|01243020||Faculty of Humanities|
|Minimum duration of study: 1 year||Total credits: 135|
Closing date for applications: 30 September annually.
An approved three-year bachelor's degree in environmental, earth, geographical or planning sciences or a directly related major in the field of social sciences with an overall average of 60% for 300- and 400-level modules.
Appropriate modules, other than the above and approved by the honours coordinator or head of department, may be taken. However, a minimum of 45 elective module credits should come from the Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology.
Minimum credits: 135
Select 5 modules to the value of 75 credits
An approved individual research project, carried out under the guidance of a lecturer. The project culminates in a research report in the format of a research paper and presentation. The student is expected to obtain the respective skills (theoretical and practical research techniques, data analysis, communication and computer skills) necessary for the research topic.
The module provides a critical review of the structures and paradigms in which the geographical and environmental sciences are practised. Particular reference is made to the development and impact of paradigms and the interdependence of systems within space and time.
Definitions of woodlands and forests and vegetation and forest resources in southern Africa; Classification of forest and woodland in southern Africa; Woodland dynamics including disturbance, recruitment, growth and mortality, recovery after disturbance; Ecosystem services (microclimate and nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration etc); Sustainable forest resource management (resource assessment, socio-economic assessment e.g. wood and non-forest products, participatory resource management processes); Forest health; Monitoring of resource-use impacts and adaptive management; Development of a framework for sustainable conservation and use of non-timber forest products; Climate change and resilience. Forest disease and pathology.
The aim of this module is to understand the principles and processes behind environmental assessments. The module will give an overview of the history of assessments, compare assessment processes internationally, evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches, provide an overview of the South African regulatory context and the environmental authorisation process.
A self-study module on an aspect or aspects of geographical or environmental science selected in consultation with the head of the department from: (a) themes not covered in existing options; or (b) educational subjects.
This module focuses on processes and applications of geomorphology. Topics that may be studied include: soil erosion and conservation, weathering, geomorphic response to environmental change, slope processes and geomorphological hazards. The module includes practical fieldwork and field assessments.
The main themes of the module include: overview of global urbanisation theories and processes; urban morphology and change; the administrative structure and functions of African cities and; the quality of urban life in the developing world.
Study themes include past environmental change, causes and consequences of human-induced environmental change and South Africa and climate change.
The module aims to provide students with an understanding and knowledge of contemporary land reform issues against the background of international land reform experiences. The module also touches on other rural development strategies and ultimately aims to enhance the student's ability to conceptualise and analyse policy in the context of broader environmental issues.
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