Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


As the mining sector expands, so do the impacts of mining and refining processes. The environmental impacts of mining activities must be managed carefully to balance stakeholder expectations and regulatory requirements with financial costs to the mining company. The overall aim of this course is to prepare students for careers in Environmental Management in mining contexts, either in consultant roles, in government agencies, or within industry. The unit first provides an introduction to the management of environmental impacts associated with mining and refining activities. Students will learn the basics of mining and refining processes, and how to identify and mitigate potential environmental impacts during mining and refining processes. The unit will involve working collaboratively within a multidisciplinary team to create an environmental management plan for mine site and critically assessing management plans for suggesting improvements. The unit will also cover approaches to manage uncertainties (technology, expenses, stakeholder expectations) when developing management plans. A range of Australian and international case studies are used to illustrate the core content of the course with real world examples.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 2UWA (Perth)Face to face

Students are able to (1) describe and compare the key stages of mining and refining processes for major commodities; (2) identify potential sources of environmental impact resulting from various stages of mining and refining processes, and develop appropriate mitigation strategies; (3) understand regulatory frameworks mining operation must conform to; (4) critically assess existing environmental management plans (EMPs) and suggest improvements; (5) work collaboratively in multidisciplinary teams to develop environmental management plans; (6) apply the ‘triple bottom line' approach when formulating environmental management plans; and (7) identify and manage uncertainties and risks when developing environmental management plans.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) virtual field report; (2) literature review; and (3) group report. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Caroline Mather
Unit rules
Successful completion of
one Unit(s) ENVT4421 Fundamentals of Environmental Management
Advisable prior study
ENVT4422 Research Methods in Environmental Science
Contact hours
1x 2hr lectures per week
1x 2hr online practicals per week
1 x field trip – virtual
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.