Geography and Oceanography BSc (Hons) Add to your prospectus

  • Offers study abroad opportunities Offers study abroad opportunities
  • Opportunity to study for a year in China Offers a Year in China

Key information


  • Course length: 3 years
  • UCAS code: FF78
  • Year of entry: 2018
  • Typical offer: A-level : ABB / IB : 33 / BTEC : D*DD
Lecture

Module details

Programme Year One

The required modules in Year One provide grounding in Ocean Science and Physical Geography, as well as developing essential and transferable skills that are required throughout your degree programme. Optional modules allow you to focus on areas of environmental sciences that interest you.

Year One Compulsory Modules

  • Study Skills (ocean Sciences) (ENVS103)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterWhole Session
    Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
    Aims
    1. To train students to make observations, collect and record data using basic oceanographic and meterological equipment.

    2. ​To improve students'' oral and written communication skills, including their ability to reference correctly. 
    3. ​To improve students'' numerical skills, specifically in statistics.
    4. To enthuse students about ocean sciences through reading and discussing topics selected for oral presentation.
    Learning Outcomes​ Write an essay and reference correctly.​Quantitatively summarise, synthesise and interpret data collected during fieldwork.  ​Communicate effectively to their peers
  • Climate, Atmosphere and Oceans (ENVS111)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
    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.
    • How the past state of the climate system is affected by the ocean circulation
    Learning Outcomes

    1. 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.​

    2. Intellectual Abilities
     

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

    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.​

    3. Subject Based Practical Skills
     

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

    b. Understand the use of dimensions.​

    ​​​​​​

    4. General Transferable Skills
     

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

    b. Time management.

    c. Problem solving.​

  • Living With Environmental Change (ENVS119)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
    Aims

    The over-arching aim of thismodule is to introduce students to the so-called ‘Grand Challenges’ facingsociety and what is being done to address them. Living with Environmental Change is a key interdisciplinaryresearch theme currently being addressed worldwide; from tackling climatechange and carbon emissions to promoting sustainable resource use and energyefficiency. This module illustrates that an interdisciplinary approach iscrucial to identifying the underlying problems faced by humanity and to findingholistic and sustainable solutions.

    ​ 

    Learning Outcomes

    ​Obtain an understanding of the Grand Challenges facing society;

    ​Develop an appreciation of the significance of interdisciplinary working in addressing the Grand Challenges;

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

    ​Become familiar with the linkages between research, policy and sustainability.

  • Introduction to Marine Biogeochemistry (ENVS158)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
    Aims
    1. To introduce students to marine chemistry of the major and trace elements.
    2. To demonstrate the dynamic relationship between the chemical ocean environment and biological processes.
    3. To identify the main ocean basins and main oceanic transport routes of chemical species
    4. To teach the necessary practical skills for oceanographic sampling and measurement of chemical species.
    Learning Outcomes1. Students will be able to identify ocean basins, their major characteristics and transport pathways.

    2. Students will gain knowledge of the sources and distributions of major and minor elements in the ocean, including dissolved gases, nutrients and carbon.​

    3. Students will understand the chemical and biological processes that control the distribution of major and minor elements including dissolved gases, nutrients and carbon.​

    ​3. Students will recognize the form and function of different components of the marine ecosystem including viruses, bacteria, phytoplankton and zooplankton. ​

    ​4. Students will be able to synthesis knowledge of key biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus to understand how they are linked in the modern and past ocean environment. 

    5. Students will know how to measure key properties of the ocean and interpret why they vary in space and time

  • 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.
    Learning Outcomes​The core processes and landforms underlying major geomorphic systems​

    Long term environmental change – Pleistocene and Holocene

    ​A deeper understanding of processes that underlie the interaction between people and the physical environment​

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

    ​Appropriate treatment of data, including quality control, graphical representation, and statistical analysis​

Year One Optional Modules

  • Mathematics and Physics for Environmental Scientists (ENVS117)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
    Aims

    To provide students with   

    1) A grounding in the basic physics relevant to processes in the atmosphere, ocean and solid earth.

    2) Practical experience in the application of mathematical methods to the solution of problems in physical processes in the environment.

