ESC-20032 - Environmental Analytical Methods
Coordinator: Ian Oliver Tel: +44 1782 7 34956
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 5
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 733615

Programme/Approved Electives for 2023/24


Available as a Free Standing Elective





CHE-10044 (Introductory Environmental Chemistry).

Barred Combinations


Description for 2023/24

Effective investigation, management and monitoring of the environment can only be achieved through the design of robust sampling strategies, the use of accurate and precise analytical techniques, and the sound interpretation of data.
This module provides hands-on practical experience and theoretical understanding of experimental design and sampling strategy development, the use of analytical instruments to characterise environmental media (e.g. air, water, soil, biota) and the interpretation of data. The knowledge and skills developed are highly relevant for careers in environmental management, regulation, consultancy and research.

To enable students to develop knowledge and understanding of sampling strategies and experimental design in environmental science investigations. To provide students with technical knowledge of, and hands-on experience using, a range of analytical equipment for examining environmental media (soil, water, vegetation, air). To facilitate students gaining experience and skills in the manipulation, analysis and interpretation of environmental data sets.

Talis Aspire Reading List
Any reading lists will be provided by the start of the course.

Intended Learning Outcomes


Study hours

Lectures 12h
Laboratory and field work 10h
Computer workshops 10h
Directed reading and assessment preparation 118h

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Laboratory Report weighted 30%
Laboratory report 1
A 1500 word laboratory report based on practical investigations and related activities conducted in class. An example is the elemental analysis of soil and water using techniques such as XRF and ICP-OES.

2: Laboratory Report weighted 20%
Laboratory report 2
A 1000 word laboratory report based on practical investigations and related activities conducted in class. An example is the analysis of pesticides and organic contaminants in water using chromatographic techniques (TLC, HPLC).

3: Group Report weighted 50%
Small Group Consultancy Report
In small groups (e.g. 4), students take on the role of an environmental consultancy firm and produce a proposal document submission that sets out how their 'company' proposes to investigate a specified pollution incident scenario and to evaluate the data obtained, including; i) field sampling strategy, ii) sample processing and preservation methods, iii) laboratory analytical instruments and techniques to be employed, iv) quality control measures, and v) data evaluation approach. Groups will be able to select their preferred pollution incident scenario from a set list. All group members receive the same mark.