SOEE1014 Introduction to Environmental Science

Reading List
  • Taught: Semester 1 View timetable
  • Credits: 10
  • Class Size: 60
  • Module Manager: Dr Yim Ling Siu
  • Email:
  • This Module is approved as a Discovery Module
  • This module is mutually exclusive with:
    • SOEE1024 Introduction to Environmental Science (Semester 2)
    • SOEE1460 Environmental Science for Environmental Management

Discovery module overview

Module Summary

Module Summary

This module runs in Semester 1. It is a web based interdisciplinary module, specifically designed to provide students with a comprehensive background in Environmental Science. It is tailored to meet the need of the students who have either no prior knowledge of or very limited experience on Environmental Science in their previous studies. The aims is to provide the students with the fundamental concepts, theories and knowledge to aid better understanding of the environment and the Earth we all live in.
In this module, students study the different physical and biological processes which generate the Earth's environment and which support life as we know it. The module is taught through a purpose built website with one compulsory introduction session which is scheduled in the first teaching week of the semester and a compulsory progress meeting which is scheduled in the 7th week of the semester (see the online module timetable for details – date, time & location). Student attendance of this compulsory introduction session will be monitored. The rest is self-study working through the course materials and completing the online test.
This module requires self-discipline and skills in time management. Support is provided through emails or arranged meetings for any problems or inquiries. Just-in-time guidance is also provided to give further support to students (e.g. announcements, deadlines, progression checks, etc.) Student's comments have included: - It was a fantastic module, not too difficult but not easy either, it helped to reinforce the information I was learning in my other modules and taught me new things that helped expand and understand better my knowledge of what our planet is and how everything in it fits together. The learning resources were brilliant, enviroweb is a fantastic way to learn, it's easily accessible, it can be scheduled into your timetable in your own way and it was a joy to use - I have learnt more from this module than any other during my first year - A great deal of information is packed into the diagrams which provides a good foundation for many other modules - It helps being able to follow the course at your own pace and not being restricted to a timetable - Really interesting subject matter.
Demonstration program is available at:
(Please use Internet Explorer (IE) as the web browser for viewing.)


On completion of this module, students will have a broad-based understanding of the (typically complex) nature of environmental science issues. They will be in a position to recognise threats to environmental sustainability.
They will have developed the skills necessary for independent, self-managed learning, and will have developed an adaptable and flexible approach to study and work.


  • 1. Our Environment: An exploration of the evolution of the Earth's environment and of the progressive exploitation of environmental resources by humankind
  • 2. Atmosphere: An introduction to its structure, composition, energy and circulation
  • 3. Hydrosphere: An appreciation of the world's water environment
  • 4. Earth: An understanding of the world's geological structure and composition
  • 5. Biosphere: An introduction to the rich diversity of life on Earth: its composition, evolution and interrelationships.

Skills Outcomes

The module places considerable emphasis on:

  • - developing the skills necessary for self-managed and lifelong learning (e.g. working independently, time management and organisation skills);
  • - developing an adaptable and flexible approach to study and work.

The module places moderate emphasis on:

  • - analysing, synthesising and summarising information critically, including prior research
  • - receiving and responding to a variety of information sources (e.g. textual numerical, verbal, graphical)

The module places some emphasis on:

  • - using the Internet critically as a means of communication and a source of information.

Assessment and teaching

Assessment and teaching


Assesment type Notes % of formal assesment
In-course Assessment 5x Computer-based MCQ tests 0
Total percentages (Assessment Coursework) 0


Exam type Exam duration % of formal assessment
Standard exam (closed essays, MCQs etc) 1 hr 0 mins 100
Total Percentage (Assesment Exams) 100

Private Study

88 hours:
- 4 hours per week engagement with purpose-built website covering each of the units listed in the syllabus
- 2 hours per week related reading and consolidation
- 5 hours MCQ tests
- 17 hours revision.

Progress Monitoring

  • - Self-administered MCQ tests on each of the units, with diagnostic feedback
  • - There is just-in-time guidance

Teaching methods

Delivery type Number Length hours Student hours
Computer Class 8 1 8
Induction Session 1 2 2
Meetings 1 2 2
Private Study Hours 88
Total Contact Hours 12
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits) 100

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