UCL Department of Geography


Description Photo Here

Personal tools
Log in
This is SunRain Plone Theme
UCL Home  /  Geography  /  Study  /  Graduate Taught  /  MSc Modules  /  GEOG0168 Environmental Monitoring

GEOG0168 Environmental Monitoring

Key Information

Credit value: 15

Level: Postgraduate (FHEQ Level 7)


This module is only available to students on the MSc Conservation and MSc Aquatic Conservation, Ecology & Restoration.

Intended teaching term: Term 1

Methods of assessment:
100% Monitoring plan (3,000 words)

Module leader: Neil Rose

Who to contact for more information:



To understand chemical and biological change in ecosystems, as well as the success of conservation and restoration interventions, it is essential to establish scientifically robust, reliable and ideally long-term monitoring. This module will introduce the philosophy and basic principles that underlie effective of monitoring, including Before-After Control-Impact (BACI) approaches and essential aspects as such quality control and internal consistency. It will illustrate the need for monitoring programmes by highlighting important environmental and conservation issues covering a range of ecosystems, especially freshwaters, estuaries, marine fisheries and nature reserves comprising a mix of aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Key long-term monitoring initiatives will be introduced as well as standard approaches used to assess ecological status in relation to conservation legislation. Case studies will be used throughout the module to illustrate different monitoring techniques and approaches, recent advances in monitoring technology and instrumentation and to highlight important complimentary approaches such as palaeoecology.

At the end of the module students should/ should be able to:

  • understand the need for effective monitoring to inform on environmental change and conservation and restoration success
  • grasp the key concepts and principles that underpin robust and reliable environmental monitoring
  • design a monitoring programme to address specific needs
  • critically interpret monitoring data in relation to key initial science and conservation questions
  • gain a detailed knowledge of sampling approaches used in monitoring
  • understand the key legislation that underpins the need for environmental monitoring in the UK and globally
  • understand recent advances in monitoring covering e-DNA, remote monitoring and drone-based techniques