The major in environmental studies examines the interactions between the natural and built environment. It encapsulates the fundamental social aspects of sustainability, environmental impact, law, ethics, development, energy use, economics and politics.
Throughout your studies, you will be introduced to the applied science techniques used by environmental scientists and examine the role of conservation biology and applied ecology in environmental science.
In planning for an environmental studies major, it is essential that you enrol in GEOS 1001 (‘Earth, Environment and Society’) and one other junior geosciences unit. It is strongly recommended that you also take junior biology units (BIOL1001 and BIOL1002) and either chemistry or physics units to prepare for second year environmental studies units.
The core intermediate unit in environmental studies is GEOS2121 (‘Environmental and Resource Management’). All students wishing to complete the major should enroll in this unit. Your second year units will form the prerequisites for your third year units, so it is a good idea to plan ahead and have an idea of which senior units you plan on taking, in order to take the relevant prerequisites in your second year. It is recommended that you also take BIOL2024, GOVT2228 and RSEC2031.
To successfully complete your environmental studies major, you must take at least 24 credit points of senior environmental studies units, including at least 12 credit points from senior environmental studies units.
Earth, Environment and Society
Environmental Law and Ethics
GIS in Coastal Management
Ecology and Conservation
Environmental and Resource Management
With a major in environmental studies, you can pursue careers in government funded organisations, in local government, or in the multitude of private environmental consultancies seeking graduates with science-based skills and specialist knowledge in environmental issues.
Employment opportunities also exist with conservation and environmental groups. There are increasing career opportunities in consultancy work for large government and industrial organisations, smaller community-based organisations involved in preparing environmental impact statements, monitoring and rehabilitation.
Further study for major
If you are interested in furthering your specialisation in environmental studies, you may wish to undertake an honours year, or a postgraduate coursework or research program, subject to admission requirements.
Opportunities for honours and postgraduate research are available for eligible students in a variety of environmental studies fields, both from a biological sciences perspective and from a geosciences perspective.
If you are interested in a more structured program of study, there are coursework programs available to you through the Faculty of Science and Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, in environmental related areas such as the Master of Agriculture, the Master of Science in Environmental Science, the Master of Sustainability and the Master of Environmental Science & Law.
Related subject areas
Geology and Geophysics