BSc (Hons) in Environmental Science


Program Description


If you want a career tackling the world's most pressing environmental challenges this is the course for you.

Today’s environmental scientists are challenged to find solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems, such as climate change, pollution, loss of biodiversity and the sustainable provision of energy, food, and clean water.

Stirling is a hub for conservation and environmental organisations. It's a superb place to study Environmental Science. We were one of the first UK universities to introduce an Environmental Science degree and our course is accredited by the Institute of Environmental Sciences.

You’ll gain a scientific grounding and relevant, employable and in-demand skills. Specialist skills modules are included in each semester of our course, and regular careers sessions are embedded into core teaching. Field training is a fundamental element that includes field courses in Scotland, Iceland and Spain.

At Stirling, we’re passionate about Environmental Science and offering you innovative, interdisciplinary and research-led teaching that’ll inspire you to be the difference, and protect our society and the planet.

"The degree is taught with the perfect balance of theory and practical application. The wide range of modules allowed me to focus on the areas which interested me the most and, as the staff members were all experts in their field, I was provided with high-quality teaching."

Raeannon Sinclair, BSc Hons Environmental Science, 2012-2016

Top reasons to study with us

#1 Our blend of scientific knowledge, fieldwork and technical training means our graduates are highly employable.

#2 Stirling's environmental hub provides a network of learning and opportunities for our students.

#3 We offer field courses at local and overseas locations, for example at the University of Guelph in Canada.

Professional accreditation

This course is accredited by the Institution of Environmental Sciences and the Committee of Heads of Environmental Sciences. Accreditation demonstrates that the course meets the QAA benchmark statement for earth sciences, environmental sciences and environmental studies. It also signals to potential employers that the teaching, learning and research is aligned to high quality professional development.

Benefits of accreditation for our students include:

  • Free student membership of the Institution of Environmental Sciences.
  • First steps on an environmental career path that could take them to Chartered Status.
  • Exclusive access to the members’ area on the IES website, with news about jobs and events.
  • Electronic copies of Environmental Scientist journal.
  • Free or reduced entry to IES events.

Prizes or awards

Altajir Scholarships (£500) are awarded to the highest performing students in year 3 of the BSc/MSci programme. Research-based learning prizes are awarded for the best dissertation in 4th year.

Course details

The environmental systems on which our society depends are complex and fragile. To understand these systems, environmental scientists need to take an interdisciplinary approach that combines knowledge of the physical, chemical and biological processes that shape our natural environment.

This course will equip you with the analytical, field and laboratory skills to understand the complex interactions between people and the environment. Research-led teaching ensures you are up-to-date with the latest knowledge.

Semesters 1-4 will explore the science behind the global physical, chemical and biological processes that shape our natural environment. We’ll also provide training in laboratory and field skills through a series of core and optional modules. This includes a residential field trip to Aviemore or the Lake District.

Semesters 5-8 will provide specialist training in core modules, such as: Environmental Policy and Management; Geographical Information Systems; and Methods and Applications in Environmental Science.

Many students work closely with academics throughout their time and benefit from actively participating in research programmes.

Our alumni contribute to our teaching, as invited speakers and discussion partners. The Faculty also offers a competitive summer bursary programme to provide students with valuable work and research experience.


We've been awarded five-star excellence for our teaching by the QS World University Rankings 2017/18. Our research-led teaching is at the core of your learning as our staff are world-leaders in Environmental Science research. Our teaching methods include lectures, field and laboratory practical exercises, seminars, and individual and group projects.


Fieldwork is integrated into the course. Stirling provides an ideal location for studying the environment – the campus has a loch and woodlands set against the backdrop of the Ochil Hills. There is also easy access to landscapes as diverse as the Scottish Highlands, the Forth Estuary and land degraded through past industrial activities.

A residential field class is held in Year 2. We also offer a choice of optional field trips to southern Spain or Iceland in Year 3, to study unfamiliar environments, develop an understanding of how these landscapes have evolved and the environmental management issues they present.


We use a wide variety of methods to assess your skills broadly. Modules are assessed by a combination of coursework and examinations that include written assignments such as essays and reports, field sketches, presentations, group and individual projects.

Classroom hours

Classroom hours vary depending on the modules being studied. Typically you can expect 9 hrs of lectures per week plus between 3 and 9 hrs of practicals.

Study abroad

Environmental Science has a well-established exchange programme with the University of Guelph in Canada. There are also Erasmus agreements in place for the University of Gothenburg (Sweden), the University of Tübingen (Germany) and the University of Wageningen (The Netherlands).


Dr Christian Schröder

+44 (0) 1786 467754

Fees - 2018/2019

  • Overseas students (non-EU) £ 14,460.00
  • Scottish and EU students £ 1,820.00
  • Students from the rest of the UK £9,250
Last updated Nov 2018

About the School

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society.

At the University of Stirling, being the difference is in our DNA – providing education with a purpose and carrying out research that helps to shape society. Read less