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UVic is a global leader in climate research, which means students have the opportunity to take classes from researchers at the forefront of the field. We have compiled a list of courses from nine faculties across campus, including the Faculty of Continuing Studies, that focus on climate change, climate solutions, and other environmental issues. 

You can navigate through the course list by faculty using the buttons below. 

Clicking on the course information will bring you to its entry in the UVic Calendar.

Social Sciences

Advanced Environmental Psychology
An in-depth analysis of how people's thoughts, feelings, and interactions influence and are influenced by the built and natural environment.
Environmental Psychology
Human interaction with the physical environment from a psychological perspective. Topics include environmental perception, cognition, and assessment; personality and environment; the dynamics of social space; the effects of temperature, sound, light and spatial arrangements in neighbourhoods, homes, schools and workplaces; mutual influences of individuals and the natural environment, the design of buildings, and resource management.
Visual Ecology, Seeing the Wild
Environmental Studies (ES)
Explores the terrain of visual media that inform environmental studies in B.C. and internationally. Environmental movements and media campaigns; the visuality of place; art and activism; indigenous new media; representations and relations with non-human animals. Critically examines the politics of looking.
Food in Place, Skills for Change
Environmental Studies (ES)
Develops and puts into action student skills towards a current environmental issue. Training in working with multi-party disputes, First Nations, and non-governmental organizations. Analyzes the role and impact of environmental policy actors.
Power, Difference, and Environmental Politics
Environmental Studies (ES)
Explores how environmental politics is shaped by and seek to challenge relations of oppression.
Colonization, Nature, and the Making of British Columbia
Environmental Studies (ES)
Introduces students to the essential concepts and methods used by historians, archaeologists, anthropologists, geographers and others to analyze environmental change from prehistoric to modern times. Explores how cultural encounters between Euro-American and the Indigenous peoples of British Columbia played out on the physical landscape, focusing on the processes of dispossession and repossession that led to the creation of the space that became British Columbia.
Climate Change and Biodiversity
Environmental Studies (ES)
Examines the challenges a changing climate poses for ecology and conservation biology research and management, including ecological restoration. Particular attention is given to reading scientific papers, both those that present biodiversity pattern and process changes, as well as those that present management solutions to climate-driven biodiversity loss.
Changing Nature
Environmental Studies (ES)
Discusses responsible intervention in ecosystems undergoing rapid change, covering a wide range of contemporary issues from barcoding biodiversity to rewilding, all with the aim of pushing against boundaries of received knowledge about preservation, conservation and restoration of nature.
Environment, Society and Sustainability
Geography (GEOG)
Introduction to the functioning of the biosphere, the ways in which humans alter natural processes, environmental consequences of these alterations and the implications for sustainability. Topics include: energy flows, biogeochemical cycles, ecosystem structure and dynamics, pollution, global change, water resources, biodiversity, endangered species, protected areas, agriculture and food, forestry, marine resources, poverty and development and different worldviews. Potential for a sustainable society is discussed.
Introduction to Physical Geography
Geography (GEOG)
Introduces the science of Physical Geography using an earth-systems approach. Course themes include global climates and climate change, hydrology and water resources, geomorphology and natural hazards, and biogeography; with focus on how geographic sciences are applied to address real world issues.
Introduction to Environmental Management
Geography (GEOG)
Introduces students to the conceptual foundations of resource and environmental management by emphasizing geographic aspects of resource systems within environmental, social, economic, and policy frameworks. Using a variety of examples, it examines strategies and tools such as adaptive management approaches, ecosystem-based management, impact assessment, and conflict resolution.
Introduction to Climatology and Hydrology
Geography (GEOG)
An investigation of the fundmental processes controlling climate and hydrology. Explores various factors and interactions that determine the spatial and temporal variations of individual climate elements. Special attention is given to the mutual interaction of climate with the Earth's surface and the role that ground surface type or cover plays in moderating local climate and hydrology.
Introduction to Biogeography
Geography (GEOG)
Examines the relationships among organisms - principally plants and animals - and their environment, emphasizing their distributions across a range of spatial and temporal scales. Examines basic ecological and evolutionary concepts affecting biogeographic processes of dispersal, speciation and extinction; how patterns of biodiversity change over space and time from early earth history to the contemporary environment; the nature of changing biotic distributions with increasing human impacts and global change.
Environmental Impact Assessment
Geography (GEOG)
An introduction to the objectives, philosophy, concepts, methods and social implications of environmental impact assessment (EIA). A critical examination of EIA as an analytical tool in the context of resource management and public policy is undertaken. Examples are drawn from B.C., Canada and other countries.
