Environmental Sciences

BSc ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES WITH A FOUNDATION YEAR

Key details 

BSC ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES WITH A FOUNDATION YEAR

Start Year
2021
Attendance
Full Time
Award
Degree of Bachelor of Science
UCAS course code
8F90
Entry Requirements
CCC
Duration (years)
4

Assessment for Year 1

During your Foundation Year we will assess your understanding through written laboratory reports, problem sheets, tests, presentations, or scientific essays.

You’ll get useful feedback on one or more formative practice exercises before summative assessments (which count towards your course marks).

During your BSc/MSci degree we will use various assessment methods across the different modules, contributing in various proportions towards your overall module mark. Coursework assessment methods include essays, projects, class tests, problem sheets, laboratory reports, field exercises, seminars, presentations, posters and blogs. We also use formative assessment throughout each module so that you can gain feedback on your skills and understanding before completing summative work.

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Register interest   
Virtual Open Day   

Assessment for Year 2

We will use various assessment methods across the different modules, contributing in various proportions towards your overall module mark.

Coursework assessment methods include essays, projects, class tests, problem sheets, laboratory reports, field exercises, seminars, presentations, posters and blogs. We also use formative assessment throughout each module so that you can gain feedback on your skills and understanding before completing summative work.

All module credits contribute equally towards the mark for the year, and years 2 and 3 are weighted 40:60 to determine your final degree mark.

Admissions Live Chat   
Register interest   
Virtual Open Day   

Assessment for Year 3

We will use various assessment methods across the different modules, contributing in various proportions towards your overall module mark.

Coursework assessment methods include essays, projects, class tests, problem sheets, laboratory reports, field exercises, seminars, presentations, posters and blogs. We also use formative assessment throughout each module so that you can gain feedback on your skills and understanding before completing summative work.

All module credits contribute equally towards the mark for the year, and years 2 and 3 are weighted 40:60 to determine your final degree mark.

Admissions Live Chat   
Register interest   
Virtual Open Day   

Assessment for Year 4

We will use various assessment methods across the different modules, contributing in various proportions towards your overall module mark.

Coursework assessment methods include essays, projects, class tests, problem sheets, laboratory reports, field exercises, seminars, presentations, posters and blogs. We also use formative assessment throughout each module so that you can gain feedback on your skills and understanding before completing summative work.

All module credits contribute equally towards the mark for the year, and years 2 and 3 are weighted 40:60 to determine your final degree mark.

Admissions Live Chat   
Register interest   
Virtual Open Day   

Year 0 (Foundation Year)

Compulsory Modules (20 Credits)

Code ENV-3001Y - (20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the interdisciplinary nature of environmental sciences through discussion of current hot topics, and carrying out projects on environmental problems; you will acquire skills in field work, data analysis, and writing scientific reports. Through the year-long module you will gain an understanding of the breadth of environmental science topics, the multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary nature of environmental systems. You will develop skills in verbal and written scientific communication skills, critically analyse environmental problems and discuss solutions to the challenges of sustainable management of our environment.

 

Options Range A (40 Credits)

Students will be assigned to EITHER Introductory Maths (SEM 1) & Further Maths (SEM 2), OR the more advanced Basic Maths I (SEM 1) & Basic Maths II (SEM 2), based on their previous qualifications.

Code MTHB3001A - (20 Credits)

Taught by lectures and seminars to bring students from Maths GCSE towards A-level standard, this module covers several algebraic topics including functions, polynomials and quadratic equations. Trigonometry is approached both geometrically up to Sine and Cosine Rule and as a collection of waves and other functions. The main new topic is Differential Calculus including the Product and Chain Rules. We will also introduce Integral Calculus and apply it to areas. Students should have a strong understanding of GCSE Mathematics.

Code MTHB3002B - (20 Credits)

Following MTHB3001A (Basic Mathematics I), this module brings students up to the standard needed to begin year one of a range of degree courses. The first half covers Integral Calculus including Integration by Parts and Substitution. Trigonometric identities, polynomial expressions, partial fractions and exponential functions are explored, all with the object of integrating a wider range of functions. The second half of the module is split into two: Complex Numbers and Vectors. We will meet and use the imaginary number i (the square root of negative one), represent it on a diagram, solve equations using it and link it to trigonometry and exponential functions. Strange but true: imaginary numbers are useful in the real world. The last section is practical rather than abstract too; we will be looking at three dimensional position and movement and solving geometric problems through vector techniques.

Code MTHB3005A - (20 Credits)

This is a course in mathematics for students who have studied Maths at GCSE level gaining a grade B/C or equivalent and/or more than two years ago. The course includes some AS level material relevant to science. This module is reserved for students on the Chemistry, Biology, Pharmacy, Environmental Science or Computing Foundation Years.

Code MTHB3006B - (20 Credits)

This module is ideal for you if you are studying a Science Faculty degree with a Foundation Year or Computing with a Foundation Year and have completed study of the module Introductory Mathematics for Scientists. You will build on the knowledge gained during the Mathematics for Scientists introduction module and advance your skills.

 

Options Range B (60 Credits)

Code BIO-3001B - (20 Credits)

The topics covered will give you a basic grounding in biological processes including the fundamental characteristics of living things; basic metabolic processes; an understanding of evolution and knowledge of the levels of biological organisation with some focus given to organ systems. This module also gives you the opportunity to develop key transferable skills such as lab skills, report writing, assignment preparation, researching and evaluating evidence, giving and responding to presentations.

Code BIO-3002A - (20 Credits)

The topics covered on the module will give you a basic grounding in biological processes including the fundamental characteristics of living things; basic metabolic processes; an understanding of evolution and knowledge of the levels of biological organisation with some focus given to organ systems. This module also gives you the opportunity to develop key transferable skills which may include lab skills, report writing, assignment preparation, researching and evaluating evidence, giving and responding to presentations.

Code CHE-3003B - (20 Credits)

A course in chemistry intended to take you to the level required to begin a relevant degree in the Faculty of Science. The module will help you to develop an understanding of: reactions of functional groups in organic chemistry; basic thermodynamics; spectroscopic techniques; transition metal chemistry and practical laboratory skills.

Code CHE-3004A - (20 Credits)

A module designed for you, if you are on a Science Faculty degree with a Foundation Year. You will receive an introduction to the structure and electronic configuration of the atom. You will learn how to predict the nature of bonding given the position of elements in the periodic table and therefore. You will be introduced to the chemistry of key groups of elements. You will become familiar with key measures such as the mole and the determination of concentrations. The module includes laboratory work. No prior knowledge of chemistry is assumed.

Code DEV-3011A - (20 Credits)

Global Challenges: Issues and Concepts in Development Studies 1 takes a thematic approach to an introduction to the interdisciplinary subject of development studies. Key pressing global challenges will be addressed, with case studies from specific countries used to explore issues in more contextual detail. Global Challenges: Issues and Concepts in Developments Studies 2 is a related module in the Spring semester and Foundation Year students in the School of International Development will take both modules. Key issues studied across the two modules could include such issues as inequality and poverty, population growth, climate change, democracy, HIV/AIDS, indigenous peoples, and migration and refugees.

Code DEV-3012B - (20 Credits)

Global Challenges: Issues and Concepts in Development Studies 2 is a progression from Global Challenges: Issues and Concepts in Development Studies 1 and Foundation Year students in the School of International Development will take both modules. Global Challenges 2 continues with a thematic approach to an introduction to the interdisciplinary subject of development studies. Key pressing global challenges will be addressed, with case studies from specific countries used to explore issues in more contextual detail. Key issues studied across the two modules could include such issues as inequality and poverty, population growth, climate change, democracy, HIV/AIDS, indigenous peoples, and migration and refugees.

