Environmental Sciences and Humanities
Anthropogenic climate change, natural degradation, and loss of biodiversity but also sustainable energy production, resource depletion, and waste disposal demand immediate action and governance. The management of these environmental challenges has already caused and will increasingly engender ethical concerns, dilemmas, and conflicts. The bachelor minor study programmes in Environmental Sciences complements the competences acquired in the main studies with special knowledge in the environmental sciences and humanities as well as in environmental ethics. It equips students with the competences for resolving governance challenges in the fields of the environment, sustainability and climate change. The unique knowledge accomplished in these bachelor minor programmes is an integrative and comprehensive sensibilisation on how to analyse environmental conflicts and to propose ethically sound solutions to environmental challenges.
Profile of the study programme
The bachelor minor study programmes in environmental sciences are offered with three options: environmental sciences, environmental law, and applied environmental management. All minors comprise four basic courses introducing the different fields of environmental sciences, a compulsory elective programme in the environmental humanities and ethics, excursions and an interfaculty elective programme from all five Faculties of the University of Fribourg.
– Environmental Sciences (30 ECTS credits): Students acquire basic knowledge in all fields of the environmental sciences with a special focus on the environmental humanities and ethics.
– Environmental Law (60 ECTS credits): Students dive into environmental law while gaining basic knowledge in all fields of the environmental sciences and especially in the environmental humanities and ethics.
– Applied Environmental Management (60 ECTS credits): Beyond basic knowledge in all fields of the environmental sciences and a special focus on the environmental humanities and ethics, students acquire practical experiences in an internship.
Structure of classes and lectures
All bachelor minor programmes in environmental sciences have the following structure in common. The basic courses introduce the problems and approaches of the different disciplines relevant to the environmental sciences. They cover selected disciplines in natural sciences, social sciences and the humanities. Students successfully completing the basic courses deepen their competences within an elective programme of compulsory courses in the environmental humanities and an elective programme in all other disciplines relevant to the environmental sciences.
The elective programme in the environmental humanities consists of compulsory courses in the environmental humanities as well as in teaching units relevant to the environmental sciences, provided by the existing course programme of the Universities of Fribourg and Bern. In all three minor study programmes students participate in three excursions attached to the seminar «Focal Points of Sustainable Development». Students attend courses of at least 2 ECTS credits each from at least two Faculties of the University of Fribourg. Students choose their electives depending on their interests and specialisations.
In these bachelor minor study programmes students complement their main studies with competences for detecting the ethical implications in environmental practice. In addition, students acquire introductory scientific, economic and legal knowledge concerning the environmental challenges of today. Studying at the multi-lingual University of Fribourg allows students to gain language competences in French and German.
Structure of studies
60/30 ECTS credits as a minor study programme
The following Swiss school-leaving certificates grant admission to bachelor programmes at the University of Fribourg:
- Swiss academic Maturity Certificate
- Federal vocational or specialised Baccalaureate + supplementary examination of the Swiss Maturity Commission (passerelle)
- Bachelor Degree from a Swiss university, from an accredited Swiss university of applied sciences (HES/FH) or from a Swiss university of teacher education (HEP/PH)
A complete list of all further recognised Swiss school-leaving certificates is to be found on the webpages of swissuniversities (in French and German only): http://studies.unifr.ch/go/en-admission-swiss-certificates
Foreign upper secondary school-leaving certificates are recognised only if they correspond substantially to the Swiss Maturity Certificate. They must qualify as general education. Foreign school-leaving certificates are considered to be general education if the last three years of schooling include at least six general education subjects, independent from each other, in accordance with the following list:
- First language (native language)
- Second language
- Natural sciences (biology or chemistry or physics)
- Humanities and social sciences (geography or history or economics/law)
- Elective (computer sciences or philosophy or an additional language or an additional subject from category 4 or 5)
The general admission requirements to the bachelor programmes at the University of Fribourg for holders of foreign school-leaving certificates as well as the admission requirements for individual countries are to be found on the webpages of swissuniversities: http://studies.unifr.ch/go/en-admission-countrylist
In addition, foreign candidates must present proof of sufficient language skills in French or German.
The assessment of foreign school-leaving certificates is based on the «CRUS Recommendations for the Assessment of Foreign Upper Secondary School-Leaving Certificates, 7 September 2007» (http://studies.unifr.ch/go/crus07en). The admission requirements are valid for the respective academic year. The Rectorat of the University of Fribourg reserves the right to change these requirements at any time.