Explore the lifecycle of freshwater ecosystems that make up only 3% of water on earth’s surface, and the trickle effect these have on the surrounding environment.
This major will prepare you with theoretical and applied skills in hydrological science and sustainable management, for areas such as water treatment, systems infrastructure engineering, marine life, and ethical and sustainable use of freshwater resources.
The programme also has a unique focus on the cultural philosophies and science of Ki Uta Ki Tai | From the Mountains to the Sea – the journey of water as it travels over the landscape to the ocean, and the effect it has on other ecological systems along the way.
- A focus on field-based learning takes advantage of the varying landscape of Waitaha Canterbury – beaches, mountains, snow fields, forests, and wetlands only a short drive away from campus.
- The degree incorporates Mātauranga Māori worldviews of nature, with studies on Aotearoa New Zealand’s unique cultural history, legal policies, and relationship with bodies of water and freshwater resources.
- This major will utilise teaching and research from Waterways Centre for Freshwater Management, a research centre co-based at UC and Te Whare Wānaka o Aoraki | Lincoln University.
- UC is ranked in the top 150 universities in the world for Earth and Marine Sciences (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2021).
UC offers a major in Freshwater as part of the Bachelor of Environmental Science with Honours.
The following courses are required throughout the degree:
- WATR 201 Freshwater Resources
- GEOG 201 Environmental Process: Principles and Applications
- BIOL 213 Microbiology or CHEM 247 Analytical Chemistry
Plus two courses chosen from:
- BIOL 309 Experimental Design and Data Analysis for Biologists
- BIOL 313 Advanced Microbiology
- CHEM 340 Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology
- PHYS 330 Environmental and Climate Modelling
Plus one course chosen from:
Freshwater is one of our most precious resources, with only a small number of catchments over the globe that are easily accessible for our use. Graduates in this area will be able to help ensure a sustainable future for this limited resource through understanding of the water lifecycle, and by protecting from exploitation, contamination, and hazardous threats.
You will find work in a variety of roles related to freshwater, for example water treatment and drinking-water sanitation, fisheries, wastewater and stormwater systems, disaster management, and research on contamination, pollution, and invasive species.
You many find work in governmental bodies, regional councils such as Kaunihera Taiao Ki Waitaha | Environment Canterbury, and research centres or consultancies that specialise in water resources, for example Taihoro Nukurangi | National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), Te Reo O Te Taiao | Forest & Bird, and Fish & Game New Zealand.
Find out more about what you can do with a degree in Environmental Science.
Level 2, Beatrice Tinsley building – see campus maps
Te Rāngai Pūtaiao | College of Science
Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha | University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800
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