Environmental Science 

(2018 Entry)

BSc (Hons)

Develop the scientific understanding and practical skills needed to tackle many of the world’s major environmental (and societal) problems such as climate change, food security, water resources, pollution and conservation.

Single Honours
Combined Honours

Combined Honours degrees allow you to study two different subjects in one degree. Find out more about Combined Honours degrees.


Study abroad
Learn a language
International year
3 years/ 4 years with international year

UCAS code: F901

View entry requirements

Course Overview

Our Environmental Science course at Keele draws on the expertise of scientists within the disciplines of life sciences, chemical sciences and geosciences to emphasise the role and importance of scientific understanding and practical skills in the analysis and management of environmental problems. Alongside studying topical global environmental issues, you will have the opportunity to develop a broad range of practical, laboratory and field-based skills to take into future employment. You’ll also have the opportunity to do fieldwork overseas, gain valuable work experience or study abroad at one of our partner institutions.

This course is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES), meaning students can gain free membership of the IES to support their personal and professional development in the environmental sector.

What will this mean for my future?

All organisations, from private business to local government, increasingly need to engage with environmental issues; hence this is one of the fastest growing areas of employment opportunities.

Through completion of a reflective portfolio, you will also have the opportunity to gain accreditation from the Institute of Leadership and Management alongside your Keele degree.

Indicative modules

First Year

  • Environmental Science Skills
  • Introductory Geology for the Environmental Sciences
  • Fundamentals of Physical Geography
  • Ecology and Environment
  • Introductory Environmental Chemistry
  • Greening Business: Employability and Sustainability

Second Year

  • Human Impacts on the Environment: Scientific Perspectives
  • Integrated Environmental Field Studies
  • Sustainable Chemistry
  • Environmental Analytical Methods
  • Geoscience and Society
  • Living Together – Behaviours, Cooperation and Conflict
  • Work Placement Module

Third Year

  • Applied Environmental Science Research Project
  • Contemporary Topics in Environmental Science

Course structure

Our degree courses are organised into modules. Each module is usually a self-contained unit of study and each is usually assessed separately with the award of credits on the basis of 1 credit = 10 hours of student effort.  An outline of the structure of the programme is provided in the tables below.

There are three types of module delivered as part of this programme. They are:

  • Compulsory modules – a module that you are required to study on this course;
  • Optional modules – these allow you some limited choice of what to study from a list of modules;
  • Elective modules – a free choice of modules that count towards the overall credit requirement but not the number of subject-related credits.

Modules Summary

A summary of the credit requirements per year is as follows, with a minimum of 90 subject credits (compulsory plus optional) required for each year.

 

Year

Compulsory

Optional

Electives

Min

Max

Min

Max

1

105

0

15

0

15

2

60

30

60

0

30

3

45

45

75

0

30

Modules - Year One

Year 1 (Level 4)

Year 1 (Level 4)

The first year of the Environmental Science programme starts by emphasising the fundamental principles of the sciences underpinning the field of Environmental Science and how these are integrated in the discipline of Environmental Science in order to address environmental issues. This broad scientific foundation in the first year leads on to the detailed study of a range of Environmental Science issues and concepts in years 2 and 3.

Students take SEVEN 15-credit compulsory modules (total 105 credits), plus ONE option module, or ONE elective.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Studying the Environment

15

Global Warming or a New Ice Age

15

Introductory Geology for the Environmental Sciences

15

People and the Environment

15

Fundamentals of Physical Geography

15

   

Biodiversity, Ecology and Environment

30

   

Introductory Environmental Chemistry

15

   

Greening Business: Employability and Sustainability

15

   

 

Field courses

Studying the Environment (local area)

Introductory field day to explore the different aspects of environmental science and sustainability at a local field site (1 day).

Studying the Environment (Centre for Alternative Technology)

A residential weekend to the Centre for Alternative Technology, exploring renewable energy, sustainable living and building, and the geology and physical landscape of the local area.

Studying the Environment (North Wales)*

Residential field course in North Wales, looking at the ecology of marine and terrestrial environments and the environmental impacts of historical mining activities, includes a day of lab work at Keele (5 days).

*Note about field courses: these may change depending on factors such as staff availability, staff changes, staff expertise, costs, student numbers, other factors outside of our control (earthquakes, volcanic eruptions etc.). Locations of 'local area' field days change on a year by year basis.

Modules - Year Two

Year 2 (Level 5)

Students study 60 credits of compulsory modules and a MINIMUM of 30 credits of option modules and a MAXIMUM of 30 credits elective modules.  Students studying abroad for one semester do not take the 30-credit module Environmental and Sustainability Impact Assessment and Research Planning, and instead take 15-credits of this module during the semester that they remain at Keele (either Environmental and Sustainability Impact Assessment or Research and Fieldwork Planning).

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Human Impacts on the Environment: Scientific Perspectives

15

Sustainable Chemistry

15

Environmental and Sustainability Impact

Assessment and Research Planning

30

Geoscience and Society

15

Environmental Analytical Methods

15

Living Together - Behaviours, Co-operation and Conflict

15

   

Work Placement module

15

   

Health and the Environment

15

   

Dynamic Geographies

15

   

Practical Physical Geography

15

   

Regional Landsystems

15

   

Research and Analytical Skills

15

   

Palaeoclimatology and Quaternary Studies

15

 

Field courses

 Environmental and Sustainability Impact

Assessment and Research Planning (local)

Based in a local country park, students work in project groups to undertake an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).  (1 day)

 Environmental and Sustainability Impact

Assessment and Research Planning (residential)

A residential field course investigating issues of environmental science and management (6-8 days depending on dates of Easter vacation).   In 2016/17 options were the Lake District, UK or Bordeaux, France.

*Note about field courses: these may change depending on factors such as staff availability, staff changes, staff expertise, costs, student numbers, other factors outside of our control (earthquakes, volcanic eruptions etc.). Locations of 'local area' field days change on a year by year basis.

 

Work Placement Year

Students taking the 4-year with ‘work placement year’ undertake their work placement between Year-2 and Year-3 of their degree programme.  During the work placement year, students undertake a work placement (minimum 30 weeks full time (1,050 hours) or equivalent) with an environmentally-focussed company or organisation. Students take the year-long, non-credit bearing module:

Core modules

Credits

Work Placement Year

n/a

 

International Year

Information relevant to students taking the International Year is available in Annex A.

 

Modules - Year Three

Year 3 (Level 6)

In the final year students take the Dissertation module (30 credits) and the core module Contemporary Topics in Environmental Science (15 credits)) plus up to five option modules from the list below.

Compulsory modules

Credits

Optional modules

Credits

Dissertation

30

Clean Technology

15

Contemporary Topics in Environmental Science

15

Applied Insect Ecology

15

   

Applied Fish Biology

15

   

Trees in their Environment

15

   

Conservation Biology

15

   

Natural Hazards

15

   

Hydrological and Engineering Geology

15

   

Global Environmental Change

15

   

Applied GIS

15

   

Coastal Environments

15

   

Water Resources

15

   

Glaciers and Glacial Geomorphology

15

 

Field courses: The field courses undertaken during the third year will depend on the modules chosen. It should be noted that for many students their Dissertation work is likely to include a significant amount of fieldwork.

 

For further information on the content of modules currently offered, including the list of elective modules, please visit: www.keele.ac.uk/recordsandexams/az