Environmental Health - BSc (Hons) 

Course Overview

Environmental health practitioners play an important role within society and have responsibility for the protection of public health and the maintenance of a healthy environment. This course provides you with the opportunity to examine complex environmental health problems and to formulate effective problem solving strategies.
At Cardiff Met we have been delivering environmental health and public health qualifications for over 40 years. Our BSc (Hons) Environmental Health programme is one of the longest-running in the UK and has recently been re-accredited by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health. Uniquely, our programme is also accredited by the Institution of Occupational Safety & Health (IOSH), allowing our students to access graduate membership of both organisations.

  • Our core teaching team comprises eight full-time members of staff, including five experienced Environmental Health Practitioners.
  • Excellent employability rates for graduates within public, private and independent sectors.
  • Excellent National Student Satisfaction scores averaging 95% over the last five years.
  • Excellent work based placement opportunities via the Chartered Institute of Environmental health Student Training Directory.

Course Content

Foundation year (Year 0):

This programme can incorporate a foundation year (year 0) for those students who aspire to enrol onto the first year of a science based honours degree programme or HND within the Cardiff School of Health Sciences, who have not achieved the standard entry requirements, or who have not studied subjects that provide the necessary background within the scientific disciplines required to enter the first year of the chosen honours degree programme.

Students wishing to undertake the foundation year will apply for the degree programme they intend to progress to, using the relevant UCAS code listed on this course page (under Key Facts) and apply for entry point 0 on the UCAS website. As such, students following the foundation route will take an extra year to complete their honours degree.

Further information about the foundation year can be found by clicking here.


Throughout the course you will study core areas, comprising: Food Safety; Housing; Health & Safety in the Workplace; Environmental Protection and the underpinning themes of Public Health; Epidemiology and Risk Assessment.

Year One:
You are introduced to the underpinning themes of environmental and public health. You will be taught the general principles of law and science that will provide the legal and scientific framework within which environmental health practitioners operate. In addition you will undertake modules that will develop your communication and analytical skills.

Modules you will study are:

  • Foundation Law
  • Environmental Science
  • Environmental & Public Health practice
  • Food Safety Management
  • Built Environment
  • Research & Study Skills

Year Two:
You will further develop your problem solving skills, by critically evaluating various strategies to remove the risk to health in core areas of environmental health. The second year will also prepare those who elect to undertake placements in the third year.

Modules you will study are:

  • Occupational Health & Safety
  • Housing Law & Practice
  • Promoting Change and Managing Risk
  • Principles and Practice of Risk Assessment
  • Public Health Epidemiology
  • Professional Employability
  • Legal Practice
  • Applied Research Methods
  • Environmental Protection
  • Food Safety Management

Year Three:
You will develop high level skills to critically evaluate policy and strategies in the key areas of environmental and public health, which culminates in a dissertation. This utilises original thought to demonstrate problem solving skills in an area that requires an intervention. In addition you are supported in your preparation for the Professional Body examinations which will enable you to practice as an Environmental Health Practitioner.

The modules you will study are:

  • Management of Outbreaks
  • Environmental Protection Management
  • Occupational Health & Wellbeing
  • Improving Health & Safety Performance
  • Influencing Policy for Health & Sustainable Development
  • Food Safety Management
  • Environmental Health Intervention Development
  • Research project.

Learning & Teaching

You are required by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) to complete a series of learning outcomes to demonstrate you possess high level professional skills as well as the technical skills necessary to practice as Environmental Health Practitioner.

The structured application of the various teaching methods is intended to provide learning environments which are the most effective for the achievements of the course aims and objectives as well as satisfying the CIEH’s requirements. Initially the emphasis will be placed upon the use of lectures coupled with seminars which will include group discussion and seminars. These methods will be supported by guided individual study.

A variety of teaching and learning strategies is employed. These include lectures, tutorials, role play exercises around case studies and field visits/practical’s. The aim is to develop personal initiative and responsibility for learning.

In order to meet the specific needs of those students who may not have undertaken any practical work experience the aims of each module will be achieved by the enhancement of existing teaching and learning strategies. This will involve a greater utilization of, for example, visits, practical sessions, case studies and role play exercises. You are actively encouraged to seek placements both within the public sector and in the private sector. The university has an excellent reputation for finding placements for students and we will endeavour to help in matching placements to your needs via the Student Training Directory.


