Environmental Science BSc (Hons)

Key information


geography-1

Module details

Programme Year One

Year One is based around four core modules to provide key skills and knowledge across the School of Environmental Sciences in the classroom, online, field and laboratory. These are supported by three optional modules to allow you to begin to explore what interests you most.

Year One Compulsory Modules

  • Experiments in Physical Geography I (ENVS120)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    For students to learn:

    Careful observation, appropriate handing of liquid and solid samples, and correct use of analytical instruments.

    Approaches to measurement quality control via replication and reference materials.

    Appropriate use of descriptive and inferential statistics using MINITAB.

    Succinct and clear presentation of experimental results in poster form (Powerpoint)

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) A deeper understanding of processes that underlie the interaction between people and the physical environment.

    (LO2) Specific knowledge in the use of selected important analytical instrument; and general knowledge about the principles and practice of accurate and precise measurement.

    (LO3) Appropriate treatment of data, including quality control, graphical representation, and statistical analysis.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Teamwork

    (S4) Organisational skills

    (S5) IT skills

  • Laboratory and Field Techniques for [marine and Terrestrial] Ecologists (ENVS171)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting25:73
    Aims

    This practical module will provide training in a range of ecological skills in a series of field exercises, either in person, or through online equivalent exercises, as necessary. The skills used will have a wide application to many fields of environmental science including modern biology, ecology and physical geography. Techniques taught include sampling and identification of plants and animals, communities and measurement of selected ecological processes. You will learn quantitative skills in field ecology and how they can be used to solve fundamental and applied problems. You will also learn quite a lot of ecology.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Be able to apply a quantitative approach to field and laboratory ecology.

    (LO2) Understand how to identify taxa and be familiar with the range of approaches used to sample species and communities.

    (LO3) Understand the basis of how biodiversity is adapted to, and influenced by, environmental conditions.

    (S1) Adaptability

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Numeracy

    (S4) Organisational skills

  • Study Skills and Gis (ENVS100)
    Level1
    Credit level30
    SemesterWhole Session
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The educational aims of this module are to:

    Develop essential study and disciplinary skills required by Geographers and Environmental Scientists, both for their current studies and future employment.

    Introduce students to key approaches/concepts and ideas in Geography and Environmental Science.

    Help students identify and effectively employ appropriate sources of data and information.

    Develop students' study skills and provide essential training for subsequent years

    Develop students' personal transferable skills.

    Enhance student employability and make students aware of the key skills taught throughout the programme relevant to career and employability development.

    Introduce the application of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS) to Environmental/Social Science.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Use IT tools to find accurate and up to date information.

    (LO2) Undertake independent GPS data collection.

    (LO3) Demonstrate basic GIS interpretation and analysis techniques.

    (LO4) Plan and structure written work to University standard.

    (LO5) Ability to critically evaluate academic publications.

    (LO6) Awareness of the importance of early planning for employability enhancement.

    (S1) Lifelong learning skills

    (S2) IT skills

    (S3) Communication skills

  • Theory and Laboratory Experiments in Earth Surface Processes (ENVS165)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The module uses a lecture and laboratory-based problem-solving approach to explore some of the fundamental physical and chemical processes underlying physical geography. It is designed to provide a foundation for environmental and physical geography modules in the second and third years.

    It also aims to provide training in careful observation, appropriate handing of liquid and solid samples, and correct use of analytical instruments. Throughout there is emphasis on quality control via replication and reference materials, and appropriate use of descriptive and inferential statistics.

    *To note that all LOs can be met using fully online delivery methods as needed.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) The core processes and landforms underlying major geomorphic systems

    (LO2) Long term environmental change – Pleistocene and Holocene

    (LO3) A deeper understanding of processes that underlie the interaction between people and the physical environment

    (LO4) Specific knowledge in the use of selected important analytical instruments; and general knowledge about the principles and practice of accurate and precise measurement

    (LO5) Appropriate treatment of data, including quality control, graphical representation, and statistical analysis

    (S1) IT skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Problem solving skills

    (S4) Teamwork

Year One Optional Modules

  • Climate, Atmosphere and Oceans (ENVS111)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
    Aims

    Introduce the climate system, the atmosphere and ocean:

    Address how the climate system varies and how climate is controlled by radiative forcing;

    How the structure of the atmosphere is determined and how the atmosphere circulates;

    How the structure of the ocean is determined and how the ocean circulates;

    How the atmosphere and ocean vary together in affecting the present and past climate system.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Knowledge and Understanding

    a. Understand how physical processes operate within the climate system, the atmosphere and the ocean.

    b. Appreciate the complexity of the climate system, the effect of radiative forcing, the concept of feedbacks, how rotation affects the circulation; the differences between currents and waves.

    c. Gain awareness of the similarities and differences between the atmosphere and ocean.

    d. Gain an awareness of policies and strategies to move towards achieving net zero carbon on a national stage.

    (LO2) Intellectual Abilities

    a. To be able to evaluate the relative importance of different physical processes in the climate systemb.

    b. To develop critical skills in transferring insight gained from one problem to another problem, such as how the atmosphere circulates from one planet to another planet.

    (LO3) Subject Based Practical Skills

    a. Perform simple order of magnitude calculations and make inferences from the results.

    b. Understand the use of units and dimensions.

    (LO4) General Transferable Skills

    a. Application of numbers, involving order of magnitudes and dimensions.

    b. Time management.

    c. Problem solving.

    d. Group work.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Digital fluency : ability to think critically and make balanced judgments, and use digital platforms to collaborate and communicate.

  • Earth Structure and Plate Tectonics (ENVS112)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The “Earth structure and plate tectonics” module provide an introduction to the Earth and aim to teach students about:
    1) the structure and composition of the Earth, the Earth’s gravitational and magnetic fields, and dynamics within the deep Earth; 2) the physics of Earth material and the geological time scale; and 3) plate tectonics.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) On completion of this module, students should have concepts and knowledge of the physical properties and behaviour of Earth materials.

    (LO2) On completion of this module, students should have concepts and knowledge of the geological time scale and radiometric dating methods.

    (LO3) On completion of this module, students should be able to understand the plate tectonic model and the relationship between plate tectonics and geological and geophysical observations in the major plate tectonic settings.

    (LO4) On completion of this module, students should be able to explain and evaluate the relationships between Earth structure, composition, physical behaviour and Earth dynamics.

    (LO5) On completion of this module, students should be able to explain and evaluate the relationships between plate tectonics and geological and geophysical processes and observations in the major plate tectonic settings.

    (S1) On completion of this module, students should be able to manipulate geological and geophysical data to help understand Earth structure and processes.