    Learning Outcomes

    ​At the end of the module a student shoudl be able to demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the basic physics relevant to processes in the atmosphere, ocean and solid earth.

    ​At the end of the module the student should be able to      

    a) judge which is the correct formula or equation to use under particular circumstances.

    b) demonstrate skills in the application of mathematical methods to the solution of problems in physical processes in the environment

    At the end of the module a student should be able to      

    a) do simple estimations by hand

    b) do arithmetic using a calculator

    c) rearrange algebraic formulae to make the required quantity the subject

    d) insert values in a formula and calculate the correct answer

    e) sketch simple mathematical curves by inspection of the formula

    f) differentiate and integrate simple mathematical functions

  • Introduction to Sedimentary Rocks and Fossils (ENVS118)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterFirst Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting75:25
    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

    ​1. 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.

    ​2. 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 processs and, to a lesser extent, environment.

    ​3. On successful completion of this module, a student will be able to describe, name and identify and interpret the main features of common fossils.

    4. 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.
  • 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

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

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

    ​Appropriate treatment of data, including quality control, graphical representation, and statistical analysis.  

  • Marine Ecosystems: Diversity, Processes and Threats (ENVS122)
    Level1
    Credit level15
    SemesterSecond Semester
    Exam:Coursework weighting55:45
    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

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

      ​Be familiar with the marine organisms that live in representative key marine ecosystems.

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

      ​Be aware of the threats that humans may pose to marine ecosystems.

      ​Appreciate how humans assess and may mitigate detrimental impacts to the environment.

      ​Be introduced to the importance to their future studies of critical reading of scientific literature.

    • Environmental Chemistry (ENVS153)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
      Aims

      This module aims to provide a basic understanding of chemistry relevant for environmental sciences.


      Learning Outcomes

      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;​

      ​b. understand the inter andintramolecular forces that bond molecules and atoms together to form "matter", and thusexplain why for instance water is a liquid atroom temperature while oxygen is a gas;​

      ​c. name chemical compounds, write balanced chemical reactions and understand howthe amount of products and reactants can be predicted;​

      ​d. understand whatoxidation numbers and redox reactions are and relate those to someenvironmental processes;

      ​e. understand basics of aquatic chemistry such aspH, concentration, dilution; understand energy changes in chemical reactions;​

      ​f. be aware of the basics of organicbiogeochemistry.​

    • Ecology and Conservation (ENVS157)
      Level1
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
      AimsUsing certain key themes, to introduce students to the complex and multifaceted nature of environmental issues and ecological science, particularly stressing the interrelationships between their biophysical and human dimensions.

      To encourage students to manage their own learning.

      Learning Outcomes An appreciation of the complexities and multifaceted nature of environmental issues.



      ​An understanding of land-use change, its history, the main drivers and their interactions.

      ​An overview of natural disasters and irreversible environmental change.

      ​An introduction to the politics of natural resources and energy.

      ​A basic understanding of ecological principles.

      ​An understanding of the complexities of conserving biodiversity.

      ​An understanding of the scientific debate about evidence for global climate change, the possible socio-economic impacts of various climate change scenarios, and possible ameliorative measures.

    Programme Year Two

    The required modules in Year Two develop more specialist skills and knowledge in Ocean Sciences and Physical Geography. Optional modules provide further an opportunity to focus on topics of Environmental Sciences that interest you. 

    Year Two Compulsory 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

      1. Knowledge and Understanding
       

      At the end of the module the student should

      a) know how to write a program script in Matlab

      b) know how to process and plot ocean and climate data​ using Matlab


      2. Intellectual Abilities
       

      At the end of the module the student should be able to:

      a) know how to construct problems and use problem solving skills.

      b) analyse and interpret signals in environmental data.

      c) implement programming methods used for simple models and time-series analysis

      d) synthesise information from their own data analysis and the literature into a written report​

      3. Subject Based Practical Skills
       

      At the end of the module the student should be able to:

      a) how to synthesize concepts across environmental science

      b) write a computer program to analyse and plot environmental data​

      ​​​​


      4. General Transferable Skills
       

      At the end of the module, the student should have:

      a) Gain ability in formulating problems and acquiring order of magnitude solutions

      b) Gained computing skills and familiarity with computing methods and programming

      c) Developed written communication through the writing of reports

    • Changing Environments (ENVS214)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
      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 yeild environmental reconstructions; a critical insight of the different techniques and methodolgies for reconstructing past environments; an understanding of the importance to study the past to forecast future environmental change.