Code PHY-3010B - (20 Credits)

This module follows on from Introductory Physics and continues to introduce you to the fundamental principles of physics and uses them to explain a variety of physical phenomena. You will study gravitational, electric and magnetic fields, radioactivity and energy levels. There is some coursework based around the discharge of capacitors. The module finishes with you studying some aspects of thermal physics, conservation of momentum and simple harmonic motion.

Code PHY-3011A - (20 Credits)

In this module you will begin your physics journey with units, accuracy and measurement. You will then progress through the topics of waves, light and sound, forces and dynamics, energy, materials and finish by studying aspects of electricity. The module has a piece of coursework which is based around PV cell technology.

 

Year 1

Compulsory Modules (80 Credits)

Code ENV-4004Y - (20 Credits)

You will gain a range of transferable skills, tools and resources that are widely used in research across the Environmental Sciences and Geography. It aims to provide a broad understanding of the research process through activities that involve formulating research questions, collecting data using appropriate sources and techniques, collating and evaluating information and presenting results. A week-long residential field course, held at Easter and based at Slapton Ley, Devon, applies field, lab and other skills to a variety of environmental science and geography topics. Depending on the size of the cohort, students on selected degree programmes may be offered the option of an alternative field course arrangement.

Code ENV-4005A - (20 Credits)

Understanding of natural systems is underpinned by physical laws and processes. You will explore the energy, mechanics, and physical properties of Earth materials and their relevance to environmental science using examples from across the Earth's differing systems. The formation, subsequent evolution and current state of our planet are considered through its structure and behaviour - from the planetary interior to the dynamic surface and into the atmosphere. You will study Plate Tectonics to explain Earth's physiographic features - such as mountain belts and volcanoes - and how the processes of erosion and deposition modify them. The distribution of land masses is tied to global patterns of rock, ice and soil distribution and to atmospheric and ocean circulation. You will also explore geological time - the 4.6 billion year record of changing conditions on the planet - and how geological maps can be used to understand Earth history. This course provides you with an introduction to geological materials - rocks, minerals and sediments - and to geological resources and natural hazards.

Code ENV-4006B - (20 Credits)

Striking a balance between societal development, economic growth and environmental conservation has proven challenging and contentious at many scales and over time. The concept of `sustainable development’ was coined to denote processes aiming to achieve this balance. This module introduces sustainable development, and examines the challenges and opportunities to achieving this, drawing together social and ecological dimensions. Drawing upon the social sciences, this module examines the theory and practice of sustainable development. From an ecological perspective, the module covers a range of concepts relevant to the structure and functioning of the biosphere, and topics ranging from landscape and population ecology to biodiversity conservation. This module is assessed by coursework and an examination.

Code ENV-4001A - (20 Credits)

What are the most pressing environmental challenges facing the world today? How do we understand these problems through cutting-edge environmental science research? What are the possibilities for building sustainable solutions to address them in policy and society? In this module, you will tackle these questions by taking an interdisciplinary approach to consider challenges relating to climate change, biodiversity, water resources, natural hazards, and technological risks. In doing so you will gain an insight into environmental science research ‘in action’ and develop essential academic study skills needed to explore these issues.

 

Options Range B (20 Credits)

Code ENV-4007B - (20 Credits)

The habitability of planet Earth depends on physical and chemical systems that control everything from the weather and climate to the growth of all living organisms. This module introduces you to some of these key cycles and the ways in which physical and chemical scientists investigate and interpret them. It leads naturally to second and third year study of these systems in more detail, but even if you choose to study other aspects of environmental sciences, a basic knowledge of these systems is central to understanding our planet and how it responds to human pressures. The module is made up of two distinct components. One focuses on the physical study of the environment (Physical Processes: e.g. weather, climate, ocean circulation, etc.) The other focuses on the chemical study (Chemical Processes: weathering, atmospheric pollution, ocean productivity, etc.). Interrelationships between these components are explored throughout. Teaching of this module is through a mix of lectures, laboratory practical classes, workshops and a half-day field trip. This module provides a Basic Chemistry introduction for those students who have little or no background in chemistry prior to joining UEA.

 

Year 2 

60 Credits need to be selected for Semester 1 and Semester 2 to total 120 Credits for the year.

Compulsory Module (0 Credits)

Code ENV-6021B - (0 Credits)

With guidance from a supervisor, you will choose a topic, design the research and collect, analyse and interpret data. You will report on progress at various stages: in the selection of a topic, the detailed plan, an interim report and an oral presentation. A final report in the form of a dissertation not exceeding 10,000 words is required. When planning the project and again after completing the report, you will reflect on the range of subject-specific and generic skills acquired through your degree and how you are reinforced and complemented by the skills acquired through your project. A final item of summative work assesses the clarity by which you communicate and evidence your range of skills in the form of a covering letter and cv for a potential job application. To further support the transition to employment, you can present a formative research poster that summarises the main aspects of the work to prospective employers.

 

Options Range A (20 Credits)

Code BIO-5020K - (20 Credits)

Conservation ecology and biodiversity are central areas of research in the biological sciences and they share many theories, concepts and scientific methods. This module intends to take a practical approach to the commonalities in these areas using a combination of seminar work and fieldwork. The seminars will develop ideas in sub-tropical and tropical biology: students will research issues affecting conservation of biodiversity in the tropics, considering the species ecology and the habitats, threats and challenges. There will be a significant component of small group work and directed, independent learning. The field component of this module will be a two week residential field trip to the tropics, one of two field sites (depending on numbers of students and availability).The field sites are run by expert field ecologists and during the two weeks we will explore the local environment, learn about the ecology of the landscape and about the species that inhabit the area. We will develop and run practical sessions on survey and census techniques, use of technology in modern field biology and the role of protected areas in species conservation. Students will conduct original research on the field trip, informed by prior research at UEA, to gain a deeper understanding of an aspect of tropical biology. There will be an assessed presentation on the field trip and many opportunities to develop the students own interests. All student participants will take an active role in the organisation and running of the module in order to gain project management and field logistics experience. Students will be responsible for the sourcing, storage and transport of field equipment on the way to the field site and of samples on the return to the UK. Students will gain experience of travelling to a remote area and of working through licensing and customs processes. At the end of the module a report is written on the field project in the style of a journal article addressing specific questions in ecology conservation or biodiversity. Throughout the module students will be expected to maintain a modern-media record of their project from the initial desk based work at UEA, through the field component to outcomes and reporting. NOTE: There will be a significant additional cost to this module to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation in the field. Costs will be detailed at an initial meeting for interested students and will be clearly advertised. 2018/19 costs were £1300 per student. Students will need to provide any visas required for entry into the host country, sturdy walking boots and appropriate field clothing. All attendees must ensure that all travel vaccinations etc are in order prior to departure.

Code ENV-5004B - (20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the processes that shape the Earth's shallow subsurface, and how to detect and map subsurface structures and resources. Physical properties of solid materials and subsurface fluids will be explored, including how fluid movement affects these properties. Methods to image the subsurface will be introduced using real datasets, collected by the class where possible. We will apply the theory to real-life problems including risk mitigation, engineering and resource exploration. This module will include fieldwork on campus where possible, specialist computer software, and some light mathematical analysis (trigonometry, rearranging linear equations, logarithms).

