Environmental and Water Science Programme

Water is the cornerstone of life as we know it.  We live in a world where more and more people rely on a limited water supply.  South Africa with an average annual rainfall of 500mm has limited water resources. If we do not understand our water resources and the environments where they occur, we cannot manage them and then will be heading for disaster.

If you are interested in the interaction of humans with the environment, the processes operating in the environment and affecting our water resources and the influence of natural phenomena on the environment, this degree is for you.

We build skills to assess and manage environmental issues related to surface water, groundwater, soils, climate and land use. Our modules focus, amongst others, on:  

  • The protection of our water resources from over-exploitation and pollution.
  • Understanding soils for conservation and erosion control and food security.
  • Land, water and vulnerability assessments using Geographical Information Systems for map creation
Degrees Offered
  • B.Sc (Environmental and Water Science)

EWP 321

Undergraduate Programmes - Environmental and Water Science Programme

ENV321  Environmental and Water Science 321                                                    (30 credits)

[Pre-requisite: COS114 or COS124] EWS 131, EWS132, EWS212, EWS 221, EWS311 or equivalent

Main Content: 

  • Different scales of water resources
  • Water resource development programmes
  • Methods of utilization of water resources
  • Concepts of sustainable development and management of water resources
  • Water resource protection concepts including Resource Directed Measures (RDM)
  • Concept of ecohydrology
  • General characteristics of water resources in Africa, especially in South Africa
  • Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) concepts

Main outcomes: It is expected that on completion of this module student will:

  • Identify different scales of water resources and illustrate water resource development and utilization programmes,
  • Interpret groundwater functions as hydrological, ecological and environmental system components
  • Illustrate methods of water resource protection
  • Explain the concepts of sustainable development and means of achieving integrated management of water resources


EWP 322

Undergraduate Programmes - Environmental and Water Science Programme

Environmental and Water Science 322

(30 credits)

[Pre-requisite: COS114 or COS124]

All relevant EWS second and third year Compulsory Modules

Main Content:

The writing of a proposal

Environmental field techniques

Setting up of equipment in field and sampling

Data collection, data analysis

Data Interpretation

Report Writing

Main outcomes:

On completing this module students will:

Be able to write a research proposal

Be able to use environmental field techniques

Demonstrate their ability to gather meaningful environmental data

Demonstrate that they can analyze and interpret the data

Be able to write up a scientific report on the results


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