Environmental Science with Hazards and Disasters BSc (Hons)

Why choose this course?

What are the causes of earthquakes, volcanoes, tsunamis, hurricanes, floods and landslides? How do we plan for them, lessen their impact and handle the emergencies that can result?

This course examines the physical science of natural hazards, the social factors that can contribute to disasters, emergency planning and disaster risk reduction (DRR). You'll gain expertise in a range of practical and field techniques through "real-world" exercises.

Guest speakers come from a variety of DRR organisations, provide first-hand learning opportunities and introduce you to potential career paths.

Attendance UCAS code/apply Year of entry
3 years full time F820 2021
4 years full time including foundation year F821 2021
4 years full time including sandwich year F822 2021
6 years part time Apply direct to the University 2021
Location Penrhyn Road

2020 entry

If you are planning to join this course in September 2020, please view the information about changes to courses for 2020/21 due to Covid-19.

 

Continuing students

Students who are continuing their studies with Kingston University in 2020/21 should refer to their Course Handbook for information about specific changes that have been, or may be, made to their course or modules being delivered in 2020/21. Course Handbooks are located within the Canvas course page.

Reasons to choose Kingston University

  • This course is accredited by the Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA). 
  • The subject is brought to life through overseas fieldwork at locations susceptible to hazards such as earthquakes and volcanoes. 
  • The course is highly practical and you'll work alongside hazard practitioners in fields such as floods and volcanoes.

Studying at the Department of Geography, Geology and the Environment

Dr Stuart Downward talks about what you can expect from studying here:

Accreditation

This course is accredited by  Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA). IEMA is the professional body for everyone working in environment and sustainability. This course entitles students to FREE student membership for the duration of the course and on successful completion you qualify for GradIEMA. Graduate membership is a launchpad for future leaders within environment and sustainability and offers a range of benefits to support you throughout your career. You can then "Fast track" to Practitioner Membership.

The degree apprenticeship route is accredited by the IEMA.

What you will study

As a pathway of the Environmental Science BSc(Hons) the Hazards and Disasters pathway focuses on the key themes of natural hazard science, disaster management and emergency planning:

Please note that this is an indicative list of modules and is not intended as a definitive list as these could change before your year of entry.

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3/4

Year 1 provides a broad understanding of earth sciences, the environment and natural hazards. You'll study the building blocks of the environmental science including geology and hydrological, atmospheric and ecological systems. You'll also study modules in Geographical Information Science (GIS) and explore a variety of research and fieldwork methods.

Core modules

Digital Earth and Spatial Analysis

30 credits

Digital Earth: Spatial Analysis introduces and develops the fundamental geographical skills of data collection, analysis and presentation and the solving of spatial problems using GIS. It concerns data types, representations of reality and key spatial analysis techniques. GIS-based skills are important employability skills for geography and environment students with many course-relevant employers requiring a working knowledge of GIS and the application of GIS to solve real world geographical and environmental challenges. Digital literacy employability skills will be introduced and developed in this module and the module will provide a baseline for those taking GG5155 Cartography, Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis at Level 5 and GG6140 GIS: Transforming Geography and Environment at Level 6.

Introduction to Physical Geography and Environmental Hazards

30 credits

This is a Level 4 module for Geography and Environmental Science students. Core lectures introduce key fundamental topics in physical geography, overviewing the various spheres of the Earth, associated processes and interaction. Themes are presented systematically as a cross-section of the Earth's physical structure: geological underpinning, Earth surface processes (introducing geomorphology, the pedosphere and hydrosphere), the atmosphere, and the biosphere. Interwoven within these topics will be lectures on associated environmental hazards, including geophysical hazards (eg. volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and tsunamis), atmospheric hazards (including hurricanes and tornadoes) and environmental and ecological hazards (including oil spills, mine contamination and wildfires). The processes behind these major natural and man-made environmental hazards will be described, with reasons provided for their occurrence and global spatial distribution. Detailed case studies will be provided for each hazard, from a variety of geographical regions, in order to build a portfolio of examples, enhancing your knowledge of the processes, impacts and means of forecasting and mitigating against the hazards becoming disasters. The module is a pre-requisite for Level 5 environmental and geographical modules: Geomorphology and Geophysical Hazards; Land Water and the Environment; Ecology and Conservation. The module introduces you to the application of geophysical knowledge and skills and potential discipline-related employment opportunities and alerts you to a range of transferable employability skills that will be developed throughout the module. These include discipline-based skills by identifying applications of geophysical knowledge to real world challenges and transferable skills developed in the learning activities and related assessments.

