Environmental Science Higher

What is special about this course?

Environmental Science is an interdisciplinary subject which draws from the sciences and social sciences. This online course looks at interactions between humans and the environment, incorporating a mix of geography, geology, history, modern studies, and biology.

Environmental Scientists are involved in tackling issues such as global climate change, pollution, use of land and water resources, and changes in wildlife habitats.  These issues require an understanding of scientific principles, economic influences, and political action.

This course is experiential and develops scientific awareness of environmental issues, providing opportunities for you to evaluate environmental and scientific issues, to consider risk, and to make informed decisions. This can lead to the development of an informed and ethical view of topical issues.

Higher Environmental Science is recognised as a supporting qualification for many institutions offering courses such as science, geography, sustainability and social care, and more. You will also be prepared for further education, training or employment, in areas associated with life sciences.

Special features:

  • You will develop skills in communication, collaborative working, leadership.
  • You can study part time alongside your employment or another full time course.
  • This course covers all the content of the SQA Higher course to prepare you for the exam which takes place in May.

Entry requirements

  • One National 5 OR
  • Practical Science at SCQF Level 5

Applications are encouraged from mature students who do not possess formal qualifications but have skills to meet the academic demand of the course.

Course content includes:

Living environment
The topics covered are: 
•    investigating ecosystems and biodiversity
•    interdependence
•    human influences on biodiversity

Earth’s resources
The topics covered are:
•    the geosphere
•    the hydrosphere
•    the biosphere 
•    the atmosphere

The topics covered are:
•    global challenges
•    food
•    water
•    energy
•    waste management
•    anthropogenic climate change


You will be required to purchase a scientific calculator (approx. £10). If you are eligible for a bursary these costs will be covered.

How will I study my course?

  • Part Time
  • Online

You will study online through our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) with support from your lecturers, however you will be required to attend a prelim, an exam and a practical assignment spread over 3 to 4 days in the evenings.

How long will my course last?

1 Year

Course cost: £352

Where can I study my course?

    • UHI Moray

Start date



If you are studying part time and are on low income or in receipt of certain benefits your course fees may be covered by a fee waiver.

If you are not Ordinarily Resident in Scotland, you may need to pay course fees.

Please refer to our Fees and Funding section for more information.


Our Student Finance Advisers can advise you on all aspects of student funding. The support available depends upon your personal circumstances.
Please refer to our Fees and Funding section for more information.

What can I do on completion of my course?

On successful completion of this course, you may progress onto:

  • Laboratory Science at SCQF Level 6
  • HNC Applied Sciences

Alternatively, a Higher Environmental Science qualification may be a requirement when applying to other institutions.

Is there more information available online?

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Apply for Environmental Science Higher

I want to start in 2024/25

We are delighted that you are thinking about studying at UHI Moray. UHI Moray operates a fair and open admissions system committed to equality of opportunity and non-discrimination. We consider all applications on merit and on the basis of ability to achieve, without discrimination on grounds of age, disability, gender identity, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity status, race, religion and/or belief, sex, sexual orientation or socio-economic background. We welcome applications from all prospective students and aim to provide appropriate and efficient services to students with disabilities.