    (S2) On completion of this module, students should have developed their skills in problem solving including simple numerical problems.

    (S3) On completion of this module, students should have developed their skills in numeracy through completion of assignments.

    (S4) On completion of this module, students should have developed their skills in information synthesis and collation.

    (S5) On completion of this module, students should have developed their skills in time management through assignment deadlines.

  • Ecology and Conservation (ENVS157)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
    Aims

    The module aims to introduce students to the key principles that govern the interactions between organisms and their environment, and how these can be used as the basis for conservation.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Understand and explain fundamental principles of how ecological systems are structured and how they function at the scale of individuals, populations and communities

    (LO2) To understand the effects of human activities on communities and ecosystems at a range of timescales

    (LO3) Develop an ability to critically evaluate how ecological understanding and data can be used to inform conservation policy

    (S1) Global perspectives demonstrate international perspectives as professionals/citizens; locate, discuss, analyse, evaluate information from international sources; consider issues from a variety of cultural perspectives, consider ethical and social responsibility issues in international settings; value diversity of language and culture

    (S2) Positive attitude/ self-confidence A 'can-do' approach, a readiness to take part and contribute; openness to new ideas and the drive to make these happen

    (S3) Learning skills online studying and learning effectively in technology-rich environments, formal and informal

    (S4) Information literacy online, finding, interpreting, evaluating, managing and sharing information

  • Environmental Chemistry (ENVS153)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To provide a basic understanding of chemistry relevant for environmental sciences.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) a. describe the structure of an atom, its electronic configuration and predict some of its chemical behaviour based on its position in the periodic table;

    (LO2) b. understand the inter and intra-molecular forces that bond molecules and atoms together to form "matter" and thus be able to explain e.g. why water is a liquid at room temperature while oxygen is a gas;

    (LO3) c. name chemical compounds, write balanced chemical reactions and understand how the amount of products and reactants can be predicted;

    (LO4) d. understand what redox reactions are and be able to work them out;

    (LO5) e. understand basics of aquatic chemistry such as pH, concentration, dilution or equilibrium constants.

    (LO6) f. know the basics of organic chemistry.

    (S1) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S2) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

  • Introduction to Sedimentary Rocks and Fossils (ENVS118)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to the study of sediments and sedimentary rocks and to introduce the main groups of common fossil.

    The module aims to cover the basic language used to describe sediments and fossils and gives an introduction to a range of physical, chemical and biological concepts.

    The students are introduced to the economic significance of sediments and sedimentary rocks and how fossils provide information on geological time, evolutionary history and ancient environments.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to describe sediments and sedimentary rocks at outcrop, hand specimen and thin section scales, identifying and naming key structures and fabrics.

    (LO2) On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the relationships between process and product for both depositional and diagenetic features, and be able to discuss the utility of sedimentary rocks to determine processes and, to a lesser extent, environment.

    (LO3) On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to describe, identify and interpret the main features of common invertebrate and plant fossils.

    (LO4) On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to demonstrate an understanding of how organisms are preserved as fossils, and of the utility of fossils to identify ancient modes of life, environments and relative ages of rocks.

    (S1) Problem solving skills - practical work aimed at development of logical interpretation

    (S2) Collecting, recording and analysing data using appropriate techniques in the laboratory

    (S3) Commercial awareness - lecture and practical course content covering economic applications of sedimentology and palaeontology

    (S4) Communicating appropriately in written and graphical forms

    (S5) Analysing, synthesising and summarising information.

    (S6) Applying knowledge and understanding

  • Living With Environmental Change (ENVS119)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The over-arching aim of this module is to introduce students to the so-called ‘Grand Challenges’ facing society and what is being done to address them. Living with Environmental Change is a key interdisciplinary research theme currently being addressed worldwide; from tackling climate change and carbon emissions to promoting sustainable resource use and energy efficiency. This module illustrates that an interdisciplinary approach is crucial to identifying the underlying problems faced by humanity and to finding holistic and sustainable solutions.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Obtain an understanding of the Grand Challenges facing society;

    (LO2) Develop an appreciation of the significance of interdisciplinary working in addressing the Grand Challenges;

    (LO3) Understand that Geography plays a key role in the Living With Environmental Change (LWEC) research agenda;

    (LO4) Become familiar with the linkages between research, policy and sustainability.

    (S1) Abstraction and synthesis of information

    (S2) Assessing the merits of contrasting theories and explanations

    (S3) Taking responsibility for learning and reflection upon that learning

    (S4) Synthesising, contextualising and critically evaluating information of different styles and from different sources

  • Marine Biology: Life in the Seas and Oceans (ENVS121)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting35:65
    Aims

    This module will introduce students to the main groups of organisms found in the marine environment. Students will develop knowledge of the taxonomic diversity of marine life, and from lectures, workshops and practicals will develop the skills to be able to recognise the major groups from their key identifying features. Students will develop knowledge of the function and form of marine organisms and the adaptational solutions organisms adopt to become successful in the marine environment.

    Students will encounter a variety of marine organisms in subsequent modules and field studies and gaining a familiarity with them in this module will enable them to recognise them and understand their role in marine ecosystems.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Acquire knowledge and understanding on the taxonomic and functional diversity of marine life.

    (LO2) Develop the ability to recognise the major groups of marine organisms using their key features

    (LO3) Experience how to examine marine organisms and understand their functional biology using different kinds of specimens and approaches.

    (LO4) Recognise the adaptational solutions to functional problems adopted by marine organisms

    (LO5) Teamwork

    (LO6) Information literacy online, finding, interpreting, evaluating, managing and sharing information

    (LO7) Problem solving skills

  • Essential Mathematical Skills (ENVS117)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To create a firm foundation of mathematics relating to pure maths, physics (mechanics) and statistics.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) At the end of the module a student should be able to demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of pure mathematics, mathematics mechanics, and statistical mathematics.

    (LO2) At the end of the module the student should be able to;

    - Demonstrate skills in the application of mathematical methods to the solution of problems.

    - Use dimensional analysis and apply it to real world problems.

    (LO3) At the end of the module a student should be able to;

    - Do simple estimations by hand

    - Rearrange algebraic formulae to make the required quantity the subject

    - Insert values in a formula and calculate the correct answer

    - Basic calculus.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

  • Marine Ecosystems: Diversity, Processes and Threats (ENVS122)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting64:35
    Aims

    This module aims to introduce students to the diversity of ecosystem types in the marine environment and the various threats that they face.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Acquire knowledge and understanding of representative key ecosystems found in the marine environment.

