GV0ENS-Environmental Science

Module Provider: Geography and Environmental Science
Number of credits: 40 [20 ECTS credits]
Level:F
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring / Summer module
Pre-requisites:
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2016/7

Module Convenor: Dr Steve Robinson

Email: j.s.robinson@reading.ac.uk

Summary module description:
This module provides the student with an understanding of ecological and physical processes, of the impact of human activity on these processes and with an appreciation of the key concept of sustainability.

Aims:
This module aims to provide the student with an understanding of ecological and physical processes, of the impact of human activity on these processes and with an appreciation of the key concept of sustainability. The module also aims to develop skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation appropriate to subsequent degree work.

Assessable learning outcomes:
By the end of the module it is expected that the student will be able to: * Explain ecological principles including energy flow, biogeochemical cycling, population dynamics * Outline Earth's history * Discuss factors influencing human population size * Recognise the impact of human activity on the natural environment * Recognise the significance of sustainability

Additional outcomes:
Students will have the opportunity to enhance their library, IT and language skills improve their skills of analysis, evaluation and presentation of researched material

Outline content:
The module follows three themes. Firstly, ecology, the study of the interrelationships between living organisms and their physical environment. Secondly, the impact of man on these natural processes, for example, population explosion, global warming, depletion of the of stratospheric ozone layer, deforestation, threats to biodiversity and water pollution. Finally the course explores the concept of sustainability and the influence of economics and politics on environmental issues. The module will also provide training in key transferrable skills; for example, survey methods and the use of Geographic Information Systems.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module is taught through lectures that introduce the student to the principles of the subjects studied. Seminars allow students to research and discuss topics in greater depth whilst case studies and videos may also be used to enhance understanding. Weekly homework assignments are designed to develop the student's understanding and to provide feedback on written work. A weekly surgery hour tutorial provides an opportunity for students to seek additional help, if required. Visits to the Natural History Museum in London, and the Cole Museum in Reading, provide an opportunity for review during the course.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 33 33 18
Seminars 11 11 12
Tutorials 11 11
Project Supervision 22 22
Practicals classes and workshops 12
Fieldwork 4
External visits 8 4
Guided independent study 188
       
Total hours by term 273.00 97.00 30.00
       
Total hours for module 400.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 70
Written assignment including essay 20
Class test administered by School 10

Other information on summative assessment:
Two essays: one set in Spring Term, one set in Summer Term. Each essay contributes 10% of the overall assessment
Two tests: one each at end of Autumn and Spring Terms, each contributes 5% of the overall assessment.

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:
    3-hours

    Requirements for a pass:
    A mark of 40% overall

    Reassessment arrangements:
    By re-examination or resubmission of coursework in August/September

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 21 December 2016

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