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BSc Hons Environmental Science and Technology

Mode of Study: Full Time Department: Lancaster Environment Centre
UCAS Code: F751 Duration/Length: 3 Year(s)
QAA Subject Benchmark: Earth Science, Environmental Sciences an Director of Studies: Dr W Tych
Total Credit Points: 360 Credit Points Year 2: 120
Credit Points Year 3: 120

Syllabus Rules and Pre-requisites

  • PartI
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • The student must take 1 modules from the following group:
  • The student must take 5 modules from the following group:
  • PartII (Year 2)
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • The student must take 2 modules from the following group:
  • PartII (Year 3)
  • The student must take the following modules:
  • The student must take 4 modules from the following group:

Educational Aims: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • Environmental Science and Technology is an integrated study of the challenges facing environments, both natural and man-made, together with technological problems and solutions. Our degree enables students to combine the disciplines of geography, geology, chemistry, physics and engineering, with an emphasis on quantification, in order to investigate subjects including climate change, sustainability, pollution and natural hazards. We offer theory-based lectures alongside practical work, both in the laboratory and in the field. In the first year, students study subjects such as global environmental challenges, hydrology, chemistry and engineering,  then progress to second year subjects including ecoinnovation, environmental field skills and energy, economy and environment. In the final year students complete a dissertation with work placement/internship, as well as studying options such as water resource management or geological hazards. 

    The programme aims to:

    • Provide a flexible but structured, progressive and thematic training in Environmental Science and Technology which will provide students with a knowledge and understanding appropriate for subject-specific graduate employment;
    • Develop key transferable skills to prepare students for general graduate employment;
    • Develop the intellectual and practical skills necessary for progression to postgraduate research and training;
    • Encourage academic curiosity which will prepare students for lifelong learning;
    • Offer a broad range of modules within which students can select a specialised route;
    • Offer all students the opportunity to conduct a substantial research project in collaboration with an employer.


Learning Outcomes: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • Graduates with Honours will be able to:

    • Demonstrate a detailed knowledge and understanding of key subject areas in Environmental Science and Technology. Depending on module options, this will include an understanding of: hydrology, Earth sciences and geology, chemistry, engineering, atmospheric science, environmental management, ecology and environmental modelling;
    • Synthesise information from a variety of sources;
    • Critically evaluate and assess the merits of contrasting theories, explanations and strategies;
    • Interpret qualitative and quantitative data;
    • Apply a multidisciplinary approach to problem-solving, and form a reasoned argument;
    • Manage time effectively and have well developed skills of organisation, planning and management;
    • Design and prepare project proposals and analyse, problem-solve and make decisions;
    • Plan, execute and report on environmental research in field, laboratory and desk-based settings, using the technical skills needed for this, including use of quantitative and analytical techniques and tools appropriate to the choice of modules and research projects;
    • Use appropriate field and laboratory equipment effectively and carry out experimental work in the field;
    • Undertake risk assessments and list appropriate safety and ethical precautions associated with practical or project work;
    • Collect and present field, laboratory and literature data;
    • Work independently and as part of a team, appreciating collective goals and applying negotiation skills;
    • Manipulate numbers and use relevant computer technology;
    • Demonstrate effective written and oral communication skills;
    • Take responsibility for, and reflect on, one's learning at university and beyond.

Learning and Teaching Strategies and Methods: Knowledge, Understanding, Skills

  • The Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy in the Lancaster Environment Centre is consistent with, and informed by, the University's Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategy, in particular with Aim 1 (well-designed curricula), Aim 2 (skills for careers), Aim 3 (using our research expertise in our teaching), Aim 4 (using a variety of teaching and assessment methods) and Aim 5 (maintaining high standards).

    Teaching is hierarchical with a broad first year becoming progressively deeper and more specialised in years two and three, depending on the student's choice of modules. Research-led teaching (provided by research-active staff) allows new developments in the field to be incorporated into the taught programme, and the 'research approach' to self-motivated learning woven into the degree programme. The degree programme uses a wide range of teaching methods appropriate for teaching the subject and skills, and of assessing the students' progress in achieving the intended learning outcomes. These methods include: laboratory and field work; theoretical and practical work; library and IT work along with individual and team work. The academic tutor system supports students in all these aspects of study, by providing discussion of feedback, and guidance on learning strategies.

    In summary:

    Subject specific knowledge and understanding is developed through a combination of lectures, field work and practical sessions, coursework exercises, tutorial discussions and undertaking reading from a range of literature sources, which will include research papers from year 1.

    Intellectual skills are developed as follows:

    • Analytical, critical, synthesising and evaluative skills are developed through: the assessment criteria and processes; the research-active staff; discussions in practical sessions and tutorials; the dissertation; and through engaging with the primary literature;
    • Skills in independence, self-management, problem solving and research skills are developed primarily through the dissertation, substantive pieces of coursework and encouraged through coursework feedback;
    • Interpretation of quantitative and qualitative data are developed through laboratory and field classes, the dissertation and are underpinned with support modules (year 1 and 2). 

    Practical and field skills are developed as follows: 

    • Test, measurement and evaluation skills are developed through lectures, field and practical work and the dissertation;
    • Experimental and risk assessment skills are developed through the dissertation and field and practical work;
    • Numerical skills are developed through being embedded in practicals, lectures and fieldwork, underpinned with support modules;
    • Key transferable skills are embedded into core Environmental Science and Technology modules to show how these skills can be used and how the study of Environmental Science and Technology is illuminated by their use. Additionally, skills-focused teaching is used in Part 1 tutorials, the compulsory skills modules in year 2, and training in how to produce a dissertation;
    • Communication skills are developed through instruction and practice in writing professional reports, essays, the dissertation and giving presentations;
    • ICT skills are developed throughout the course for accessing, working on and sharing materials, completing coursework (including computer modelling), and communication;
    • Information retrieval skills are developed in coursework and the dissertation;
    • Time management skills are developed through coursework and student projects;

    • Numeracy, data manipulation and presentation skills are developed through specific skills modules and embedded within practical classes, report writing and the dissertation;
    • Group work skills are developed through field and practical classes;
    • Employability skills are promoted through the Profiling and Career Guidance exercises that promote reflection and career management, and a range of careers fairs and events at both department (subject specific graduate) and University (general graduate) levels.

Assessment Strategy and Methods: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • The department's assessment strategy is to utilise a wide variety of different forms of assessment, to ensure that all students encounter a range of assessment methods during their degree, and to ensure that the assessment methods used are appropriate to the aims and learning outcomes of individual modules. Both formative and summative assessment methods are used.
    In summary:
    Knowledge and understanding is assessed through unseen examinations which consist of short answer, data analysis and essay type questions. Coursework assignments, which include: essays, field reports, practicals, presentations and the dissertation also test students' knowledge and understanding. The relative weight of these components varies according to the type of module and its intended outcomes.

    Intellectual skills are assessed by a combination of coursework assignments, practical assignments, laboratory/field reports, dissertation work and written examinations. Students are expected to learn from previous assessment, and receive substantial feedback on the intellectual content and communication skills aspects of their coursework.

    Field courses and laboratory/practical-based modules are usually assessed entirely by coursework such as, field or laboratory reports and the dissertation. Computing and numerical skills are additionally assessed through practical-class assignments.

    Transferable skills such as written and oral presentation, graphical presentation of data, general IT and information gathering are assessed by a variety of summative and formative assessments, e.g. essay writing, practical reports, oral presentations, practical-class assignments, participation in tutorials and the dissertation. All skills are continually assessed through being embedded in coursework assignments and exam questions.

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