    (LO2) Be familiar with the marine organisms that live in representative key marine ecosystems.

    (LO3) Acquire a basic knowledge of fundamental ecological principles, transferable to later marine and non-marine modules.

    (LO4) Be aware of the threats that humans may pose to marine ecosystems.

    (LO5) Appreciate how humans assess and may mitigate detrimental impacts to the environment.

    (LO6) Be introduced to the importance to their future studies of critical reading of scientific literature.

  • Quantitative Skills for Ecology and Marine Biology (ENVS128)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module will prepare students for the quantitative aspects of other parts of their degree programme.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) On completion of this module, students should be able to use basic algebra

    (LO2) On completion of this module, students should be able to use basic statistical methods

    (LO3) On completion of this module, students should be able to use spreadsheets to record, present and analyze scientific data

    (LO4) On completion of this module, students should be able to recognize the basic ideas of calculus in scientific contexts

    (LO5) On completion of this module, students should be able to use mathematical results to support reasoning about real-world problems in marine biology and environmental science.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) IT skills

  • Introduction to Geoscience and Earth History (ENVS123)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    Provide a broad introduction to the geosciences, emphasising the interdisciplinary nature of the subject. Assuming no prior knowledge of geoscience, this module is accessible for non-geoscience disciplines (as an optional module);
    Equip students to understand the relevance of the more detailed geoscience material following in the rest of their programmes;
    Begin to equip students with key practical skills across a range of geoscience disciplines;
    Begin to expose students to an indicative range of research expertise in the School of Environmental Sciences;
    Develop skills for learning by group interaction and guided research.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Explain current models for the origin and structure of the Earth, and summarise supporting evidence

    (LO2) Explain, with examples, the nature of most common Earth materials, with basic knowledge of why they are important

    (LO3) List processes that are modifying the Earth and its biosphere, including human processes

    (LO4) Define the time and spatial scales involved in the Earth structure and evolution

    (LO5) Relate the 3D structure and evolution of regions of the Earth's crust using typical geological media such as geological maps and cross sections

    (LO6) Introduce the problem of a sustainable biosphere for a rapidly growing human population and the role the geoscience has in defining and tackling this problem

    (S1) Communication, listening and questioning respecting others, contributing to discussions, influencing, presenting work

    (S2) Learning skills online studying and learning effectively in technology-rich environments, formal and informal

    (S3) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

    (S4) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S5) Team (group) working respecting others, co-operating, negotiating / persuading, awareness of interdependence with others

Programme Year Two

Year Two is comprised of three core modules (including a week long field class), two core modules from your chosen pathway, and three optional modules that you can choose from any pathway.

Year Two Compulsory Modules

  • Environmental Science Field Class (ENVS285)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To provide experience in designing, executing, analysing and presenting (orally and in a report) a research field project in the environmental sciences.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Gained knowledge, understanding and experience in planning and executing a research project in the Environmental Sciences.

    (LO2) Developed key skills in field data collection and laboratory anlaysis (where appropriate) in Environmental Sciences.

    (LO3) Enhanced skills in the statistical analysis of data

    (LO4) Developed skills in writing and presentating orally a research project

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Teamwork

    (S3) Organisational skills

    (S4) Communication skills

    (S5) IT skills

    (S6) Leadership

    (S7) Numeracy

  • Research Skills (geography and Environmental Science) (ENVS203)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterWhole Session
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    Provide students with training in research methods and analysis techniques

    Develop students' understanding and appreciation of the Environmental Sciences as a contemporary academic discipline

    Nurture students' understanding of, and engagement with, theoretical and methodological issues in the Environmental Sciences

    Develop students' skills of critical analysis and academic writing

    Support students' preparation for individual research projects

    Develop students' study and personal transferable skills

    Develop students' awareness of careers and employability.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Demonstrate knowledge of the development of Geography and the Environmental Sciences in recent decades

    (LO2) Demonstrate an appreciation of the nature and appropriate use of different methodological strategies

    (LO3) Making use of newly-developed research skills and knowledge, identify a research problem or subject and design an appropriate research strategy

    (LO4) Write a dissertation proposal in an academic style with appropriate illustrations, citations and references

    (LO5) Enhanced ability to write an essay in a technical English academic style

    (LO6) Make an oral presentation on a researched topic to a small group

    (LO7) Develop personal employability skills through application letter and CV development

    (S1) Adaptability

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Numeracy

    (S4) Organisational skills

    (S5) Communication skills

    (S6) IT skills

  • Statistics for Environmental Scientists (ENVS222)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module provides training in statistics for environmental scientists. We emphasize the use of software to analyze real environmental data. We do not assume extensive prior knowledge. We will teach the essential theory alongside the practical components.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Make sense of the statistical terms that appear in scientific papers and the media

    (LO2) Summarize data using graphs, tables, and numerical summaries

    (LO3) Choose appropriate statistical methods to answer research questions

    (LO4) Use statistical software to apply these methods, and interpret the output

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) IT skills

Year Two Optional Modules

  • Key Skills for Environmental Data Analysis (ENVS202)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To develop skills in environmental data analysis by applying the Matlab  computing package to process, analyse and plot data. To develop a critical approach to the results of data analysis .

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Use the MATLAB interface to create scripts and functions

    (LO2) Understand the building blocks of programming: variable assignment, conditional statements, program flow control, and function calls.

    (LO3) Be able to read, plot, and interpret a variety of data types.

    (LO4) Be able to construct a program to read data, perform calculations on it, and plot the results, using function calls where appropriate.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) IT Skills

    (S4) Data intepretation

  • Understanding Marine and Terrestrial Spatial Ecology Using Gis (ENVS255)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module aims to introduce students to the nature, operation and application of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) relevant to ecologists and marine biologists. Through a series of workshops student will learn how to conduct complex tasks in GIS and how to apply these to real-world scientific questions. Through an essay addressing the use of GIS in conservation, students will review published literature to examine how the advent of GIS has changed marine and terrestrial ecology.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Be able to critically review selected applications of GIS in areas of ecology, environmental management and marine biology in order to appreciate its role in decision support.

    (LO2) Understand the nature and sources of spatial data by correct analysis of a variety of datasets provided (particuarly with respect to remotely sensed information) used within GIS, have practised the input of these data into a GIS and have developed a critical awareness of the importance of error and quality with respect to spatial data.

    (LO3) Demonstrate the ability to accurately deploy a variety of GIS functions (such as measurement, queries, neighbourhood analyses, overlay, interpolation, etc.) available within a GIS package to integrate manipulate and analyse spatial datasets.

    (LO4) Apply selected GIS functions with respect to solving a problem based exercise.