      Learning Outcomes​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
      ​Students will have acquired theoretical knowledge of the key characteristics of important depositional environments

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

      Through practical work, you will have acquired practical knowledge of different laboratory techniques needed for the identification of major biological indicators conventionally used for reconstructing the environment and climate (pollen, diatoms, foraminifera, testate amoeba); lake sediment description and analysis; spatial awareness of landscape change thought GIS exercises. ​
    • Sampling the Ocean (ENVS220)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
      Aims

      To provide students with 

      a) Understanding of the methods used to measure and analyse physical and biogeochemical quantities in the ocean.

      b)The skills to be able to the process and analyse oceanographic data in order to understand processes in the ocean.
      Learning Outcomes

       

      1. Knowledge and Understanding:

      At the end of the module a student should be able to demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the following techniques:

      a) Navigation;

      b) Measurements of temperature, salinity;

      c) Measurements of currents – both direct and indirect methods;

      d) Remote sensing;

      e) Chlorophyll analysis

      f) Nutrient Analysis; 

      g) Oxygen Analysis

      h) Analysis of Particles

      i) Data quality/analysis techniques including:

                (i) Manipulation of CTD and current data.

                (ii) Calculation of water column propoerties from discrete sampling.

                (iii) Calibration of instrumentation using distrete samples.

              

      ​2. IntellectualAbilities:


      At the end of themodule a student should be able toevaluate the quality and significance of oceanographic data.


      ​3. Subject BasedPractical Skills:


      At the end of themodule a student should be able to apply skills in:


      a) Processingand analysing hydrographic data,


      b) Processingand analysing current meter data ,


      c) Calculatingcurrents from indirect measurements and hydrographic data,


      d) Interpretingremote sensing data,


      e) Analysis ofnutrient, oxygen and particulate samples


      f) Interpretingnutrient, oxygen and particulate data


      g) Planning cruise tracks.


    • Climatology (ENVS231)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
      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

      ​Evaluate appropriate theories, methods and techniques

      ​Recognise how selected environments interact with appropriate atmospheric and weather processes

      ​Understand different weather from high, mid and tropical latitudes

      Apply practical data analysis.​
    • Geomorphology: Ice, Sea and Air (ENVS252)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting67:33
      Aims

      The module aims  to

      1) develop an understanding of major geomorphic systems

       and

      2) how they create terrestrial landforms.

      Learning OutcomesOn completion of this module the students will demonstrate knowledge and critical understanding ofthe functioning of major geomorphic processes

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

      ​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

      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).

    • Life in A Dynamic Ocean (ENVS265)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      Aims
      • To gain an appreciation of how ecosystems in the ocean are intricately linked to their physical fluid environment
      • To understand how microbial life is affected by molecular diffusion and turbulence
      • To understand the challenges faced by microscopic life in the viscous fluid of the ocean
      • To address how mean flows in the ocean can be vital in the life stages of larger marine organisms
      • To appreciate the global differences in plankton communities, and the underlying reasons for those differences
      • To understand the problem of how community diversity is maintained in the ocean, and the current theories attempting to explain this diversity
      Learning Outcomes

       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.

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

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

      ​Students will learn the important of a multi-disciplinary approach on marine biology and gain experience in solving novel problems.

    • Oceanography of Estuaries and Shelf Seas (ENVS266)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
      Aims

      Provide students with a quantitative understanding of some key oceanographic concepts, applied to coastal seas.

      Provide students with knowledge of how the oceanography of a coastal sea supports biological production.

      Allow students to gain experience in the use of a simple computer model to design and carry out experiments on coastal oceanography.

      Provide students with practical experience of making basic, useful calculations applied to coastal oceanography.