Understanding the Environment

30 credits

This is a Level 4 module for Environment Science students. The module will investigate basic environmental principles, introduce environmental systems and identify and understand how physical and human processes can promote change in environmental systems at a range of spatial and temporal scales. Students will investigate the impacts of environmental change, understand their significance and show how this knowledge can be applied to the management of environmental challenges. The importance of a holistic approach to problem solving in the environmental sciences will be introduced along with material on key underpinning scientific disciplines including environmental chemistry and ecology through the investigation of global habitats. Environmental sustainability will be examined and debated within a broader sustainable development setting and students will define and debate anticipated 21st Century environmental challenges and the application of Environmental Science to these challenges. A range of employability skills will be emphasised throught the module curriculum and students will be challenged to consider and articulate how their environmental knowledge and skills learning development can be applied to real world environmental problems.

Research and Fieldwork Methods

30 credits

This is a module for all Level 4 Geography and Environmental Science students. The module introduces a range of generic and discipline specific research and fieldwork methods. Students are introduced to their course learning aims and identify their learning targets from Induction to graduation and their alignment to their learning pathway. Students are tutored in a range of learning techniques (eg. critical thinking and communication skills) and are introduced to assessment for learning and the role of feedback, reflection and feedforward as an integrated part of their learning journey. Students are introduced to a range of research methods that form the basis of successful investigations in their subject areas, including research design, information acquisition, qualitative and quantitative analysis and critical interpretation.

Year 2 develops the theory and practice of disaster risk reduction. You'll enhance your knowledge of GIS, geomorphology, atmospheric science and tectonic hazards. An overseas trip will provide the opportunity to develop your fieldwork skills.

Core modules

Cartography, Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis

30 credits

Maps are tools for visualising geospatial data to communicate spatial patterns and processes and the results of geographical analysis. This module explores the principles of map design and production in a GIS environment. It introduces ground, aerial and space based surveying, exploring the underlying physical principles and geographical/technological concepts. It covers remotely sensed data capture, image processing and data modelling. The third element develops skills in spatial data analysis and modelling and to explore the application of techniques with respect to point patterns, spatially continuous data and area based data.

Design and Management of Environmental Projects

30 credits

This module is core for all Level 5 Environmental Science students and forms a bridge between Level 4 GG4090 Research and Fieldwork Methods and Level 6 GG6400 Research Project.

1)    Students design, manage and execute an environmental science or environmental hazards research project in a 'real-life' field-based setting. Students are tutored in aspects of research design: defining research questions, research philosophy and appropriate methodologies. Students learn practical aspects of research design such as logistical considerations of time and budget limitations as well as data archiving (including digital and mobile technology) and location based analysis. They will design and manage a field-based research project in a UK and/or overseas setting.

2)    A Personal Tutorial System (PTS) will run in parallel to the taught elements of the module whereby students will integrate and develop their learning from this module to the wider academic and professional/workplace context. The PTS will emphasise key employability skills that will be acquired through the production of the research projects and their relationship to employability skills in other Level 5 modules. This will assist those students wishing to take a sandwich year and prepare those students and provide a development platform for the production of an independent research proposal. On completion of this module students will have gained first- hand experience of research project design and management as a pre-cursor to their Level 6 Independent Research Project and/or work placement

3)    Students will learn how to collect, manipulate and interpret statistical environmental data and apply this learning to their project-based investigations.

Geomorphology and geophysical hazards

30 credits

This module presents a series of thematic taught sessions overviewing major geomorphological processes and landforms, sedimentary environments and geophysical hazards. The module builds upon foundations of GG4080 Introducing Physical Geography and Environmental Hazards. On completion of the module you will gain a detailed understanding of the major surface processes and their geomorphological significance and will be able to interpret a range of sedimentary environments. Module themes will reflect on likely hazards linked to geomorphological processes, including floods, coastal change (including impacts of sea-level change on coastal environments), slope stability, geological controls on geomorphology such as fault movement and associated and sediments (and sedimentary structures) created by events such as tsunamis and ash falls.

The module emphasises the mastery of geomorphological skills through experiential learning closely associated to core lecture delivery. The practical programme will aid you in evaluating key geomorphological concepts, learning and testing analytical techniques. Fieldwork programme provides an arena for applying new skills and knowledge gained and provides a learning bridge to those wishing to pursue physical geographical and/or hazards based research projects at Level 6.

Disaster Risk Reduction

30 credits

This module is a Level 5 module for Geography students and Environmental Science, Hazards and Disasters students. The module introduces the key theories and concepts in disasters studies which underpin changing approaches to Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). The relationship between evolving theories and practice are explored. The policies which shape disaster response are examined at a variety of scales from international to local. Employability skills and the transferability of acquired knowledge to the workplace environment are introduced and developed. These include the roles of key stakeholders and stakeholder engagement and the concepts and challenges involved in communicating effectively. The impacts of these influences are explored through a number of case studies which explore both developed and developing world examples of DRR in action across a variety of hazard types.dies.

