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Environmental assessment

In this course, we will study some practical aspects regarding environmental assessment of selected habitat types. The course takes a holistic approach to environmental assessment, including topics such as experimental design and monitoring to data analysis. Experimental design will focus on sampling techniques in soil and water, applied statistics and assessment underpinned by national and international laws and policies. In addition to environmental assessment, we will also demonstrate how geostatistics is used for describing soil heterogeneity, for designing robust monitoring programmes and subsequently in the analysis of soil-based assessment data. A number of examples and case studies will be used to illustrate how environmental assessment is used to study human-induced effects of inter alia eutrophication and acidification.

Information from the course leader

Welcome to the course. All course information will be available on the course canvas page.

Here, you will find a preliminary schedule. See link to the right.

Course evaluation

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MX0152-40080 - Course evaluation report

Once the evaluation is closed, the course coordinator and student representative have 1 month to draft their comments. The comments will be published in the evaluation report.

Additional course evaluations for MX0152

Academic year 2021/2022

Environmental assessment (MX0152-M4080)

2022-03-24 - 2022-06-05


MX0152 Environmental assessment, 15.0 Credits



Environmental Science

Education cycle

Master’s level


Title Credits Code
Exam 9.0 0102
Computer exercises 3.0 0103
Field exercises 1.5 0104
Project 1.5 0105

Advanced study in the main field

Second cycle, has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements(A1N)

Grading scale

5:Pass with Distinction, 4:Pass with Credit, 3:Pass, U:Fail The requirements for attaining different grades are described in the course assessment criteria which are contained in a supplement to the course syllabus. Current information on assessment criteria shall be made available at the start of the course.



Prior knowledge

Knowledge equivalent to:

• 150 ECTS first-cycle courses, including

• 60 ECTS in a scientific subject such as Biology, Agricultural Science, Soil Science, Earth Sciences, Environmental Science or Technology,

• 10 ECTS Chemistry,

• 10 ECTS Biology


• a level of English equivalent to upper-seconday-school English (Engelska 6).


The course aims at providing knowledge to analyse and assess environmental data to assess environmental status in relation to national and international environmental norms. Focus is on limnic biology and chemistry, terrestrial biology and soil chemistry. The course includes planning of environmental studies, data collection methods, data analysis, evaluation of results, assessment of ecological status, design of indicators and communication of results. An overall goal is that students who have passed the course should be able to use raw data from their own or previously performed environmental monitoring and through statistical analyses and scientific theory to make an ecological status assessment and relate results to relevant norms.

Upon completion of the course the student should be able to:

- plan basic environmental monitoring programs and field experiments,

- apply theoretical and practical knowledge of sampling in both aquatic and terrestrial environments,

- analyse and evaluate data from experiments and environmental monitoring, to analyse, describe and assess both geochemical and biological environmental status,

- apply the critical load concept and the EU Water Directive to assess ecological status,

- describe the pathways, conversions and effects on the environment of various organic pollutants and metals,

- describe how indicators are developed and used in environmental assessment,

- account for heterogeneity in soil, and be familiar with applying geostatistics to evaluate data from soil sampling


During the course, environmental assessment is applied in various environments and environmental problems: - the forest landscape, - lakes and streams, - acidification, - eutrophication and - organic pollutants. The course also includes a tool part for theoretical and practical analysis techniques. During calculations, basic parts of environmental assessment will be practiced: - dimensioning of studies, - time series analysis, - geostatistics and - biodiversity calculations. Data collection and sampling techniques will be practiced in compulsory field exercises. Data from field exercises will be processed in a project work.

Formats and requirements for examination

- Passed results on the exam and all assignments, as well as approved oral and written presentation of the project work.

- Active participation in compulsory exercises.
  • If the student fails a test, the examiner may give the student a supplementary assignment, provided this is possible and there is reason to do so.
  • If the student has been granted special educational support because of a disability, the examiner has the right to offer the student an adapted test, or provide an alternative assessment.
  • If changes are made to this course syllabus, or if the course is closed, SLU shall decide on transitional rules for examination of students admitted under this syllabus but who have not yet passed the course.
  • For the examination of a degree project (independent project), the examiner may also allow the student to add supplemental information after the deadline. For more information on this, please refer to the regulations for education at Bachelor's and Master's level.

Other information

  • The right to take part in teaching and/or supervision only applies to the course date to which the student has been admitted and registered on.
  • If there are special reasons, the student may take part in course components that require compulsory attendance at a later date. For more information on this, please refer to the regulations for education at Bachelor's and Master's level.

Additional information

Field exercises will be one day excursions at bicycle distance from Uppsala. Participants are recommended to have knowledge equivalent to at least 7.5 credits of general or inorganic chemistry, and have knowledge of chemical equilibrium and especially acid-base equilibria. It is an advantage if course participants have studied basic statistics, but not a requirement.

Responsible department

Department of Aquatic Science and Assessment

Cooperating departments:

Department of Soil and Environment

Further information

Determined by: Programnämnden för utbildning inom naturresurser och jordbruk (PN - NJ)
Replaces: MX0096, MX0087, MX0134

Grading criteria

The grading criteria is published on the Canvas page for the course.

Litterature list

  1. All literature will be scientific papers that will be uploaded on the Canvas page for the course.

Course facts

Tuition fee: Tuition fee only for non-EU/EEA/Switzerland citizens: 38054 SEK Cycle: Master’s level
Subject: Environmental Science
Course code: MX0152 Application code: SLU-40080 Location: Uppsala Distance course: No Language: English Responsible department: Department of Aquatic Science and Assessment Pace: 100%