    (LO5) Communicate the results from GIS operations by outputting results in the appropriate format.

  • Population and Community Ecology (LIFE214)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    Introduce students to the concepts and principles underlying the dynamic interactions between species within communities and populations; Describe examples taken from across the globe that illustrate the importance of population ecology, pressures on fish stocks, and use of natural predators for biological control processes Describe how mutualistic interactions benefit communities, such as coral reefs and leguminous plants; Explore how knowledge and understanding of species- and community- interactions can help to develop plans for ecological restoration; Develop students’ ability to apply, evaluate and interpret this knowledge and understanding to solve problems in zoology.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Analyze the demographic forces acting on populations of single and multiple interacting species, and their consequences;

    (LO2) Explain the development of community patterns in time (succession) and in space;

    (LO3) Explain the relationships between structure and function operating at the level of the ecological community;

    (LO4) Interpret biological patterns in terms of their dynamics and underlying processes.

    (S1) Numeracy

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

  • Environmental Sustainability (ENVS218)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module aims to; introduce students to current thinking in relation to sustainable development and locate environmental sustainability within this broader framework of ideas;
    Develop an understanding of various dimensions of environmental sustainability and their relationship to patterns of human development;
    Develop an understanding of the role of the public and private sectors in promoting environmentally sustainable development.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Students completing the course successfully should be aware of current thinking in relation to sustainable development and be able to locate environmental sustainability within this broader framework of ideas

    (LO2) Students completing the course successfully should have an understanding of various dimensions of environmental sustainability and their relationship to patterns of development;

    (LO3) Students completing the course successfully should develop an understanding of the role of the public and private sectors in promoting environmentally sustainable development.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Organisational skills

    (S4) Communication skills

    (S5) International awareness

  • Gis for Human Geography (ENVS257)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The module aims to develop an understanding of how and why GIS may be useful in the social sciences. It will introduce students to the fundamentals of GIS and enable students to develop both (i) theoretical knowledge of GIS and (ii) a practical ability to apply GIS in the handling and analysis of spatial data in a human geography context.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Students will gain a sound understanding of the principles of GIS in a social science context

    (LO2) Students will understand how to implement the basic functions of GIS.

    (LO3) Students will know how to apply a number of spatial analysis techniques and how to interpret the results, in the process of turning data into information.

    (LO4) Students will be able to locate a prepare a new dataset for analysis using a GIS.

    (S1) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written

    (S2) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

    (S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Report writing

    (S4) Time and project management - Project planning

    (S5) Numeracy/computational skills - Numerical methods

  • Catchment Hydrology (ENVS217)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The module aims to enable students to investigate and understand the main hydrological processes operating in drainage catchments in terms of their measurement, operation and controlling factors. The module will provide students with a 'hands-on' experience of both observing hydrology and modelling hydrological systems, with an emphasis on applied learning, which might be useful in a vocational sense in the future. The module will aim to deliver excellent training for students in the knowledge required to work in a wide variety of environmentally-facing careers, including those with the EA, Natural England or DEFRA, as well as Environmental Consultancies.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Describe the key hydrological components of the catchment system

    (LO2) Explain the main controlling factors on hydrological processes occurring within drainage catchments

    (LO3) Analyse and predict the response of catchments to rainfall events

    (LO4) Evaluate methods used to measure and predict river flows

  • Geomorphology: Ice, Sea and Air (ENVS252)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The module aims  to 1) develop an understanding of major geomorphic systems  and 2) how they create terrestrial landforms.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) On completion of this module the students will demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding ofthe functioning of major geomorphic processes

    (LO2) On completion of this module the students will demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of the relationship between geomorphic processes and climate

    (LO3) On completion of this module the students will demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of the magnitude, frequency and spatial scales and timescales under which geomorphic processes operate

    (LO4) On completion of this module the students will demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding of the importance of linkages between geomorphic process, material and resulting landform (energy/material interaction).

    (S1) Field work: measuring and quantifying an observable process

    (S2) Group work: generating data through team work

    (S3) Field work: logging and mapping sediments in lateral and vertical succession

  • Changing Environments (ENVS214)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting34:66
    Aims

    At the end of this module, students will have  a strong understanding of the mechanisms that have shaped our landscape over time; laboratory and computer skills to yield environmental reconstructions; a critical insight of the different techniques and methodologies for reconstructing past environments; an understanding of the importance to study the past to forecast future environmental change.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) At the end of this module, students will have acquired theoretical knowledge of the global changes that have affected the Earth in the recent past

    (LO2) Students will have acquired theoretical knowledge of the key characteristics of important depositional environments

    (LO3) Students will have acquired theoretical knowledge of the major environmental indicators used  in these environments and the dating techniques

    (LO4) Through practical work, you will have acquired practical knowledge of different laboratory techniques needed for environmental reconstruction.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) IT skills

    (S4) Communication skills

  • Climatology (ENVS231)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The module aims to provide knowledge and understanding across a number of areas of meteorology and weather, covering physical processes. These processes are covered at a detailed level and supported by an overview of the subject area. This module gives the scientific foundation for more discursive as well as process orientated final year modules. The practicals provide an introduction to aspects of meteorological analysis. These are supported through the general lecture programme.  The practical series add to the learning experience and skills to enable students to apply what is learnt in the lecture programme.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Evaluate appropriate theories, methods and techniques

    (LO2) Recognise how selected environments interact with appropriate atmospheric and weather processes

    (LO3) Understand different weather from high, mid and tropical latitudes

    (LO4) Apply practical data analysis.

    (S1) The handling of large datasets

    (S2) Written and graphical communication

    (S3) Analysis and problem-solving through quantitative and qualitative methods

    (S4) Numeracy and statistical literacy

  • Marine Ecophysiology, Ecology and Exploitation (ENVS251)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting55:45
    Aims

    This module aims to provide students with essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resource exploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop the ability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as the ability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address this module aims to provide students with essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resource exploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop the ability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as the ability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address multi-disciplinary topics.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Be familiar with some key physiological adaptations necessary to survive in the marine environment

    (LO2) Understand the imporance of some key ecological concepts that underpin the stucturing of marine communities

    (LO3) Develop a basic understanding of key human activities that can affect individuals, populations and communities of marine animals

    (LO4) Develop the ability to read and critically evaluate scientific papers

    (LO5) Develop the ability to research, plan and write essay questions that tackle multi-disciplinary issues (using material from across the module as necessary)

    (S1) Communication, listening and questioning respecting others, contributing to discussions, communicating in a foreign language, influencing, presentations

