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Undergraduate Courses 2017

Environmental Social Sciences - BA (Hons)

Canterbury

Overview

Our Environmental Social Sciences degree programme focuses on the environment from the perspective of the social sciences and humanities.  You are encouraged to engage with a variety of environmental understandings from a range of subjects, including: anthropology, politics, economics, philosophy, law, history, literature and the creative arts. You can also develop practical skills (for example biodiversity monitoring) and can choose to do an independent research project on a subject largely of your choice.

In addition to compulsory modules covering social science approaches to environmental issues and environmental politics, policy and practice, you can also choose modules covering biodiversity and ecological sciences, the foundations of human culture, creative conservation and environmental law. You can also develop practical skills (for example biodiversity monitoring in Borneo) and can choose to do an independent research project on a subject largely of your choice in the UK or overseas.

Think Kent video series

In this talk, Dr Robert Fish of the University of Kent, explains how the field of human ecology seeks to promote understanding of nature and the life-giving, life-saving and life-affirming role it plays in people’s lives.

Independent rankings

In the National Student Survey 2016, Kent achieved the fourth highest score for overall satisfaction*. Kent’s high level of overall satisfaction also resulted in it being ranked joint first in London and the South East, alongside the universities of Oxford and Surrey.

Kent is ranked in the top 20 of UK universities in The Guardian University Guide 2016.

* Out of all publicly funded, multi-faculty (i.e. not single-subject/specialist institutions) universities.

Course structure

The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This listing is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.  Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take ‘wild’ modules from other programmes offered by the University in order that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas of interest to you or that may further enhance your employability.

Stage 1

Possible modules may include:

DI304 - Environmental Sustainability-An Introduction (15 credits)

Economic growth and consumerism are threatening our planet and the future of human kind. This module provides a comprehensive introduction to environmental sustainability, using a strongly interdisciplinary approach based on environmental science and economics. In Part 1, we define environmental sustainability and explain how environmental sustainability can be assessed in relation to renewable resources, non-renewable resources and pollution. We consider the main threats to environmental sustainability such as climate change, pollution and resource exploitation and how they arise from the economic-environmental system. In Part 2, we explore environmental threats and issues in more detail focusing on issues such as species extinction, deforestation, climate change, and fossil fuel burning. Throughout Part 2 we actively consider potential solutions to current global economic and environmental crises for example, through the development of green technology, renewable energy, resource efficiency, recycling of materials, and green infrastructure.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI305 - Biodiversity (15 credits)

This module will introduce a range of fundamental concepts that underpin our understanding of biodiversity and, therefore, the conservation of biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. The differences and similarities between the multiple definitions for the term 'biodiversity' will be considered, in addition to examining how scientists are trying to assess the magnitude of biodiversity on the planet. Spatial and temporal patterns of biodiversity will be investigated, along with the importance of biodiversity (both use and non-values). The module will then explore the contemporary threats to biodiversity and provision of associated ecosystem services, in conjunction with a broad overview of the methods conservationists employ to protect and maintain biodiversity.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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SE308 - Skills for Anthropology and Conservation (15 credits)

This module is designed to introduce students to the range of basic practical and technical skills required across the School's BA and BSc programmes. The following areas will be covered:

Literary skills - different types of academic writing, and when and how to use them.

Reading skills - how to read an academic paper, how to precis an argument, how to make notes on a book chapter.

Bibliographical skills - how to construct a bibliography and the use of the library, online databases and full-text journals.

Correct referencing and the use of Endnote/Refworks.

Data collection and handling - the use of spreadsheets for simple statistics and graphs.

Planning projects and fieldwork.

The use of appropriate specialist software.

