Your feedback is important to us
Please take two minutes at the end of your visit to help us improve our information and services.
Skip to content The Open University

BSc (Honours) Environmental Science

On this page

Description

Environmental science is a vital and vibrant subject, exploring the complexities of the natural environment and our relationship with it. Our environment is fascinating – but it’s under threat from climate change, biodiversity loss and resource depletion. This interdisciplinary degree course combines aspects of biology, geography, chemistry, technology and social science to help you understand the whole picture. You will develop the scientific and technical knowledge and skills required to understand fundamental environmental patterns and processes, and to address local and global environmental issues. You’ll also investigate the problems we face in understanding our environment and in managing it sustainably, as well as developing your scientific, interpretive and creative thinking skills. This qualification requires fieldwork including compulsory residential school activities in the UK.

Fees and facts

Where will you be resident whilst you study?

If your country isn’t shown here, please visit our website for international students.

Fee: Choose country above to see fee and ways to pay.
Study method: Flexible, part-time study through distance learning.
Type of qualification: Degree
Degree
undergraduate.qualification.Q52,qualification,,degree,1

Undergraduate or bachelors degrees are nationally recognised qualifications consisting of academic study designed to help you gain a thorough understanding of a subject.

For a degree in a named subject, such as business studies or humanities, you'll study mainly in your chosen subject, although you may be able to include some modules from other subjects.

With The Open University you could also study an Open degree where you can combine a range of modules from similar or different subjects to suit either your particular career or personal interests.

You can use a degree to:

  • change careers or progress your current career
  • gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of a subject you are interested in
  • gain professional recognition
  • go onto postgraduate study, such as a diploma or masters degree.
Code: Q52

Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements to study this degree.

Career relevance and employability

The broad and specialist skills you’ll develop in this degree course will equip you to work in a variety of jobs. Environmental science skills are in demand from government and regulatory bodies, the private sector, consultancies and conservation organisations. Careers directly related to the degree include:

  • pollution control
  • waste management and recycling
  • water quality and resources 
  • energy management 
  • planning and sustainability
  • environmental management and consultancy
  • ecology and nature conservation
  • environmental education.

Your studies will also be relevant to financial, business and public sector work.

As a graduate of the BSc (Honours) Environmental Science, you’ll have gained breadth and depth of understanding in scientific, technical and environmental issues. You’ll be able to think creatively; tackle multifaceted issues; and collect, analyse and interpret complex quantitative and qualitative data.

You’ll also gain skills in:

  • practical and project working – including research, planning and fieldwork techniques
  • digital literacy
  • communication
  • interdisciplinary team working.

In addition, skills like self-motivation, teamwork and problem solving will demonstrate your all-round ability and make you more employable.

There’s more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU’s Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.

Register your interest

For academic year 2014/15, registration opens on 24/04/2014. If you would like to be kept updated, you can register your interest now.

Credit for previous study elsewhere

If you have already completed some successful study at higher education level at another institution you may be able to transfer credit for this study and count it towards this qualification. If you wish to apply to transfer credit you must do so as soon as possible, and before you register for this qualification.  

If you are awarded credit for study completed elsewhere, you may find that you need to study fewer OU modules to complete this qualification. This may also mean that the next start date and the maximum time limit for this qualification are different to those shown above.

Visit our Credit Transfer site for more information and details of how to apply for credit transfer.

Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills

Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes, and how they are acquired through teaching, learning and assessment methods.

Classification of your degree

On successful completion of the required number and type of modules you will be awarded a Bachelor of Science (Honours) Environmental Science degree. 

Your honours degree will be classified either as first-class honours, upper second-class honours, lower second-class honours or third-class honours. The class of degree is determined by the best grades you achieve in 240 credits from modules above Level 1. These 240 credits must include all the compulsory Level 2 and Level 3 requirements of the qualification as specified, and must include at least 120 credits at Level 3. 

You will have the opportunity to attend a degree ceremony.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the following regulations:

These regulations are also available on our Essential Documents website.

If you have a disability

Choosing the qualification that’s right for you is very important. Depending on your disability, long-term health condition, mental health disability or specific learning difficulty, you may need to consider any challenges posed by:

  • the learning objectives: for example, to gain an honours degree in a language you must be physically able to speak the language
  • how the modules are taught: for example, some of our science qualifications require that you complete laboratory work
  • any work-based competency requirements.

Choosing the right qualification can be a complex mix of the subject requirements and the support you may need. To help you assess whether the qualification you are interested in will work for you, further advice is available from:

Computing requirements

You will need a computer with internet access to study for this qualification. For most OU qualifications a Microsoft Windows (new since 2007), Apple Mac (OS X 10.6 or later) or Linux computer should be adequate. However, some qualifications require more specific IT equipment, in which case you will need additional software to use an Apple Mac or Linux computer. A detailed technical specification for your modules will be made available when you register. Please note, technical specifications do change over time to match computer developments and the way we teach.

Distance learning

The Open University is the world’s leading provider of flexible, high quality distance learning. Unlike other universities we are not campus based. You will study in a flexible way that works for you whether you’re at home, at work or on the move. As an OU student you’ll be supported throughout your studies – your tutor or study adviser will guide and advise you, offer detailed feedback on your assignments, and help with any study issues. Tuition might be in face-to-face groups, via online tutorials, or by phone.

For more information read Distance learning explained.

Are you already an OU student ? Go to StudentHome for information on choosing your next module.

Your questions

Try our frequently asked questions.

Come and meet us at an event near you.

Or contact an adviser by Email or call +44(0) 845 300 60 90 +44(0) 845 366 60 35

Employers' questions

Contact Corporate Enquiries
Visit our website for employers or Email us