BSc (Hons)

Ecology and Conservation

Student using camera trap
Top
20
In the UK for Biosciences
in The Guardian University Guide 2019
  • UCAS code(s): C18A / C18B
  • Level(s) of study: Undergraduate
  • Study mode(s): Full-time / Sandwich
  • Location: Brackenhurst Campus
  • Starting: September 2019
  • Course duration: Three years full-time or four years with placement

This degree focuses on ecological concepts, the natural world and how we conserve it. It has been designed
to develop your knowledge and understanding of environmental problems and their solutions. You’ll study how ecological concepts can be applied to conserve nature, and the threats from pressures such as climate and land-use change.

You’ll benefit from studying in a variety of habitats including the wetland, woodland and grassland that form part of our Brackenhurst Campus. It’s the ideal location for you to gain ecological and conservation skills and undertake field studies.

Why choose this course?

  • Explore over 200 hectares of farm and woodland estate on our Brackenhurst Campus, an ideal location to study Ecology and Conservation.
  • Benefit from studying with a variety of habitats including wetland, woodland and grassland, right on your doorstep.
  • Study at one of the UK's most environmentally friendly universities – NTU has achieved the EcoCampus Platinum award and invested in many environmental-impact innovations.
  • Put your learning into practice and boost your appeal to employers with a work placement.
  • Get the best of both worlds! Immerse yourself in the subject in our stunning outdoor classroom at Brackenhurst, but still be completely connected to student life and all the events, entertainment, clubs and societies that Nottingham has to offer.
  • We have a 1,000 square metre, £2.5 million library on campus.

You might also be interested in BSc (Hons) Biological Sciences (Environmental Biology)

Video Icon
Tom Winterton
Tom tells us about his life as a student at Nottingham Trent University and the optional South Africa Field trip.

What you'll study

The course has been designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of both natural and man-made environments. You will develop key vocational attributes, in a strong ecological context, that are valued by employers.

You will study the ecology of plants, animals and land use, the conservation of organisms and the management of habitats - including learning how to manage them through practical experience. You will examine environmental impact assessment and global food security issues. The course also explores methods of ecological investigation using geographical information system (GIS) skills. You will develop an understanding of ecotourism, and the assessment of the social and economic issues which underpin pressing environmental problems. You will also have the chance to tailor your studies, by choosing optional modules to focus on your particular area of interest in the second and final years.

  • Year One

    Principles of Ecology

    Study the interaction of biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) factors in relation to the distribution of populations and communities within ecosystems.

    Introduction to Plant Ecology

    Understand how plants exist and respond to their environment. Examine how plant communities become established and how to recognise them.

    Biodiversity Conservation

    Explore the biological diversity on Earth, focusing on the abundance and distribution of species. Investigate theories addressing evolution, the causes of mass extinctions, and the conservation of species.

    Ecological Census Techniques

    Study the purpose of, and undertake, ecological surveys, using industry-recognised techniques. Learn species identification for a range of taxonomic groups such as birds, plants and invertebrates.

    Introduction to Animal Ecology

    Understand the structure and function of a range of animal species and examine how animals respond to their environments.

    Conservation in Practice

    Develop practical skills through carrying out nature conservation tasks. Develop mapping skills and the ability to carry out surveys of sites using a variety of techniques. Establish working links with the conservation industry.

  • Year Two

    Experimental Design and Data Analysis

    Cultivate an understanding of research methodology, hypothesis testing, statistical analysis and data presentation.

    Applied Habitat Management

    Study a wide range of natural, semi-natural and man-made habitat types and associated species. Look at integrated management techniques for multi-use habitats via site-based evaluations.

    Land Use Ecology

    Explore land uses such as farming and forestry, whose productivity is determined by the presence and products of ecological processes, and the impacts of humans upon them.

    Field Techniques and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)

    Understand the methods and processes involved in assessing the status of the natural environment using field techniques and data acquisition. Study the mapping and analytical techniques used in GIS and remote sensing.

    Ecotourism and Recreation

    Explore the importance and value of recreational provision and the challenges this presents to land-use priorities such as habitat and wildlife protection. Evaluate national policy and site management objectives.