Photography and video skills.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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SE314 - Contested Environments: People and Nature in the 21st Century (15 credits)

This module provides an introduction to contemporary discourses and issues surrounding the relationship between nature, environment and society. The module begins by introducing people to the idea of 'environment', and specifically, to the range of assumptions we might hold about the relationship between environmental processes and human identity and behaviour. We go on to examine how ideas of human-environment relations play out across different geographical and land use contexts, at a range of different spatial scales (global, national, regional, urban and rural), and within the context of different stakeholder and social groups (such as policy makers, pressure groups, the media, and publics), More generally we provide a framework for critically evaluating the values and ethical assumptions that lay behind human constructions and uses of the non-human world and how we might manage, respond to and construct a range of environmental issues from a government, business and civic society starting point. More generally, the module aims to introduce students to basic conceptual distinctions that cut across these relationships, including ideas of ‘local and global’, ‘culture and nature’, and ‘representation and materiality’

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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SE315 - Field Class: Sustainable Land Use Systems (15 credits)

This field based module explores how to interpret and assess the sustainability of land use systems. It involves local field investigations into different types and scales of system and the way these are valued and managed according to different, often competing, economic, social and environmental priorities for land. The local field investigations span key different contexts for learning. Contexts and emphasises will vary over each year according to teaching staff but may include:



• Land-use systems at the landscape scale –such as the management of protected areas designated for their biodiversity and cultural value.

• Exploring and managing woodland environments– including the culture and practice of woodland management.

• Farming and agricultural change –spanning the environmental and economic dimensions of changes in farming systems and wider supply chain

• Urban ecosystems and landscapes – including a focus on the role of green infrastructure for linking people to the natural world

• Touristic and leisure landscapes – linking sustainable landscapes to a major sector for economic regeneration and growth



The module will include four day-long field trips to local (kent-based) sites over the course of the term and contextualised through supporting lectures and group exercises. The trips will be timetabled to avoid clashes with existing student commitments (and may include attendance at weekend and during reading weeks). The module will provide practical learning to complement theoretical issues explored across anthropology and conservation programmes. The emphasis throughout will therefore be on learning from the experience of people and organisations directly engaged in creating, cultivating and managing land for different kinds of human benefit.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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You have the opportunity to select wild modules in this stage


Stage 2

Possible modules may include:

DI528 - Conservation Social Science: Methods and Research Design (15 credits)

The module will begin with an introduction to research. Students will be asked to think about what counts as research, how research validity can be assessed, and. Subsequent sessions will give training in the design and use of (a) qualitative interviews and (b) (quantitative) questionnaires. Sessions will also be devoted to processing and analysis of qualitative data, and also basic descriptive statistics to analyse quantitative data, but not inferential statistics, since this is covered in a separate core module on statistics in the BSc programme (DI508). Towards the end of the module we will look in more depth at the principles of research design in order to help students begin to plan their final year research projects

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI501 - Climate Change and Conservation (15 credits)

This module will inform students how climate has influenced the diversity of life on Earth, from past to present, and its likely future impacts. We will begin with a summary of the physical science basis of contemporary climate change and the role that anthropogenic factors have played since the commencement of the industrial era. We will then explore the biological and ecological impacts of climate change on individual organisms, populations and communities, with particular emphasis given to understanding how species are responding. The module will then explore how conservation biologists are using particular interventions to ameliorate the most harmful and destabilising effects of climate change. From a more general perspective, the social, economic and political ways in which climate change can be mitigated will be assessed

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI531 - Human Wildlife Conflict and Resource Competition (15 credits)

Human-wildlife conflicts and resource competition imply costs on human social, economic or cultural life and on the ecological, social or cultural life of wildlife concerned, often to the detriment of conservation objectives and socio-economic realities. This module aims to introduce students to the magnitude and multidisciplinary dimensions of human-wildlife conflicts (HWC) and resource competition, and current approaches and challenges in mitigating and preventing HWC. We will explore how theoretical frameworks for approaching HWC are most often confined within disciplinary boundaries and how more holistic approaches can better equip conservationists and other professionals in dealing with the issue. Using a variety of teaching and learning methods, students will learn about issues involved in determining and analysing HWC, and planning, implementing and evaluating conflict mitigation or prevention schemes.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI532 - Creative Conservation (15 credits)

Creative Conservation will engage students with a range of ways of thinking critically about conservation issues and their communication whilst developing their own creative practice and skills portfolio. The approach will seek to take a truly interdisciplinary approach, exploring these issues form a range of disciplinary perspectives and seeking syntheses and new imaginings in addressing them. Topics of focus will be chosen from amongst:

• History of place and the relationship with nature – esp. East Kent and the Blean

• Photography - and the use of the still image

• Video - as representation and a research tool

• Art and Conservation - craftwork, eco-regional design and natural resource utilisation

• The Wildlife Documentary - a critical deconstruction and analysis

• Conservation, Religion and Culture

• Campaigning for Conservation

• Conservation and Agriculture

• Literature and Storytelling

• Conservation and Cuisine - benefit or burden to the conservation mission?

