Undergraduate course

Environment, Climate and the Human History

Teaching semester

Spring. The course will not be held in spring 2019.

The registration deadline for enrollment in the course is Thursday in week 2 for the spring semester. You will receive confirmation of whether you received a spot in Studentweb no later than Tuesday the week after the deadline.

The time of the first lecture/orientation meeting can be found in the schedule on the course website or on the Mitt UiB learning platform.

Objectives and Content

Humans have transformed their natural environment for thousands of years by cultivating the soil and domesticating plants and animals. Humankind¿s influence on the natural processes of the planet has been so massive in the last 200 years that the Holocene epoch in the aftermath of the Ice Age has ended. We currently live in the Anthropocene era, with mass eradication of animal species, climate change and physical changes in the Earth's surface. The course discusses how geographic factors, environmental conditions, social conditions and unequal access to resources have led to these changes, while pointing at solutions for a greener future and sustainable development. The courses focuses specifically on the consequences of domestication of plants, animals and landscapes, as well as the consequences that different forms of energy exploitation have had on development and changes in nature and society. Resilience and sustainability in socio-ecological systems are key topics in the course.

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the course, the student should have the following learning outcomes defined in terms of knowledge, skills and general competence:


The student:

  • Can explain selected aspects of the global environmental development in a sustainability perspective, and explain how different natural foundations have led history to develop differently across the continents.
  • Can explain the correlation between human activity and global environmental changes and be able to outline solutions for sustainable development.


The student:

  • Has developed insights into the environmental and social dynamics that are decisive in order to promote sustainable development.
  • Masters project work on a given topic and can conduct knowledge-based dissemination.

General competence

The student:

  • Has experience with project work.

Access to the Course

The course is accessible to all UiB students. Students who have the course as mandatory or recommended in their study plan will be given priority in case of capacity problems.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

  • Compulsory attendance at first lecture.
  • Compulsory participation in project groups/excursions.

Approved compulsory activities are valid for 6 semesters, including the semester of completion. Compulsory activities must be completed in order to do the exam.

Forms of Assessment

Grading Scale

The grading scale used is A to F. Grade A is the highest passing grade in the grading scale, grade F is a fail.

Assessment Semester

Written digital examination both in spring and autumn semesters. In semesters with no teaching, the exam will be arranged at the beginning of the semester.

Course Evaluation

Students will evaluate the course in accordance with the quality assurance system at UiB and the Department. You can find course evaluations in the Quality Assurance Reports.


Contact Information

Contact the Study Section at the Department of Biological Sciences: studie@bio.uib.no

Exam information

  • For written exams, please note that the start time may change from 09:00 to 15:00 or vice versa until 14 days prior to the exam. The exam location will be published 14 days prior to the exam.

  • Type of assessment: Written examination

    15.05.2018, 09:00
    5 hours
    Withdrawal deadline
    Examination system
    Digital exam