Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Environmental Geography with Studies in the USA

School of Science, Engineering and Environment




Three year

Next enrolment

September 2024


In a nutshell

Now is the time for environmental action. The devastating impact of climate change, highlighted by Greta Thunberg and Sir David Attenborough, reveals 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.

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.

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.

Start your study journey 

Register for our next Open Day to learn more about studying environmental geography, explore our facilities and meet the course team 

You will:

  • 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

Course details

All about the course

Environment students

Course Delivery

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. 

Throughout the course you will look at the effects of climate change, earth surface processes, fluvial processes, food security, sustainability and environmental management, all while you develop your applied and practical skills through fieldwork. 

Learn more about the course modules in the section below. 

Geography and environmental management students

Learning Experience

A unique aspect of this course is the 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.

Fieldwork is also key element of this course, and trips are aligned with the specialist modules to develop applied skills and gain practical experience. Residential field trips take place in the UK and the European Alps. Typical day trip destinations include the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales, and cities such as Sheffield and Liverpool.

Year one

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.

Environmental Resources

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.

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.

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.

Academic Tutorial

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.

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. 

Year two

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.    

Year three

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.

Global Rivers in a Changing Climate

This module will explore in detail the concepts and theories that underpin fluvial and glacial systems including hill slope processes, fluvial network development and glacial systems. You will explore the stability and characteristics of fluvial systems in UK-based fieldwork, and undertake detailed site and desk-based methodological approaches to build your understanding of natural dynamic systems and managed river environments. 

Choose one module from the following: 

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.

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. 

Plus one module from:

Environmental Decision Making Systems

This module examines the role of decision-making in the management of natural resources and ecosystem services. You will investigate the role of environmental modelling in supporting environmental decision-making and assess the effectiveness of decision-making tools including Environmental Impact Assessment, hazard and risk analysis, and life-cycle analysis.

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.

Sustainable Cities

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:

  • Lectures
  • Fieldwork
  • Tutorials
  • Practical classes
  • Computer based learning
  • Assignments
  • Project work


Assessments will be based on a combination of examinations and continuous assessment. This will include:

  • Field reports
  • Reflective diaries
  • Essays
  • Problem-solving exercises
  • Data analysis
  • Seminars
  • 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, consultants and leaders. 

Driven by industry, and delivered by supportive programme teams, you can develop the knowledge and skills to become unstoppable in your career.


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.



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.

Industry collaboration and research

When you start this degree with Salford, you are also joining a community making a difference in industry, our local region and in our wider society.

Many of our academics and technicians who support your course are also part of a collective delivering collaborative, interdisciplinary, high-impact work in a range of local and global environmental issues and challenges.

Read on and discover how you are part of something bigger.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

Sustainability professionals


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. 

MSc Environmental Assessment and Management

MSc Health and Global Environment

MSc Safety, Health and Environment

MSc Sustainability

A taste of what you could become

an Environmental Manager

an Environmental Education Officer

an Environmental Consultant

a Planning surveyor

a Nature Conservation Officer

and more...

Career Links

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 study 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 too, embracing the opportunity to spend a year studying in the USA.


If you are an international student and not from a majority English speaking country, you will need an IELTS score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5. We also accept a range of other English language qualifications. If you do not have the English language requirements, you could take the Pre-Sessional English course to gain entry onto this degree.

Standard entry requirements


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

104 -112 UCAS points - Geography preferred but not essential. General Studies is accepted in combination with other A level subjects.

A level

104 -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

Foundation Degree

Possible entry

Access to HE

104 -112 UCAS points from QAA approved Access to HE Diploma

Scottish Highers

104 -112 UCAS points from Higher Level, Geography preferred but not essential.

Irish Leaving Certificate

104 -112 UCAS points from Higher Level, Geography preferred but not essential.

European Baccalaureate

Pass in Diploma of at least 60% including at least one science subject

International Baccalaureate

30 points

Alternative entry requirements

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.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2024/25 £9,250.00per year

Additional costs

You should consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Year in the USA 

The major additional costs (as of June 2023) for the year in Toledo are as follows:

  • Flights – in recent years the cost for a return flight has been approximately £1,200 - £1,500.
  • Visa – currently $340; in addition all applicants must attend a visa interview in London, so will need to cover the travel costs incurred.
  • Health insurance – this will vary from one individual to another, but it will cost approx. $1,500 if obtained in the USA. There are also options to purchase a plan from the UK prior to departure.
  • Living costs - approximately $10,000 for 9 months.
  • Students pay only a reduced tuition fee to Salford while undertaking their studies in the USA and all tuition fees to the University of Toledo are waived. However students will have to pay approximately $200 on arrival to cover various services.

Most students are able to claim back a reasonable proportion of the above costs from Student Finance England as a grant: “You must pay the first £303 of your travel costs - and your travel grant will be reduced by £1 for each £8.73 of household income over £39,796.” See https://www.gov.uk/travel-grants-students-england/what-youll-get for more information. 

All registered Salford students are eligible to apply for funding under the Turing scheme, which is a UK government programme providing funding for International Opportunities. For more information on the Turing Scheme, please contact Salford-IOT@salford.ac.uk.

Field Trips

All 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. 

Apply now

All Set? Let's Apply?

Enrolment dates

September 2024

September 2025

UCAS information

Course ID F812

Institution S03