• Performance Ethnography - a theoretical framework for action research in conservation



In each case the theoretical, as well as the applied practical aspects of the topic will form a core component of the learning and teaching.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI505 - Conceptual Frameworks in Conservation Science (15 credits)

The aim of the module is to cover major overarching and current issues, such as understanding biodiversity in the fossil record, extinction rates and how they are calculated, and how many species are there and why it matters. By looking at these "bigger picture" issues conceptual thinking will be brought in; for example how using basic biological knowledge, we can estimate the number of species on Earth. In addition, there will be guest lectures, and discussion of current global issues that are making the press such as the results of major international conferences; past examples included the outcomes of the Copenhagen conference on climate change and the concept of 'Planetary Boundaries'.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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DI508 - Skills for Conservation Biologists (Field trip) (15 credits)

This course is designed to introduce and re-affirm statistical concepts, and their correct use and relevance to field biologists. Introductory topics will include measures of central tendency, frequency distributions, the normal distribution, standard errors, and how sample parameters, and null hypotheses apply in real biological situations. Further topics will include one- and two-tailed tests, chi-squared test, regression analysis, and analysis of variance. The role of probability in field biology will be considered, and its application to biological questions. Throughout this taught course, emphasis will be placed on practical application of statistics as much as possible, and when and how they are applied. Since there is both a theoretical and practical component to this course, students should aim to link the theory presented in lectures with the practical sessions and field trip parts of the course. The field trips will be towards the end of the course, by which time students will have been exposed to sufficient statistical methods, and be ready to apply it. By the end of the module, students should have a knowledge of the underlying principles of biological statistics, be able to evaluate from a theoretical stand-point and in practise, statistical results, and have a sound appreciation of the benefits and limitations of different statistical techniques and their application to field biology.



The role of this module has been to provide students with the statistical knowledge to conduct their data analysis for their research project, and to reinforce the appreciation and knowledge of statistical methods within a biological framework. It is often the case that students in the second and third years of their degree are able to execute statistical analysis via computer programmes, but lack an appreciation of what the statistical results actually mean, and the ability to correctly interpret them in the context of their research. This module is designed to address these issues through a combination of lectures on statistical topics within a biological framework, and practical tasks and exercises.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI520 - Conservation and Communities (15 credits)

The driving causes of biodiversity loss are not just ecological, but also political, economic and cultural, and conservationists need to acquire the knowledge and skills to address broader social contexts. This module aims to introduce students to cutting-edge debates about the place of local people in biodiversity conservation, and provide them with an overview of the essential role that the social sciences play in the analysis of environmental issues. Objectives of the module are to provide students with a broad conceptual understanding of the social context of conservation, and particularly of the importance of politics and economics; knowledge of the history of conservation approaches towards local communities; familiarity with key issues in the implementation of community conservation; and a critical approach to analysis of the current conservation-preservation debate.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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SE610 - Human Ecology:An Introduction to Social-Ecological Systems (15 credits)

The aim of this module is to introduce students to recent developments in natural resource management focused on the ideas of natural capital, ecosystem services and sustainable landscape management and thus a module set firmly with the socio-ecological tradition of human ecology. The module will trace the traditions of this gradual harmonisation of resource management discourse and how it plays out conceptually, empirically and at the interface of environmental science, policy and practice. The module will also set this tradition in a critical frame, drawing back to underlying assumptions about the idea of nature, and the relationship between nature, economy, human development and well-being. It will also have a practical edge by covering issues of environmental citizenship and the ethical, procedural and practical rationales that underpin different forms and levels of engagement in environmental decision making.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

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SO525 - Environmental Politics (15 credits)

