Close Menu

Environmental Impact Assessment

Semester 1

This course provides an overview of the variety of environmental assessment tools available with the selection of the EIA for in depth treatment. It aims to help students understand what impact assessment is attempting to achieve and what constitutes a good EIA and EIS. The course will introduce participants to the fundamental principles and philosophy of EIA, including practical demonstrations for illustrative purposes. The course will expect students to reflect deeply on the limitations and key issues of EIA as it is currently practiced, and suggest creative solutions to advance the effectiveness of EIA as an environmental management tool.


▪ General overview environmental assessment tools currently available; introduction to Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) including definition, goals, objectives and purpose; definition of key terms, history of the EIA; legislative, policy and institutional framework for EIA.
▪ Description of the EIA process, with emphasis on biodiversity conservation and sustainable use; development of Terms of Reference (TOR) including screening, scoping and public participation; and assessment of project impacts, including understanding the ecosystem, assessment of significant impacts of the project and impact management.
▪ EIS reporting and Environmental Management Plans, review of the EIS, linked to the TOR; and follow-up monitoring, auditing, adaptive management and enforcement; public participation, EIA standards, EIA for islands, and Strategic Environmental Assessments.

  • Coursework 50 %
    • Project 25%
    • Essay 25%
  • Final Exam 50 %
    • One two-hour examination
Learning Objectives: 

The student who successfully completes this course will be able to:

  • Understand the variety of environmental assessment tools available and their key functions
  • Describe the role and intentions of EIA in environmental management for sustainable development
  • Explain processes, principles and supporting legislation
  • Define the objectives of EIA
  • Critically assess the quality of EIA processes and EIA documents, especially TORs and EIS
  • Explain the limitations of EIA in environmental management and issues that require further development to improve the contribution of EIA to sustainable development
Course Code: 
3 Credits
Top of Page