Code ENV-5014A - (20 Credits)

We live in a human dominated era recently designated “the Anthropocene”. Humans harvest more than half of the primary productivity of the planet, many resources are over-exploited or depleted (e.g. fisheries) never before has it been so important to correctly manage natural resources for an exponentially growing human population. It is, thus, fundamental to predict where other species occur and the sizes of their populations (abundance). Population Ecology is an area dedicated to the dynamics of population development. In this module we will look closely at how populations are regulated, from within through density dependent factors and from external density independent factors. We start the module with a global environmental change perspective to the management of populations and the factors that affect the population size. We then extend these ideas to help us understand population properties and processes both intra-specifically and inter-specifically. Finally we examine several management applications where we show that a good understanding of the population modelling is essential to correctly manage natural resources on the planet. Practicals include learning to survey butterflies and birds using citizen science monitoring projects and will be focused on delivering statistical analyses of “Big data” using the programme R-studio. The projects will provide a strong training in both subject specific and transferable skills.

Code ENV-5010K - (20 Credits)

Weather is one of the most popular topics of conversation. But how, specifically, does it present risks and opportunities, to people, organisations and to the wider environment? In this module you will develop a clear understanding of these linkages and an evidence base to draw on in future roles in which weather is a factor. You’ll learn how to confidently source a diverse range of real-time weather information and you’ll practice analysing such data, leading subsequently to successful interpretation and effective communication, both written and in front of the camera. You’ll see, first hand, how meteorology depends upon computer systems for the efficient sharing, processing and visualisation of weather information. Being taught by weather practitioners with long experience of providing weather services to users, you will get the inside track on what it’s like to work in weather. Weather Forecasting is one central theme and application which will provide a focus for learning. How are forecasts made and delivered, who uses forecasts and what are their distinctive needs? Success in forecasting depends in part on a good physical understanding of atmospheric processes - through practical work, we’ll study those processes and use real examples of weather systems and events to reinforce the learning. At the end of the module, through an embedded week-long Easter residential fieldcourse, you’ll apply your enhanced process understanding and forecasting knowledge in a hands-on way to design and implement meteorological field experiments, testing hypotheses through the collection and interpretation of field data collected using weather sensors. You’ll write up your choice of fieldcourse experiment for assessment, after first receiving informal feedback on a related poster presentation.

Code ENV-5015A - (20 Credits)

Atmospheric chemistry and global change are in the news. Stratospheric ozone depletion, acid rain, greenhouse gases, and global scale air pollution are among the most significant environmental problems of our age. Chemical composition and transformations underlie these issues, and drive many important atmospheric processes. This module covers the fundamental chemical principles and processes in the atmosphere, from the Earth's surface to the stratosphere, and considers current issues of atmospheric chemical change through a series of lectures, problem-solving classes, seminars, experimental and computing labs, as well as a field trip to UEA’s own atmospheric observatory in Weybourne/North Norfolk.

Code ENV-5017B - (20 Credits)

The shallow shelf seas that surround the continents are the oceans that we most interact with. They contribute a disproportionate amount to global marine primary production and CO2 drawdown into the ocean, and are important economically through commercial fisheries, offshore oil and gas exploration, and renewable energy developments (e.g. offshore wind farms). You will explore the physical processes that occur in shelf seas and coastal waters, their effect on biological, chemical and sedimentary processes, and how they can be harnessed to generate renewable energy. You will develop new skills during this module that will support careers in the offshore oil and gas industry, renewable energy industry, environmental consultancy, government laboratories (e.g. Cefas) and academia. The level of mathematical ability required to take this module is similar to Ocean Circulation and Meteorology I. You should be familiar with radians, rearranging equations and plotting functions.

Code ENV-5018A - (20 Credits)

Processes in the Earth’s interior exert a profound influence on all aspects of the Earth’s system, and have done so throughout geological time. This module is designed to explore all aspects of those processes from the creation and destruction of tectonic plates to the structure of the Earth’s interior and the distribution and dissipation of energy within it. This will include: the theory and mechanisms of plate tectonics, the generation of magma and volcanism; the mechanisms behind earthquakes. The geological record of this activity, its evolution and impacts on the Earth will also be discussed.

Code ENV-5041A - (20 Credits)

Explore how chemical, physical and biological influences shape the biological communities of rivers, lakes and estuaries in temperate and tropical regions. Three field visits and laboratory work, usually using microscopes and sometimes analysing water quality, provide an important practical component to this module. A good complement to other ecology modules, final-year Catchment Water Resources and modules in development studies or geography, it can also be taken alongside Aquatic Biogeochemistry or other geochemical and hydrology modules. Students selecting this module must have a background in basic statistical analysis of data.

Code ENV-5043A - (20 Credits)

The weather affects everyone and influences decisions that are made continuously around the world. From designing and siting a wind farm to assessing flood risk and public safety, weather plays a vital role. Have you ever wondered what actually causes the weather we experience, for example why large storms are so frequent across north western Europe, especially in Winter? In this module you will learn the fundamentals of the science of meteorology. We will concentrate on the physical processes that underpin the radiation balance, thermodynamics, wind-flow, atmospheric stability, weather systems and the water cycle. We will link these to renewable energy and the weather we experience throughout the Semester. Assessment will be based entirely on a set of practical reports that you will submit, helping you to spread your work evenly through the semester. You will learn how Weather is a rich fusion of descriptive and numerical elements and you will be able to draw effectively on your own skill strengths while practising and developing others, guided by Weatherquest’s Meteorologists.

Options Range C (40-60 Credits)

Code BIO-5010B - (20 Credits)

We will explore how evolution and ecology shape animal behaviour, examining how important traits have evolved to maximise survival and reproduction in the natural environment. Darwinian principles provide the theoretical framework, and we will explore key concepts of selfishness, altruism, conflict, survival, optimality, reproduction, parental care and death. Relevant research will be used to lead our understanding of the ultimate function of key traits. In parallel with the lectures, students design, conduct, analyse and present their own research project, working in a group to collect original data in order to answer a question about the adaptive significance of behaviour.

Code BIO-5014B - (20 Credits)

This module introduces you to major concepts and definitions in community ecology, macro-ecology and biogeography. You will use these to explore how communities are structured in relation to local-scale to regional-scale processes, how they function and respond to perturbations at different scales, and result in emergent macro- to global-scale patterns of biodiversity distribution. Throughout the module, there is an emphasis on the relevance of theory and fundamental science to understanding the current environmental and biodiversity crisis. Anthropogenic impacts on natural communities through land-use, species exploitation, non-native species, and climate change, are a recurrent theme underpinning the examples you will draw upon.

Code BIO-5020K - (20 Credits)

Conservation ecology and biodiversity are central areas of research in the biological sciences and they share many theories, concepts and scientific methods. This module intends to take a practical approach to the commonalities in these areas using a combination of seminar work and fieldwork. The seminars will develop ideas in sub-tropical and tropical biology: students will research issues affecting conservation of biodiversity in the tropics, considering the species ecology and the habitats, threats and challenges. There will be a significant component of small group work and directed, independent learning. The field component of this module will be a two week residential field trip to the tropics, one of two field sites (depending on numbers of students and availability).The field sites are run by expert field ecologists and during the two weeks we will explore the local environment, learn about the ecology of the landscape and about the species that inhabit the area. We will develop and run practical sessions on survey and census techniques, use of technology in modern field biology and the role of protected areas in species conservation. Students will conduct original research on the field trip, informed by prior research at UEA, to gain a deeper understanding of an aspect of tropical biology. There will be an assessed presentation on the field trip and many opportunities to develop the students own interests. All student participants will take an active role in the organisation and running of the module in order to gain project management and field logistics experience. Students will be responsible for the sourcing, storage and transport of field equipment on the way to the field site and of samples on the return to the UK. Students will gain experience of travelling to a remote area and of working through licensing and customs processes. At the end of the module a report is written on the field project in the style of a journal article addressing specific questions in ecology conservation or biodiversity. Throughout the module students will be expected to maintain a modern-media record of their project from the initial desk based work at UEA, through the field component to outcomes and reporting. NOTE: There will be a significant additional cost to this module to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation in the field. Costs will be detailed at an initial meeting for interested students and will be clearly advertised. 2018/19 costs were £1300 per student. Students will need to provide any visas required for entry into the host country, sturdy walking boots and appropriate field clothing. All attendees must ensure that all travel vaccinations etc are in order prior to departure.