Disaster Risk Reduction

30 credits

This module is a Level 5 module for Geography students and Environmental Science, Hazards and Disasters students. The module introduces the key theories and concepts in disasters studies which underpin changing approaches to Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). The relationship between evolving theories and practice are explored. The policies which shape disaster response are examined at a variety of scales from international to local. Employability skills and the transferability of acquired knowledge to the workplace environment are introduced and developed. These include the roles of key stakeholders and stakeholder engagement and the concepts and challenges involved in communicating effectively. The impacts of these influences are explored through a number of case studies which explore both developed and developing world examples of DRR in action across a variety of hazard types.dies.

Geomorphology and geophysical hazards

30 credits

This module presents a series of thematic taught sessions overviewing major geomorphological processes and landforms, sedimentary environments and geophysical hazards. The module builds upon foundations of GG4080 Introducing Physical Geography and Environmental Hazards. On completion of the module you will gain a detailed understanding of the major surface processes and their geomorphological significance and will be able to interpret a range of sedimentary environments. Module themes will reflect on likely hazards linked to geomorphological processes, including floods, coastal change (including impacts of sea-level change on coastal environments), slope stability, geological controls on geomorphology such as fault movement and associated and sediments (and sedimentary structures) created by events such as tsunamis and ash falls.

The module emphasises the mastery of geomorphological skills through experiential learning closely associated to core lecture delivery. The practical programme will aid you in evaluating key geomorphological concepts, learning and testing analytical techniques. Fieldwork programme provides an arena for applying new skills and knowledge gained and provides a learning bridge to those wishing to pursue physical geographical and/or hazards based research projects at Level 6.

The modules in Year 3 further develop your knowledge of disaster management, with an emphasis on recent case studies. You'll also research and engage with practising professionals in all areas of disaster management.

Core modules

GIS Transforming Geography and Environment

30 credits

This module has a twin focus on changes that have impacted on Geography and Environment over recent decades and how these have created opportunities for geographical and spatial investigation to address an expanding range of applications. Information technology, in particular GIS, is one of the major drivers of change and this module explores the application of GIS in a range of domains encompassing socio-demographic, economic, political, environmental, natural and anthropogenic hazard events.

The Challenge of Climate Change

30 credits

This is a core Level 6 module for all Environmental Science and Environmental Science, Disasters and Management Students. This module tackles the key issues relating to climate change in the three main subject areas of science, policy and society. It aims to provide you with an understanding of the key concepts and processes of climate change and the various ways in which societies can respond. Core factual material is provided via Canvas with keynote lectures, seminars and workshops used to explain concepts. Fieldwork sessions are designed to complement the lecture series and give further practical demonstration of policy and practice complexities.

Research Project

30 credits

The module is core to those on the geographical and environmental courses. It provides experience in the design, execution and preparation of an independent but approved programme of research. Furthermore, through the Personal Tutorial System (PTS) it encourages you to employ reflective learning techniques and to develop a variety of level-appropriate employability skills by engaging with their research project as a piece of academic research with commercial, policy or political value which requires effective dissemination and communication to a range of suitable audiences. Employability skills developments are integral to the Research Project module. The specific nature of the research project chosen allows you to target specific skills you wish to develop in your learning pathway and the PTS will work closely with you to identify and articulate these skills through the associated module assessments.

Disaster Management

30 credits

The module builds on underpinning concepts, such as vulnerability and resilience, introduced in GG5140 Disaster Risk Reduction. It takes a critical approach to understanding disaster management and its implementation. The module examines the varying ways in which societies attempt to reduce the impacts of hazards through disaster management. It provides an exploration of how the historical, geographical, social, economic and political contexts shape the creation and implementation of disaster management in both developed and developing world contexts.

The information above reflects the currently intended course structure and module details. Updates may be made on an annual basis and revised details will be published through Programme Specifications ahead of each academic year. The regulations governing this course are available on our website. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this may not be offered.

Foundation year

If you would like to study one of our science degrees at Kingston University but are not yet ready to join the first year of a BSc(Hons) course, you can include an extra foundation year within your chosen degree. Please see the science foundation year course page for details of modules.

Entry requirements

Typical offer 2020

  • 96 UCAS points from a minimum of two A-levels or equivalent Level 3 qualifications.
  • An A-level (or equivalent) in any subject is considered but we prefer one or more from Geography, Biology, Chemistry, Environmental Science, Geology or Physics. General Studies not normally accepted.

Alternatively, BTEC Extended Diploma with grades MMM or BTEC Diploma with grades DD.

Candidates are normally required to hold five GCSE subjects grades A*-C including Mathematics and English Language (or comparable numeric score under the newly reformed GCSE grading).

Entry requirements 2021

UCAS tariff points: 96 for BSc (Hons); 32 for BSc (Hons) including foundation year.

Alternative routes

We will consider a range of alternative Level 3 qualifications such as an Access Course in Applied Science or Science,  which has been passed with 96 UCAS points.

Applications from those that have undertaken a Science foundation year will also be considered. 