    (S2) Literacy application of literacy, ability to produce clear, structured written work and oral literacy - including listening and questioning

    (S3) Research management developing a research strategy, project planning and delivery, risk management, formulating questions, selecting literature, using primary/secondary/diverse sources, collecting & using data, applying research methods, applying ethics

    (S4) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S5) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

    (S6) Learning skills online studying and learning effectively in technology-rich environments, formal and informal

    (S7) Global perspectives demonstrate international perspectives as professionals/citizens; locate, discuss, analyse, evaluate information from international sources; consider issues from a variety of cultural perspectives, consider ethical and social responsibility issues in international settings; value diversity of language and culture

  • Marine Pollution (ENVS232)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting45:55
    Aims

    To introduce students to the main anthropogenic stressors, their effects and importance on the marine system

    To train students in literature search and reading of scientific papers

    To enhance writing and communication skills

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) An understanding of the main anthropogenic stressors of the marine system, their causes, functioning, effects and their remediation/regulation;

    (LO2) An awareness of current problems (news + scientific papers)

    (LO3) To enhance communication skills

    (LO4) To learn how to use Web of Science

    (S1) Communication skills

    (S2) International awareness

  • An Introduction to Environmental History (ENVS223)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    On completion of this module, students should be able to:
    1. Demonstrate a knowledge of global environmental history, from pre-history to the present day.
    2. To understand and critically evaluate the impact on the earth of: domestication of plants and animals; agricultural and industrial revolutions; and present day processes of globalisation and development.
    3. To explain critically the consequences of desertification and deforestation
    4. To critically evaluate present day academic and policy perspectives on the environment
    5. To contribute and evaluate debates on environmental philosophy and ethics

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) On completion of this module, students should be able:- 1. Demonstrate an understanding of global environmental history from the pre-history to the present day. 2. To have a demonstrable understanding and ability to critically evaluate the impact on the earth of: the domestication of plants and animals; the agricultural and industrial revolutions from the eighteenth century; and present day processes of globalisation and resource management. 3. To critically explain the consequences of desertification and deforestation.4. To critically evaluate present day academic and policy perspectives on the sustainability of agricultural and industrial systems. 5. To engage with debates on environmental philosophy and ethics. Achievement of these objectives will be assessed by examination.

    (S1) Communication skills

  • Biodiversity Practical Skills (LIFE233)
    Level2
    Credit level7.5
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To develop in students the ability to acquire, present, critically evaluate and interpret qualitative and quantitative data related to biological specimens ;  To develop in students practical skills and the ability to accurately record procedures and protocols ;  To  provide students with the opportunity to execute a series of experiments, and to use laboratory and field equipment correctly and safely to generate data.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) map taxonomic and evolutionary relationships in order to understand large scale evolutionary processes.

    (LO2) conduct field sampling of plants and invertebrates in order to measure biodiversity and describe a range of habitats.

    (LO3) use keys for taxonomy in order to measure biodiversity. 

    (LO4) dissect and observe the morphology of specific organ systems in order to compare physiologies.

    (LO5) utilise basic Geographic Information Systems in order to map habitats spatially.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Adaptability

    (S3) IT skills

    (S4) Teamwork

    (S5) Organisational skills

    (S6) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S7) Literacy application of literacy, ability to produce clear, structured written work and oral literacy - including listening and questioning

  • Bird Ecology, Identification and Conservation (LIFE243)
    Level2
    Credit level7.5
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting40:60
    Aims

    This field based module aims to provide experience in many current techniques and methods used to identify, monitor and manage birds in the UK.

    Learning Outcomes

    (1) identify a range of bird species based upon key features that might include appearance and song

    (2) apply the principles of avian ecology to management practices for bird communities, species, populations and habitats.

    (3) select appropriate ecological approaches and management techniques for monitoring, censusing and assessing bird communities

    (4) make linkages between theory and practice, particularly with regard to how species-specific understanding is applied in conservation schemes

    (5) evaluate appropriate management and conservation approaches to answer a specific ornithological issue

    (S1) using specialist field equipment

    (S2) problem solving/critical thinking/analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions

    (S3) know how to conduct census work

    (S4) communcation

  • Oceanography, Plankton and Climate (ENVS245)
    Level2
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    The module will provide a multi-disciplinary view of how ocean physics, microbiology, chemistry and plankton ecology operate in different ocean environments, explain how Earth's climate is affected by the plankton, and show how plankton ecosystems are responding to a changing climate.

    The aim is then to use this multi-disciplinary framework to develop skills in setting sensible hypotheses, numeracy, problem-solving and written communication. Throughout the module material will connect to the research currently being carried out by staff, using research results and research tools to illustrate key concepts and formulate methods to test hypotheses.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Students will gain a broad understanding of how different plankton communities arise in different oceanic regimes, and how that ultimately structures food chains to larger marine animals and effects Earth's climate.

    (LO2) Students will be able to compare quantitatively the scales of different processes, and critically assess their relative importance for life in the ocean.

    (LO3) Students will strengthen, and acquire new, skills in quantifying physical-biological drivers of ecosystems.

    (LO4) Students will learn the importance of a multi-disciplinary approach to marine biology and gain experience in solving novel problems.

    (LO5) Students will acquire knowledge of key concepts in physical and biological oceanography.

    (LO6) Students will learn the importance of understanding the assumptions behind key theories in oceanography.

    (LO7) Students will learn how to frame and test hypotheses using appropriate data and methods.

    (LO8) Students will develop skills in written communication of science.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

    (S4) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

Programme Year Three

Your final year dissertation is the only compulsory module, where you conduct a piece of original research on a topic of your choice. You have the option to take one of our overseas field courses, currently in California, Iceland and the Algarve. You will have two core modules from your chosen pathway and up to four optional modules.