Code ENV-5002B - (20 Credits)

The most significant obstacles to problem solving are often political, not scientific or technological. This module examines the emergence and processes of environmental politics. It analyses these from different theoretical perspectives, particularly theories of power and public policy making. The module is focused on contemporary examples of politics and policy making at UK, EU and international levels. The module supports student-led learning by enabling students to select (and develop their own theoretical interpretations of) ‘real world’ examples of politics. Assessment is via seminar slides and a case study essay. The module assumes no prior knowledge of politics.

Code ENV-5004B - (20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the processes that shape the Earth's shallow subsurface, and how to detect and map subsurface structures and resources. Physical properties of solid materials and subsurface fluids will be explored, including how fluid movement affects these properties. Methods to image the subsurface will be introduced using real datasets, collected by the class where possible. We will apply the theory to real-life problems including risk mitigation, engineering and resource exploration. This module will include fieldwork on campus where possible, specialist computer software, and some light mathematical analysis (trigonometry, rearranging linear equations, logarithms).

Code ENV-5009B - (20 Credits)

This module will build upon material covered in Meteorology I, by covering topics such as synoptic meteorology, weather hazards, micro-meteorology, further thermodynamics and weather forecasting. The module includes a major summative coursework assignment based on data collected on a UEA meteorology fieldcourse in a previous year.

Code ENV-5010K - (20 Credits)

Weather is one of the most popular topics of conversation. But how, specifically, does it present risks and opportunities, to people, organisations and to the wider environment? In this module you will develop a clear understanding of these linkages and an evidence base to draw on in future roles in which weather is a factor. You’ll learn how to confidently source a diverse range of real-time weather information and you’ll practice analysing such data, leading subsequently to successful interpretation and effective communication, both written and in front of the camera. You’ll see, first hand, how meteorology depends upon computer systems for the efficient sharing, processing and visualisation of weather information. Being taught by weather practitioners with long experience of providing weather services to users, you will get the inside track on what it’s like to work in weather. Weather Forecasting is one central theme and application which will provide a focus for learning. How are forecasts made and delivered, who uses forecasts and what are their distinctive needs? Success in forecasting depends in part on a good physical understanding of atmospheric processes - through practical work, we’ll study those processes and use real examples of weather systems and events to reinforce the learning. At the end of the module, through an embedded week-long Easter residential fieldcourse, you’ll apply your enhanced process understanding and forecasting knowledge in a hands-on way to design and implement meteorological field experiments, testing hypotheses through the collection and interpretation of field data collected using weather sensors. You’ll write up your choice of fieldcourse experiment for assessment, after first receiving informal feedback on a related poster presentation.

Code ENV-5022B - (20 Credits)

This module examines the complexities of the transition to low carbon energy systems. It draws on a range of disciplines, theories and perspectives to critically examine many of the key challenges. It begins by exploring how we can understand energy systems and how they differ across space and time. The module draws on historical analyses to understand how energy systems have evolved in the past, as well as examining the different ways in which we can imagine the future of energy. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the complexities of changing energy systems, enabling them to critically engage with debates around future “energy transitions”, the role that innovation and emergent technologies might play, and the various challenges of shifting towards renewable based energy systems.

Code ENV-5028B - (20 Credits)

This module builds upon the introduction to GIS provided in the first year Research and Field Skills module, focusing on how you obtain your data, integrate it and then undertake analysis and presentation tasks. ESRI ArcGIS will be the main software used, but the module also offers information on online GIS (ArcGIS Online) as well as scripting tools (Python) and open source software (QGIS) that you may wish to progress in your own time. Teaching will consist of a one-hour lecture and a three-hour practical class each week.

Code ENV-5030B - (20 Credits)

This module is designed to develop good observational, descriptive and analytical skills and is particularly suitable for students with interest in Geology, Earth and Geophysical Sciences. It will cover generic geological skills, together with some geophysical and physical geography skills that will be of use when carrying out independent projects. The module will include: (i) observing, describing and recording of characteristics of geological materials (minerals, soils, sediments, rocks and fossils) in the field, in hand specimen and under the microscope; (ii) measuring and recording of spatial and 3D structural data on maps, stereographic and rose diagram projections, reading geological maps and basic geological mapping, and (iii) an introduction to applied geophysical techniques. The module includes a week-long residential fieldwork component in the Easter vacation which has an added cost implication in the region of £300. There will be an alternative arrangement for students who for whatever reason are unable to undertake the residential fieldwork. There is a co-requisite or pre-requisite of 20 or more credits from the modules: Earth Surface Processes, Global Tectonics or Exploring the Earth’s Subsurface. Students who have previously taken ENV-5030B Geology Skills, or ENV-5029B Geology Lab Skills cannot take this module. They will, however, have an opportunity to take part in the residential field course.

Code ENV-5039B - (20 Credits)

The Earth’s terrestrial and marine water bodies support life and play a major role in regulating the planet’s climate. This module will train you to make accurate measurements of the chemical composition of the aquatic environment. In lectures and in the lab you will explore important chemical interactions between life, fresh and marine waters and climate, looking at nutrient cycles, dissolved oxygen, trace metals, carbonate chemistry and chemical exchange with the atmosphere. Students taking this module are expected to be familiar with basic chemical concepts and molar concentration units. This module makes a good combination with Aquatic Ecology.

Code ENV-5040A - (20 Credits)

Human geography and the environmental social sciences employ a range of approaches and methods with which to explore their diverse research questions. This module will introduce you to the practice of social science research, including methods that use quantitative (numerical) and qualitative (non-numerical) data. Through a combination of lectures, workshops, and practical activities, you will learn how to design and carry out your own research. By the end of the module you will know how to formulate an interesting research question; how to choose an appropriate method to investigate it; how to ensure that you collect good quality data; how to analyse and interpret your data; and how to present the results of your research. The module is recommended if you intend to use social research methods in your independent dissertation project. In addition to gaining practical research skills, you will develop your ability to critically evaluate research studies that use social science methods. As well as benefiting your academic studies, these analytical and practical research skills are highly valued in many occupational sectors.

Code ENV-5042A - (20 Credits)

This module draws upon on a range of scientific disciplines including geomorphology, sedimentology, soil science and eco-geomorphology. The module overviews a variety of Earth’s surface environments and the processes that lead to expression in landforms, soil evolution, sediment accumulation and ultimately, the formation of sedimentary rocks. The environments covered include deep and marginal marine, intertidal, aeolian, glacial and fluvial. The approach will be both descriptive and quantitative, based on understanding of erosion, transport, deposition, accumulation and burial and the evolution of soils. East Anglian case studies will be used to illustrate and explain eco-geomorphology and coastal processes, dovetailed with soil evolution. Geomorphological expression will be linked to sedimentary processes and sedimentary rock. There will be an introduction to the methods and different types of evidence used by geologists, physical geographers and other earth scientists.

 

Options Range D (0-20 Credits)

Note a minimum number of students is required to make a fieldcourse viable.

Code ENV-5020K - (20 Credits)

The first three days of the fieldcourse involve lectures, seminars and practical sessions on physical, chemical and biological oceanographic techniques, as well as analysis of data and planning of field activities. The next five days see you undertake practical activities using oceanographic research ships and laboratory facilities. On the final day, you’ll be involved in data interpretation and group presentations. The number of practical days required will depend on the number of students undertaking the fieldcourse, so the above days are flexible. This module runs every 2 years and only goes ahead if there are sufficient students enrolled. The maximum number of students (28)includes those enrolled on ENV 7030K. Please note that you can only enrol onto this module via an application form from the School (Deadline usually at the end of semester 1 in the previous academic year) and not via the standard module enrolment process. The module runs in the summer prior to the start of the academic year.