Global Environment Change and Human Response
Geography (GEOG)
Based on four components: global environmental change; sustainable development; biodiversity; and population impoverishment and environmental degradation. Lectures and discussion emphasize the causes of global change, the present and expected impacts on natural and social systems, and response strategies that have been proposed or enacted.
Field Studies in Sustainable Communities
Geography (GEOG)
The challenges and opportunities for promoting resilient, inclusive, equitable and sustainable communities are explored through practical and experiential learning. A field trip fee may be applied.
Health, Environment and Community
Geography (GEOG)
Examines the dynamics and linkages between health and the environment at the micro scale of individuals to the macro scale of communities and nations. Definitions of health, wellness and well-being, as well as healthy communities; focusing on the range of factors, conditions and determinants that make people and place healthy or unhealthy.
Applied Climatology
Geography (GEOG)
A study of the application of physical principles to practical problems in climatology and the reciprocal interaction between climate and human activities. Topics include: urban effects on climate; air pollution; human bioclimatology; agricultural climatology; and methods of microclimatic modification.
Sustainable Cities
Geography (GEOG)
Explores the opportunities and challenges of planning ecologically, socially and environmentally just cities.
Environment and Sustainability in Practice
Geography (GEOG)
Examines the decision making theory and real world processes associated with resources management at the policy and field levels. Case studies used to illustrate decision making behaviour, from conflict to co-operation. Simulation sessions, field trip and field methods review.
Advanced Studies in Weather and Climate
Geography (GEOG)
Detailed examination of atmospheric structures and processes underlying weather and climate. Practical work focuses on analysis of vertical stability and utilizing computer weather model data.
Canadian Environmental Politics
Political Science (POLI)
An examination of political factors shaping development and implementation of Canadian environmental policy.
Topics in Environmental Politics
Political Science (POLI)
A seminar course covering examination of political factors shaping responses to selected global environmental issues.
Issues in Environmental Sociology and Climate Change
Sociology (SOCI)
In-depth examination of sociological explanations of the causes and social consequences of environmental degradation and climate change with a focus on solutions and alternatives. Topics may include: social movements around environmental justice, climate change and climate justice, alternative and diverse economies including food sovereignty, "fair trade" and ethical consumption, and ecological feminisms.
Globalization, Health, and the Environment
Anthropology (ANTH)
A comparative framework for understanding the relationship between global processes, the environment and health. Topics may include the origin and evolution of infectious diseases with human societies, social and economic inequalities, violence, gender, diet, health policies, technologies, pandemics, climate change, and health care industries. Emphasis on how local experiences of health are linked to global processes via the environment.
The Economy and the Environment
Economics (ECON)
Investigates the linkages between economic activity and the environment. Studies the relationships between economic growth, trade, urbanization and the global environment, with a particular focus on urban air pollution, water pollution, hazardous waste, solid waste management, and climate change. Environmental policy design, in both developed and developing countries, is the central unifying theme of the course. The course is non-technical in nature and does not require any background in economics or environmental studies.
Environmental Economics I
Economics (ECON)
An introduction to the economic analysis of environmental problems. In particular, an examination of policy interventions in cases where market activities result in socially undesirable impacts on the environment. Topics typically include: externalities; pollution control policy; climate change; public goods; time, uncertainty and the environment; and trade and the environment.
Natural Resource Economics I
Economics (ECON)
Introduces students to economic issues and public policies specific to the use and management of natural resources. Explores economic principles for the efficient allocation of renewable and nonrenewable natural resources over time. Topics typically include a review of current natural resource issues affecting Canada, with particular focus on British Columbia, and policies for the management of forests, water, mineral, petroleum and marine resources, and the conservation of biological diversity.
Climate Economics
Economics (ECON)
Introduces complex issues related to the interaction between the economy and climate, and simple tools of economics used to analyze climate-related problems. Role of energy and governance in economic development. Use of economic principles to quantify human influence on climate, evaluate the IPCC's emissions scenarios, develop instruments for addressing greenhouse gas emissions reductions, compare competing policies for addressing climatic change, and analyze the prospects of proposed solutions to global warming.
Environmental Economics II
Economics (ECON)
A detailed treatment of advanced topics in environmental economics. Topics covered vary from year to year, but typically include a selection from the following: property rights and the Coase theorem, risk and uncertainty, sustainability, policy design under asymmetric information, monitoring and enforcement, green consumerism and corporate environmentalism, trade and the environment, climate change and transboundary pollution, mobile source pollution, non-point source pollution, solid waste management, technological change and non-market valuation.
Natural Resource Economics II
Economics (ECON)
Dynamic optimization as it applies to renewable and non-renewable resources, focusing in particular on dynamic problems related to fishing, logging and mining. Economic principles relating to the governance/regulation of natural resources are also examined.
