Environmental Science

Environmental Science BSc (Hons)

Environmental Science is a dynamic and increasingly important area of study.  Issues such as climate change, sustainable resource use and decreasing biodiversity are just some of the complex environmental issues requiring scientific, policy and management solutions. This course focusses on the principles and practical applications of Environmental Science and seeks to equip students with the skills necessary to realise their academic potential while preparing them for environment-related employment and /or postgraduate study. The course places a strong emphasis on field and laboratory-based study and “real world” application of subject-specific knowledge and wherever possible seeks to rely on research-informed and practitioner led delivery. Employability is a key focus and is reflected in the placement module in second year and an option to undertake a sandwich year in industry (full-time mode).

Key Information

  • Duration:

    Full-time: 3 years Sandwich: 4 years Part-time: 6 years

  • Level:


  • Delivery:

    Campus, Full-time and Part-time

  • Award Type:

    BSc (Hons)

  • Institution Code:

    CLANC C30

  • UCAS Code:


  • Campus:

    Preston (Campus code: U)

  • Start Date:


  • Opportunity to study Archaeology and/or Forensic Science strands alongside core Environmental Science modules.
  • Emphasis is placed on gaining practical experience through laboratory and fieldwork sessions, work placement and volunteering opportunities.
  • This course is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES) and the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment.

Course Overview

Year 1

  • Introduction to Environmental Management and Assessment
  • Measuring the Environment
  • Dynamic Earth
  • Ecology

Plus one from the following:

  • Introduction to Osteology and Anthropology
  • Archaeology of Britain
  • Environment and Sustainability

Year 2

  • Environmental Pollution and Control
  • Placement / Project Module
  • Geographical Information Systems
  • Research Theory and Practice


Plus at least one from the following:

  • Biodiversity and Conservation
  • Environmental Change


Plus (if required) one from the following:

  • Environmental Forensics
  • The Science and Management of Death
  • Themes in British Archaeology 1

Year 3

  • Research Project
  • Fieldwork
  • Environmental Impact Assessment

Plus at least one from the following:

  • Ecotoxicology
  • Carbon and Energy Management

Plus (if required) one from the following:

  • Forensic Taphonomic Traces
  • Themes in British Archaeology 2
  • Nature, Science and Society
  • Applied Ecology
  • Applied River Management


Module descriptions can be found in the applicant guide (.pdf 1.26MB)

More information about programme specifications and module information is available in the course handbook.

Fees 2020/21

Full-time: £9,250* per year (UK/EU)
Part-time: £1,540* per 20 credits studied (UK/EU)
Fees for international students

Entry Requirements

Our typical offer is 104-112 UCAS Points.  We operate a flexible admissions policy and treat everyone as an individual. This means that we will take into consideration your educational achievements and predicted grades (where applicable) together with your application as a whole, including work experience and personal statement. General Studies accepted

BTEC Extended Diploma: Distinction, Merit, Merit 
BTEC Diploma: Distinction*, Distinction
Pass Access Course: 106-112 UCAS Points  
International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 104-112 UCAS points from Higher Level Subjects
IELTS: 6.0 with no score lower than 5.5
GCSE: 5 at grade C/4 including Maths & English or equivalent 

International Students

View our entry requirements for your country

Scholarships and Bursaries

The University offers a range of scholarships and bursaries to support you through your studies.

Discover More

Not got the grades?

If you do not meet the formal entry requirements specified, Foundation Entry offers an alternative route to study for this degree

Foundation Entry Route

Check your points

Not sure how many points you have? Use our handy calculator and find out.

Points calculator

Further Information

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Course Highlights

  • Employability focused programme with an emphasis on gaining practical experience through laboratory and fieldwork sessions, work placement and volunteering opportunities.
  • Professional body accredited programme
  • Opportunity to study Archaeology and/or Forensic Science strands alongside core Environmental Science modules
  • International residential fieldwork

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During the degree programme students gain essential subject specific knowledge, practical experience and transferable skills preparing them for employment and/or postgraduate study. Students undertake a placement /internship (usually 4 weeks) in either an industry or research setting (based on academic interests and career aspirations). Students also have the opportunity of studying abroad for a semester or undertaking a sandwich year in industry.

The course is based in the School of Forensic and Applied Sciences and this association provides a unique opportunity for Environmental Science students to study optional related modules in either Archaeology or Forensic Science throughout the degree programme. Module options include the Science and Management of Death and the Archaeology of Britain.


Fieldtrips are a key element of the programme because they bring to life the information provided in the classroom and expose students to a range of practitioners and researchers working in relevant fields.  We run a UK-based residential fieldtrip at the end of first year and offer students the opportunity of an international field trip at the end of the second year (previous locations have included: Guyana, China, Poland and Kenya) in a dedicated fieldwork module.

