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Environmental Science BSc(Hons): Field trips

Find out about the opportunities for field trips as part of this course

Fieldwork is an important component of our environment-based degrees. Studying issues in context brings them to life and deepens your understanding. 

Below are the main field trips we run. During Years 2 and 3, many of the optional modules also include other trips and excursions. You might visit:

  • Ashtead Common, a national nature reserve close to Kingston;
  • the nearby North Downs; or 
  • the Sussex coast.

View our image gallery at the bottom of the page for an idea of what your fieldwork might involve.

Course director Dr Stuart Downward talks about what students can expect from the field trips:

Year 1

Kingston upon Thames

During induction week, we take you into Kingston with your course mates to get to know each other, your lecturers and the local environment.

Isle of Wight

The entire School of Geography, Geology and the Environment visits the Isle of Wight for a long weekend in the autumn. This is a great opportunity to get to know other students and meet staff informally.

Each degree has specific field destinations. Environmental students may look at issues such as:

  • coastal erosion;
  • land-use change; and
  • wildlife conservation.

Peak District

In the second semester, you go on a week long trip to a national park, usually the Peak District. Here you will:

  • study a range of topics, such as water resources, tourism and mine waste;
  • complete work suggested by lectures and individual projects; and
  • research a controversial environmental issue for a role playing exercise.

Year 2/3

Southern Spain

During the second or third year, you take a two-week field trip overseas, usually to Andalucia in Southern Spain. This gives you the chance to study an environment very different to that of the UK. Andalucia is enormously bio-diverse, with huge contrasts in climate and development opportunities. The environment ranges from ski resort development in the high Sierras to semi-desert to high density coastal resorts. Water supply and quality can be a significant problem.

You design your own environmental project for the trip. This includes:

  • working out what equipment you'll need;
  • organising the logistics of transporting it to your base;
  • presenting results on laminated posters or as video presentations.

We also encourage you to take in the region's culture, living as the locals do. Spanish students studying English provide local information and help with translation.

Year 3

South Africa

In Yearl 3, you have the option of going on a field trip to a more exotic location, currently South Africa. The two-week trip forms an entire module. The trip gives you an insight into some of the issues facing a developing nation. You will:

  • visit game parks;
  • have lectures at local universities;
  • stay in various locations; and
  • visit different areas and communities, such as the poorer townships, not be seen by tourists.

Image gallery

Studying remote sensing on the Isle of WightOn the waterfront on the Isle of WightOn the waterfront on the Isle of WightTelescope use on the Isle of WightCape Town, South AfricaCape Town, South AfricaFieldwork in South AfricaFieldwork in South AfricaTraditional Braai in South AfricaHIV/AIDS Centre in South AfricaFieldwork in South AfricaKhayelitsha, South Africa

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This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

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This course is taught at Penrhyn Road

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