Environmental issues have become central matters of public concern and political contention. In this module we shall consider explanations for the rise and social distribution of environmental concern as well as the forms of organisation that have been adopted to address environmental questions, including the emergence of global environmental issues and the responses to them. The development of environmental protest, environmental movements and Green parties are central concerns, but we shall also consider the ‘greening’ of established political parties and political agenda. Is it realistic to expect the development of a global environmental movement adequate to the task of tackling global environmental problems. The approach is broadly comparative and examples will be taken from Europe (east and west), North America, Australasia and south-east Asia.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

EC532 - Environmental Economics, Institutions and Policy (15 credits)

This module introduces you to environmental economics and economics generally. A key objective of the module is to help you develop an ability to apply economic thinking to environmental problems. The module considers various aspects of environmental economics including why pollution occurs and how policy can be designed and implemented to deal with it, how to place economic value on the environment and how to understand sustainable development in microeconomic terms.



The module is divided into three parts. In Part A we examine the relationship between the economy and the environment. In Part B we consider how environmental policy can be designed, implemented and evaluated in relation to environmental pollution. In Part C we examine issues of environmental valuation, which is a rapidly growing area of research in environmental economics. The emphasis in all parts of the course is to understand the links between theory and practice.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

LW585 - Environmental Law I (15 credits)

Environmental law involves the study of those areas of law which concern the threats to environmental quality and ecosystems brought about by a variety of human impacts, especially those involving pollution and the unsustainable use of natural resources. The subject represents both a pressing area of public concern and an increasingly important area of legal practice. Environmental Law I is focused upon those parts of environmental law which are most relevant to avoiding pollution of the environmental media of water, air and land. The module commences with a discussion of the foundational concepts of the subject, including the meaning of ‘the environment’, ‘pollution’ and ‘sustainable development’ in law. These ideas are then related to environmental quality legislation, concerned with public health and pollution controls in respect of different environmental media. After examining sectoral approaches to pollution control, the module then considers cross cutting issues, such as access to environmental information and alternative approaches to environmental regulation which utilise market mechanisms. In each case the object is to place discussion of national and European Community environmental laws in context, by considering how effectively they function as mechanisms for achieving sustainable development. These themes are pursued further in Environmental Law II, which is primarily concerned with the regulation of land use for environmental purposes and the legal protection afforded to biodiversity.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

LW586 - Environmental Law II (15 credits)

Environmental Law II builds upon the themes introduced in Environmental Law I whilst placing central emphasis upon the environmental and ecological implications of land use and development, and the regulation of land use activities to secure protection of biodiversity. The module commences with some cross-cutting issues, encompassing civil liability for environmental harms and human rights in respect of the environment, before turning to consideration of regimes for restricting land use to prevent unacceptable kinds of environmental and ecological harm. This involves looking at land use development controls in national law and European Community requirements for environmental assessment of projects and plans to anticipate and mitigate the environmental impacts of development. This leads into a discussion of laws that are more specifically concerned with the protection of species and habitats, either through direct restrictions upon destructive activities or through legal mechanisms to secure biodiversity conservation through designation and management of land that is of ecological importance. In respect of each topic, the object is to place discussion of national and European Community laws into context, by considering how effectively they function as mechanisms for achieving environmentally and ecologically appropriate land use and conservation of biodiversity, and ultimately sustainable development.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

SO539 - Environmental Policy and Practice (15 credits)

This module aims to give you an understanding of the ways in which governments have attempted to address environmental issues such as climate change, energy security and pollution control. It discusses the role of government and other interest groups in formulating and implementing environmental policy, the various forms of policy mechanism that are employed, and the constraints upon their effective implementation.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

SO670 - Kent Student Certificate for Volunteering, Platinum Award (15 credits)

This is a 15 credit course which will enhance your CV, particularly if you are hoping to work in the public or voluntary sector. You will be supported to undertake three placements in a variety of volunteering roles, both on and off campus; attend four lectures on the voluntary sector and complete a reflective learning log to help you think about your experiences and the transferable skills you are gaining.



