Environmental Science



Mr T Chadwick

Department Overview

Most of us are familiar with the major environmental issues of the day: climate change, loss of biodiversity, pollution. However, few people are aware of the science behind these problems and without this knowledge, society will not be able to find sustainable solutions.

So, this subject explores the impacts humans have on the environment and their wider consequesnces. It also considers some of the solutions to our energy needs, diminishing water supplies and resource demands from an ever growing population.

Did you know?

In 1903 there were 13 varieties of asparagus. Now there is….1

In 1903 there were 287 varieties of carrot. Now there are….21

!n 1906 there were over 500 types of lettuce available. Now we are down to ….36.

Why is this so risky? And how does it link to conservation?

In the last century, society was threatened with belching chimneys and rivers which were orange and lifeless. Smogs killed thousands of urban dwellers, and elephants and blue whales were on the verge of extinction. Today the challenges are no less significant.  Businesses, corporations, individuals and communities need the kind of knowledge and expertise this subject offers in managing the lithosphere (rocks, soils), atmosphere, biosphere and hydrosphere.


A-Level Environmental Science

Why study Environmental Science?

Environmental science courses are increasingly popular at universities and new legislation means that industry and the public sector are urgently seeking well-qualified graduates with a background in the subject.

What do I need to know or be able to do before taking this course?

The course focuses on the science of the environment. It is not a pure science although some universities do accept it as such. The underlying principles are rooted in scientific theory so a sound grasp of GCSE level science is essential.

Students must also be prepared to undertake additional reading. A reading list is available on the student shared area of the school intranet site. Some reading material is supplied in Year 12, but a more independent approach is needed in Year 13 to ensure that students can reach the top grades.

Features of the course:

This course examines how human activity affects the environment. How can these impacts be managed to limit the damage caused and to secure healthy surroundings for us and for future generations? These are increasingly urgent issues, relevant across a range of curriculum and policy areas.

Environmental science is a holistic subject with many interconnected systems and processes. A change to one process can affect many other processes over different spatial and temporal scales. Consideration of environmental issues and the conclusions reached are based on reliable evidence-based information and quantitative data. Students will develop an understanding of how human society relies upon natural systems for resources and life support systems. An understanding of these systems will be used to propose changes in society that would produce sustainable lifestyles.

Key information:

Topics for Study:

 The living environment

 The physical environment

 Energy resources


 Biological resources


 Research methods

 Assessment summary

 2 x 3 hour written papers

 Entry requirements

 Grade B in GCSE Biology

 Exam Board




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