Environmental Geography with Studies in the USA
School of Science, Engineering and Environment
In a nutshell
Now is the time for environmental action. The devastating impact of climate change, highlighted by Great Thunberg and Sir David Attenborough, reveal the damage societies can knowingly and unknowingly make on our precious natural ecosystems. Gain the skills, knowledge and international insight to see how you can make a difference by studying our exclusive BSc (Hons) Environmental Geography with Studies in the USA degree.
Unique learning experience
The modern geographer needs a different type of skill set for emerging environment-based roles - so we've built a course to help you prepare. On this exclusive degree course, we've combined the holistic investigative approach of a geographer with the applied skills of an environmental manager. This hybrid curriculum not only helps you to build core geographical investigation skills, you will also acquire the foresight to respond and mitigate climatic and environmental changes.
Take your studies stateside
At the heart of this course is the year you will spend with Toledo University in Ohio, USA - our exchange partner for over 30 years! You will spend the second year of your studies based an hour from Detroit in the friendly city of Toledo. Alongside gathering new friends and a lifetime of memories, you'll be inspired by the Geography and Planning department as you roam the physical and human landscapes of Ohio and surrounding areas.
- Become a next-generation geographer as you build a hybrid skill set grounded in geography, geology and environmental management
- Acquire knowledge from internationally recognised experts working with industry on live environmental projects
- Experience international study by spending a year with our partner University of Toledo in the USA
This is for you if...
You're looking for a course that matches your passion for travel and learning more about the world around you
You're looking for a future-focused course that can equip you with the knowledge and skills to help tackle environmental issues
You like the idea of learning in smaller classes, with more direct access to expert academics and industry partners
All about the course
Become a next-generation geographer with our BSc (Hons) Environmental Geography with Studies in the USA. Delivered over three years of study, including a year in the USA, this exclusive course will help you to advance your geography and environmental management knowledge and skills.
- During your first year, you will follow modules designed to increase your subject knowledge and prepare for the next level. You will look at the effects of climate change, earth surface processes, fluvial processes, food security, sustainability and environmental management. You'll also build your confidence by developing applied and practical skills through a UK-based residential field course.
- There is a change of scenery in your second year as you take your studies stateside. You'll join fellow geographers studying at the University of Toledo in the USA. Here, you'll explore conservation, environmental planning and industrial geography, while developing advanced mapping skills using Geographical Information Systems and quantitative methods.
- Returning to Salford for your final year, you'll build further knowledge about mitigating climate change and focus your studies with options that include environmental modelling, remote sensing, corporate environmental management, environmental decision-making and sustainable cities. You'll complete your studies with a dissertation (independent research project) focusing on your chosen area of the climate and environmental change.
The Salford Experience
Fieldwork is a key element of this course and trips are aligned with the specialist modules to develop applied skills and gain practical experience.
Small group teaching is another key course benefit, and there are strong links between course content and University research projects.
The module develops your academic skills and helps you develop your personal and professional skills for study and for work. You will work on a range of geographical/environmental management problems linked to the core first year modules. Academic Tutorials module comprise lecture\workshop sessions and a weekly one hour tutorial with a member of academic staff in groups of between six and eight. The tutorials involve discussion, debate, and problem-solving, and provide you with a regular forum for monitoring your progress through your first year.
Sustainability and Environment
You will examine sustainability at local, national and global scales and explore a range of case studies. Sustainability is a concept that cuts across disciplines and provides a framework for managing environmental issues. Project work will allow you apply your knowledge of the principles of sustainable development to assess and classify real-world problems and suggest solutions.
Earth Surface Processes
An introduction to the physical processes operating across the geosphere and biosphere to provide a solid basis to understand their influence on the landscape and ecosystems. The module looks at the inter-relationships between both environmental and ecological processes with a focus on the impact on human activity. Case studies explore key concepts such as climate change, geohazards and biodiversity.
People, Place and Space
This module examines the role of people in shaping the human environment and focuses on key concepts such as place, power, scale and networks. You will learn about how the shape and form of cities is influenced by social and political issues, and how new technologies are changing the nature of human interactions in cities, states and across the world.
Environmental resources include food, energy and water. Spatial and temporal variation in the availability of these resources is arguably the most important issue for society in the twenty first century. This module introduces energy, water, minerals, and food resources as fundamental topics in environmental resources management and examines current problems related to climate change, food security, water availability and pollution. You will explore these themes through a combination of case study work, site visits, and field and laboratory work.
