UCAS Code
F900
Mode of Study
Full-time, Full-time sandwich with work placement
Duration
3 years full-time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
Start Date
September 2019, September 2020
Accredited
Yes

Overview

From climate change to depleting natural resources, our planet faces many challenges. Environmental scientists stand on the front line in tackling these issues. If you want to join them, this is the course for you.

On this BSc (Hons) Environmental Science degree course, you’ll explore how the environment is changing and what steps we're taking to minimise our impact on it. You’ll use the latest tech to analyse pollutants, soil structure and water quality and go on plenty of field trips to put your skills to work outside of the classroom.

This course is your first step towards professional certification as an Environmental Scientist. The Government is putting sustainability at the heart of policy making. So your skills will be in high demand for a wide range of Master’s, PhD’s and jobs within the environmental sector including academia, business or Government positions. 

Accredited by:

This course is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES) and gives you automatic Student Membership status while you study, allowing progression to Associate Membership when you graduate.

With appropriate experience in the industry, you can usually achieve Full Membership within 1 year and Chartership within a further 4–5 years.

92% Overall student satisfaction (Unistats data on NSS, 2018)

What you'll experience

On this degree course you’ll:

  • Examine the physical and social aspects of environmental issues and develop practical skills to carry out your own environmental research
  • Get experience in our environmental labs using the same techniques employed by the world’s leading environmental researchers, including plasma spectrometry and electron microscopy
  • Make use of teaching and research facilities at the internationally renowned Institute of Marine Sciences
  • Go on field trips to locations such as Somerset, Isle of Wight, Malta, Portugal, Malaysia and Belize
  • Develop leadership and teamworking skills by working on group projects in the field and in the lab
  • Take advantage of our waterside location with boats available for marine excursions and the option to learn scientific and technical diving in a PADI-certified unit
  • Do a final year independent project considering the ethical issues connected to the project and health and safety documentation
  • Have the opportunity to study abroad at institutions including Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona (Barcelona, Spain), Universite du Havre, (Le Havre, France) and Adam Mickiewicz University (Poznan, Poland)

On this course, you can do your final year project abroad. Previous students have gone to Brazil, Canada, USA, Romania, Ukraine, Tenerife, Singapore, Hong Kong, Cyprus, Costa Rica, Zakynthos and Iceland.

Careers and opportunities

After the course, you could go on to study Master’s PhD’s, work in academia, business and Government in a wide range of environmental specialties such as, conservation, pollution monitoring and
control, waste management, sustainability, audit and assessment, climate change and energy resources.

Roles our graduates have taken on include:

  • Environmental chemist
  • Environmental consultant
  • Geographic information scientist
  • Conservation officer
  • Waste Management Manager
  • Environmental Policy officer
  • Hydrologist
  • Climate change modeller 

After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.

I liked that the course is very multi-disciplinary. The lecturers are very helpful and most are still active in their own areas of expertise, providing up-to-date information and support.

Anita Carey,

What you'll study on this BSc (Hons) Environmental Science degree

Each unit on this course is worth a certain number of credits.

In each year, you need to study units worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 units worth 20 credits and 1 unit worth 40 credits.

Units currently being studied

Core units in this year include:

  • Science for Earth Systems
  • Environmental Systems
  • Quantitative Methods
  • Planet Earth
  • Introduction to Marine Ecology and Oceanography
  • Ecology, Plant and Human Impact

There are no optional units in this year.

Core units in this year include:

  • Environmental Chemistry and Monitoring
  • Environmental Fieldwork and Professional Skills
  • Research Design and Data Analysis
  • Geographic information systems 

Options to choose from in this year currently include:

  • Energy Resources
  • Hydrology and Freshwater Ecosystems
  • Hydrology and Flood Hazard Assessment
  • Scientific and Technical Diving Techniques(PADI-accredited)
  • Practical Boat Handling (Royal Yacht Association accredited)
  • Introduction to Teaching Language

On this course, you can do an optional work placement year between your 2nd and 3rd years to get valuable experience working in industry.