 

Year 3

Compulsory Module (40 Credits)

Code ENV-6021Y - (40 Credits)

With guidance from a supervisor, you will choose a topic, design the research and collect, analyse and interpret data. You will report on progress at various stages: in the selection of a topic, the detailed plan, an interim report and an oral presentation. A final report in the form of a dissertation not exceeding 10,000 words is required. When planning the project and again after completing the report, you will reflect on the range of subject-specific and generic skills acquired through your degree and how these are reinforced and complemented by skills acquired through your project. A final item of summative work assesses the clarity by which you communicate and evidences your range of skills in the form of a covering letter and cv for a potential job application. To further support the transition to employment you can present a formative research poster that summarises the main aspects of the work to prospective employers.

 

Options Range A (0-40 Credits)

Code BIO-6018Y - (20 Credits)

You will gain an understanding of how science is disseminated to the public and explore the theories surrounding learning and communication. You will investigate science as a culture and how this culture interfaces with the public. Examining case studies in a variety of different scientific areas, alongside looking at how information is released in scientific literature and subsequently picked up by the public press, will give you an understanding of science communication. You will gain an appreciation of how science information can be used to change public perception and how it can sometimes be misinterpreted. You will also learn practical skills by designing, running and evaluating a public outreach event at a school or in a public area. If you wish to take this module you will be required to write a statement of selection. These statements will be assessed and students will be allocated to the module accordingly.

Code ENG-6002Y - (20 Credits)

This module addresses the technical and financial aspects of nuclear power and solar energy, whilst letting you apply your knowledge from the Engineering Practice module to make ethical decisions incorporating health and safety risk assessments. Successful design of nuclear installations requires a detailed quantitative risk analysis within a regulatory framework that imposes high tolerances. Furthermore, you will obtain advanced knowledge and skills for the optimal design and performance analysis for cost-effective configurations of PV systems, solar thermal systems and hybrids to achieve sustainable development. Although these energies are considered cleaner, it is essential to consider the environmental impact and planning law, as well as changing the societal perception of both.

Code ENV-6004A - (20 Credits)

Our aim is to show how environmental problems may be solved from the initial problem, to mathematical formulation and numerical solution. Problems will be described conceptually, then defined mathematically, then solved numerically via computer programming. The module consists of lectures on numerical methods and computing practicals; the practicals being designed to illustrate the solution of problems using the methods covered in lectures. We will guide you through the solution of a model of an environmental process of your own choosing. The skills developed in this module are highly valued by prospective employers.

Code ENV-6005A - (20 Credits)

Explore the evolution, biodiversity and ecology of bacteria, diatoms, coccolithophores and nitrogen fixers, and the physiology and distribution of zooplankton. You will study ecosystems such as the Antarctic, mid ocean gyres and Eastern Boundary Upwelling Systems in detail, and predict the impact of environmental change (increasing temperature, decreasing pH, decreasing oxygen, and changes in nutrient supply) on marine ecosystem dynamics. Biological oceanographic methods will be critically evaluated. The module will include a reading week in week 7 and a voluntary employability visit to the Centre for the Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) in Lowestoft. You will be expected to have some background in biology, e.g. have taken a biology, ecology or biogeochemistry based second year module in order to study this module.

Code ENV-6006A - (20 Credits)

The global biodiversity crisis threatens mass species loss. What are the implications for society? How can communities solve this problem in a world that is facing other challenges of climate change, food security, environmental and social justice? In this inter-disciplinary module, (designed for students of Geography, Environmental Science, Ecology and International Development who have an interest in biodiversity and its conservation), you will focus on the interactions between biodiversity and human societies. The module adopts a rigorous evidence-based approach. You will first critically examine the human drivers of biodiversity loss and the importance of biodiversity to human society, to understand how underlying perspectives and motivations influence approaches to conservation. You will then examine conflicts between human society and conservation and how these potentially can be resolved, reviewing institutions and potential instruments for biodiversity conservation in both Europe and developing countries. Coursework is inter-disciplinary and will require you to evaluate and communicate the quality of evidence showing effectiveness of conservation interventions and approaches.

Code ENV-6008A - (20 Credits)

What do you know about the drivers of climate change? Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the greenhouse gas that has, by far, the greatest impact on climate change, but how carbon cycles through the Earth is complex and not fully understood. Predicting future climate or defining ‘dangerous’ climate change is therefore challenging. In this module you will learn about the atmosphere, ocean and land components of the carbon cycle. We cover urgent global issues such as ocean acidification and how to get off our fossil fuel ‘addiction’, as well as how to deal with climate denialists.

Code ENV-6009A - (20 Credits)

You will be introduced to geological, economic and political aspects of fossil fuels (oil, natural gas and coal). These are used to discuss environmental concerns arising from the use of fossil fuels, and the potentially profound implications of future fuel scarcity on society. Some knowledge of Earth science and basic Chemistry will be expected.

Code ENV-6032A - (20 Credits)

The onset of the Anthropocene, a geological epoch defined by the human shaping of Planet Earth, is seeing people starting to fundamentally rethink the human place in nature. What does this mean for the study of human geography? In this module you’ll explore the debate over the onset of the Anthropocene, and the unique contribution that human geographers can make to it. You’ll gain a firm grasp on how the idea of the Anthropocene is re-shaping geographical thought, and will encounter concepts and methods from across the field of human geography which can help us to think in new ways about the past, present and future of human-environment relationships. You’ll also learn new skills in communicating geographical ideas and theories by written, oral and visual means. You’ll begin with an introduction to the Anthropocene debate and to the different kinds of evidence that are drawn upon to define the character of this new age. You’ll then range across the discipline, taking on-board ideas and insights from historical, political, social and cultural geography on the complex roots, meanings and politics of environmental change. Through a mixture of lectures, seminars, field classes and self-directed study, you’ll explore what it means to be a geographer in a rapidly changing world. You’ll develop a new appreciation of the processes shaping our environmental present, as well as the critical capacities needed to help shape our environmental future. Lectures cover topics such as Geopolitics as if the Earth Mattered, Cities in the Anthropocene, and Conservation at the end of Nature. As you study you’ll put your new knowledge into practice, gaining experience in communicating your ideas in tutorials, group discussions, presentations and written work.

 

Options Range B (0-40 Credits)

Code ENV-6001B - (20 Credits)

Geophysical hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis and landslides have significant environmental and societal impacts. This module focuses on the physical basis and analysis of each hazard, their global range of occurrence, probability of occurrence and their local and global impact. You will address matters such as hazard monitoring, modelling and assessment, and consider approaches towards risk mitigation and the reduction of vulnerability (individual and societal), with an emphasis on their practical implementation. Scenarios and probabilities of mega-disasters are also investigated. All the teaching faculty involved have practical experience of supplying professional advice on these hazards (and related risks) in addition to their own research involvement. A basic knowledge of physical science and of mathematics is assumed e.g. use of logs, exponentials, powers, cosines, rearrangement of equations.

Code ENV-6012B - (20 Credits)

Environmental economics provides a set of tools and principles which can be useful in understanding natural resource management issues. This module introduces you to key principles and tools of environmental economics for students who have not studied the subject previously. It then explores how these principles can be applied to address a number of complex economy-environment problems including climate change, over-fishing and water resources management. In this module you will have the opportunity to practically apply cost-benefit analysis as a framework for decision-making and will gain knowledge on the key non-market valuation techniques that are used to monetarily value environmental goods and services. At the end of the module you will have gained insights into how environmental economics is used in developing natural resource management policy as well as some of the challenges in using environmental economics in policy-making.