Applied Skills and Field Course
The Applied skills and fieldwork module provides lectures and associated practical activities (in trimester 1) to identify and source data, describe, and utilise environmental statistics to develop writing and analytical skills associated with spatial and temporal variations in real world data.
In Trimester 2 lectures investigate the role of qualitative research methods and build background detail before the residential field course takes place. Post field course sessions provide opportunities for feedback, questions and guidance before the final assessment. This module introduces water, glaciers, climate change and a mixed methods approach to both desk and field based activities. You will explore these themes through a combination of lectures, practical computer lab sessions and field work.
University of Toledo
In year 2 at the University of Toledo, you will study a range of modules similar to those offered in year 2 of the degree at Salford. You will be supported by a tutor based in Salford whom you will have had as your first year tutor. You will also be supported by a local tutor in Toledo.
Dissertation (40 credits)
You will undertake independent research guided by the literature relevant to your chosen field of study, to deploy techniques of analysis and enquiry within the discipline. Provided by the practical skills you will be supported by an academic supervisor to design and execute a dissertation project with an understanding of the roles of ethics and risk assessment.
Mitigating Climate Change
You will develop a detailed understanding of the scientific principles underlying how changing climate has an effect on the natural world, urban environments and society. Through this knowledge you will be able to appreciate the implications of climate change on biodiversity, ecosystems and society, and identify what adaptions can be made to mitigate climate change.
You will then be able to choose several options from:
Corporate Environmental Management
Corporations and organisations are continuously having to make choices about their products and services which have significant environmental implications. Corporate environmental managers are required to support and ensure organisations and businesses minimise their environmental impact and actively work towards a more global sustainable future. This module looks at the details and gives practical work-based experience for those wishing to explore a career in environmental management.
Development and Global Challenges
In the first part of the module, we will critically engage with the evolution of development theories and approaches, and their relationship with wider global phenomena such as colonialism and globalization. In the second part, we will understand the concept of Sustainable Development and investigate a range of global challenges such as food security, poverty, inequality, migration, energy security and climate change. The module will draw upon a range of diverse case studies from the global south and the global north and will allow students to focus more in depth in the study of one of the indicated global challenges.
Environmental Remote Sensing
This module will explore the principles and applications of remotely sensed data with an emphasis on terrestrial applications and optical remote sensing systems. You will learn about the use of satellite and aircraft sensor data to solve environmental problems. You will carry out a real-world, group-based, problem-driven project for a client using remotely sensed imagery.
Modelling Environmental Systems
This module will give you an introduction in the role and implementation of models to solve environmental problems. Environmental modelling is an important tool across policy and decision making in fields such as conservation, wildlife management, biodiversity and climate change. The module consists of a combination of lectures and computer practicals where you will get hands on experience of different types of models and how they are used to inform environmental decision making. The module is focused on the use of models rather than on mathematical or technical aspects of model development, and so will benefit anyone interested in the rapidly increasing role of models in environmental policy.
Environment and Wellbeing
This module explores the relationships between human health and environment and the epidemiology and geographical distribution of disease. You will assess the availability and accessibility of health services and their influence on well-being in communities and explore the principles and techniques for health promotion. The module is set in the context of the impacts that environmental factors (including socio-economic factors) have on health and wellbeing.
River Restoration and Management
You will learn about the relationships between fluvial processes, and river restoration and management strategies. Underpinning theory on river hydromorphology, fluvial geomorphology, and sediment processes provides a sound basis for evaluating the success of different river engineering strategies. Field work in UK rivers provides practical experience of the impacts of river management, and an appreciation of the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches.
Overall, Sustainable Cities is a broad module covering a wide variety of topics, allowing you to focus on elements relevant to your specific field of study. This module will engage with a host of ideas and concepts, from urban agriculture, which involves farming in cities, to methods for greening cities and the role of key actors in managing these spaces. Semester two focuses on the rise of megacities, with a specific focus on the social and environmental issues present in such complex environments; it builds on the themes from semester one and enables you to focus on a topic which is of interest to you.
Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.
What will I be doing?
