388 Ecology and Natural Resources, bachelor


Many researchers believe that the modern world faces enormous environmental problems that have been created by humanity’s interference with nature’s cycles. Managing changes in climate, population growth and the use of land and water resources will require professional expertise, if we intend to achieve sustainable development. In local communities in Norway it is also important to link ecological knowledge to knowledge of management and planning, especially if we are to achieve a sustainable future society.

Target Group and Admission Requirements

The study programme is aimed at students who are interested in the management of the natural environment and outdoor recreation and who wish to enrol on a programme which focuses on conservation of natural environments, biodiversity, sustainable management of natural resources, ecotourism and ecological land use planning.
Applicants must meet general admission requirements or have prior experiential learning.

Aim of the Programme

The study programme is interdisciplinary and provides students with ecological insight so they will be able to manage natural resources for future generations in both global and local contexts. The study programme provides students with basic knowledge of biological and geological topics which lays a foundation for a review of the various ecosystems and management issues with an emphasis on fresh water, mountains, wildlife and fish. Expertise in the management of these aspects of our natural resources will be related to the laws and planning using geographic information systems (GIS) as a tool.

The study programme will provide the basis for an active and realistic social involvement within the relevant fields, and convey different values in connection with this. It will enable the students to deal with value-charged and controversial issues related to the use and management of natural resources.

Further Education opportunities

The study programme provides the basis for admission to the Master’s degree programme in Environmental Health.

Curriculum and structure

Elective courses

Elective courses marked with “V” may be replaced with other courses which are either pre-approved or approved on application. This should be confirmed with the department as soon as possible. Courses other than those listed below are normally not coordinated with other courses in relation to the timetable, so that if the student wishes to substitute one course for another he/she must confirm that this is possible well in advance.

For example, this applies to 4504 Georesources and Ground Water, which may be replaced by 4216 Groundwater and Pollution, which is offered in the Bachelor's programme, Pollution and the Environment.

Teaching is conducted in English to a greater or lesser degree in some of the elective courses, if there are foreign students who have enrolled on the course. Other elective courses taught in Norwegian, and with a different content, will be offered as an alternative to these courses. Examination answers or obligatory semester assignments may always be submitted in Norwegian.

Special conditions: In special cases, an elective course in the table listed below may be replaced with another course. This would normally happen in consultation with the students involved and in such a way that the academic level of the study programme is maintained.

International study opportunities

The study programme also offers the opportunity of studying for one semester at an educational institution abroad (equivalent of 30 ECTS credits). This would normally be done in the fifth semester or sixth semester, and should be planned well in advance. Please contact the Department’s student advisor and the International Office. The university college has established agreements with other educational institutions and funding is also available with regard to student exchange programmes; please click on the following link for more information:


Overview of courses
Code Course title Credits O/V *) Credits pr. semester
  S1(A) S2(V) S3(A) S4(V) S5(A) S6(V) S7(A)
4006 Climate, Energy and the Environment 10.00 O 10            
4011 Biology and the Environment 1 10.00 O 10            
4008 Outdoor Life, Hunting and Fishing 10.00 V 10            
4100 Mathematics for Ecologists 10.00 V 10            
4012 Biology and Environment 2 10.00 O   10          
4010 Man and Views on Nature 10.00 O   10          
4009 The Natural Environment and the
10.00 O   10          
4105 Ecology 10.00 O     10        
4208 Wildlife Ecology and Management 10.00 O     10        
4101 General Chemistry 10.00 O     10        
4503 Nordic surface waters 10.00 O       10      
4102 Land-Use Management and Municipal
10.00 O       10      
4504 Georesources and Groundwater 10.00 V       10      
4216 Groundwater and Pollution 10.00 V       10      
4207 Fresh Water Fisheries and Water Resource
10.00 O         10    
4501 Alpine Ecology 10.00 V         10    
5700 Digital Geodata 10.00 V         10    
5701 Maps and Surveying 10.00 V         10    
4308 Ecotoxicology 10.00 V           10  
4505 Conservation Biology 10.00 V           10  
4209 Project Assignment 10.00 V           10  
5702 Geographical Analysis 10.00 V           10  
Total: 30 30 30 30 30 30 0
*) O - Mandatory course, V - Optional course

The first year of study provides students with basic knowledge of climatic, geological and biological conditions. Further, the programme examines how the natural environment may be used for outdoor recreational purposes and how views of nature have changed over time. The second and third year of study will focus on special ecological conditions related to fresh water, mountains, game and fishing, and this will also be viewed in the context of nature-based tourism. The relationship between living organisms and environmental conditions will be examined with special emphasis on the human impact. How land use planning is used to manage conservation areas in accordance with current laws will be examined; and how digital maps are used, which are a necessary tool in this work, will also be considered.

Teaching and Learning Methods

Teaching in the programme is based on lectures, field training, field trips and laboratory exercises. Students are followed up through the course of the study programme by means of teaching and learning methods that include field and laboratory teaching with report writing, projects, seminar assignments, group and seminar teaching, etc. In the learning process, emphasis will be placed on practical projects. The various teaching and learning methods are also described in the individual course descriptions.
Legitimate absence (sick leave) of as much as 20% of the mandatory part of a course will be accepted. A student’s absence of more than 20% of the obligatory part of a course will not be approved. The student will not be eligible for preferential treatment with regard to a place on the field/laboratory course the next time the course is given.

Assessment Methods

Most of the programme’s courses include both continuous and final assessment.

Many of the courses will include semester assignments and similar work that will be assessed. The individual course descriptions describe in detail the various assessment methods used.

Minor adjustments may occur during the academic year, subject to the decision of the Dean

Publisert av / forfatter Anette N. Fredly <Anette.N.FredlySPAMFILTER@hit.no>, last modified Ian Hector Harkness - 19/12/2008