Wetlands vegetations, berms, and a dirt road on a sunny day in the swamps at Orlando Wetlands Park in Christmas, Florida.

Environmental Science with Foundation Year BSc

4-5 years

There’s always another way to follow your passion. If you don’t quite have the entry requirements to study Environmental Science at Leicester, this STEM Foundation Year degree is for you.

Environmental Science with Foundation Year BSc, 4-5 years

There’s always another way to follow your passion. If you don’t quite have the entry requirements to study Environmental Science at Leicester, this STEM Foundation Year degree is for you.

Start date:

2024
2025

Course information

Typical offer BCC

UK fee £9,250

International fee £20,250

Institute code L34

Course description

Course description

Our integrated Science, Technology and Engineering (STEM) Foundation Year degrees are aimed at students who wish to study a STEM subject but don't have the traditional entry requirements.

The course is run on the University of Leicester campus like any other, and you will be studying alongside other students who applied for, and slightly missed out on, a place on a course similar to yours. In the first year of this course, you will be working towards passing a foundation year (year 0), which will enable automatic progression onto year 1 of any of our BSc Geography, Geology and Environmental Science courses.

  • By completing the STEM Foundation Year you will automatically progress onto the first year of your chosen degree.
  • You will be taught by our expert academic staff from across several schools, including staff from the School of Geography, Geology and Environmental Sciences.
  • The course strongly emphasises the development of essential professional and personal skills, which are necessary throughout your studies and beyond.
  • During your foundation year you will join our student community and be able to enjoy all aspects of the University of Leicester student experience. You will be able to join the Students’ Union, use our academic and leisure facilities, live in our accommodation and access all our support services.
  • You will have a personal tutor to support you.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

  • A-levels: BCC or points equivalent from your best three A-levels. One science subject preferred from: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Electronics, Geography, Geology, Maths, Further Maths, Physics, and Statistics. You may be required to take an additional maths assessment test dependant on A-level subjects taken.
  • GCSE: Grades C/4 in Maths (if no A-level Maths) and English Language.
  • BTEC Diploma: DDM in a science related subject, which must include appropriate maths and science content. You may be required to take an additional maths assessment test.
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass diploma with 24 Distinctions in a science related subject, which must include appropriate maths and science content. You may be required to take an additional maths assessment test.
  • International Baccalaureate: Pass diploma with 26 points minimum, one HL science subject preferred. Must have maths and English if not held at GCSE grade C/4.

Other official national and international qualifications considered from across the world. You can review some of the qualifications we accept on our countries page and English Language equivalencies.

If your qualification or country is not listed, please contact us for more information, including the name and result of the qualification you have studied.

Contextual offers

The University of Leicester is committed to providing equitable opportunities for all applicants from all backgrounds. We make contextual offers to support students who may be impacted by the area they live in, their personal circumstances or who have completed one of our progression programmes. These offers are usually one or two grades lower than the standard entry requirements. To qualify for a contextual offer, you must apply for an eligible course and meet specific criteria – check if you’re eligible.

Selection process

When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries List

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

UK Students

Starting in September 2024

  • £9,250 in your first year. Tuition fees are subject to government regulations and may change in future years
  • Year Abroad: your fee will be £1,385 for that year
  • Year in Industry: your fee will be £1,850 for that year

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

There is an additional cost to students as a contribution towards core fieldwork modules in years one and two. In year one this is a maximum of £100. In year two this is a maximum of £250. These are the total contributions for the academic year, regardless of the number of field courses (i.e. they are not the costs or contributions per field course).

International Students

Starting in September 2024

  • £20,250 per year
  • Year Abroad: £5,062.50, which is 25% of the full-time tuition fee
  • Year in Industry: £3037.50 which is 15% of the full-time tuition fee

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

There is an additional cost to students as a contribution towards core fieldwork modules in years one and two. In year one this is a maximum of £100. In year two this is a maximum of £250. These are the total contributions for the academic year, regardless of the number of field courses (i.e. they are not the costs or contributions per field course).

Careers and employability

Careers and employability

Environmental Scientists are highly competitive in the job market as their degrees allow them to develop a range of highly sought-after skills. As well as studying topics that consider major global challenges of the 21st century, our graduates are equipped with a range of subject specific and transferable skills (such as teamwork, communication, resilience, planning, problem solving, data analysis and data visualisation). Our expertise in “big data” spatial data analysis and the application of satellite data and images means that students gain increasingly sought-after skills.

Students can shape their degree to align with their career interests, building on specific skills in areas such as conservation and biodiversity management/monitoring and natural resource management and exploration.

Recent employers for Geography, Geology and Environmental Science graduates include:

  • Environment Agency
  • Yorkshire Water
  • Aon
  • National Library of Scotland
  • KPMG
  • NHS
  • Cabinet Office
  • Department of Work and Pensions
  • HSBC

Get career-ready at Leicester with guidance from our award-winning Careers and Employability Service. We're here to give you a lifetime offer of support, even after graduation. Our team of specialist careers advisers and mentors will help you every step of the way. From supporting you with CVs and interviews, to volunteering opportunities and placements, we’re here to help you reach your professional goals.