Year Three Compulsory Modules

  • Dissertation (geography & Environmental Science) (ENVS321)
    Level3
    Credit level30
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To provide students with the opportunity to apply theorectical concepts to real-life situations.
    To alow students to identify a research question, devise a research methodology and conduct a research project on a topic of their choice.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) An understanding of how to use independent research to address a specific research question, including understanding the diversity of techniques and approaches involved in collecting geographical information

    (LO2) An understanding of how to design and undertake a research project to answer that question, including understanding issues involved in research design andexecution

    (LO3) The ability to produce  an independent reviewof academic literature relating to a specific research question

    (LO4) The ability to collect, synthesise and analyse primary and secondary geographical data

    (LO5) The ability to write-up a research project using an appropriate academic style and structure, including the techniques and approaches required to present geographical data

    (LO6) The development of time- and project-management skills, including the ability to coordinate and complete a project independent of close supervision (i.e. managea project independently)

    (S1) Information literacy online, finding, interpreting, evaluating, managing and sharing information

    (S2) Literacy application of literacy, ability to produce clear, structured written work and oral literacy - including listening and questioning

    (S3) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

    (S4) Positive attitude/ self-confidence A 'can-do' approach, a readiness to take part and contribute; openness to new ideas and the drive to make these happen

    (S5) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S6) Research management developing a research strategy, project planning and delivery, risk management, formulating questions, selecting literature, using primary/secondary/diverse sources, collecting & using data, applying research methods, applying ethics

    (S7) Self-management readiness to accept responsibility (i.e. leadership), flexibility, resilience, self-starting, initiative, integrity, willingness to take risks, appropriate assertiveness, time management, readiness to improve own performance based on feedback/reflective learning

Year Three Optional Modules

  • Geographic Data Science (ENVS363)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The module provides students with core competences in Geographic Data Science (GDS). Thisincludes the following: Advancing their statistical and numerical literacy. Introducing basic principles of programming and state-of-the-art computational tools for GDS. Presenting a comprehensive overview of the main methodologies available to the Geographic Data Scientist, as well as their intuition as to how and when they can be applied. Focusing on real world applications of these techniques in a geographical and applied context.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Demonstrate advanced GIS/GDS concepts and be able to use the tools programmaticallyto import, manipulate and analyse data in different formats.

    (LO2) Understand the motivation and inner workings of the main methodological approaches ofGDS, both analytical and visual.

    (LO3) Critically evaluate the suitability of a specific technique, what it can offer and how it canhelp answer questions of interest.

    (LO4) Apply a number of spatial analysis techniques and how to interpret the results, in theprocess of turning data into information.

    (LO5) When faced with a new data-set, work independently using GIS/GDS tools programmatically.

    (S1) Numeracy

    (S2) Organisational skills

    (S3) Problem solving skills

    (S4) IT skills

    (S5) Ethical awareness

    (S6) Communication skills

  • Simulating Environmental Systems (ENVS397)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module aims to:

    Train students in the concepts and techniques required to construct and use numerical forward models of Earth surface systems using high-level programming languages such as Matlab and Python;

    Introduce students to the development and use of numerical forward models as an experimental tool that can be used to better understand and predict how Earth surface systems work;

    Teach students important transferable skills in coding, general numeracy, and data and model visualisation;

    Provide a broad overview of the range of numerical forward models in the environmental sciences, how they are applied, and why they are important.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Knowledge and Understanding

    On successful completion of this module, students should understand:

    Concepts of basic algorithm construction in a high-level programming language, for example Matlab or Python;

    The concepts that underpin formulation and use of numerical forward models of Earth surface systems, including oceanographic and ecological models;

    How to use these numerical models to better understand how the represented real systems work.

    (LO2) Intellectual Abilities

    On successful completion of this module, students should have competence in:

    Translation of conceptual ideas and data on how Earth surface systems work into a representative numerical forward model;

    Creation and coding of simple algorithms;

    Design of simple model experiments to explore the likely behaviour of the real system.

    (LO3) Subject Based Practical Skills

    On successful completion of this module, students should have competence in:

    Basic modelling algorithm development and coding in an appropriate high-level programming language, for example Matlab or Python;

    Constructing simple numerical forward models of Earth surface systems including stratigraphic, geomorphic, geodynamic, oceanographic and ecological systems;

    Using simple numerical forward models of Earth surface systems to conduct numerical experiments to better understand how the represented real systems work.

    (LO4) General Transferable Skills

    On successful completion of this module, students should have competence in:

    Basic general algorithm development and coding in an appropriate high-level programming language, for example Matlab or Python.

    (S1) Communication skills

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Numeracy

  • Glaciology Past, Present and Future (ENVS330)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To provide students with experience in:
    The application of glaciological theory within current research;
    In-depth knowledge reflecting most up to date understanding of glaciers and ice sheets;
    Analysis of data, and how to interpret and present this as a piece of academic research;
    Develop ability to critically apply glaciological knowledge to novel scenarios as part of concisely written summary assessments on each topic.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Engage with and evaluate the latest glaciological research

    (LO2) Critically apply glaciological theory to given scenarios

    (LO3) Assess the wider implications of glaciology to society and the climate system

    (S1) Numeracy

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Organisational skills

    (S4) Communication skills

    (S5) IT skills

    (S6) Critical skills

  • Field Class (santa Cruz) (ENVS352)
    Level3
    Credit level30
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To provide students with experience in:

    Application of theory to practical field research.

    General fieldwork skills (Critical observation, data collection and management, continual re-evaluation of progress, etc.).

    Team work.

    Synthesis, interpretation, and presentation of data obtained through independent research.

    Group report writing.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Identification of research questions from current research literature

    (LO2) Formulation of a research proposal with appropriate scope for a short field study

    (LO3) Implementation of a field research project

    (LO4) Analysis and interpretation of findings

    (LO5) Formal presentation of research findings in academic journal format

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Teamwork

    (S4) Communication skills

  • Field Class (algarve, Portugal) (ENVS380)
    Level3
    Credit level30
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To develop an understanding of the physical and biological landscape of the Algarve and its modification by human action; to get to know the basic geomorphic evolution of the Algarve area in the light of climate change; to comprehend the interplay of processes acting at different spatial and temporal scales in the present day landscape; to realize the importance that the physiographic setting has for natural resources, landuse and natural hazards in a Mediterranean landscape, and how human landuse has transformed the landscape; applied in a climatic context not found in the UK; to learn how water, landscape and vegetation resources are managed.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) After completing the module students should be able to evaluate the field evidence: (a) for understanding the role of climate in landform evolution (applied in an environmental context not encountered in the UK)

    (LO2) b) for interpreting the temporal and spatial relationships between climate change and human impact on landscapes and environments,

    (LO3) (c) for deducing the importance of lithology and landscape evolution for present day soils, land use and natural hazards.