The following 2 units are compulsory:



Active community volunteering

Project Leadership



Plus 1 unit selected from the following:



Active university volunteering

Training facilitator

Mentoring

Committee role



All students taking this module are expected to attend four sessions that provide the academic framework for understanding volunteering, as well as practitioner knowledge that will be helpful as you progress through your placements, and invaluable preparation for your essay. These sessions last one hour each and are spaced evenly throughout the academic year.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more


Stage 3

Possible modules may include:

DI522 - Research Project (30 credits)

The module is considered as an important element of Wildlife Conservation undergraduate training. The opportunity to engage in personal research is seen as an essential element of academic training in all disciplines. The particular skills necessary to undertake research, whether practical fieldwork or laboratory work or a desk-based study, can only be taught through the medium of practically orientated investigative tasks. The principle objective in the research project is to assist students in gaining insight into the organisation, analysis and communication of research. The approved investigation may be novel i.e. one that has not previously been carried out, or it may repeat previously executed work for comparative or control purposes.

Credits: 30 credits (15 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI501 - Climate Change and Conservation (15 credits)

This module will inform students how climate has influenced the diversity of life on Earth, from past to present, and its likely future impacts. We will begin with a summary of the physical science basis of contemporary climate change and the role that anthropogenic factors have played since the commencement of the industrial era. We will then explore the biological and ecological impacts of climate change on individual organisms, populations and communities, with particular emphasis given to understanding how species are responding. The module will then explore how conservation biologists are using particular interventions to ameliorate the most harmful and destabilising effects of climate change. From a more general perspective, the social, economic and political ways in which climate change can be mitigated will be assessed

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI520 - Conservation and Communities (15 credits)

The driving causes of biodiversity loss are not just ecological, but also political, economic and cultural, and conservationists need to acquire the knowledge and skills to address broader social contexts. This module aims to introduce students to cutting-edge debates about the place of local people in biodiversity conservation, and provide them with an overview of the essential role that the social sciences play in the analysis of environmental issues. Objectives of the module are to provide students with a broad conceptual understanding of the social context of conservation, and particularly of the importance of politics and economics; knowledge of the history of conservation approaches towards local communities; familiarity with key issues in the implementation of community conservation; and a critical approach to analysis of the current conservation-preservation debate.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI508 - Skills for Conservation Biologists (Field trip) (15 credits)

This course is designed to introduce and re-affirm statistical concepts, and their correct use and relevance to field biologists. Introductory topics will include measures of central tendency, frequency distributions, the normal distribution, standard errors, and how sample parameters, and null hypotheses apply in real biological situations. Further topics will include one- and two-tailed tests, chi-squared test, regression analysis, and analysis of variance. The role of probability in field biology will be considered, and its application to biological questions. Throughout this taught course, emphasis will be placed on practical application of statistics as much as possible, and when and how they are applied. Since there is both a theoretical and practical component to this course, students should aim to link the theory presented in lectures with the practical sessions and field trip parts of the course. The field trips will be towards the end of the course, by which time students will have been exposed to sufficient statistical methods, and be ready to apply it. By the end of the module, students should have a knowledge of the underlying principles of biological statistics, be able to evaluate from a theoretical stand-point and in practise, statistical results, and have a sound appreciation of the benefits and limitations of different statistical techniques and their application to field biology.



The role of this module has been to provide students with the statistical knowledge to conduct their data analysis for their research project, and to reinforce the appreciation and knowledge of statistical methods within a biological framework. It is often the case that students in the second and third years of their degree are able to execute statistical analysis via computer programmes, but lack an appreciation of what the statistical results actually mean, and the ability to correctly interpret them in the context of their research. This module is designed to address these issues through a combination of lectures on statistical topics within a biological framework, and practical tasks and exercises.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI532 - Creative Conservation (15 credits)

Creative Conservation will engage students with a range of ways of thinking critically about conservation issues and their communication whilst developing their own creative practice and skills portfolio. The approach will seek to take a truly interdisciplinary approach, exploring these issues form a range of disciplinary perspectives and seeking syntheses and new imaginings in addressing them. Topics of focus will be chosen from amongst:

• History of place and the relationship with nature – esp. East Kent and the Blean

• Photography - and the use of the still image

• Video - as representation and a research tool

• Art and Conservation - craftwork, eco-regional design and natural resource utilisation

• The Wildlife Documentary - a critical deconstruction and analysis

• Conservation, Religion and Culture

• Campaigning for Conservation

• Conservation and Agriculture

• Literature and Storytelling

• Conservation and Cuisine - benefit or burden to the conservation mission?