International

We welcome applications from International Applicants. View our standard entry requirements from your country.

All non-UK applicants must meet our English language requirements. For this course it is Academic IELTS of 6.0, with no element below 5.5.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching includes lectures, seminars and tutorials, practical classes and integrated fieldwork study. We place an emphasis is on learning through experiences and there is field and practical work at all stages, including local and overseas fieldwork.

Assessment is varied and your assignments may replicate tasks you are likely to face in the workplace including report writing, role-playing exercises, presentations and environmental hazards and disaster management project exercises.

Guided independent study

When not attending timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. This typically will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for final assignments. Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities including online resources, the library and CANVAS, the online virtual learning platform.

Academic support

Our academic support team here at Kingston University provides help in a range of areas.

Dedicated personal tutor

When you arrive, we'll introduce you to your personal tutor. This is the member of academic staff who will provide academic guidance, be a support throughout your time at Kingston and who will show you how to make the best use of all the help and resources that we offer at Kingston University.

Your workload

Type of teaching and learning

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 1
  • Scheduled teaching: 419 hours
  • Guided independent study: 826 hours
Year 2
  • Scheduled teaching: 437 hours
  • Guided independent study: 763 hours
Year 3
  • Scheduled teaching: 655 hours
  • Guided independent study: 1172 hours

How you will be assessed

Type of assessment

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 1
  • Coursework: 65%
  • Practical: 15%
  • Exams: 20%
Year 2
  • Coursework: 80%
  • Practical: 6%
  • Exams: 14%
Year 3
  • Coursework: 71%
  • Practical: 3%
  • Exams: 26%

Feedback summary

We aim to provide feedback on assessments within 20 working days.

Your timetable

Your individualised timetable is normally available to students within 48 hours of enrolment. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9am and 6pm. For undergraduate students, Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities, but there may be occasions when this is not possible. Timetables for part-time students will depend on the modules selected.

Class sizes

To give you an indication of class sizes, this course normally enrols 5 students and lecture sizes are normally 5­.  However this can vary by module and academic year.

Staff teaching on this course

The course is taught at the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing. Faculty staff have a wide range of experience across research and industry and continue to practice and research at the cutting edge of their discipline. This ensures that our courses are current and industry informed ensuring you get the most relevant and up to date education possible. Staff will use their experience and professional networks to hone your skills and shape you into the next generation of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) graduates.

Postgraduate students may run or assist in lab sessions and may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader.

Course fees and funding

2021/22 fees for this course

The tuition fee you pay depends on whether you are assessed as a 'Home' (UK), 'Islands' or 'International' student. In 2021/22 the fees for this course are:

 Fee category Amount
Home (UK students) £9,250*
International Year 1 (2021/22): £15,000
Year 2 (2022/23): £15,400
Year 3 (2023/24): £15,800

For courses with a sandwich year, the fee for the placement year can be viewed on the undergraduate fees table. The placement fee published is for the relevant academic year stated in the table. This fee is subject to annual increases but will not increase by more than the fee caps as prescribed by the Office for Students or such other replacing body.

* If your course involves a foundation year, the fee for that year for Home (UK) students will be £9,250 in 2021/22. The fees shown above apply for year 1 of the degree from 2021/22 onwards (fees may rise in line with inflation for future academic years). For full time programmes of a duration of more than one academic year, the published fee is an annual fee, payable each year, for the duration of the programme. Your annual tuition fees cover your first attempt at all of the modules necessary to complete that academic year. A re-study of any modules will incur additional charges calculated by the number of credits. Home tuition fees may be subject to annual increases but will not increase by more than the fee caps as prescribed by the Office for Students or such other replacing body. Full time taught International fees are subject to an annual increase and are published in advance for the full duration of the programme.

Eligible UK students can apply to the Government for a tuition loan, which is paid direct to the University. This has a low interest-rate which is charged from the time the first part of the loan is paid to the University until you have repaid it.

2020/21 fees for this course

The tuition fee you pay depends on whether you are assessed as a 'Home' (UK or EU), 'Islands' or 'International' student. In 2020/21 the fees for this course are:

 Fee category Amount
Home (UK and EU students) £9,250*
International Year 1 (2020/21): £14,600
Year 2 (2021/22): £15,000
Year 3 (2022/23): £15,450

For courses with a sandwich year, the fee for the placement year can be viewed on the undergraduate fees table. The placement fee published is for the relevant academic year stated in the table. This fee is subject to annual increases but will not increase by more than the fee caps as prescribed by the Office for Students or such other replacing body.