Related courses

Course structure

Foundation Year

Foundation Year

Modules

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 1

Year 1

The first year introduces you to key concepts surrounding the functioning of the Earth System, from both a deep time (key events in planetary development) and a contemporary perspective. You will gain key skills in laboratory and field methods, and you will learn a range of methods for statistical and spatial data analysis. A residential field course in Devon will enable you to put these new skills into practice. Optional modules allow you to focus on a range of themes, spanning the complexities of human-society interactions, management of natural resources, and the nature and functioning of life on Earth (e.g. via courses in Biological Sciences). 

Core modules

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

Choose one option module from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

In year 2 you will take two core modules, with the first concerning the most pressing issue of our time, climate change. This discipline-straddling module provides a grounding in the causes and mitigation of climate change. You will take an additional core module, Research Design, which begins the process of developing your third year dissertation project. The remainder of year 2 is built from optional modules, allowing you to specialise, or to build a broad portfolio of modules. There are multiple options in Biological Sciences and Geoscience, along with a suite of Geography modules. The latter include options in cutting-edge spatial environmental data methods (Remote Sensing, Geographical Information Science). Field trips to mainland Spain (Almeria) and Mallorca are associated with the Research Design and Field Guide to Evolution modules

Core modules

Option modules

Choose four option modules from:

Choose two option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year Abroad or in Industry (optional)

Year Abroad or in Industry (optional)

If you want to, you can spend the third year of the BSc studying abroad at one of our partner institutions or working in an industrial placement. Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in three years.

Year Abroad

We’ll make sure you have everything you need for your future career: not just by awarding you a high quality degree, but also by helping you to develop the skills, knowledge and confidence you need to make your mark in the world as a Citizen of Change. One way you can do this is by opting to take a Year Abroad between Years 2 and 3 of your degree.

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to a career in the private, public or third sector - or plough your own furrow as an entrepreneur – you will find the experience invaluable.

For more information, including a list of destinations, please visit our Study Abroad website.

Please note

  • A year spent abroad still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See the Fees and Funding tab of this page for details.
  • You may be eligible for a travel grant from Student Finance England.
  • Places are offered on a competitive basis, and eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2.
  • Language courses, at beginners or advanced level, are available through our Languages at Leicester scheme.

Year in Industry

A Year in Industry gives you the opportunity to stand out from the crowd when it comes to applying for graduate jobs with work experience incorporated into your programme of study. If this is for you, in Year 2 you will take a module in which we prepare you for that year in work and support you with your search for a placement in an industry or organisation relevant to your career aspirations. After your Year in Industry you will return to University for your final year of study.

A year in industry still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See the Fees and Funding tab of this page for details.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

In year three, your only core module is your final year dissertation project, where you will develop a topic of your own interest, supported by an academic supervisor. A wide range of optional modules allow you to then develop foci of interest following from year two, or to remain a generalist. Three (optional) residential field class modules provide opportunities for extensive field learning, and many modules allow you to develop high levels of expertise via our research-led teaching. Examples of the latter include modules such as Stable Isotopes in the Environment, which makes use of our cutting-edge laboratory infrastructure, as well as Water Quality Processes and Management.

Core modules 

Option modules 

Choose two option modules from:

Then choose four option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Why Leicester?

Hear from our Geography BSc graduate Lucy, as she talks about module flexibility, worldwide field trip opportunities, and reflects on her time studying at Leicester.

Our courses are built around you. We have excellent staff-student ratios and you will experience small group teaching throughout your degree. You will really get to know the staff and your personal tutor, meaning close support throughout your time with us.

Our courses offer flexibility in course transfer and a wide range of optionality, allowing you to shape your Environmental Science degree in a manner that most fits your strengths and interests.

We have a range of UK and international field trip options throughout the degree, including destinations such as Devon and Spain in Years One and Two, and even the Amazon Rainforest in Year Three.

Our School has excellent graduate employability statistics and employability is embedded throughout our curriculum, via the Leicester Award programme and our close work with the Careers Service. We are focused on helping students to learn (and recognise) the key transferable and employable skillsets they are building throughout their course. We also offer a Year in Industry option.

Geography and Environmental Science field work highlights

Teaching and learning

You will be taught through a mixture of lectures, tutorials, seminars, practical classes and fieldwork and all lecture material is available online through our virtual learning environment Blackboard. Contact time typically averages around 11-13 hours per week. Residential field trips are run by academic staff throughout the degree and provide extended periods of small group teaching in field contexts.

Your work will be assessed through a mixture of methods including, essays, learning diaries, oral and poster presentations, mock journal articles, popular science articles and a final year individual (supervised) dissertation project. Coursework is mainly undertaken on an individual basis. However, a number of modules (especially field-based modules) involve assessed group project work.

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. To help with your independent learning, you can access the Library and our social study spaces in halls of residence.

Your contact hours will depend on the option modules you select. You can see details of the contact hours on individual module pages.

Academic support 

Our AccessAbility Centre offers support and practical help for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties, including physical, mental health or mobility difficulties, deafness, or visual impairment.

Teaching staff

You will be taught by an experienced teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. PhD research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is informed by the research we do. You can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff profiles.

Apply now

Course Qualification Duration Availability
Course Environmental Science with Foundation Year Qualification BSc Duration 4 years full-time Availability How to apply
Course Environmental Science with Foundation Year with Year Abroad Qualification BSc Duration 5 years full-time Availability How to apply
Course Environmental Science with Foundation Year with Year in Industry Qualification BSc Duration 5 years full time Availability How to apply
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