Code ENV-6017B - (20 Credits)

This module examines the geological evidence for climatic change through the Quaternary Period (the last 2.6 million years) and the longer-term evolution of climate through the Cenozoic Era (the last 65 million years). You will explore the interpretation and causal mechanisms behind these major global environmental changes using a diverse range of approaches – isotope geochemistry, sedimentology, palaeoecology and organic geochemistry. We will focus on the geochemical, biological and sedimentological information that can be obtained from marine sediments, ice cores, and terrestrial environments and use these records to reconstruct the timing extent and magnitude of selected climatic events in the geological record.

Code ENV-6018B - (20 Credits)

Based around the theme of Integrated Catchment Management (ICM), in this module you will address the fundamental requirement for an interdisciplinary catchment-based approach to protecting water and soil resources that includes an understanding of land use policy and management. Exploring land and water processes, you will cover aspects of hydrology, water pollution, aquatic ecology, soil science, flood modelling, agronomy and agri-environmental policy. This module is ideally suited for those seeking a career in catchment management working for organisations including water companies, Rivers Trusts, Natural England and the Environment Agency.

Code ENV-6025B - (20 Credits)

What sets the mean global temperature of the world? Why are some parts of the world arid whilst others at the same latitudes are humid? This module aims to provide you with an understanding of the processes that determine why the Earth’s climate (defined, for example, by temperature and moisture distribution) looks like it does, what the major circulation patterns and climate zones are and how they arise. You will study why the climate changes in time over different timescales, and how we use this knowledge to understand the climate systems of other planets. This module is aimed at you if you wish to further your knowledge of climate, or want a base for any future study of climate change, such as the Meteorology/Oceanography.

Code ENV-6026B - (20 Credits)

This module will introduce students to a range of social science perspectives on the inter-relationships between energy and people. The module begins by tracing the history and development of energy intensive societies and everyday lives as a means of understanding how energy has emerged as a key sustainability problem. The second part of the module then introduces some theories of social and technical change and uses these to critically analyse a range of people-based solutions to energy problems that are currently being tried and tested around the world. This module is assessed by formative assessment and coursework which includes a group film and an individual Evaluative Report. By the end of this module, students should: -Possess a clear understanding of the history and development of contemporary energy problems and about a range of people-based solutions to energy problems currently being used around the world. -Understand a range of theories of social and technical change, and be able to apply them critically to contemporary energy problems and solutions. -Be able to produce a detailed proposal for a people-based solution to energy problems and communicate about it in writing, orally and through film. -Be able to work effectively in a team to develop a people-based solution to energy problems.

 

Options Range C (0-40 Credits)

Note a minimum number of students is required to make a fieldcourse viable.

Code ENV-6029K - (20 Credits)

During this field course you will develop a deeper understanding and integration of geoscience subjects through the development of field observation, recording and interpretation skills in areas of classic field geology. This fieldcourse is in the Almeria province of southern Spain where you will study a range of rock types, sedimentary, metamorphic and igneous. Your interpretive skills will include reading the rock record to unravel evidence for deep, to shallow, to marginal basin environments, with climatic and tectonic controls on the sedimentary fill of a basin. Also the evidence for strike-slip systems and associated sub-marine Miocene volcanism.

Code ENV-6030K - (20 Credits)

This module seeks to promote a deeper understanding of the interactions between the natural environment and human society through field-based teaching and project work in Almeria, southern Spain. The region provides classic examples of landform evolution and arid environments, as well as experiencing major socio-economic changes in recent decades. Field activities will focus on such issues as agriculture, water resources, renewable energy and adaptation to climate change. Methods for evaluating the sustainability of developments will be examined. The module is assessed by an individual evidence report and public communication item. You will need to contribute 50% of the field course costs (the remainder is paid by the School). The precise cost will depend on the £ to Euro exchange rate at the time bookings are made but a best estimate as of October 2018 is approximately £450. In addition, the field course will run only if a minimum number of 21 students enrol and commit to paying the student contribution. If interest exceeds the maximum number that the field centre can accommodate then priority will be given to students according to the number of possible prerequisite modules they have taken.

 

Optional Range D (0-20 Credits)

Code BIO-5010B - (20 Credits)

We will explore how evolution and ecology shape animal behaviour, examining how important traits have evolved to maximise survival and reproduction in the natural environment. Darwinian principles provide the theoretical framework, and we will explore key concepts of selfishness, altruism, conflict, survival, optimality, reproduction, parental care and death. Relevant research will be used to lead our understanding of the ultimate function of key traits. In parallel with the lectures, students design, conduct, analyse and present their own research project, working in a group to collect original data in order to answer a question about the adaptive significance of behaviour.

Code BIO-5014B - (20 Credits)

This module introduces you to major concepts and definitions in community ecology, macro-ecology and biogeography. You will use these to explore how communities are structured in relation to local-scale to regional-scale processes, how they function and respond to perturbations at different scales, and result in emergent macro- to global-scale patterns of biodiversity distribution. Throughout the module, there is an emphasis on the relevance of theory and fundamental science to understanding the current environmental and biodiversity crisis. Anthropogenic impacts on natural communities through land-use, species exploitation, non-native species, and climate change, are a recurrent theme underpinning the examples you will draw upon.

Code BIO-5020K - (20 Credits)

Conservation ecology and biodiversity are central areas of research in the biological sciences and they share many theories, concepts and scientific methods. This module intends to take a practical approach to the commonalities in these areas using a combination of seminar work and fieldwork. The seminars will develop ideas in sub-tropical and tropical biology: students will research issues affecting conservation of biodiversity in the tropics, considering the species ecology and the habitats, threats and challenges. There will be a significant component of small group work and directed, independent learning. The field component of this module will be a two week residential field trip to the tropics, one of two field sites (depending on numbers of students and availability).The field sites are run by expert field ecologists and during the two weeks we will explore the local environment, learn about the ecology of the landscape and about the species that inhabit the area. We will develop and run practical sessions on survey and census techniques, use of technology in modern field biology and the role of protected areas in species conservation. Students will conduct original research on the field trip, informed by prior research at UEA, to gain a deeper understanding of an aspect of tropical biology. There will be an assessed presentation on the field trip and many opportunities to develop the students own interests. All student participants will take an active role in the organisation and running of the module in order to gain project management and field logistics experience. Students will be responsible for the sourcing, storage and transport of field equipment on the way to the field site and of samples on the return to the UK. Students will gain experience of travelling to a remote area and of working through licensing and customs processes. At the end of the module a report is written on the field project in the style of a journal article addressing specific questions in ecology conservation or biodiversity. Throughout the module students will be expected to maintain a modern-media record of their project from the initial desk based work at UEA, through the field component to outcomes and reporting. NOTE: There will be a significant additional cost to this module to cover the costs of transportation and accommodation in the field. Costs will be detailed at an initial meeting for interested students and will be clearly advertised. 2018/19 costs were £1300 per student. Students will need to provide any visas required for entry into the host country, sturdy walking boots and appropriate field clothing. All attendees must ensure that all travel vaccinations etc are in order prior to departure.

Code ENV-5002B - (20 Credits)

The most significant obstacles to problem solving are often political, not scientific or technological. This module examines the emergence and processes of environmental politics. It analyses these from different theoretical perspectives, particularly theories of power and public policy making. The module is focused on contemporary examples of politics and policy making at UK, EU and international levels. The module supports student-led learning by enabling students to select (and develop their own theoretical interpretations of) ‘real world’ examples of politics. Assessment is via seminar slides and a case study essay. The module assumes no prior knowledge of politics.