* If your course involves a foundation year, the fee for that year for home and EU students will be £9,250 in 2020/21. The fees shown above apply for year 1 of the degree from 2020/21 onwards (fees may rise in line with inflation for future academic years). For full time programmes of a duration of more than one academic year, the published fee is an annual fee, payable each year, for the duration of the programme. Your annual tuition fees cover your first attempt at all of the modules necessary to complete that academic year. A re-study of any modules will incur additional charges calculated by the number of credits. Home/EU tuition fees may be subject to annual increases but will not increase by more than the fee caps as prescribed by the Office for Students or such other replacing body. Full time taught International fees are subject to an annual increase and are published in advance for the full duration of the programme.

Eligible UK and EU students can apply to the Government for a tuition loan, which is paid direct to the University. This has a low interest-rate which is charged from the time the first part of the loan is paid to the University until you have repaid it.

Additional costs

Depending on the programme of study, there may be extra costs which are not covered by tuition fees, which students will need to consider when planning their studies.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching, assessment and operating University facilities such as the library, IT equipment and other support services. Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees. 

Where a course has additional expenses, we make every effort to highlight them. These may include optional field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering), security checks such as DBS, uniforms, specialist clothing or professional memberships.

Field trips

All compulsory field trips are paid for by the University.

Optional field trips students will be required to pay for:

  • Cornwall costing approx. £200
  • Tenerife approx. £800
  • South Africa approx. £600

Text books

Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. You may prefer to, or be required to, buy your own copy of key textbooks.

Computer equipment

There are open-access networked computers available across the University, plus laptops available to loan. You may find it useful to have your own PC, laptop or tablet which you can use around campus and in halls of residences.

Free Wi-Fi is available on each of the campuses.

Printing

In the majority of cases coursework can be submitted online. There may be instances when you will be required to submit work in a printed format. Printing and photocopying costs are not included in your tuition fees.

Travel

Travel costs are not included but we do have a free intersite bus service which links the campuses and halls of residence.

Lab equipment

For this course you will need to purchase a lab coat and safety glasses at approximately £20

Note for EU students: UK withdrawal from the European Union

The Government has recently announced that new students from the European Union and Swiss Nationals starting their course after August 2021 will no longer be eligible for a student loan in England for Undergraduate or Postgraduate studies for 2021/22 academic year. This decision only applies to new EU students starting in 2021/22. If you are an existing/continuing EU student, you will continue to be funded until you graduate or withdraw from your course.

Need to know more?

Our undergraduate fees and funding section provides information and advice on money matters.

Field trips for this course

Fieldwork is an important part of our environmental hazard and disaster management teaching. It deepens your understanding and brings the subject to life.

Year 1: Cornwall

In the second semester you go on a week long trip to Cornwall. Here you will:

  • learn and develop a variety of environmental fieldwork skills;
  • study a range of topics, such as water resources, tourism and mine waste;
  • complete work suggested by lectures and individual projects; and
  • research controversial environmental issues.

Year 2: Tenerife, Spain

During Year 2, you will visit Tenerife. You will study a range of environments to identify and examine a range of natural hazards and disaster management interventions. This will include the study of volcanic processes that have formed the islands and to look at the possible generation of a tsunami.

Year 3: Western Cape, South Africa

In Year 3, you have the option of going on a non-European field trip, currently to the Western Cape in South Africa. The field trip provides an opportunity to apply your environmental hazard and disaster management knowledge and skills in a typically unfamiliar environment with distinctive challenges. In South Africa this includes:

  • Flash floods
  • Participation in hazard management exercises including forest fire management
  • Learning in multiple environments: from the city (eg. Cape Town) to rural landscapes

South Africa field trip 2019

We also have links with international organisations. These include: 

  • The University of Malta 

  • Malta Environment and Planning Authority 

  • Malta Council for Economic and Social Development 

  • The BREEDE Skills Training Centre and Youth Activity Centre, South Africa, 

  • Naturally Knysna, South Africa 

  • Backsberg Vineyard, South Africa 

International fieldwork programmes enable students to examine human and physical issues in diverse contexts and to get perspective on the challenges that other countries face from local governmental and non-governmental organisations and from industry.

After you graduate

Graduates pursue careers in a variety of commercial, industrial and public sector organisations such as local governments, INGOs, first responders (such as the police and fire service), civil defence, insurance companies and environment consultants.

Careers and recruitment advice

The Faculty of Science, Engineering and Computing has a specialist employability team. It provides friendly and high-quality careers and recruitment guidance, including advice and sessions on job-seeking skills such as CV preparation, application forms and interview techniques. Specific advice is also available for international students about the UK job market and employers' expectations and requirements.

The team runs employer events throughout the year, including job fairs, key speakers from industry and interviews on campus. These events give you the opportunity to hear from, and network with, employers in an informal setting.

 

 

Employability preparation at Kingston University

In addition to building expertise in your own discipline, our courses will also help you to develop key transferable skills that you'll need for professional life or further study once you graduate.