• Performance Ethnography - a theoretical framework for action research in conservation



In each case the theoretical, as well as the applied practical aspects of the topic will form a core component of the learning and teaching.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

DI531 - Human Wildlife Conflict and Resource Competition (15 credits)

Human-wildlife conflicts and resource competition imply costs on human social, economic or cultural life and on the ecological, social or cultural life of wildlife concerned, often to the detriment of conservation objectives and socio-economic realities. This module aims to introduce students to the magnitude and multidisciplinary dimensions of human-wildlife conflicts (HWC) and resource competition, and current approaches and challenges in mitigating and preventing HWC. We will explore how theoretical frameworks for approaching HWC are most often confined within disciplinary boundaries and how more holistic approaches can better equip conservationists and other professionals in dealing with the issue. Using a variety of teaching and learning methods, students will learn about issues involved in determining and analysing HWC, and planning, implementing and evaluating conflict mitigation or prevention schemes.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

SO670 - Kent Student Certificate for Volunteering, Platinum Award (15 credits)

This is a 15 credit course which will enhance your CV, particularly if you are hoping to work in the public or voluntary sector. You will be supported to undertake three placements in a variety of volunteering roles, both on and off campus; attend four lectures on the voluntary sector and complete a reflective learning log to help you think about your experiences and the transferable skills you are gaining.



The following 2 units are compulsory:



Active community volunteering

Project Leadership



Plus 1 unit selected from the following:



Active university volunteering

Training facilitator

Mentoring

Committee role



All students taking this module are expected to attend four sessions that provide the academic framework for understanding volunteering, as well as practitioner knowledge that will be helpful as you progress through your placements, and invaluable preparation for your essay. These sessions last one hour each and are spaced evenly throughout the academic year.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

SO539 - Environmental Policy and Practice (15 credits)

This module aims to give you an understanding of the ways in which governments have attempted to address environmental issues such as climate change, energy security and pollution control. It discusses the role of government and other interest groups in formulating and implementing environmental policy, the various forms of policy mechanism that are employed, and the constraints upon their effective implementation.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

LW586 - Environmental Law II (15 credits)

Environmental Law II builds upon the themes introduced in Environmental Law I whilst placing central emphasis upon the environmental and ecological implications of land use and development, and the regulation of land use activities to secure protection of biodiversity. The module commences with some cross-cutting issues, encompassing civil liability for environmental harms and human rights in respect of the environment, before turning to consideration of regimes for restricting land use to prevent unacceptable kinds of environmental and ecological harm. This involves looking at land use development controls in national law and European Community requirements for environmental assessment of projects and plans to anticipate and mitigate the environmental impacts of development. This leads into a discussion of laws that are more specifically concerned with the protection of species and habitats, either through direct restrictions upon destructive activities or through legal mechanisms to secure biodiversity conservation through designation and management of land that is of ecological importance. In respect of each topic, the object is to place discussion of national and European Community laws into context, by considering how effectively they function as mechanisms for achieving environmentally and ecologically appropriate land use and conservation of biodiversity, and ultimately sustainable development.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

LW585 - Environmental Law I (15 credits)

Environmental law involves the study of those areas of law which concern the threats to environmental quality and ecosystems brought about by a variety of human impacts, especially those involving pollution and the unsustainable use of natural resources. The subject represents both a pressing area of public concern and an increasingly important area of legal practice. Environmental Law I is focused upon those parts of environmental law which are most relevant to avoiding pollution of the environmental media of water, air and land. The module commences with a discussion of the foundational concepts of the subject, including the meaning of ‘the environment’, ‘pollution’ and ‘sustainable development’ in law. These ideas are then related to environmental quality legislation, concerned with public health and pollution controls in respect of different environmental media. After examining sectoral approaches to pollution control, the module then considers cross cutting issues, such as access to environmental information and alternative approaches to environmental regulation which utilise market mechanisms. In each case the object is to place discussion of national and European Community environmental laws in context, by considering how effectively they function as mechanisms for achieving sustainable development. These themes are pursued further in Environmental Law II, which is primarily concerned with the regulation of land use for environmental purposes and the legal protection afforded to biodiversity.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

EC532 - Environmental Economics, Institutions and Policy (15 credits)

This module introduces you to environmental economics and economics generally. A key objective of the module is to help you develop an ability to apply economic thinking to environmental problems. The module considers various aspects of environmental economics including why pollution occurs and how policy can be designed and implemented to deal with it, how to place economic value on the environment and how to understand sustainable development in microeconomic terms.



