Understanding the Environment minor

This Understanding the Environment minor responds to the increased need of a science based cognate background of the general principles, processes and facts in environmental science. Environmental science specifically studies the human influence on the environment and develops scientific, risk based solutions. Developing new business opportunities in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way is at the core of modern societies. Additionally, the need for rules and regulations which ensure opportunities in novel environmental business sectors as well as control of certain environmental standards are in high demand. The aim of this Minor is to educate students to be capable of addressing the great environmental challenges of our age by gaining a general cognate background on key factors such as the water cycle, carbon cycle, land use patterns and changes, pollutant and nutrient pathways, global change problems as well as identifying the key differences between urban, agricultural, mining and natural environments.

Western Australia is a state where changes in land use via agricultural and mining together with growing urban spaces put enormous pressure on the natural ecosystems. This human development takes place in a global biodiversity hotspot and UWA is a key institution to critically study both, the challenges but also the new opportunities within this setting.

The Minor prepares students for effective engagement with environmental organisations, agricultural and mineral industries, communities and policy, lawmakers and education.

Outcomes

Students are able to (1) develop a general understanding of the main differences between urban, agricultural, mining and natural environments; (2) develop a general understanding of the main drivers of human influence on different environmental systems including land-water-climate interactions; (3) develop a broad understanding of available, scientific based assessment methods of the current state of the environment; (4) develop a broad understanding of risk based evaluations and solutions of various environments; (5) critically assess both qualitative and quantitative environmental data to identify significant changes in environmental conditions; (6) demonstrate a basic understanding of using environmental data for risk based solutions to benefit society; and (7) apply critical thinking and writing skills to the interpretation of environmental science data.

Unit sequence

Key to availability of units:
S1 = Semester 1; S2 = Semester 2
Take the following unit:
Availability Unit code Unit name Unit requirements
S1 ENVT1104 Environmental Science and Technology
Prerequisites:
Nil
Co-requisites:
Nil
Incompatibility:
Nil
Take all units (12 points):
Availability Unit code Unit name Unit requirements
S1 ENVT2220 The Climate System
Prerequisites:
none;
for pre-2012 courses: none
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
S2 ENVT2251 Hydrology and Water Resource Management
Prerequisites:
EART1105 The Dynamic Planet
or
ENVT1104 Environmental Science and Technology
or
GEOG1103 Geographies of a Global City
Co-requisites:
Nil.
Incompatibility:
Nil.
Take the following unit:
Availability Unit code Unit name Unit requirements
S2 GEOG3303 Environmental Policy and Planning
Prerequisites:
Completion of 72 Points Course Enrolment MJD-CONBI Conservation Biology (ID 256)
Or
MJD-NRMGT Natural Resource Management (ID 1237)
Or
MJD-GGRPY Geographical Sciences (ID 1240)
Or
MJD-HGYPL Human Geography and Planning (ID 1550)
Or
MJD-WLCDM Wildlife Conservation (ID 4836)
Or
MJD-ENVDM Environmental Science and Management (ID 4842)
Or
MJD-ENVMT Environmental Management (ID 4847)
Or
MJD-ENGEO Environmental Geography and Planning (ID 4869)
Or
MNR-SAPEP Science and Policy: Environmental Planning (ID 59)
Or
MNR-SPCEU Science and Policy: Climate Change, Environmental Planning and Urban Environments (ID 60)
Or
MNR-ENVST Understanding the Environment (ID 73)
Co-requisites:
Nil
Incompatibility:
Unit PLNG2203 Environmental Policy and Planning (ID 1313)