As well as a range of careers and employability activities at Kingston, we also offer you the chance to apply and develop your skills in live contexts as an integral part of your course. Opportunities include:

  • placements;
  • working or studying abroad;
  • volunteering;
  • peer mentoring roles; and
  • internship opportunities within and outside the University.

In your final year, you'll get the opportunity to complete a major 'capstone' project where you can apply the knowledge and skills you have acquired to a range of real issues in different contexts. This is a great way to learn and is a valuable bridge to employment or further research at masters level.

Careers and recruitment advice

If you decide that you would like to go on to postgraduate study after your undergraduate course, we offer a 10% discount on our postgraduate course tuition fees to our alumni.

What our students say

I previously studied for a National Diploma in Music Performance at Kingston College and then went on to the Academy of Contemporary music, where I studied a Higher National Diploma in Guitar. I decided that I wanted to do something that could perhaps make a difference to people – I suppose in the same way that music changes one's emotions, I felt the knowledge and skills I developed on this course could help me change people's fortunes, making them safer and less at risk. I like how science can help do that.

John Browning – Environmental Hazards and Disaster Management BSc(Hons)

Initially I was very sceptical about going back to education as I hadn't enjoyed my A-levels, but the teaching here has been fantastic. The lecturers are superb, I can't fault any of them. Classes are clear and well-constructed and you can always get help.

The trip to Tenerife has been a highlight of the course. We had spent the previous year and a half learning everything from geology to atmospherics to understanding the environment. Tenerife was the point where we put it all into perspective and utilised what we had learnt. Going into this amazing landscape, looking around and thinking, 'I understand this' was just brilliant.

Christopher Lord – Environmental Hazards and Disaster Management BSc(Hons)

How we work with external organisations

We have good links with employers at Kingston University. This course was set up in response to the growing need for emergency planners, both in the UK and globally.

Throughout your degree we encourage you to think about how to apply your studies to potential real-life work situations. This ensures that you graduate with the skills employers need.

Guest speakers

One way we keep the course up to date is by inviting guest lecturers from the many organisations with which we have contact, including:

  • the London Ambulance Service;
  • the Metropolitan Police;
  • the Fire Service; and
  • the Environment Agency.

Many of the guest speakers discuss case studies of actual disasters, such as the Boxing Day Tsunami in 2004 and Hurricane Katrina in 2005. You will also work with hazard practitioners in fields such as floods and volcanoes.

Work placement year

How you can work in industry during your course

Placements:

  • provide work experience that is relevant to your course and future career;
  • improve your chances of graduating with a higher grade degree;
  • enhance your CV;
  • lead to a graduate job;
  • enable you to earn a year's salary whilst studying (the vast majority of placements are paid); and
  • help you to select your final-year project.

"To be successful, tomorrow's leaders will need to be far more rounded individuals than ever before. They will collaborate in pursuit of shared goals. They will guide, challenge and support...They will have an appetite for change and a hunger for continuous improvement, and they will have an ethos of learning and development..." Jeremy Darroch, Former Chief Executive, Sky.

"Doing a placement year effectively gives you one foot in the door of a future job and to stand out from the crowd... as well as enhancing my CV... and future interviews. It's a great motivator to be successful in my studies as it only serves to open even more doors and gain more skills." Placement student at Jagex Games Studios Ltd.

  • 81% of placement students and 34% of non-placement students got a first or 2.1 (Faculty of Computing, Information Systems and Mathematics, 2008).
  • 100% of placement students during 2008 recommend doing a placement (Faculty of Computing, Information Systems and Mathematics, 2008).
  • Many employers offer a graduate job to their successful placement students.

There is a lot of support available for students looking to secure a placement (eg a jobs board with placement vacancies, help with writing CVs and mock interviews). Getting a placement and passing the placement year are ultimately the student's responsibility.

For further information please contact the placements team by telephone 020 8417 2969 or email secplace@kingston.ac.uk.

Examples of placements

Placements can be with large multinational companies, international companies, local companies and small start ups; offering a diverse range of posts. Here are some examples of employers and roles:

Construction-based placement employers Construction-based placement roles 
RG Group
Multiplex
Costain
Willmott Dixon
Fluor
Assistant site manager
Assistant trades package manager
Assistant logistics manager
Health and safety officer
Construction engineer
Science-based placement employers  Science-based placement roles
Reckitt and Benckiser
GSK
Drug Control Centre
Minton Treharne and Davies Ltd
Various local and international hospitals
Bioanalytical sciences
Lab assistant
Pharmacy assistant
Sports coach
Engineering-based placement employers  Engineering-based placement roles
Airbus
BAM Nuttall
Nissan
Bosch
Wozair
Analysis of aircraft structure
Construction resources specialist
Site engineer assistant
Computing and IS-based placement employers Computing and IS-based placement roles
Disney
Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe
IBM
McKinsey
Intel
Database coordinator
Software developer
Website developer
App developer
Mathematics-based placement employersMathematics-based placement roles
Lloyds Banking Group
AXA
Allianz
PAU Education, Spain
Analyst
Investment solutions
Research analyst
Accounts assistant

Changes to courses for 2020/21 due to Covid-19

Changes detailed here are for students who will be starting the course in September 2020.