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your situation and ambitions. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Core units in this year include:

  • Environmental Science Dissertation
  • Environmental Pollution and Waste Management
  • Environmental Audit and Assessment

Options to choose from in this year currently include:

  • European Study Tour
  • Tropical Study Tour
  • Environmental Conservation
  • Environmental Forensics
  • Climate Change

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.

Placement year

After your second year, you can do an optional work placement year to get valuable longer-term work experience in the industry.

Students have completed work placements at top organisations, including:

  • Leap Environmental
  • Mott MacDonald
  • Enitial

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year. 

Work experience and career planning

To give you the best chance of securing a great job when you graduate, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships and voluntary roles that will complement your studies and build links in the industry.

Learning support

As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

If you have a mental or physical disability, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) can give you help, support and advice so you can reach your potential.

Teaching

Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • tutorials
  • laboratory work
  • field work
  • workshops

How you'll spend your time

Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and 2 assessment periods:

  • September to December – teaching block 1
  • January – assessment period 1
  • January to May – teaching block 2 (includes Easter break)
  • May to June – assessment period 2

Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. There’s no teaching on Wednesday afternoons.

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • field work or lab notebook recordings
  • reports
  • site surveys
  • computer-based exercises
  • oral presentation and essays
  • posters
  • presentations

The way you’re assessed may depend on the units you select. As a guide, students on this course last year were typically assessed as follows:

  • Year 1 students: 52% by written exams, 8% by practical exams and 40% by coursework
  • Year 2 students: 40% by written exams, 12% by practical exams and 48% by coursework
  • Year 3 students: 33% by written exams, 4% by practical exams and 63% by coursework

Entry requirements​

Entry Requirements

Qualifications or experience
  • 104-120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent, with 32 points from a Science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science/Studies, Geography, Geology, Mathematics or Physics).

See the other qualifications we accept

English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

Qualifications or experience
  • 104-120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent, with 32 points from a Science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science/Studies, Geography, Geology, Mathematics or Physics).

See the other qualifications we accept

English language requirements
  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

​Course costs

Tuition fees (2019 start)

  • UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £15,900 per year (subject to annual increase)

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

Your travel and accommodation costs for compulsory fieldwork are included in the course fee, but you’ll need to pay for meals and other subsistence costs

You’ll need to contribute travel, accommodation, and meal costs for compulsory project work, which normally takes place between years 2 and 3. These costs are between £0–£500.

You’ll need to cover the cost of any optional fieldwork that you do, including travel, accommodation, meals and other living cost. These will vary depending on location. For example, the cost of fieldwork in Belize is around £3400, while the cost of fieldwork in Portugal is around £800.

If you haven’t dived before, you can take the Scientific and Technical Diving A unit, which includes a PADI Open Water course, Dry Suit course and Scientific and Technical Diving course. This unit costs around £860, covering tuition, transport and diving costs.

If you already hold a PADI Open Water certificate (or equivalent), you can take the Scientific and Technical Diving B unit, which includes an advanced diving course (e.g. PADI Advanced Open Water), Dry Suit course and Scientific and Technical Diving course. This unit costs around £780, covering tuition, transport and diving costs.

You can take a Practical Boating skills unit, which includes a Day Skipper Theory course, a Powerboat Level 2 course and VHF radio course. This costs £550.

We supply field kit but you need to make sure you have suitable clothing for fieldwork such as appropriate footwear (walking boots) and a waterproof jacket and trousers.

Apply

How to apply

If you want to start this course in 2019, you need to apply through UCAS. You can start your application now and submit it from 5 September. You’ll need:

  • the UCAS course code – F900
  • our institution code – P80

Not quite ready to apply? Come to an Open Day to explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.

If you’re new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

To start in 2020 you need to apply through UCAS. You can register and start your application from 21 May 2019 and submit it from 5 September 2019.

In the meantime, sign up to an Open Day to explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.

If you’re new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

When you apply, you'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – F900
  • our institution code – P80

How to apply from outside the UK

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also apply directly to us or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

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