Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science

Dr Ayanda Shabalala

Programme Description

The purpose of the programme is to provide students with a firm grounding in the environmental sciences from which they can start to specialise in integrative environmental science with ecology, or geography with GIS or water management.  

Agriculture, the environment and conservation are important focus areas for the economy of Mpumalanga yet these are under threat from pollution, the competing demands of mining, climate change and land reformation. Graduates from this BSc (Environmental Science) will be trained and educated to work in these and other fields and contribute to sustainability. The qualification will provide a broad grounding in environmental sciences with environmental science, environmental biology, chemistry and earth science in first year, supported by mathematics and computer literacy. In second and third year, students will be able to join one of three streams being environmental science with environmental biology and ecology, environmental science with geography, and environmental science with water management. Graduates will have a relevant set of skills and knowledge and a good understanding of the nature of science and how knowledge is created. They will be independent leaners with some experience in answering research questions and will have well developed communication skills. The choice of subjects will allow students to be exposed to inter- and trans-disciplinary thinking and research. 

Teaching will be by contact and will include lectures, tutorials, practicals, field trips, group work and online learning. Throughout the three years, there will be an emphasis on independent research, and third year will include 30 credits (15 per major subject) for research. 

Admission Requirements

The minimum requirements for admission are: 
Admission point score of 30.  
Minimum NSC requirements for degree entry must be met.
English (Home Language or First Additional Language on at least NSC level 4 (5059%). 
Mathematics on minimum NSC level 4 or Mathematics literacy on minimum NSC level 6.
A minimum of NSC level 4 for two of Life Science, Physical Science or Geography. 

South African students who have written under another Examination Board and International students must have similar scores for the same or similar subjects will be considered.  

Students who have completed a 360 credit Diploma in an appropriate field such as conservation will be considered for this degree.  
Students will be considered on a monthly basis and students who meet or exceed the minimum entrance requirements will be offered places. 


The BSc (Environmental Science) is at exit level 7 on the HEQSF, with a requirement of 360 credits as a minimum. The BSc (Environmental Science) is offered over 3 years (120 credits per year x 3 years = 360 credits).  


Students will be able to articulate horizontally and diagonally between this Programme, and the BSc and BSc (Agriculture). Graduates from the BSc (Environmental Science) will be able to continue into Honours programmes in any of the subjects in which they will have majored.  

Module Structure of the Program

Module Code Semester Compulsory Credits Pre-requisites
Biology 101 BIO101 1 Yes 15 -
Earth Science 101 GOG1E1 1 Yes 15 -
Chemistry 101 CHEM101 1 Yes 15 -
Environmental Science 101 ENV101 1 Yes 15 -
Biology 102 BIO102 2 Yes 15 -
Geography 102 GOG102 2 Yes 15 -
End User Computing CSC1C2 2 Yes 5 -
Mathematics 102 MLS102 2 Yes 15 -
Environmental Science 102 GOG1E2 2 Yes 15 -
Chemistry 102 CHEM102 2 Yes 15 -
Ecology 201 ECL201 1 No 20 BIO101 & 102
Geography 201 GOG201 1 No 20 GOG1E1
Water Management 201 WMG201 1 No 20 -
Environmental Science 201 ENV2A1 1 Yes 20 ENV101
Ecology 202 ECL202 2 No 20 BIO101 & 102
Geography 202 GOG202 2 No 20 GOG1E2
Water Management 202 WMG202 2 No 20 -
Environmental Science 202 ENV2A2 2 Yes 20 ENV101
Advanced Ecology 301 ECL3A1 1 No 20 ECL201 & 202
Geography 301 GOG301 1 No 20 GOG201
Water Management 301 WMG301 1 No 20 WMG201 & 202
Environmental Science 301 ENV3A1 1 Yes 20 ENV201 & 202
Advanced Ecology 302 ECL3A2 2 No 20 ECL201 & 202
Geography 302 GOG302 2 No 20 GOG202
Water Management 302 WMG302 2 No 20 WMG201 & 202
Environmental Science 302 ENV3A2 2 Yes 20 ENV201 & 202
TOTAL CREDITS       480  


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