Course information (changes for 2020 entry)

Composition of the course

We do not anticipate making any changes to the composition of the course, i.e. number of modules or credits in a year, as a result of the pandemic.

In order to safeguard our students' health and safety and to minimise the risk of disruption to their studies, the University has postponed all Study Abroad programmes for outgoing students in the first teaching block of 2020/21. The University will review this decision before the second teaching block and will take into account relevant government advice at that time.

Changes can be made to courses as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area and to provide a high quality student experience. Any such changes made to the composition of the course will be highlighted to students during the induction period.

Modules

We do not anticipate making any changes to module titles and summaries or to the availability of modules as a result of the pandemic.

Changes can be made to modules as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area and to provide a high quality student experience. Any such changes made to module titles and/or availability of modules will be highlighted to students during the induction period.

Length of course

We expect to deliver the course within the planned timescales to enable successful students to progress through and graduate from the course without delay.

In exceptional circumstances the sequence of learning and teaching activities may be changed, e.g. re-sequencing those modules that can be delivered more effectively under the current restrictions with those which would be more difficult to deliver, such as practical modules and placements.

If the current pandemic situation continues into the next academic year and beyond, the University may be unable to offer suitable placements which may then impact the length of the course. In these circumstances the University will provide students with appropriate alternative options and ensure that support will be available to them so that they are able to make informed choices.

Entry requirements (changes for 2020 entry)

We have not changed entry requirements as a result of the pandemic. However, the range of accepted alternatives have increased as has the way in which we select students, which now includes virtual interviews and online portfolios.

Entry requirements for international students

We have not changed entry requirements for international students as a result of the pandemic. However, in response to the pandemic, we now accept a much broader list of English language exams for entry to the course; the level of these exams remain the same.

Teaching (changes for 2020 entry)

Changes to the way the course will be delivered

Due to the current pandemic the course's teaching and learning activities will be delivered through both online and on-campus methods (blended learning) in 2020/21. In order to provide all students with a comparable on-campus experience, the University has committed to ensuring that all courses provide at least 30% of their teaching and learning activities on-campus.

While physical distancing measures remain in place, you will receive your learning and teaching via a blend of on-campus and on-line activities. Should your circumstances prevent your attendance at on-campus sessions, you will still be able to engage with your course in a way that allows you to progress. Where this is not possible, support will be available to consider what options are open to you.

Changes to teaching in the event of a further lockdown or adjustments in government advice

The University will continue to closely monitor government announcements and advice in relation to the current pandemic and, where required, will take any necessary action in order to comply with such advice.

In the event that a further lockdown is enforced the University will aim to deliver the course fully online. This may require some additional changes being made to planned teaching and learning activities, including assessments. The majority of our courses are prepared to be delivered fully online if the situation requires it. Where the quality of the student experience may be compromised significantly, or the course is unable to be delivered fully online, the University may need to suspend the delivery of that course until a time that it can be delivered appropriately. Students will be supported in these situations to ensure they are able to make the right choices for their particular circumstances.

In the event that the current social distancing restrictions are fully lifted and the University is able to resume normal delivery of teaching and learning activities, courses will assess whether it is in the students' interest to resume normal delivery. In some cases it may be better to continue and complete modules under the planned blended delivery mode.

Changes to the overall breakdown of scheduled teaching hours, placements and guided independent study hours for Year 1

Changes to the overall breakdown of scheduled teaching hours, placements and guided independent study hours will not be made as a result of the pandemic. However, it is possible that some adjustments might be made at module level, e.g. a few more scheduled activities, in order to help ensure student engagement with blended learning.

Any changes made to the overall breakdown of scheduled teaching hours, placements and guided independent study hours for year 1 of the course will be highlighted to students during the induction period.

'Scheduled teaching' includes teaching that is online either live or recorded / on demand.

Timetable

Your individualised timetable for teaching block 1 (i.e. up to December 2020) should be available by the end of August. Timetables for teaching block 2 (i.e. from January 2021) will not be available until the autumn. Whilst we make every effort to ensure timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week between 9am and 9pm. To accommodate smaller group sizes and social distancing, we will need to maximise the time available for teaching. This means, we may have to use Wednesday afternoons and enrichment week for additional teaching slots. Timetables for part-time students will depend on the modules selected.

Class sizes

On-campus teaching may involve smaller class sizes in line with social distance requirements.

Where online teaching takes places, class sizes will remain as normal to ensure engagement of a diverse cohort of students and apprentices.

