Faculty of Arts

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitSustainability Environment and Society
OfferedClayton First semester 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Bruce Missingham


Previously coded GES3250


This unit deals with the processes for assessing the potential environmental consequences of a range of human activities with a focus on development proposals and land use changes. These can be highly contentious because of the conflicting interests, types of knowledge and values of different stakeholders. The unit will examine the nature of the widely-adopted procedure of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), exploring relevant legislative frameworks and understandings of best practice. It will also examine other assessment tools such as social impact assessment, strategic environmental assessments, cost-benefit analysis, and product life cycle assessment.


Students successfully completing this unit should:

  1. Understand the different types of environmental assessments and the decision-making contexts in which they are applied.
  2. Understand the roles of scientific information, socio-political, economic, legal and participatory processes in different types of environmental assessments.
  3. Understand the range of tools and methods, and their strengths and weaknesses, in conducting environmental assessments.
  4. Be familiar with Commonwealth and state procedures for environmental impact assessment for projects and plans in Australia.
  5. Understand the different stages of environmental impact assessment and identify best principles and practices for preparing environmental impact statements.


Participation: 5%
Research essay (2500 words): 35%
Group oral presentation (15 minutes) and written submission(500 words/person): 20%
Examination (2 hours): 40%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

Four 4-hour block mode presentations per semester

  • Twelve 1-hour tutorial per semester
  • Ten hours independent study per week

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


A first year sequence in Geographical science, or two gateway units in Society, cities and sustainability or permission of the unit coordinator


ENV3011, ATS2546, AZA2546, AZA3546