravity flows), and the diagnostic features in the deposits that might be used to recognise them in the rock record.  Over the years, Jan has studied sedimentary processes and products in rivers, lakes, seas and oceans of North America, Australia and Europe, and also undertaken a wide range of laboratory experiments to understand aspects of the interactions between moving water and sediment.
Jan Alexander teaches at all levels within UEA including contributions to the undergraduate first year module "Understanding the Dynamic Planet", second year "Earth Science Skills" and "Sedimentology", third year "Fossil Fuels" and MSc "Research topics in Earth Sciences".  She also supervises PhD students.



  • 1986-89 Lecturer in Applied Sedimentology, Geology Department, University College, Cardiff.
  • 1989-96 Lecturer, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Wales, Cardiff.
  • 1993 Honorary Assistant Professor, Department of Geological Sciences, State University of New York - Binghampton, USA.
  • 1996-2002 Senior Lecturer, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia.
  • 2002 Visiting Fellow, University of Queensland, Brisbane.
  • 2002-2009 Reader, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia.
  • 2009 - Professor of Environmental Earth Sciences, University of East Anglia.

PhD Positions

Click here for current PhD opportunities in the School of Environmental Sciences.  However, feel free to email me to discuss projects outside these areas and alternative sources of funding.

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