    Example optional modules (choose one of the following):

    Living with Environmental Change

    Examine the impacts of environmental change on ecosystems, food production, water resources, energy use and many other issues. You'll focus on the science and perceptions of environmental change, and how we respond to these changes.

    Environmental Law and Policy

    Investigate the development, implementation and impact of environmental policies and laws. Explore the important theme of protecting the environment via environmental politics and policies, and the ever-increasing issue of securing sustainability.

  • Year Three

    Placement year for sandwich course students

  • Final year

    Dissertation

    Undertake independent research, under supervision. Focus on your own area of interest within ecology and conservation.

    Ecosystem Ecology

    Examine the ecology of landscapes and ecosystems. Understand the influence of, and relationship between, location and ecological processes, and the resulting ecosystem goods and services that come from them.

    Global Agriculture and Food Security

    This module provides an overview of the global agricultural industry and investigates the concepts of production and sustainability in agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

    Introduction to Ecological Consultancy

    Gain an insight into the work of scientists who provide knowledge and advice to ensure short, medium and long term developments avoid being ecologically harmful.

    You'll also choose one optional module:

    Conservation Project Management

    Develop skills in project management and critically evaluate the methods by which projects can be managed. You will work as part of a project team on a live integrated management project for the conservation industry.

    Africa Field Course

    Investigate the function and conservation of African ecosystems by way of a 10-day residential field trip. You'll undertake surveys and assessments and explore their implications.

    UK Field Course

    Investigate the function and conservation of UK ecosystems by way of a 10-day residential field trip. You'll undertake surveys and assessments and explore their implications.

Course specification

View the full course specification
Please note that course specifications may be subject to change

How you’re taught

You will be taught through a variety of methods including group seminars, lectures and practical sessions.

Assessment methods

  • Year 1 coursework (50%), written (33%) and practical (17%).
  • Year 2 coursework (83%), written (17%) and practical (0%).
  • Year 3 coursework (67%), written (33%) and practical (0%).

Contact hours

A full-time student on average can expect to spend 1200 hours a year learning which will typically be broken down as follows:

  • Year 1 lectures/seminars/workshops (28%), independent study (72%) and placements (0%).
  • Year 2 lectures/seminars/workshops (27%), independent study (73%) and placements (0%).
  • Year 3 lectures/seminars/workshops (20%), independent study (80%) and placements (0%).

A placement year may be taken between year 2 and year 3 of study.

You'll be studying at one of the UK's most environmentally friendly universities – NTU has achieved the EcoCampus Platinum award and invested in many environmental-impact innovations.

Careers and employability

You will gain the skills you need to become a:

  • reserve warden
  • community / site / area ranger
  • assistant field ecologist / ecologist
  • environmental education officer
  • biodiversity officer
  • species officer.

You could work for companies such as:

  • Forestry Commission
  • Wildlife Trusts
  • National Trust
  • Woodland Trust
  • Groundwork
  • Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)
  • FrogLife
  • Environment Agency
  • Local Authorities
  • Ecological consultancies
  • Academic institutions.

Excellent placement opportunities

You will have the option to do a year's placement in industry. The vital experience you will gain in a vocational position will make you more employable when you graduate.

Sandwich placements take place between Year Two and Year Three. This is an excellent chance for you to explore an aspect of ecology or conservation that interests you as a career while significantly increasing your employment prospects.

Recent student placements include:

  • Earth Trust
  • Middleton Lakes
  • National Trust
  • Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB).

Benefit from studying in a variety of habitats, including the wetland, woodland and grassland that form parts of our Brackenhurst Campus.

Entry requirements

What are we looking for?

  • A-levels – BBC; or
  • BTEC Extended Diploma – DMM; or
  • 112 UCAS Tariff points from three A-levels or equivalent qualifications; and
  • GCSEs – English and Maths grade C / 4.

Applicants without A-levels will have their applications assessed for subject compatibility.

We also consider equivalent qualifications and combinations.

If you are unsure whether the qualifications you have, or are currently studying for, meet the minimum entry requirements for this course, please contact us before submitting an application through UCAS.

The UCAS Tariff

We've created a UCAS Tariff calculator to help you work out how many UCAS points your qualifications relate to.

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

What are we looking for?

We accept qualifications from schools, colleges and universities all over the world for entry onto our courses. If you’re not sure how your international qualification matches our course requirements please visit our international qualifications page.