      Learning Outcomes

      ​Students will acquire knowledge of key concepts in coastal oceanography​​

      ​Students will learn to appreciate the need to consider a theory''s underlying assumptions when testing its appropriateness as an explanation for a phenomenon​

      ​Students will develop skills in framing testable hypotheses.​

      ​Students will acquire experience in the use of a simple computer model in testing a hypothesis.​

      ​Students will gain experience in reaching quantified answers to problems in the coastal ocean.​

      ​Students will develop an understanding of how the physics and biology of a coastal sea are linked​

    Year Two Optional Modules

    • 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

      Describe the key hydrological components of the catchment system

      Explain the main controlling factors on hydrological processes occurring within drainage catchments​ ​​Analyse and predict the response of catchments to rainfall events ​​​Evaluate methods used to predict river flows​

      ​Review the environmental variables that control the morphology, sedimentation and evolution of lakes​

    • Sedimentary Processes and Depositional Environments (ENVS219)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
      Aims

      To address aspects of physical, chemical and biological processes of sedimentation in the context of the depositional settings in which they operate. To provide the necessary background for understanding the significance of structures and textures preserved in sedimentary rocks and the skills necessary to gather and analyse information that allows well constrained interpretations of depositional environments to be made in the rock record.

      Learning Outcomes

      ​Ability to describe how fluid flow governs sediment transport and bedform configuration 

      ​Ability to collect and analyse sedimentary information to infer sedimentary process

      ​Ability to recognise a range of depositional environments from the sedimentary record

      ​Ability to use sedimentary information to build facies models for depositional environments

      ​Ability to synthesise sedimentary datasets to demonstrate spatial and temporal evolution of depositional systems

    • Statistics for Environmental Scientists (ENVS222)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting80:20
      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

      make sense of the statistical terms that appear in scientific papers and the media


      ​summarize data using graphs, tables, and numerical summaries

      ​choose appropriate statistical methods to answer research questions

      use statistical software to apply these methods, and interpret the output

    • Marine Pollution (ENVS232)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
      Aims

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

      ·         To develop an awareness of the current problems;

      ·         To train students in literature search and reading of scientific papers;

      ·         To enhance writing and communication skills.

      Learning Outcomes​​Students will gain an understanding and awareness of the various types of stressors that affect the marine system.

      ​​Students will be trained in browsing and searching Web of science to produce a research related poster 

    • Soils, Slopes and the Environment (ENVS238)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterSecond Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
      Aims

      1.  To understand the fundamental properties and characteristics of slopes and soils.

      2. To understand slope and soil forming processes and evolution

      3. To apply this knowledge to a number of pure and applied problems relating to slope and soil stability.

      Learning Outcomes

      ​Describe the fundamental physical, chemical and biological properties of soils.

      ​Use your knowledge of the fundamental physical, chemical and biological properties of soils to classify them

      ​Understand the processes of soil formation.

      ​Understand the factors that affect slope and soil stability

      ​Explain the processes of soil erosion, why they vary in time and space, and describe how they shape the landscape.

      ​Explain why landslides/mass movements occur.

    • Principles and Theory in Geography (ENVS249)
      Level2
      Credit level15
      SemesterFirst Semester
      Exam:Coursework weighting67:33
      Aims
      • To develop a critical and reflexive sense of the nature of geography as a dynamic, plural and contested discipline.
      • To become aware of major theoretical and conceptual frameworks used in Geography.
      • To develop an understanding of cutting edge debates in physical and human Geography.
      • To develop an understanding of the interrelations and interface between physical and human Geography, particularly around environmental issues.
      Learning Outcomes
      Critically evaluate key perspectives on human and physical geography, and to situate them in the history of the discipline.

        ​Apply different styles of spatial thinking to particular contexts and research questions.
        Engage in theoretical understanding of the behaviour of complex social and physical systems, and the approached to their modelling.

        ​​Understand the relevance of theoretical debates for their own research practices.​

        Understand the interface between physical and human Geography, and be able to illustrate how this can help in the analysis of environmental problems.​

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

        This module aims to provide studentswith essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resourceexploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop theability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as theability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address This module aims to provide studentswith essential background in marine ecology, ecophysiology and resourceexploitation required for study at higher levels. Students will also develop theability to evaluate and critique the scientific literature, as well as theability to draw in relevant information from multiple topics areas to address multi-disciplinarytopics.


