Ecology and Conservation

BSc single honours Ecology and Conservation 2016/17

From the abyssal depths of the oceans, to the snow covered Himalayas, the staggering biodiversity of this amazing planet is still providing us with wonderful new surprises. The fabulous wildlife of the Earth is intricately linked through adaptation and evolution, with the global systems of ocean currents, prevailing winds and the movement of continents. Deeper understanding of these remarkable relationships is essential if we are to overcome increasing concerns about global environmental change and loss of biodiversity.

The focus of attention is turning to the consequences this may have for the vulnerability of the biosphere and the economic implications for mankind. Increasing human populations and their influence on the loss and degradation of important ecosystems are issues that affect us all. In its role as global leader of science-based environmental policy, the United Nations Environmental programme ‘continues to attach great importance to universities that will educate environmentalists of the future as well as serve as the pool for the intellectual capital needed to address the concerns of climate change and growing environmental degradation.’ (Press release, November 2010).

This programme is designed to equip students for working in local and international ecological and conservation roles by providing a stimulating and challenging programme that encompasses the biosciences, biogeography and land management.

Practical and theoretical ecology is a central theme throughout the programme but successful students develop a strong and varied background in the geographical and life sciences that makes them highly employable.

The first year consists of a set of compulsory modules covering introductory biology, environmental science and physical sciences to a level needed to underpin sound ecological knowledge. Geography-based modules introduce students to the methodology and social and physical geography needed for a holistic understanding of conservation issues. The ethos of the programme is to integrate the disciplines together, rather than treating them as separate subjects.

In Years 2 and 3, students take a core of compulsory science and geography-based modules aimed specifically at ecology and conservation, but with scope to specialise in subject areas that interest them. The scope extends from social geography modules examining such issues as environmental risk, Geographical Information Systems (GIS), and understanding climate change, to molecular biology, pollution science, biological imaging and plant science. Students also carry out a practical investigation as part of a final year Individual Study.

This programme provides opportunities for careers in key positions in local government planning departments, environmental consultancies, teaching, reserve management, wildlife education and interpretation and a range of other areas of conservation or environmental management.

Graduates may progress to study for higher degrees either by research or a taught programme. Surveys of recent graduates have indicated that our emphasis on graduate skills has been particularly valuable to them in their first appointments.

Time management, statistical and planning skills are developed during this degree programme and these are prized by many employers. The good communication and presentation skills developed, coupled to an ability to think critically and analyse complex data sets, make our graduates highly employable. Being able to use GIS and analyse its outputs is a skill particularly prized by employers from a range of backgrounds, including wildlife conservation and research; local, regional, national and international planning organisations; the police and local authorities.

Year 1


  • Core Science
  • People, Nature and Places
  • Discovering Geography

Optional Modules:

  • Variety of Life
  • Introduction to Environmental Systems
  • Physical Environment
  • Starred Modules

Year 2


  • Evolution
  • Earth as a Planetary System
  • Biogeography and Landscape Ecology
  • Environmental Development

Optional Modules:

  • Plant Control Systems
  • Comm. and Analysis in Science
  • Molecular Biology
  • Chemistry for the Environmental Sciences
  • Geomorphology
  • Introduction to Mapping and GIS
  • Understanding PCC
  • The Hydrosphere in Europe
  • Starred Module

Year 3


  • Ecology and Conservation
  • Individual Study
  • Soil Science and Land Management
  • Countryside Conservation and Management; Regions of Risk; or Applied Physical Geography
  • Must choose from either:
  • Countryside Conservation and Management
  • Regions of Risk;
  • Applied Physical Geography

Optional Modules:

  • Pests, Parasites and Pathogens
  • Plant Responses to the Environment
  • Practical Ecology
  • Aspects of Pollution
  • Biological Imaging and Photography
  • Applied Biological Chemistry
  • Advanced GIS and Remote Sensing
  • Starred Module


The 2015/16 and 2016/17 annual tuition fees for this course are:







Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

UK/EU full-time tuition fees for this course are set in line with the current maximum regulated tuition fee levels permitted by the UK Government.

Overseas full-time tuition fees for this course may be subject to an annual inflationary increase in every year where the course lasts more than one year. 

*Overseas fee scholarships may be available for eligible students. For further information please contact or the International Office:

**Full-time courses which have a Foundation Year 0 will have a 2015/16 and 2016/17 UK/EU tuition fee of £6,000 in Year 0.

Further information

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students on courses are expected to meet. 

Read further information about the general additional costs which apply to courses at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Core knowledge and understanding is acquired through a number of methods and strategies including lecture and discussion; laboratory practical; field course, student-led seminars; tutorials; individual oral presentations; group oral presentations; poster presentations; problem solving exercises, case studies and projects. Intellectual skills are promoted through lectures, practical classes, workshops and seminars.

Learning to apply these thinking skills is achieved by the use of case studies and especially through laboratory and field-based activities. This enables students to apply their classroom learning in more challenging environments and to appreciate general processes and relationships in practical and ‘real-world’ settings. Throughout their degree, students receive academic and personal support from their personal tutor as well as from the Student Support Guidance Service and the Employability and Careers Service.

Knowledge and understanding is assessed via examination and coursework including essay, calculation and problem solving exercises, practical write ups, portfolios, log books, group and/or individual work, group projects, oral presentations, assessed practical, laboratory work, graph drawing exercises, (group) poster presentation, computer based assessment, group presentation, data handling exercises, multiple choice questionnaire, seminar presentation, paper presentation, seminar papers, case study (involving the analysis of biological data) and audio or video presentation.

Intellectual skills are assessed by coursework (including computer based assessment), presentations and examination. Examinations provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to structure a clear, concise and reasoned argument and analyse an issue in a limited time period. The execution of an independent or special study allows them to demonstrate their thinking skills to the highest level.

Fact file

UCAS code

  • C180 Ecology and Conservation
  • C182 Ecology and Conservation (4 years with Foundation)


  • 3 years (or 4 years with Foundation year) full-time

Entry requirements

  • A typical offer would be 240 UCAS Tariff points
    An A2 level grade C, or above, in a science subject, preferable biology. More entry requirement details.



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Last edited: 30/06/2016 21:08:00