Assessment (changes for 2020 entry)

Changes can be made to modules, including how they are assessed, as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our modules up to date with current developments in that subject area. Due to the current restrictions in place, i.e. social distancing, it is anticipated that many formal on-campus examinations, including practical examinations, will be replaced with alternative assessments which can be completed online. These changes will be considered and approved through the University's processes to ensure that student assessments will be able to demonstrate they have achieved the expected learning outcomes. The approval process will also assess whether the change impacts the status of any professional body accreditation the course benefits from.

Any changes to the overall methods of assessment for Year 1 of the course will be highlighted to students during the induction period.

Staff (changes for 2020 entry)

No changes are expected to the general level of experience or status of staff involved in delivering the course.

As a result of the social distancing restrictions in place, on-campus teaching activities may need to be split into smaller groups which may require the support of teaching assistants and student mentors, who will be managed by experienced staff.

Fees, funding and additional costs (changes for 2020 entry)

Tuition fees

There will be no changes to published tuition fees for 2020/21.

Additional costs (e.g. field trips, materials, equipment, etc.)

As a result of the blended delivery of courses in 2020/21, where a significant proportion of the teaching will be done online, students will need a personal laptop or computer and access to the internet to participate in online teaching and learning activities. Students who are able to travel will have access to computers on campus, however, it should be noted that access to on-campus facilities will be restricted due to social distancing requirements.

The University is considering how best to provide support to students who do not have access to suitable hardware and software requirements and access to the internet. Identifying students who require this type of support is an important milestone for the University in our journey to ensure equity of access while we continue to deliver our blended approach. Information about the support that will be available will be provided to students during the induction period.

Funding

There will be no changes to any existing University funding arrangements for 2020/21. Currently there are no indications from the UK government that there will be any changes to government funding arrangements.

Fees and funding for international students

There will be no changes to published tuition fees or funding arrangements specifically relating to international students for 2020/21.

Work placements and field trips (changes for 2020 entry)

Placements (including work and clinical placements) and field trips included as part of the course will go ahead as planned. However, to ensure students are able to gain maximum value from these activities, it may be necessary to reschedule them to later in the year, or to a different year when current restrictions have been lifted. We acknowledge that this year it may be more difficult for students to secure appropriate placements. In those situations, students will be guided and supported through the various options that will be available to them, including switching courses or interrupting their studies until a time when they can complete their placement.

Any proposed changes to placements or field trips would go through the University's agreed processes where the impact of the change will be carefully considered. Students will be advised of any changes that may become necessary and appropriate support will be available to guide them through the various options that may be available to them.

In the interest of the health and wellbeing of our students, the University will ensure that appropriate risk assessments are made before students are sent on a placement.

Courses which require placements or field trips to be completed in order to pass relevant modules will have contingency plans in place in the event that a placement or field trip cannot be completed due to another lockdown or more stringent social distancing measures.

Voluntary placements or field trips may be rescheduled, or, as a last resort, cancelled if it becomes difficult to deliver them and doing so is in the interest of the health and safety of our staff and students.

For Teaching Block 1 (September to December) Government guidelines will dictate the extent and location of fieldwork. It is expected that all local (London-based) field excursions will proceed as planned; however, our interactions with people and places may be limited on the basis of guidance. Where it is not possible to visit in person, virtual platforms will be used to engage with real people, organisations and places to ensure that learning outcomes are met and students and apprentices still get real world learning.

Award, qualification and accreditation (changes for 2020 entry)

Qualification

No changes will be made to the qualification awarded, e.g. BSc (Hons), as a result of the pandemic.

Changes can be made to courses, including the qualification awarded (although very rare), as part of normal enhancement processes in order to keep our courses up to date with current developments in that subject area. Any changes made to the qualification awarded for the course will be highlighted to students during the induction period.

Accreditation

During the pandemic, the University has been working closely with all its associated professional bodies to establish where flexibility/changes can be applied without undermining their professional standards. This will ensure that any changes made to courses which have professional, statutory or regulatory body (PSRB) accreditation do not negatively impact the accreditation status.

In the very exceptional circumstance that professional bodies do not agree with changes proposed, it may be necessary to defer relevant modules until those modules can be delivered as required. Students will be informed of this during the induction period and appropriately supported so that they can consider all options available to them.

Additional (changes for 2020 entry)

International students

International students should maintain awareness of the UK government's and their home country's government advice on possible travel restrictions. The University will closely monitor advice and guidance published by the UK government and assess its impact on our international students. Appropriate advice and guidance will be provided as and when required.

Students who are unable to attend on-campus learning and teaching activities

The University will ensure students who are unable to attend on-campus learning and teaching activities are able to effectively engage with their studies remotely. For certain courses an inability to attend on-campus learning and teaching activities may not be in the students best interest, as it may impede their chances of succeeding in the course or lead to them receiving a poor learning experience. In such cases students will be advised and guided through the various options available to them, such as deferring their studies until they can engage fully with the course.

Key information set

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