Teaching is through a combination of methods. These include:
- Practical classes
- Computer based learning
- Project work
Assessments will be based on a combination of examinations and continuous assessment. This will include:
- Field reports
- Reflective diaries
- Problem-solving exercises
- Data analysis
- Research projects
Assessments will involve a mixture of group and individual work.
School of Science, Engineering and Environment
Rising to the challenge of a changing world, our degree courses are designed to shape the next generation of urbanists, scientists, engineers and industry leaders.
Driven by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the knowledge and skills to become unstoppable in your career.
You will experience a modern learning environment, enriched with accessible lecture theatres and AV-equipped classrooms, computing suites and multimedia libraries, with access to industry journals, databases, and simulation software.
As an environmental geography student, you will have access to our state-of-the-art, integrated teaching laboratory known as the Bodmer Lab. The Bodmer Lab is a specialist, purpose-built facility and ensures our students benefit from the latest technologies to support their learning and remain on the cutting edge of innovation and discovery.
UNIVERSITY OF TOLEDO
At the heart of this course is a year overseas with our partner institution the University of Toledo in Ohio (USA), based an hour from Detroit.
Spend your second year building knowledge, roaming new landscapes, gaining an international perspective - and enjoying the USA study experience.
What about after uni?
There is growing demand for professionals with environment-focused skills. A wide range of organisations need skilled professional to help them to comply with legislation and conform to standards. Many environment-focused not-for-profit organisations are also increasing the range of roles to help tackle the impact of climate change.
Environmental consultancies, local authorities, utility companies (such as water, electricity and gas), and organisations within the voluntary sector are all concerned with the protection of the environment. Such organisations employ professionals to set up and manage their environmental management systems in order to comply with legislation and to conform to national and international standards.
Salford geography graduates have progressed to work in environmental consultancies, utility companies, transport logistics, housing organisations, and have pursued careers in primary and secondary teaching. Others have used the degree as a platform to study geography and environment-focused PhD research degrees.
You might find you want to learn more about the environment through further study. Building on our subject expertise, we offer a range of focused postgraduate courses where you can gain specialist knowledge. Salford graduates and alumni also receive a generous fees discount.
Building on the University's strong connections to industry, the geography and environment department has developed unique links that benefit our students. Examples include:
- Environmental consultancies, including Atkins, WSP and AECOM
- Government bodies, such as The Environment Agency, DEFRA and local authorities
- Charities, such as Northern Roots, the largest urban farm and eco-park in the country
- In-house physical and environmental consultancies based within the University's Centre for Applied Archaeology
- Prominent built environment organisations, such as Peel Land & Property
What you need to know
We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. You will be interested in the broad fields of geography and environmental management, with passion for sustainability, climate change and related areas. You will be adventurous and up for travel, embracing the opportunity to spend a year in the USA.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS
All of our courses are taught and assessed in English. If English is not your first language, you must meet our minimum English language entry requirements. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this, and we also accept a range of equivalent qualifications.
Read more about our English language requirements, including information about pathways that can help you gain entry on to our degree courses.
English language and mathematics at grade C or 4 or above
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below
UCAS tariff points
112 UCAS points - Geography preferred but not essential. General Studies is accepted in combination with other A level subjects.
112 UCAS points - Geography preferred but not essential. General Studies is accepted in combination with other A level subjects.
BTEC National Diploma
BTEC Higher National Diploma
Possible entry to year three
Access to HE
112 UCAS points from QAA approved Access to HE Diploma
112 UCAS points - Grade C Maths and English required. If taking GCSEs in English Language and Mathematics to be awarded in 2017 and beyond, in England, a grade 4 will be required.
Irish Leaving Certificate
112 UCAS points from Higher Level
Pass in Diploma of at least 60% including at least one science subject
Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)
We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.
There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home||2021/22||£9,250per year|
|Full-time home||2022/23||£9,250per year|
For the second year travel and healthcare in the USA are additional costs. Guidance and options will be presented to you by the University.
All other field trips are funded by the school but you may need to consider additional costs such as food and spending money.
International field trips that are part of core modules are also funded by the school but you will need to pay towards international field trips that are part of optional modules (although these are subsidised by the school) and you will be made aware of these costs before selecting the module.
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
Students on this course have previously benefited from a scholarship to support their study and living costs. Visit the scholarships page for more information about available scholarships.
All Set? Let's Apply?
Course ID F899
This course begins in September 2021