The module is divided into three parts. In Part A we examine the relationship between the economy and the environment. In Part B we consider how environmental policy can be designed, implemented and evaluated in relation to environmental pollution. In Part C we examine issues of environmental valuation, which is a rapidly growing area of research in environmental economics. The emphasis in all parts of the course is to understand the links between theory and practice.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

SO525 - Environmental Politics (15 credits)

Environmental issues have become central matters of public concern and political contention. In this module we shall consider explanations for the rise and social distribution of environmental concern as well as the forms of organisation that have been adopted to address environmental questions, including the emergence of global environmental issues and the responses to them. The development of environmental protest, environmental movements and Green parties are central concerns, but we shall also consider the ‘greening’ of established political parties and political agenda. Is it realistic to expect the development of a global environmental movement adequate to the task of tackling global environmental problems. The approach is broadly comparative and examples will be taken from Europe (east and west), North America, Australasia and south-east Asia.

Credits: 15 credits (7.5 ECTS credits).

Read more

You have the opportunity to select wild modules in this stage

Teaching & Assessment

Teaching is through a combination of lectures, seminars, field trips and laboratory-based practicals. There is also an opportunity to conduct a special research project in your final year. This gives you the opportunity to use a range of research methods in a variety of contexts to explore key environmental issues and participate in the advancement of knowledge. The type of approach may differ depending on the student’s preferred discipline. For most, it will mean using advanced methods to explore literature and other documents and in some cases there may also be opportunities for field research deploying the skills taught during the course.

Most modules are assessed by a combination of coursework and unseen exam. Some modules are assessed only by coursework, which takes a variety of forms, including essays, short answer tests, presentations, advocacy, individual and team projects and research reports.

Programme aims

The programme aims to:

  • produce competent and flexible social scientists with an understanding of the social, economic and political processes affecting the environment
  • to equip students with the skills, knowledge and abilities needed to contribute to understanding processes affecting the environment whether or not they are currently labelled as ‘environmental problems’
  • to help students to understand the role of theories and values in research on processes affecting the environment.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

You gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • the changing meaning of ‘environment’
  • the role of international and EC treaties, agreements and laws and national laws and regulations affecting the environment
  • the role of market forces and state action in the production of the environment
  • the process by which environmental policy is made at all levels and the role of pressure groups
  • why some issues are defined as environmental while others (often equally serious) are not
  • the main concepts and theories used in understanding environmental problems
  • how and why some places have more attractive environments and others less
  • the typical conflicts that occur over environmental issues
  • the options available to households, companies and local governments when faced with unsatisfactory environments
  • the role of local governments and national regulatory agencies in shaping local environments
  • the scope for citizen action to exert pressure for tougher action on the environment
  • the rise in environmental consciousness and its main types.

Intellectual skills

You gain the following intellectual abilities:

  • problem solving and the knowledge to seek solutions to urban problems and individual needs
  • research skills, including the ability to identify a research question and to collect and manipulate data to answer that question
  • evaluative and analytical skills to assess the outcomes of policy intervention on individuals, communities and places
  • sensitivity to the values and interests of others and to the dimensions of difference.

Subject-specific skills

You gain specific skills in the following:

  • to identify and use theories and concepts to analyse environmental issues
  • to seek out and use statistical data relevant to environmental issues
  • to undertake an investigation of an empirical issue, either alone or in a group.

Transferable skills

You gain transferable skills in the following:

  • the ability to study and learn independently using library and internet sources
  • develop an appetite for learning and be reflective, adaptive and collaborative in your approach to learning
  • make presentations to fellow students and staff
  • communicate ideas and arguments to others in written and spoken form
  • prepare essays and reference the material quoted according to scholarly conventions
  • use IT to word process, conduct online searches, communicate and access data sources
  • develop skills in time management by delivering academic work on time and to the required standard
  • develop interpersonal and team work skills to enable students to work collaboratively, negotiate, listen and deliver results.