Code ENV-5003A - (20 Credits)

This module develops skills in the scientific and social scientific analysis of global climate change, using perspectives from natural sciences, science studies, and economics and politics. It first offers a historical perspective on how global climate change developed as a scientific and social object of inquiry. The course then gives grounding in climate and society relations, economic principles and the political science and governance of climate hazards, energy and greenhouse gas emissions.

Code ENV-5004B - (20 Credits)

In this module you will learn about the processes that shape the Earth's shallow subsurface, and how to detect and map subsurface structures and resources. Physical properties of solid materials and subsurface fluids will be explored, including how fluid movement affects these properties. Methods to image the subsurface will be introduced using real datasets, collected by the class where possible. We will apply the theory to real-life problems including risk mitigation, engineering and resource exploration. This module will include fieldwork on campus where possible, specialist computer software, and some light mathematical analysis (trigonometry, rearranging linear equations, logarithms).

Code ENV-5009B - (20 Credits)

This module will build upon material covered in Meteorology I, by covering topics such as synoptic meteorology, weather hazards, micro-meteorology, further thermodynamics and weather forecasting. The module includes a major summative coursework assignment based on data collected on a UEA meteorology fieldcourse in a previous year.

Code ENV-5010K - (20 Credits)

Weather is one of the most popular topics of conversation. But how, specifically, does it present risks and opportunities, to people, organisations and to the wider environment? In this module you will develop a clear understanding of these linkages and an evidence base to draw on in future roles in which weather is a factor. You’ll learn how to confidently source a diverse range of real-time weather information and you’ll practice analysing such data, leading subsequently to successful interpretation and effective communication, both written and in front of the camera. You’ll see, first hand, how meteorology depends upon computer systems for the efficient sharing, processing and visualisation of weather information. Being taught by weather practitioners with long experience of providing weather services to users, you will get the inside track on what it’s like to work in weather. Weather Forecasting is one central theme and application which will provide a focus for learning. How are forecasts made and delivered, who uses forecasts and what are their distinctive needs? Success in forecasting depends in part on a good physical understanding of atmospheric processes - through practical work, we’ll study those processes and use real examples of weather systems and events to reinforce the learning. At the end of the module, through an embedded week-long Easter residential fieldcourse, you’ll apply your enhanced process understanding and forecasting knowledge in a hands-on way to design and implement meteorological field experiments, testing hypotheses through the collection and interpretation of field data collected using weather sensors. You’ll write up your choice of fieldcourse experiment for assessment, after first receiving informal feedback on a related poster presentation.

Code ENV-5014A - (20 Credits)

We live in a human dominated era recently designated “the Anthropocene”. Humans harvest more than half of the primary productivity of the planet, many resources are over-exploited or depleted (e.g. fisheries) never before has it been so important to correctly manage natural resources for an exponentially growing human population. It is, thus, fundamental to predict where other species occur and the sizes of their populations (abundance). Population Ecology is an area dedicated to the dynamics of population development. In this module we will look closely at how populations are regulated, from within through density dependent factors and from external density independent factors. We start the module with a global environmental change perspective to the management of populations and the factors that affect the population size. We then extend these ideas to help us understand population properties and processes both intra-specifically and inter-specifically. Finally we examine several management applications where we show that a good understanding of the population modelling is essential to correctly manage natural resources on the planet. Practicals include learning to survey butterflies and birds using citizen science monitoring projects and will be focused on delivering statistical analyses of “Big data” using the programme R-studio. The projects will provide a strong training in both subject specific and transferable skills.

Code ENV-5015A - (20 Credits)

Atmospheric chemistry and global change are in the news. Stratospheric ozone depletion, acid rain, greenhouse gases, and global scale air pollution are among the most significant environmental problems of our age. Chemical composition and transformations underlie these issues, and drive many important atmospheric processes. This module covers the fundamental chemical principles and processes in the atmosphere, from the Earth's surface to the stratosphere, and considers current issues of atmospheric chemical change through a series of lectures, problem-solving classes, seminars, experimental and computing labs, as well as a field trip to UEA’s own atmospheric observatory in Weybourne/North Norfolk.

Code ENV-5017B - (20 Credits)

The shallow shelf seas that surround the continents are the oceans that we most interact with. They contribute a disproportionate amount to global marine primary production and CO2 drawdown into the ocean, and are important economically through commercial fisheries, offshore oil and gas exploration, and renewable energy developments (e.g. offshore wind farms). You will explore the physical processes that occur in shelf seas and coastal waters, their effect on biological, chemical and sedimentary processes, and how they can be harnessed to generate renewable energy. You will develop new skills during this module that will support careers in the offshore oil and gas industry, renewable energy industry, environmental consultancy, government laboratories (e.g. Cefas) and academia. The level of mathematical ability required to take this module is similar to Ocean Circulation and Meteorology I. You should be familiar with radians, rearranging equations and plotting functions.

Code ENV-5018A - (20 Credits)

Processes in the Earth’s interior exert a profound influence on all aspects of the Earth’s system, and have done so throughout geological time. This module is designed to explore all aspects of those processes from the creation and destruction of tectonic plates to the structure of the Earth’s interior and the distribution and dissipation of energy within it. This will include: the theory and mechanisms of plate tectonics, the generation of magma and volcanism; the mechanisms behind earthquakes. The geological record of this activity, its evolution and impacts on the Earth will also be discussed.

Code ENV-5020K - (20 Credits)

The first three days of the fieldcourse involve lectures, seminars and practical sessions on physical, chemical and biological oceanographic techniques, as well as analysis of data and planning of field activities. The next five days see you undertake practical activities using oceanographic research ships and laboratory facilities. On the final day, you’ll be involved in data interpretation and group presentations. The number of practical days required will depend on the number of students undertaking the fieldcourse, so the above days are flexible. This module runs every 2 years and only goes ahead if there are sufficient students enrolled. The maximum number of students (28)includes those enrolled on ENV 7030K. Please note that you can only enrol onto this module via an application form from the School (Deadline usually at the end of semester 1 in the previous academic year) and not via the standard module enrolment process. The module runs in the summer prior to the start of the academic year.

Code ENV-5022B - (20 Credits)

This module examines the complexities of the transition to low carbon energy systems. It draws on a range of disciplines, theories and perspectives to critically examine many of the key challenges. It begins by exploring how we can understand energy systems and how they differ across space and time. The module draws on historical analyses to understand how energy systems have evolved in the past, as well as examining the different ways in which we can imagine the future of energy. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the complexities of changing energy systems, enabling them to critically engage with debates around future “energy transitions”, the role that innovation and emergent technologies might play, and the various challenges of shifting towards renewable based energy systems.

Code ENV-5028B - (20 Credits)

This module builds upon the introduction to GIS provided in the first year Research and Field Skills module, focusing on how you obtain your data, integrate it and then undertake analysis and presentation tasks. ESRI ArcGIS will be the main software used, but the module also offers information on online GIS (ArcGIS Online) as well as scripting tools (Python) and open source software (QGIS) that you may wish to progress in your own time. Teaching will consist of a one-hour lecture and a three-hour practical class each week.

Code ENV-5030B - (20 Credits)

This module is designed to develop good observational, descriptive and analytical skills and is particularly suitable for students with interest in Geology, Earth and Geophysical Sciences. It will cover generic geological skills, together with some geophysical and physical geography skills that will be of use when carrying out independent projects. The module will include: (i) observing, describing and recording of characteristics of geological materials (minerals, soils, sediments, rocks and fossils) in the field, in hand specimen and under the microscope; (ii) measuring and recording of spatial and 3D structural data on maps, stereographic and rose diagram projections, reading geological maps and basic geological mapping, and (iii) an introduction to applied geophysical techniques. The module includes a week-long residential fieldwork component in the Easter vacation which has an added cost implication in the region of £300. There will be an alternative arrangement for students who for whatever reason are unable to undertake the residential fieldwork. There is a co-requisite or pre-requisite of 20 or more credits from the modules: Earth Surface Processes, Global Tectonics or Exploring the Earth’s Subsurface. Students who have previously taken ENV-5030B Geology Skills, or ENV-5029B Geology Lab Skills cannot take this module. They will, however, have an opportunity to take part in the residential field course.