    (LO4) (d) for inferring human impact on the landscape

    (S1) Teamwork

    (S2) Organisational skills

    (S3) Communication skills

    (S4) International awareness

  • Natural Hazards and Society (ENVS319)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To introduce contextual perspectives on a variety of natural hazards, the different levels of impact on human societies and the mitigation/adaptation strategies adopted before, during and after an extreme natural event.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) An understanding of the physical and societal definitions of a natural hazard

    (LO2) An understanding of the processes leading to geophysical, hydrological, meteorological and climatological hazards

    (LO3) An awareness of the vulnerability of societies

    (LO4) An appreciation of the costs on these extremes events on societies

    (LO5) Acquire a sound knowledge on mitigation and adaptation strategies for each type of natural hazard

    (S1) Communication skills

    (S2) Teamwork

    (S3) IT skills

    (S4) Organisational skills

    (S5) International awareness

  • Conservation Biology (LIFE326)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
    Aims

    To develop in students the ability to explore current thinking and research in conservation biology;

    To develop in students knowledge and understanding about patterns of biodiversity and to enable them to critically evaluate the evidence supporting alternative explanations for the extinctions or demise of many animal and some plant species;

    To develop in students knowledge and deep understanding in conservation biology, and ability to apply, critically evaluate and interpret this knowledge to solve complex problems.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) To construct justified arguments for the value of conserving biodiversity

    (LO2) To evaluate the human activities that affect biodiversity and describe how they act individually and in combination to affect individuals, populations and ecosystems

    (LO3) To evaluate, using case studies, the pros and cons of a wide range of conservation interventions, from international legal instruments to local habitat management

    (LO4) To analyze where conservation questions can be answered with scientific evidence, and where socio-economic and other types of information are more important

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Communication skills

    (S3) Ethical awareness

  • Coastal Environments: Spatial and Temporal Change (ENVS376)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    This module aims to consider the response of physical processes and coastal environments to changes in sea-level and climate. Attention is given to the geomorphology of coastal environments, its response to external agents, as well as to possible coastal management strategies. The module aims at proving students with knowledge and understanding of the physical processes acting along coastal areas, and to promote students capability to critically understand pros and cons of different management techniques in relation to future climate change.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Knowledge and understanding of physical aspects of coastal environments

    (LO2) Knowledge and understanding of the concept of spatial and temporal variation: physical processes and landforms, and the importance of spatial and temporal scales

    (LO3) Knowledge and understanding of environments as a result of process and form interaction

    (LO4) Knowledge and understanding of methodologies of analysis and interpretation

    (LO5) Development of an informed concern for the Earth and its people

    (LO6) Capability to critically analyze real case studies in the context of previously acquired knowledge

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

    (S3) Communication skills

    (S4) Organisational skills

  • Politics of the Environment (ENVS325)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    This unit is designed to critically evaluate the political responses to the growing impact that environmental issues and the concept of sustainability are having on decision making at all levels of governance, (international, national and local). More specifically the unit aims to;
    Develop an understanding of the growing importance of environmental and sustainable development thinking in political decision-making processes.
    Explore different environmental attitudes, values and perspectives and examine the impact on various political perspectives.
    Develop an understanding of the opportunities and limitations of environmental decision making international dimension of environmental politics and its impact on nation states.
    Understand the role that environmental pressure groups have in shaping political decisions at the international, national and local levels of governance.
    Explore the policy responses at national and local levels to the new emerging environmental agenda.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) an appreciation of how environmental issues are being developed at all levels of governance

    (LO2) an understanding of different environmental values and attitudes and the way that these impact upon political philosophy and decision-making;

    (LO3) an understanding of the way that various environmental interest groups impact on political and other decision making processes an understanding of the way that various environmental intereste groups impact on political and other decision making processes

    (S1) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S2) Team (group) working respecting others, co-operating, negotiating / persuading, awareness of interdependence with others

    (S3) Information literacy online, finding, interpreting, evaluating, managing and sharing information

  • Surviving the Marine Environment: Adaptation, Behaviour and Conservation (ENVS310)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module aims to foster a broad understanding of contemporary theory in behavioural ecology, evolutionary biology and ecophysiology, with special reference to the marine environment. We will consider processes that operate at scales from individuals to populations and consider implications of these processes for the conservation of marine species and ecosystems.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Appreciate the diversity of behavioural, life-history, genetic and phenotypic adaptations that are adopted by a variety of marine organisms.

    (LO2) Understand the costs and benefits of these behavioural and life-history strategies of different marine species.

    (LO3) Understand the various processes that drive evolution in the marine environment.

    (LO4) Have experience of the relevance of evolutionary processes to contemporary marine science and biological conservation.

  • Ocean Dynamics (ENVS332)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To gain a high level understanding of ocean and atmospheric dynamics:

    To understand the background state of the atmosphere and ocean;

    To address how tracers spread;

    To understand the effects of rotation and how jets and eddies form on a rotating planet;

    To understand how waves influence and interact with the ocean circulation;

    To understand why there are western boundary currents and gyres in ocean basins;

    To understand how topography shapes the deep ocean circulation over the globe.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Students will acquire knowledge of key concepts in ocean and atmosphere dynamics.

    (LO2) Students will learn to appreciate the approximate nature of theoretical ideas, and the strengths and weaknesses of such ideas as explanations of observed phenomena.

    (LO3) Students will develop mathematical skills in scale analysis of differential equations to isolate the essential phenomena.

    (LO4) Students will acquire experience in combining quantitative and qualitative understanding of dynamics to give clear explanations of observed phenomena in the ocean and atmosphere.

    (LO5) Students will develop an understanding of the factors controllng fluid flows on a range of rotating planets.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

  • Advanced Topics in Ecology (LIFE337)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To describe modern approaches to long standing ecological issues;

    To introduce current research in the expanding areas of ecology;

    To develop students' knowledge and deep understanding in key areas of ecology and an ability to apply, critically evaluate, and interpret this knowledge to solve complex ecological problems.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) To assess how a range of biotic and abiotic processes can act, and interact, to drive ecological dynamics and the structure and assembly of communities

    (LO2) To evaluate predictions associated with relationships between organisms and their environment at a range of spatial and trophic scales

    (LO3) To explain how current key concepts can be used to understand, and manage, ecosystems

    (S1) Improving own learning/performance - Self-awareness/self-analysis

    (S2) Students will develop skills in participating in group discussions to reach consensus and/or recognise where ambiguities exist in conclusions associated with addressing issues.

  • Climate Change - A Critical Review (ENVS389)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
    Aims

    The module aims to provide students with the knowledge to evaluate likely outcomes climate change and climate variability over the next 10 to 50 years by understanding current climate variablity and the data and models available. To understand policy decisions at different levels, to obtain a critical understanding of climate predictions, and to understand the importance of reference to past (last 100 years) and present climates.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Evaluate a range of future climate change projections .

    (LO2) Recognise the likely impacts of climate change to a range of sectors.

    (LO3) Learn how to engage with stakeholder communities with regard to climate change. 

    (LO4) Produce effectively targeted report writing and visual communication.