Foundation courses

If you need to do a foundation course to meet our course requirements please visit Nottingham Trent International College (NTIC). If you’re already studying in the UK at a school or college and would like to know if we can accept your qualification please visit our foundation courses page.

English language entry requirements

If English is not your first language you need to show us that your language skills are strong enough for intensive academic study. We usually ask for an IELTS test and we accept some alternative English language tests.

Help and support

If you have any questions about your qualifications or about making an application to the University please email our International Team for advice

How to apply

Ready to join us? Then apply as soon as you can. Just click the Apply button at the top of the page and follow the instructions for applying. Make sure you check the entry requirements above carefully before you do.

Writing your application and personal statement

Be honest, thorough and persuasive in your application. Remember, we can only make a decision based on what you tell us. So include all of your qualifications and grades, including resits or predicted grades.

Your personal statement is a really important part of your application. It’s your chance to convince us why we should offer you a place! You’ve got 4,000 characters to impress us. Make sure you use them to show how your skills and qualities are relevant to the course(s) you’re applying for. For more hints and tips, take a look at our page on how to write a good personal statement.

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

You can get more information and advice about applying to NTU on our Your Application page. Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

You can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year. If you are applying to more than one UK university you must apply through UCAS.

Apply as early as you can so that you have time to prepare for your studies. If you need a visa to study here you need to plan this into your application.

Apply now

Keeping up-to-date

After you’ve applied, we’ll be sending you important emails throughout the application process so check your emails regularly, including your junk mail folder.

Good luck with your application!

Getting in touch

If you need any more help or information, please email our Admissions Team or call on +44 (0)115 848 4200.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.

Further information on how to apply

Need help with your application?
For admissions related enquiries please contact us:
Telephone: +44 (0)115 848 4200

Fees and funding

Preparing for the financial side of student life is important, but there’s no need to feel anxious and confused about it. We hope that our fees and funding pages will answer all your questions.

Getting in touch

For more advice and guidance, you can contact our Student Financial Support Service.

Tel: +44 (0)115 848 2494

What do the course fees cover?

Mandatory costs for the course are covered in the course fee. In addition, most study modules will recommend one or more core textbooks, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary between courses and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. A good supply of these essential textbooks are available in the University libraries which students can easily borrow or access directly whilst studying in the library.

You will be charged a maximum of £60 for any compulsory residential trips in the UK which will cover travel, accommodation and entrance fees where applicable.  There will be a maximum charge of £300 for overseas residential fieldwork that is compulsory to your course. Non-residential day excursions are included in the tuition fee and other non-compulsory opportunities, in the UK and abroad, may also be offered, and these will be charged at additional cost to students. A valid passport and any associated visas will also be required for field trips outside of the UK.

All students will also be expected to provide their own steel toe-capped safety boots, wellingtons, overalls, waterproof coat and trousers and a scientific calculator.

Students will be expected to pay for accommodation, travel and living costs whilst on placement.

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

International fees and scholarships

For information on international and EU fees and advice on how to pay, please visit our international fees page.

We offer prestigious scholarships to new international students holding offers to study at the University. For details and an application form please visit our international scholarships information.

What do the course fees cover?

Mandatory costs for the course are covered in the course fee. In addition, most study modules will recommend one or more core textbooks, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary between courses and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. A good supply of these essential textbooks are available in the University libraries which students can easily borrow or access directly whilst studying in the library.

You will be charged a maximum of £60 for any compulsory residential trips in the UK which will cover travel, accommodation and entrance fees where applicable.  There will be a maximum charge of £300 for overseas residential fieldwork that is compulsory to your course. Non-residential day excursions are included in the tuition fee and other non-compulsory opportunities, in the UK and abroad, may also be offered, and these will be charged at additional cost to students. A valid passport and any associated visas will also be required for field trips outside of the UK.

All students will also be expected to provide their own steel toe-capped safety boots, wellingtons, overalls, waterproof coat and trousers and a scientific calculator.

Students will be expected to pay for accommodation, travel and living costs whilst on placement.

While we aim to keep any extra study costs to a minimum, please see our page on additional costs and optional extras to find out about any additional expenses you may incur on your course.

Still need help?

+44 (0)115 941 8418