        Learning Outcomes

        Be familiar with some key physiological adaptations necessary to survive in the marine environment​

        ​Understand the imporance of ​​​​​some key ecological concepts that underpin the stucturing of marine communities

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

        ​Develop the ability to read and critically evaluate scientific papers

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

      Programme Year Three

      Students are required to take five research-led core Ocean Science modules and one Physical Geography module. Year Three provides advanced training in Ocean Sciences and the opportunity to conduct an independent research project and to engage in activities at sea during a three day research cruise. Optional modules are available in Physical Geography and Environmental Sciences.

      Year Three Compulsory Modules

      • Ocean Dynamics (ENVS332)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting100:0
        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

        ​Students will acquire knowledge of key concepts in ocean and atmosphere dynamics.

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

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

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

        ​Students will develop an understanding of the factors controling fluid flows on a range of rotating planets.

      • Global Carbon Cycle (ENVS335)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting70:30
        Aims

        To provide students with a view of the ocean 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 ocean.

        To provide students with an in depth understanding of the carbon cycle from the surface ocean, to the deep ocean and sediments, and the impact environmental change may have on it.

        Learning Outcomes

        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

        Students will understand the role and significance that the ocean plays in the global cycling of carbon

        ​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

        ​Students will understand how stable isotopes can be used to study the carbon cycle and how it has varied in Earth''s history

        ​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

      • Sea Practical (ENVS349)
        Level3
        Credit level30
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims

        The aim of this module is to teach basic field skills in laboratory work and ship work including:

        a) safety at sea,

        b) ship''s operation,

        c) physical oceanographic and meteorological measurement,

        d) chemical sampling and

        e) analysis of water and sediment samples and

        f) interpretation of physical, chemical and biological oceanographic data from a coastal sea.

        Learning Outcomes
        1. Knowledge and Understanding:
         

        On completion of the module students should be able to demonstrate a knowledge of

        a) safety at sea,

        b) ship''s operation,

        c) how physical oceanographic and meteorological measurements are made,

        d) how to take water and sediment samples,

        e) how to analyse water and sediment samples,

        f) oceanographic conditions in the study area. 



         



         

         

        ​2. Intellectual Abilities:

        At the end of the module the student should be able to apply skills in

        a) devising marine sampling strategies

        b) evaluating the quality and significance of marine data

        c) evaluating publicly available meteorological data



        ​3. Subject Based Practical Skills:

        At the end of the module students should be able to apply skills in work at sea and ashore including:

        a) physical oceanographic and meteorological measurement,

        b) chemical sampling and

        c) analysis of water and sediment samples.


      • Marine Sciences - Special Topics (ENVS366)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
        Aims

        To promote engagement, discussions and raise the overall awareness of the most topical research issues in Marine Sciences.

        Learning Outcomes

        Gain a broad and detailed knowledge of some of the main research issues in marine sciences.

                   

        ​Improve critical reading of scientific literature.

         

         

        ​Gain/Practice Transferable Communication Skills: Reporting the main research findings on topics (through a number of different media including oral presentation, poster presentation, essay) to an audience of their peers and academic staff.

      • Coastal Environments: Spatial and Temporal Change (ENVS376)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterFirst Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
        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 managment 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 managment tecniques in relation to future climate change.

        Learning Outcomes

        Knowledge and understanding of physical aspects of coastal environments

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

        ​​Knowledge and understanding of environments as a result of process and form interaction

        ​​Knowledge and understanding of methodologies of analysis and interpretation

        ​Development of an informed concern for the Earth and its people

        ​Capability to critically analyze real case studies in the context of previously acquired knowledge

      • Ocean Sciences Research Project (ENVS377)
        Level3
        Credit level30
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims

        To develop skills in all aspects of research in ocean sciences, including

        a) literature searching, review and appraisal,

        b) design of experiments or models,

        c) practical and computing skills,

        d) collection and/or manipulation of data,

        e) construction of scientific hypotheses,

        f) oral communication and report writing.

        Learning Outcomes

        ​Plan, organise and undertake a programme of research.

        ​Make observations of data, reflect on outcomes and adjust the research
            design if necessary.

        ​Interpret, critically evaluate and present the data.