Code ENV-5039B - (20 Credits)

The Earth’s terrestrial and marine water bodies support life and play a major role in regulating the planet’s climate. This module will train you to make accurate measurements of the chemical composition of the aquatic environment. In lectures and in the lab you will explore important chemical interactions between life, fresh and marine waters and climate, looking at nutrient cycles, dissolved oxygen, trace metals, carbonate chemistry and chemical exchange with the atmosphere. Students taking this module are expected to be familiar with basic chemical concepts and molar concentration units. This module makes a good combination with Aquatic Ecology.

Code ENV-5040A - (20 Credits)

Human geography and the environmental social sciences employ a range of approaches and methods with which to explore their diverse research questions. This module will introduce you to the practice of social science research, including methods that use quantitative (numerical) and qualitative (non-numerical) data. Through a combination of lectures, workshops, and practical activities, you will learn how to design and carry out your own research. By the end of the module you will know how to formulate an interesting research question; how to choose an appropriate method to investigate it; how to ensure that you collect good quality data; how to analyse and interpret your data; and how to present the results of your research. The module is recommended if you intend to use social research methods in your independent dissertation project. In addition to gaining practical research skills, you will develop your ability to critically evaluate research studies that use social science methods. As well as benefiting your academic studies, these analytical and practical research skills are highly valued in many occupational sectors.

Code ENV-5041A - (20 Credits)

Explore how chemical, physical and biological influences shape the biological communities of rivers, lakes and estuaries in temperate and tropical regions. Three field visits and laboratory work, usually using microscopes and sometimes analysing water quality, provide an important practical component to this module. A good complement to other ecology modules, final-year Catchment Water Resources and modules in development studies or geography, it can also be taken alongside Aquatic Biogeochemistry or other geochemical and hydrology modules. Students selecting this module must have a background in basic statistical analysis of data.

Code ENV-5042A - (20 Credits)

This module draws upon on a range of scientific disciplines including geomorphology, sedimentology, soil science and eco-geomorphology. The module overviews a variety of Earth’s surface environments and the processes that lead to expression in landforms, soil evolution, sediment accumulation and ultimately, the formation of sedimentary rocks. The environments covered include deep and marginal marine, intertidal, aeolian, glacial and fluvial. The approach will be both descriptive and quantitative, based on understanding of erosion, transport, deposition, accumulation and burial and the evolution of soils. East Anglian case studies will be used to illustrate and explain eco-geomorphology and coastal processes, dovetailed with soil evolution. Geomorphological expression will be linked to sedimentary processes and sedimentary rock. There will be an introduction to the methods and different types of evidence used by geologists, physical geographers and other earth scientists.

Code ENV-5043A - (20 Credits)

The weather affects everyone and influences decisions that are made continuously around the world. From designing and siting a wind farm to assessing flood risk and public safety, weather plays a vital role. Have you ever wondered what actually causes the weather we experience, for example why large storms are so frequent across north western Europe, especially in Winter? In this module you will learn the fundamentals of the science of meteorology. We will concentrate on the physical processes that underpin the radiation balance, thermodynamics, wind-flow, atmospheric stability, weather systems and the water cycle. We will link these to renewable energy and the weather we experience throughout the Semester. Assessment will be based entirely on a set of practical reports that you will submit, helping you to spread your work evenly through the semester. You will learn how Weather is a rich fusion of descriptive and numerical elements and you will be able to draw effectively on your own skill strengths while practising and developing others, guided by Weatherquest’s Meteorologists.

 

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Entry Requirements

A Levels

CCC - All Science A-Levels must include a pass in the practical element.

BTEC

MMM

Scottish highers

BBCCC

Scottish highers advanced

DDD

Irish leaving certificate

6 subjects at H4

Access course

Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 45 credits at Level 3

European Baccalaureate

60% overall.

International Baccalaureate

28 points

GCSE offer

You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.

Additional entry requirements

General Studies and Critical Thinking A Levels are not accepted.  

Alternative Qualifications

UEA recognises that some students take a mixture of International Baccalaureate IB or International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme IBCP study rather than the full diploma, taking Higher levels in addition to A levels and/or BTEC qualifications. At UEA we do consider a combination of qualifications for entry, provided a minimum of three qualifications are taken at a higher Level. In addition some degree programmes require specific subjects at a higher level.

We welcome applications from students with non-traditional academic backgrounds.  If you have been out of study for the last three years and you do not have the entry grades for our three year degree, we will consider your educational and employment history, along with your personal statement and reference to gain a holistic view of your suitability for the course. You will still need to meet our GCSE English Language and Mathematics requirements.

If you are currently studying your level 3 qualifications, we may be able to give you a reduced grade offer based on these circumstances:

  • You live in an area with low progression to higher education (we use Polar 4, quintile 1 & 2 data)

  • You will be 21 years of age or over at the start of the course

  • You have been in care or you are a young full time carer

  • You are studying at a school which our Outreach Team are working closely with

Students for whom english is a foreign language

Applications from students whose first language is not English are welcome. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including writing, speaking, listening and reading):

  • IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 5.5 in all components)

We also accept a number of other English language tests. Please click here to see our full list.

Interviews

Most applicants will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Track. However, for some applicants an interview will be requested. Where an interview is required the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a time.

Gap year

We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year.  We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry on your UCAS application.

Intakes

This course is open to UK, EU and International applicants. The annual intake for this course is in September each year.

Course Reference Number: 1545029

Fees and Funding

Tuition Fees

Information on tuition fees can be found here.

Scholarships and Bursaries

We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. 

The University of East Anglia offers a range of Scholarships; please click the link for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.

Course related costs

In your Foundation Year you will need to buy maths support material. However, much of the guided reading is available from the UEA library as textbooks or digital resources.

Please see Additional Course Fees for details of course-related costs.

Course Reference Number: 1545029

How to Apply

Applications need to be made via the Universities Colleges and Admissions Services (UCAS), using the UCAS Apply option.

UCAS Apply is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time Undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom. It is made up of different sections that you need to complete. Your application does not have to be completed all at once. The application allows you to leave a section partially completed so you can return to it later and add to or edit any information you have entered. Once your application is complete, it is sent to UCAS so that they can process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.

The Institution code for the University of East Anglia is EANGL E14.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Please complete our Online Enquiry Form to request a prospectus and to be kept up to date with news and events at the University. 

Course Reference Number: 1545029
Key details
Attendance
Full Time
Award
Degree of Bachelor of Science
UCAS course code
8F90
Entry Requirements
CCC
Duration (years)
4
How can we change our behavior to reduce the effects of climate change? What controls the Earth’s natural systems? What might our landscape look like in the future? How do I write a good science report? Prepare to explore it all. On your Foundation Year you’ll gain the knowledge, understanding and skills needed for undergraduate level study, all within a nurturing, supportive environment. With this under your belt, you’re then able to progress to the BSc in Environmental Sciences – or other courses, such as Geography or Geophysics depending on your grades and preference. So whether you’re a mature student looking for a new career, a student who needs to strengthen their science knowledge before progressing to a BSc degree, or an international student whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry, our Foundation Year is a great route onto our science degrees.
Schools
Environmental Sciences
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