GVMENVC-Environmental Consultancy

Module Provider: Geography and Environmental Science
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2019/0

Module Convenor: Dr Tom Sizmur

Email: t.sizmur@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

You will work in a team of students to deliver an Environmental Consultancy project for a client which will involve planning and executing a sampling strategy, collecting primary data, plotting spatial data, interpreting the data to make recommendations, writing a consultancy-style report, and presenting findings to an expert panel.

You will benefit from a genuine environmental consultancy experience that can be used as a convincing case study to demonstrate competencies to future employers.


To apply knowledge acquired in other modules to conduct a genuine environmental consultancy project with the subsequent presentation of the findings to a panel consisting of regulators and practitioners from the environmental industry.

Assessable learning outcomes:

Students will produce a site investigation report at the conclusion of the module and collective presentation to a panel consisting of regulators and practitioners from the environment industry.

Additional outcomes:

By the end of this module, you should be able to:

- Undertake a complex environmental project as part of an equitable team

- Design a sampling strategy

- Present spatial data

- Interpret and evaluate environmental data in the context of legislation

- Present the findings of an environmental investigation to a client

- Demonstrate competency working in a multidisciplinary and multicultural team

You will undertake a real investigation and develop the associated planning and project management skills that will be beneficial for your Independent Research Project, and beyond. 

You will apply your knowledge from taught modules and further develop your skills in data analysis and sampling design.

You will present your findings to environmental professionals providing an opportunity to develop your presentation skills and network with potential employers. 

Outline content:

The module will commence with a series of lecture-demonstrations introducing the task set by the client and the basic principles of GIS and sampling design. In the second part of the module you will undertake fieldwork and laboratory work to collect and analyse samples. You will then interpret the analysis and create and deliver an oral presentation and a consultancy report for the client. Tutorial support will be provided throughout the module.

Global context:

 Environmental Pollution is a global issue and although this module will focus on a real contaminated environment in the UK, the approaches adopted are widely applicable to the activities of environmental consultants globally.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

A mixture of interactive lectures, computer classes, laboratory practicals, and fieldwork will be used in this diverse module.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 12
Tutorials 12
Demonstration 12
Practicals classes and workshops 52
Fieldwork 12
Guided independent study: 100
Total hours by term 200
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 60
Oral assessment and presentation 25
Set exercise 15

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

 Coursework 100%:

  • Team assessment: Desktop study (15%)

  • Team assessment: Oral presentation (25%)

  • Individual assessment: Consultancy report (60%)

Formative assessment methods:

Peer feedback will be used to formative feedback relative contributions of team members to the desktop study assessment. Interactive lectures and demonstrations will provide the opportunity for students to practice and receive instant feedback on performance.

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guidePG.aspx

Assessment requirements for a pass:

A mark of 50% overall 

Reassessment arrangements:

Resubmission of coursework in September 

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Students will require sturdy footwear and waterproof clothing for participating in fieldwork.


Last updated: 10 April 2019


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