SOEE2670 Environmental Impact Assessment

Reading List
  • Taught: Semester 2 View timetable
  • Credits: 10
  • Class Size: 80
  • Module Manager: Dr Yim Ling Siu
  • Email:
  • This Module is approved as a Discovery Module
  • This module replaces SOEE2121 Environmental Planning, Policy & Decision Making: Assessment Tools & Techniques

Discovery module overview

Module Summary

Module Summary

This module comprises lectures, in-class activities and student group work, designed to provide a through grounding in the content of and the methods for conducting an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). An introduction to the legislation framework and reasons for conducting EIAs will be given, leading to the discussion of the essential elements required in the EIA process. Lectures will give summaries of the approaches and methods drawn from a variety of disciplines to cover the scope and implementation of an EIA, with a focus on the production of Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Techniques for reviewing project-level EIAs will be outlined, and these methods will be used by students to provide their student group work for use in the module assessment. The difference between EIA and Strategic Environment Assessment (SEA) will be portrayed. Implications of the current practices in EIA and its future directions will be discussed.


The module objectives are to provide a broad understanding of the need for environmental assessment in any development projects and plans in our societies and offer a general knowledge of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) as a planning tool to evaluate the environmental (and social) impacts the projects and plans may have on the Environment (and community/society).


  • 1. Introduction to the module
  • 2. History and legislative background of environmental planning and Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA)
  • 3. The essential elements of the EIA process, in particular Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
  • 4. Evaluation of the current EIA process
  • 4. EIS vs Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)
  • 5. Implications of EIA and its future directions

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this module, the students should be able to:
• understand the legislative background of EIA, in particular the format and role of EIA within England planning process
• identify the essential elements of EIA process
• gain the awareness of multi-disciplinary nature of EIA and the various methods of contribution to the production of Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) (which is submitted to the planning authority for the approval of the proposed project plan)
• understand the context and uses of EIAs and make realistic judgments on their relative value
• conduct a critical review of project-level EIAs (and EISs)
• understand the implications of the potential evolution of EIAs into (more) sustainable development assessments such as Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)

Skills Outcomes

  • - To gain a broad understanding of the legislative background of environmental assessment in any proposed development projects and plans;
  • - To gain the knowledge of the role and key elements of Environmental Impact Assessment;
  • - To gain confidence in providing a critical evaluation on EIAs (and Environmental Impact Statements);
  • - To gain knowledge of the difference between EIA and Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)
  • - To provoke the awareness of the implications of EIA and its future directions

Assessment and teaching

Assessment and teaching


Assesment type Notes % of formal assesment
Group Project Group Report (1,200 words) 30
Fieldwork Student group field course logbook 0
Total percentages (Assessment Coursework) 30


Exam type Exam duration % of formal assessment
Unseen exam 1 hr 0 mins 70
Total Percentage (Assesment Exams) 70

Private Study

Reading and pre-lecture preparation – 40 hours (4 hours per week)
Assignment preparation – 40 hours

Teaching methods

Delivery type Number Length hours Student hours
Group learning 11 1 11
Lecture 9 1 9
Private Study Hours 80
Total Contact Hours 20
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits) 100

Reading List

Reading List
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