        ​Complete a scientific report of the research planned and undertaken

      Year Three Optional Modules

      • Fluvial Environments (ENVS372)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting60:40
        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

        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)




         

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

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

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

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

      • 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 100 years, to understand policy decisions at different levels, to obtain a critical understanding of climate predictions, and to understand the importance of reference to past and present climates.

        Learning Outcomes

        Evaluate a range of future climate change projections.​

        ​Recognise the likely impacts of climate change to a range of sectors.


        ​Learn how to engage with stakeholder communities with regard to climate change. 


        Produce effectively targeted report writing and visual communication​.

        ​Consider the multiple sector impact of climate change on societies

      • Evolution, Oceans and Climate (ENVS461)
        LevelM
        Credit level15
        SemesterSecond Semester
        Exam:Coursework weighting50:50
        Aims

        The module aims to develop

        Skills -the manipulation and interpretation of numerical, stratigraphic and geochemical data, the synthesis of data and literature information and coherent scientific argument.

        Knowledge and understanding of the major controls on the behaviour of the Earth''s oceans and climates and the interaction of climate and the evolution of life on Earth. An appreciation of the role of physical, geochemical, palaeontological and sedimentological techniques in the study of ancient oceans and climates, and the relationships between changes in the physical environment and the development of life on Earth.

        Learning Outcomes

        ​Students will develop an understanding of the key changes that have affected life on earth and the evolution of climate, atmosphere and oceans. 

        ​Students will develop an understanding of the use of geochemical, palaeontological and sedimentological data to determine and monitor past changes. 

        ​Through data analysis and dicussion students will develop skills to analyse and criticise the methodology and conclusions in published work. 

        ​Students will develop their core skills in data analysis, verbal and written comunication

      • Science Communication (ENVS393)
        Level3
        Credit level15
        SemesterWhole Session
        Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
        Aims
      • Provide key transferable skills​ to undergraduates, including: communication, presentation, practical classroom skills and team working.

      • ​Provide classoom based experience for undergraduates who are considering teaching as a potential career

      • ​Encourage a new generation of STEM teachers.

      • Provide role models for pupils within schools located in areas of high deprivation.​

      • Increase University of Liverpool widening participation activites within merseyside.​

      • Learning Outcomes

        ​Have an understanding of the UK educational system and relevant teaching and learning styles.

        ​Have an understanding of the Widening Participation Agenda

        Have an understanding of relevant STEM subjects and activities that would link into the National Curriculum

        ​Develop appropriate STEM activities for KS2 and KS3 school groups that link with the National Curriculum

        ​Reflect on and evaluate the effectiveness of the outreach acivities and their delivery

        ​Be able to apply the relevant protocols and safeguarding practice ​when delivering within a school setting

        ​Be able to apply practical knowledge of effective delivery styles when engaging with primary or secondary aged pupils

        ​Have experience of planning the delivery of a project

        ​Have experience of team working

        ​Have experience of science communication in a variety of situations

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


      Teaching and Learning

      Teaching takes place through lectures, practicals, workshops, seminars, tutorials and computer based learning, with an emphasis on learning through doing. The award-winning £23 million Central Teaching Laboratories provides a state-of-the-art facility for undergraduate practical work.

      Students value the learning opportunities provided by field classes, including the rapid feedback on performance. You will typically receive at least 15 hours of formal teaching each week. Between 30 and 100 hours of fieldwork and hands-on activities are provided each year depending on the discipline.

      A typical module might involve two or three one-hour lectures each week, and often a three- hour laboratory or computer-based practical as well. Tutorials typically involve groups of 4-7 students meeting with a member of staff at least every two weeks in Year One and Two. In Year Three, you will undertake an Honours project, which is a piece of independent research (field, laboratory or data analysis) on a topic of your choice, supervised by a member of staff. In Years Three and Four students meet with their project supervisor on a weekly or more frequent basis. As you progress through your degree, you will be increasingly challenged to engage with current debates, to think critically and to study independently.

      A number of the School’s degree programmes involve laboratory and field work. The field work is carried out in various locations, ranging from inner city to coastal and mountainous environments. We consider applications from prospective students with disabilities on the same basis as all other students, and reasonable adjustments will be considered to address barriers to access.