Bachelor of Science (Applied Conservation)

Applied conservation graduates will understand ecosystems but at the same time have the skills required to engage with communities and stakeholders in planning, managing and implementing conservation projects. Graduates who understand the vital links between ecology and human geography are particularly likely to be effective conservation advocates and managers.

The combination of conservation biology and socio-ecological science is also much more useful to employers, who are aiming for more creative thinking and flexibility than is provided by narrowly focused courses in conservation biology. We have designed this major by working closely with the Department of Conservation (DOC) so that it meets the defined needs in the conservation industry.  

Bachelor of Science: degree outline

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Below is a summary only. For a comprehensive overview of this qualification, please refer to the academic calendar.

You will study the following compulsory papers:

Year 1

Level 5

HEAL506 Knowledge, Enquiry and Communication
HEAL507 Health and Environment
ECOL501 Ecology and Evolution
BIOL502 Plants and Animals
BIOL501 Biological Sampling and Interpretation
ENVS521 Physical and Human Geography 

At least two of:
CHEM501 Principles of Chemistry
SCIE503 Biophysics
MICR501 Microbiology
CHEM502 Biological Chemistry

Year 2 and 3

Level 6

ENVS601 Environmental Law
SCIE602 Research Techniques
ENVS621 Geographical Information Systems
ENVS622 Biogeography
CONS621 Conservation Planning

At least two of:
ECOL602 Terrestrial Ecology
ECOL601 Freshwater Ecology
BIOL603 Marine Invertebrates
BIOL602 Fish and Aquatic Plants

Level 7

CONS701 Applied Conservation
ENVS701 Ecosystem Management
ENVS722 Socio-Ecological Systems

Plus another 90 points (six 15-point papers) as electives.

Other majors or pathways, such as Environmental Science, Marine Biology, or Geospatial Science, can be completed along with Applied Conservation within three years without doing more than the standard eight papers (120 points) per year.

Research Project

In the final year of your degree you will have the opportunity to enrol in either the Research Project paper (30 points) if you had a B-grade average in 60 points at level 6. This may involve placement in an employer organisation related to your major and undertaking a mini research project.

Career opportunities

There is a shortage of science graduates with a combination of biological science and social science skills. Therefore graduates with these skills are extremely valuable for improving the effectiveness of conservation initiatives and are sought after by conservation employers such as DOC, Auckland Council (AC) and national and international Non-Government Organisations working in conservation. 

Careers include:

  • Environmental consultant
  • Conservation scientist for governmental institutions such as DOC
  • Conservation scientist for regional or city councils such as Auckland Council
  • Conservation advocate or scientist for Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) such as Conservation International or WWF

Graduates and students of science

Other majors and pathways in the Bachelor of Science

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Last updated: 13-Dec-2017 3.42pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.