Residential trips are of real academic value but they can also be significant in terms of personal development and this is definitely the case with the Scotland field trip to the Isle of Rum and Cairngorm (an optional destination on the fieldwork module)  where students are given the opportunity to climb mountains and to stay out overnight in a remote bothy. Several of our graduates that went on the trip have returned to live and work on Rum or have been inspired to volunteer with the RSPB and other natural history organisations as a direct result of the trip.

Guirdil Bothy, Isle of Rum - UCLan Geography and Environmental Management Students about to return to civilisation after a night at the Bothy. Amazing views of Bloodstone Hill and the Island of Canna (Small Isles) - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA

Students about to return to civilisation after a night at Guirdil Bothy on the Isle of Rum. Amazing views of Bloodstone Hill and the Island of Canna (Small Isles).

Summit of Askival, Isle of Rum - UCLan Geography and Environmental Management students enjoy the panoramic views of the Small Isles - well worth the 810 metre climb!! - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA

An intrepid few enjoy the amazing views from the summit of Askival (812 m) on the Isle of Rum

Learning Environment and Assessment

A 3 year degree qualification typically comprises 360 credits and each 20 credit (a standard module) equates to 200 hours of study, which comprises of a mixture of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical sessions and independent study. Independent study is an important aspect of your degree course. The exact combination of study time will be detailed within your module descriptors, and will depend on your option choices.

A wide range of assessment styles are used to evaluate student performance, identify strengths and weaknesses and support learning, these include: exams, written assignments, laboratory and field reports, academic posters, oral presentations and interview.

The staff involved in delivery of the Environmental Science programme are from a diverse range of academic backgrounds and include geographers, ecologists, biologists, environmental scientists, archaeologists and forensic scientists. Most staff are research active and all staff are actively encouraged to integrate research into course delivery. For individual research interests and latest projects / publications please view our staff profiles.


This course is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES) and the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA).

This programme is accredited by the Committee of Heads of Environmental Sciences (CHES), the education committee of the Institution of Environmental Sciences (IES). CHES is the collective voice of the environmental sciences academic community and serves to enhance the quality of environmental education worldwide. A programme accredited by CHES is assured to meet high standards, contain a strong component of practical, field and theoretical activities, and has excellent opportunities for training, work experience and links to the professional environmental sector. Students enrolled on CHES accredited programmes can apply for free Student Membership of the IES and for a fast-track route to membership once they graduate, starting you on a route towards becoming a Chartered Environmentalist or Chartered Scientist.

The University of Central Lancashire is an approved IEMA University Partner. The BSc (Hons) Environmental Science has been successfully mapped against the IEMA internationally recognised Graduate membership standard ensuring that students have the right knowledge and skills to compete in a continuously developing market. Course approval ensures that students graduate with the professionally recognised GradIEMA suffix, signifying that they are part of the next generation of sustainability leaders and enabling them to fast track an application to practitioner once they have gained sufficient experience.


The course actively engages with a range of external organisations and makes use of these links in the delivery of practitioner-led classroom sessions and external visits. Guest speakers have included staff from Energy and Environmental Consultancies, Forest Research, Environment Agency and the RSPB. Examples of site visits have included Heysham Nuclear Power Station, Leighton Moss RSPB reserve, Lancashire County Scientific Services and BAE Systems.  We have especially close links with the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside and host their annual Volunteer Conference. Students are also encouraged to volunteer with the Trust and other local organisations, providing invaluable experience when seeking employment.


Environmental Science is a multidisciplinary subject and as a result career options are incredibly varied in both the environmental sector and in a range of other occupations. Examples of directly related career options include: Environmental consultant, Environmental manager, Recycling officer, Water quality scientist, Environment Agency officer, Nature Reserve manager, Sustainability consultant, Environmental education officer. The degree may also act as a gateway to a career in related areas such as: Landscape Architecture, Toxicology, Town planning, Environmental Health and Education.

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If you have any questions or want to know more about Environmental Science please contact the course leader: Dr Chris Lowe (email: cnlowe@uclan.ac.uk; tel +44(0)1772 893960)

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Course Enquiries

Telephone us: +44(0)1772 892400
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Important Information

This course is based in the School of Forensic and Applied Sciences

Course Handbook

For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry: 2019 Entry | 2020 Entry
For information on possible changes to course information, see our Essential and Important Course Information.

Tuition Fees & Finance

*Tuition Fees are per year unless otherwise stated.
For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

Further Information for students

You can find regulations and policies relating to student life at The University of Central Lancashire on our Student Contract page.

Entry Requirements

For changes to 2017 UCAS tariff entry requirements please see our Essential and Important Course Information. UCLan requires all undergraduate applicants to have a minimum attainment of five GCSEs at grade C and above, or equivalent, (including Maths and English). In 2017 and beyond we will view the new Grade 4 as being equivalent to a C grade and will therefore require students to achieve GCSE Grade 4 or above. However, if the subject is relevant to our degree programme and requires a higher GCSE grade (e.g. GCSE B grade), and/or includes a Professional body that governs the entry requirements, Grade 5 or above may be required.