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EV5020 - Human Dimensions of Nature, Environment and Conservation

Credit points: 3
Year: 2021
Student Contribution Band: Band 2
Administered by: College of Science and Engineering

Knowledge of how ecosystems work that does not include consideration of the integral role of humans in these systems is unlikely to provide a complete understanding required to achieve conservation or sustainable use of natural resources. Successful environmental management requires an interdisciplinary approach that includes information about how humans interact with natural resources, and the complex feedbacks between their values, perceptions, needs, behaviours, and environmental outcomes. This subject draws on a multitude of contemporary theories from the rapidly evolving field of environmental social science; including social-ecological systems, resilience thinking, sustainable livelihoods, commons theory, and the psychology of environmentally significant behaviour. The lectures draw on the current research of the lecturers and guest speakers, exposing students to the latest developments in the field. This class is suitable for students from a multitude of disciplines across the natural and social sciences, and is designed to build the knowledge required to approach environmental problems from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Learning Outcomes

  • demonstrate an understanding of the relevance and importance of taking an integrated, social- ecological approach to resolving environmental problems;
  • demonstrate knowledge of relevant, contemporary human dimensions theories, concepts, and methods;
  • apply environmental social science theory and methods to analysing real-world environmental issues;
  • communicate and critically evaluate the relevance and importance of environmental social science to others within an environmental management context.

Subject Assessment

  • Oral > Presentation 1 - (40%) -
  • Participation > Class participation - (10%) -
A basic understanding of environmental management and conservation principles and issues is assumed for students undertaking this subject.


Townsville, Internal, Study Period 1
Census Date 25-Mar-2021
Workload expectations:

The student workload for this 3 credit point subject is approximately 130 hours.

  • 26 hours lectures (didactic or interactive)
  • 15 hours tutorials
  • assessment and self-directed study

Note: Minor variations might occur due to the continuous Subject quality improvement process, and in case of minor variation(s) in assessment details, the Subject Outline represents the latest official information.