Assessment normally consists of written examinations and an element of coursework. In order to proceed to subsequent years of the course students must satisfactorily complete all modules.

At the beginning of each term students will be given details of the assessment programme for that term. This will include the precise nature and format of the assessment, the criteria for assessment and details of dates for submission of work.

Employability & Careers

Within local government, the profession of the environmental health practitioner is highly regarded and environmental health practitioners are employed by all local authorities throughout Britain. There are also many employment opportunities within the private sector. Forty per cent of Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) members now work in the private sector.

To fully prepare students for the workplace considerable emphasis is placed upon student’s technical knowledge and the application of that knowledge in core areas of practice. As part of the degree programme students will follow a Professional Employability module which helps to prepare students to develop professional CV’s and be able to demonstrate through the development of personal statements, the knowledge and aptitudes required of the job application process.

Opportunities for further study include the MSc Environmental Risk Management and Masters of Applied Public Health, as well as a number of research studentships.

Read more about recent Graduate Ali Mason and how studying BSc (Hons) Environmental Health helped get Ali's career off to a great start: Ali Mason Graduate Profile

Entry Requirements

Foundation route:

Applicants should normally have five GCSEs including Mathematics, Science and English Language (or Welsh First Language) plus one of the following:

  • 120 points from at least 2 A-Level qualifications or their equivalent at an appropriate standard for entry into Higher Education at Year 1, but in subject areas which fail to meet the entry requirements for their intended undergraduate degree programme.
  • 120 points from at least 2 A-Level qualifications or their equivalent in subject areas relevant for their intended undergraduate degree programme, but at a standard which fails to meet the entry requirements to Higher Education at Year 1.
  • Prospective students who do not meet the above criteria may be considered on an individual basis and may be called for interview.

For specific information on entry requirements, please refer to the UCAS website.


Applicants should have five GCSEs incl. English, Maths and Science plus one of the following:

  • 220 points from at least two A Levels / Scottish Advanced Highers to include grades CC, one to be in a Science subject; or 240 points to include grades CC without a Science
  • BTEC QCF Diploma / Extended Diploma 220 points including a Science or 240 points without a Science
  • 220 points from the Irish Leaving Certificate at Highers to include Science (minimum grade C2 considered)
  • Pass Access with 45 credits at Level 3, Science subject preferred;
  • 220 points from the Welsh Baccalaureate to include grades CC at A level or equivalent, within a Science; or 240 points to include grades CC at A level or equivalent without a Science, Core considered as a third subject

Or ‘Foundation leading to Health Sciences

If your qualification isn't listed above, please refer to the UCAS website.

If you do not meet the above entry requirements, the ‘Foundation leading to BSc Health Sciences’ is available one year full-time and will provide you with a relevant qualification that will allow you to progress to this degree upon successful completion. For further information about the Foundation course, please click here.

Selection Procedure:
Selection is usually on the basis of a completed UCAS application and where relevant an interview.

Key Facts

UCAS Code(s): B910
Foundation students should also use this UCAS code and apply for entry point 0 on the UCAS website.

Place of Study:
Cardiff School of Health Sciences
Llandaff Campus

Course Length: Three years full-time or four years full-time including foundation.

The BSc (Hons) is also available part-time and can take between four to eight years to complete. For further information please contact us.

How to Apply:
Applications for this course should be made online to UCAS at http://www.ucas.com/. For further information please visit our How to Apply pages at www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/howtoapply.

International Applicants:
Before making an application, international students (those outside of the EU), should contact the International Office at Cardiff Met to discuss the necessary procedures in relation to studying with us. For further information visit www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/international.

Tuition Fees & Additional Costs:
For up to date information on tuition fees and the financial support that may be available please refer to www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/fees. For additional costs please refer to www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/additionalcosts

Bursaries & Scholarships:
The university also offers a bursary and scholarship scheme to help students whilst at university. To see if you are eligible, visit www.cardiffmet.ac.uk/scholarships.

Contact Us

For general enquiries please contact the Student Recruitment Team on 029 2041 6044 or email courses@cardiffmet.ac.uk

For course specific enquiries, please contact the programme leader, Andrew Curnin:
Email: acurnin@cardiffmet.ac.uk
Tel: 029 2041 6854

Come and see us
If you’d like to find out more, then why not come and see us at one of our undergraduate Open Days. To book a place, click here.

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