    (LO5) Consider the multiple sector impact of climate change on societies

    (S1) Learning and studying, Developing autonomous learning and metacognition  decision making and prioritising tasks

    (S2) Communication in formats appropriate to the audience

    (S3) Awareness of responsibility as a local, national and international citizen with a global perspective

    (S4) Taking responsibility for learning and reflection upon that learning

  • Fluvial Environments (ENVS372)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To develop understanding of functioning and stability/instability characteristics of fluvial geomorphic systems - in both humid and arid regions over timescales from the Pleistocene to the present day

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) By the end of the module, a student should be able to:-1. Describe and analyse the functioning of fluvial systems and apply major concepts (Assessed by exam)

    (LO2) 2. Explain the different temporal and spatial scales on which variations occur (Assessed by exam and essay)

    (LO3) 3. Analyse and evaluate the likely factors influencing fluvial responses (Assessed by essay and exam)

    (LO4) 4. Analyse and use field evidence of fluvial processes and landforms (Assessed by use of field experience in exam and essay)

    (LO5) 5. Critically evaluate and synthesise published literature (Assessed by essay)

    (S1) Lifelong learning skills

    (S2) Problem solving skills

    (S3) Communication skills

    (S4) Literacy application of literacy, ability to produce clear, structured written work and oral literacy - including listening and questioning

  • Marine Ecology: Theory and Applications (ENVS383)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    To develop the connections between ecological theory and the management of marine communities and ecosystems. The theory covered will mostly be concerned with the dynamics and diversity of communities and ecosystems.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) evaluate the major ecological theories underlying the dynamics and diversity of marine communities and ecosystems.

    (LO2) relate problems in marine conservation and resource exploitation to these ecological concepts.

    (LO3) use appropriate methods to assess the consequences of environmental change and management for marine communities and ecosystems.

    (LO4) recognize the importance of ecological theory in underpinning scientific advice to management.

    (S1) Problem solving skills

    (S2) Numeracy

  • Contemporary Issues in Ocean and Climate Sciences (ENVS366)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To promote awareness, understanding and discussions about contemporary issues in Ocean and Climate Sciences.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Gain a broad and detailed knowledge of some of the main contemporary research topics in marine and climate sciences.

    (LO2) Improve critical reading of scientific literature.

    (LO3) Gain/Practice Transferable Communication Skills: Communicating research topics and/or specific research papers (through oral presentations) to students and/or academic staff.

    (S1) research skills

    (S2) communication skills

  • Human-environmental Interactions (ENVS315)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    The module aims to distil existing knowledge of complex human-environmental interactions into a format that can be taken on board by policy and decision makers.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Learning outcomes are: a knowledge of appropriate theory about human-environmental interactions

    (LO2) a deeper understanding of interactions between human activities and natural and built environments in space and time

    (LO3) a critical view of the assumptions on which management decisions are based

    (S1) Communication skills

    (S2) Teamwork

    (S3) Organisational skills

  • Carbon, Nutrients and Climate Change Mitigation (ENVS381)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims

    This module aims to provide students with a quantitative understanding to examine the interlinkages between carbon, nutrients, water and climate change mitigation. The module aims to develop and demonstrate core knowledge and skills in this specialised area of climate change. The module will provide students with the skills to apply this knowledge quantitatively, critically evaluate scientific positions on topics of debate regarding climate change, and provide opportunities to develop skills in scientific communication and outreach to the scientific and general public. The module is built around the University’s core values of Active Learning, Research-Connected Learning, Authentic Assessment and Digital Fluency.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Knowledge of theory regarding carbon, nutrients and climate change mitigation strategies.

    (LO2) Ability to critically and quantitatively determine the importance of carbon and nutrient cycling to ecosystems.

    (LO3) Ability to communicate the theory and skills developed in this module in scientific and public forums.

    (S1) Quantitative assessment of ecosystem carbon and nutrient cycling.

    (S2) Science communication in public and scientific forums.

    (S3) Ability to work individually and in a group.

  • Global Carbon Cycle (ENVS335)
    Level3
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims

    To provide students with a view of the global carbon cycle as a dynamic system;
    To give students an appreciation of the importance of chemical and biological processes in controlling the distribution of carbon in the atmosphere, ocean and land;
    To provide students with an in depth understanding of how carbon is transfered between the atmosphere, land and ocean over contemporary and glacial timescales.

    Learning Outcomes

    (LO1) Students will learn how physical, chemical and biological process control the transfer of carbon between the atmosphere, ocean and land, and the distribution of carbon species between these environments

    (LO2) Students will understand the role and significance that the atmosphere, land and ocean plays in the global cycling of carbon

    (LO3) Students will understand the pathways involved in cycling of inorganic and organic carbon between land and the ocean and the surface and deep ocean, with emphasis on the solubility, carbonate and biological pumps

    (LO4) Students will gain hands-on experience in calculating the response of the ocean to increasing temperature and atmospheric CO2 using the internationally-applied software CO2sys, providing an opportunity for authentic assessment.

    (LO5) Students will understand how environmental change is perturbing the global carbon cycle in the present day. Topics covered will include ocean acidification and changes in the surface temperature

    (S1) Numeracy (application of) manipulation of numbers, general mathematical awareness and its application in practical contexts (e.g. measuring, weighing, estimating and applying formulae)

    (S2) Problem solving/ critical thinking/ creativity analysing facts and situations and applying creative thinking to develop appropriate solutions.

    (S3) Communication, listening and questioning, respecting others, contributing to discussions, influencing, presentations

The programme detail and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.


Teaching and Learning

You will be assigned an Academic Adviser in each of the three years who will provide pastoral care and help you develop your skills for your chosen career path.

To help you meet the intellectual and practical challenges of studying Environmental Science, our programmes are taught using a student-centred approach, involving a range of learning experiences. These include:

  • Small tutor groups (typically six-eight students) through all years
  • High levels of field and lab-based teaching within the School of Environmental Sciences and in Europe’s most advanced teaching laboratories
  • An emphasis on active, problem-based learning (learning by doing)
  • Hands-on experience of cutting-edge laboratory technologies
  • Supervised independent and group project work, including a final year independent research-based dissertation supervised by a dedicated expert in the field.

Assessment

Your assessments are designed around developing skills and styles of communication that will be most relevant to future employers. So, in addition to exams and essays, you will also undertake assessments that include computer-based exercises, oral presentations, laboratory reports, field projects, and research reports. You will complete a compulsory 10,000-word dissertation in your final year on a topic of your choice. This is your opportunity to develop your skills as an independent researcher and develop specialist expertise in your chosen career path, supported on a one-to-one basis by an expert in the field.