Bachelor of Science (Earth and Environmental Systems, and Marine Systems)



Course overview

A flexible, multi-dimensional degree that allows you to incorporate a wide range of subjects in an integrated way with career-focused science disciplines. The double specialisation in Earth and Environmental and Marine Systems develops your skills in and understanding of environmental science to address how we interact with Earth systems in the Anthropocene.

Building on core science principles you will study units covering ecology, ecosystem regeneration, biogeochemistry, modelling and resource management (including water, catchments and waste/resources in the circular economy).

The Marine Systems specialisation builds on introductory earth systems knowledge by studying units at our National Marine Science Centre adjacent to the Solitary Islands covering oceanography, marine ecology, fish and aquaculture, reefs, fisheries and marine parks management.

Career opportunities

Career opportunities exist in public and private sectors as a regenerative agricultural specialist/consultant, farmer, resource manager, regenerative agronomist, sustainability advisor and planner, policy developer, biologist, ecologist, soil health scientist, or in scientific research. Combined with our education course, students may also take roles in high school agricultural science.

Professional placement

Complete either an internship or an integrated project as part of your environmental systems studies, giving you the opportunity to investigate a particular area in depth and develop your knowledge and skills in a field that interests you.

Entry pathways

Graduates of the Diploma of Science are guaranteed entry into this course and receive up to 8 units of credit.

Course structure

The Bachelor of Science (Earth and Environmental Systems and Marine Systems) is comprised of 24 units.

7 foundation core units with a strong foundation in science, socio-ecological systems and critical thinking. 15 specialisation core units that develops specialist skills and knowledge. The specialisation provides capstone units that reinforce the student’s chosen field via research and applied practise aspects.

7 foundation core units
  • Earth Systems
  • Science and Global Challenges
  • Scientific Data Management and Analysis
  • Data Collection and Quantitative Analysis
  • Caring for Country
  • Impactful Science and Practice I
  • Impactful Science and Practice II
3 common core units
  • Chemistry
  • Organisms and Environments
  • Ecology for Natural and Managed Systems
Plus 6 Earth and Environmental specialisation core units:
  • Ecosystem Regeneration
  • Waste as a Resource
  • Aquatic Pollution and Catchment Management
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecosystem Modelling for Management
  • Biogeochemistry
Plus 6 Marine Systems specialisation core units:
  • Fish Ecology and Aquaculture
  • Reefs
  • Invertebrate Life
  • Fisheries and Marine Parks Management
  • Oceanography
  • Cells and Molecules.
Plus choose a further two units (24 credit points) from the following list of recommended units
  • Soil Processes
  • Ecological Perspectives: Human Ecology
  • Fire Ecology and Management
  • Invertebrate Life
  • Oceanography
  • Cells and Molecules
  • Drone Technology and Spatial Analysis
  • Water and Wastewater Engineering
  • Coastal and Fluvial Hydrodynamics
  • Principles of Stormwater and Drainage Management
  • Rainfall-Runoff Modelling
  • Internship Study
  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Genetics
  • Humanitarian Projects
  • Protected Area Management
  • Analysis of Food, Soils and Water
  • Ecological Economics
  • Plant Biology
  • Pest and Disease Management
  • Geographical Information Systems: Mapping
Why choose Southern Cross University?
  • Ranked number 1 in Australia for graduate salary, overall experience and learning resources in agriculture and environmental studies (GUG 2021 *)
  • Strong focus on practical fieldwork in a variety of environments.)
  • Top 3% of universities worldwide in Forestry and Agriculture (QS rankings 2020**)
  • A world leader in marine science teaching and research. Learn from our marine experts who are tackling the big challenges of ocean climate change, sustainable fisheries and reef restoration
  • Study at the National Marine Science Centre (NMSC), Coffs Harbour, which is a purpose-built teaching and research facility
  • The NMSC is located on the doorstep of the Solitary Islands Marine Park and has a state-of-the art flow-through seawater supply system, an aquaculture farm and hatchery

2021 Start:   February, June
Location:  Lismore, National Marine Science Centre Coffs Harbour, Online
Duration:  3 years FT/6 years PT
Admission requirements: ATAR 60 or equivalent

* Good Universities Guide 2021

** QS World Rankings 2020