Careers

The conservation and environmental sector is an expanding area for employment opportunities. This programme aims to secure graduates with employment in high level policy and practice positions, as well as more technical posts involving habitat management and species conservation, working with local people. Potential employers include local, regional and national UK government departments, voluntary organisations and the private sector, as well as international conservation and environmental organisations. Many also go on to postgraduate studies.

Entry requirements

Home/EU students

The University will consider applications from students offering a wide range of qualifications, typical requirements are listed below, students offering alternative qualifications should contact the Admissions Office for further advice. It is not possible to offer places to all students who meet this typical offer/minimum requirement.

Qualification Typical offer/minimum requirement
A level

ABB

GCSE

Mathematics Grade C

Access to HE Diploma

The University of Kent will not necessarily make conditional offers to all access candidates but will continue to assess them on an individual basis. If an offer is made candidates will be required to obtain/pass the overall Access to Higher Education Diploma and may also be required to obtain a proportion of the total level 3 credits and/or credits in particular subjects at merit grade or above.

BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma (formerly BTEC National Diploma)

The University will consider applicants holding BTEC National Diploma and Extended National Diploma Qualifications (QCF; NQF;OCR) on a case by case basis please contact us via the enquiries tab for further advice on your individual circumstances.

International Baccalaureate

34 overall or 16 at HL including Mathematics 4 at HL or SL

International students

The University receives applications from over 140 different nationalities and consequently will consider applications from prospective students offering a wide range of international qualifications. Our International Development Office will be happy to advise prospective students on entry requirements. See our International Student website for further information about our country-specific requirements.

Please note that if you need to increase your level of qualification ready for undergraduate study, we offer a number of International Foundation Programmes through Kent International Pathways.

Qualification Typical offer/minimum requirement
English Language Requirements

Please see our English language entry requirements web page.

Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.

General entry requirements

Please also see our general entry requirements.

Funding

Kent offers generous financial support schemes to assist eligible undergraduate students during their studies. Our funding opportunities for 2017 entry have not been finalised. However, details of our proposed funding opportunities for 2016 entry can be found on our funding page.  

General scholarships

Scholarships are available for excellence in academic performance, sport and music and are awarded on merit. For further information on the range of awards available and to make an application see our scholarships website.

The Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence

At Kent we recognise, encourage and reward excellence. We have created the Kent Scholarship for Academic Excellence. Details of the scholarship for 2017 entry have not yet been finalised. However, for 2016 entry, the scholarship will be awarded to any applicant who achieves a minimum of AAA over three A levels, or the equivalent qualifications as specified on our scholarships pages. Please review the eligibility criteria on that page. 

Enquire or order a prospectus

Resources

Contacts

Related schools

Enquiries

T: +44 (0)1227 827272

Fees

The 2017/18 tuition fees for this programme are:

UK/EU Overseas
Full-time
Part-time

The Government has announced changes to allow undergraduate tuition fees to rise in line with inflation from 2017/18.

The University of Kent intends to increase its regulated full-time tuition fees for all Home and EU undergraduates starting in September 2017 from £9,000 to £9,250. This is subject to us satisfying the Government's Teaching Excellence Framework and the access regulator's requirements. The equivalent part-time fees for these courses will also rise by 2.8%.

For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact information@kent.ac.uk

Key Information Sets

Full Time


Part Time


The Key Information Set (KIS) data is compiled by UNISTATS and draws from a variety of sources which includes the National Student Survey and the Higher Education Statistical Agency. The data for assessment and contact hours is compiled from the most populous modules (to the total of 120 credits for an academic session) for this particular degree programme. Depending on module selection, there may be some variation between the KIS data and an individual's experience. For further information on how the KIS data is compiled please see the UNISTATS website.

If you have any queries about a particular programme, please contact information@kent.ac.uk.

The University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that the information contained in its publicity materials is fair and accurate and to provide educational services as described. However, the courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Full details of our terms and conditions can be found at: www.kent.ac.uk/termsandconditions.

*Where fees are regulated (such as by the Department of Business Innovation and Skills or Research Council UK) they will be increased up to the allowable level.

Publishing Office - © University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000