Principles and Concepts of Ecological Restoration
Environmental Restoration (ER)
An examination of how effective restoration depends on both ecological and cultural awareness, including the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of ecosystems from local to global scales; the impacts of human-induced change; the philosophical and ethical context for good restoration; the need for and significance of community involvement; the legal and policy frameworks that direct and influence restoration activities; and the importance of understanding essential ecosystem characteristics in restoration.
Biodiversity and Conservation Biology
Environmental Restoration (ER)
Study of biological organisms and ecosystems with particular reference to mechanisms of change and human impacts on the environment. Focuses on: biodiversity (definition, assessment methods, loss, and evaluation); population biology (concepts and research methods); habitat loss; species extinction; exotic species and their impacts; and possibilities for human intervention in alleviating trends in species loss and ecosystem degradation.
Traditional Systems of Land and Resource Management
Environmental Restoration (ER)
The role of traditional ecological knowledge in the understanding and documentation of the biodiversity of natural systems and their restoration. Examination of how restoration strategies can benefit from the close relationship of Indigenous Peoples to their local environments, and from their knowledge of plants and animals, their habitats and ecological interrelationships, as well as from traditional land and resource management strategies.
Soil Conservation and Restoration
Environmental Restoration (ER)
Physical, chemical and biological characteristics of soils and their relationship to restoration. Soil fertility; importance of soil flora and fauna, especially mycorrhizae. Comparison of characteristics of undisturbed soils. Types of soil disturbance in agriculture, forestry, mining and urban environments; soil restoration strategies; planning pre- and post-disturbance.
Introduction to Environmental Studies
Environmental Studies (ES)
Introduction to the symptoms and sources of environmental problems and approaches to resolving them. Global and local food systems are used as a focal lens through which to view and understand human impacts on ecosystems (e.g. climate change, biodiversity loss, deforestation) and how those impacts can be best addressed.
Ecological Processes
Environmental Studies (ES)
An introduction to the discipline of ecology with a focus on understanding biotic processes as they relate to contemporary environmental challenges.
Political Ecology
Environmental Studies (ES)
An introduction to the various socio-political and philosophical issues associated with the concept of a sustainable society. Emphasis is placed on the analysis of the complex relationships between social and biophysical systems. Examines how communities and environments are being impacted by the globalization of economies and cultures, technologies and ideologies, as well as responses from a variety of local, non-governmental and international agencies.
Capitalism, Justice and Sustainability
Environmental Studies (ES)
Examines how the global capitalist economy is transforming ecosystems, and how social and environmental challenges are in turn beginning to transform capitalism. Economic alternatives are examined in local and global contexts (e.g. the social economy, steady state economies and Indigenous economic practices).
Environmental Studies (ES)
Environmental knowledge systems of indigenous and other local peoples are increasingly recognized as having relevance in understanding and documenting biological diversity and conservation and in undertaking ecological restoration. The different aspects of local and traditional ecological knowledge and their relationships to western academic knowledge are reviewed and the issues and requirements for applying local knowledge in environmental sustainability are explored.
Past, Present, and Future Ecologies
Environmental Studies (ES)
Explores how ideas and practices about ecosystems and nature more generally have come to be in the early 21st century, how they are manifest in the present, and what trends will shape the future. Rapid environmental, ecological and cultural changes are forcing a reconsideration of how we understand nature and natural processes, and how to intervene responsibly in ecosystems. Themes are drawn from landscape and community ecology, systems ecology, ethnoecology, restoration ecology, and political ecology.
Climate and Society
Environmental Studies (ES)
A survey of the climate system and its interaction with past, present and future societies. Topics include: climate change and the onset of agriculture/domestication, climate change and the rise and fall of early civilizations, the anthropocene and global warming. The interplay between science, media, public relations and public policy is also addressed.
Environmental Evidence in a Post-truth Era
Environmental Studies (ES)
Builds the skills necessary to critically assess environmental issues and research. Emphasis is placed on critical assessment of evidence of all kinds, grounded in an understanding of quantitative and qualitative methodological considerations. Students evaluate a wide variety of approaches to understanding and addressing real-world environmental challenges, and work towards producing their own compelling and comprehensive analysis of these challenges.
Deep Roots, Trajectories of Environmental Thought
Environmental Studies (ES)
Examines classic works and persistent themes in North American environmental thought. A study of primary source material and texts by writers such as Thoreau, Austin, Muir, Pinchot, Leopold, Carson, Ellul, Schumacher, Berry and Shiva.
Climate, Energy and Politics
Environmental Studies (ES)
Focuses on developing the knowledge and skills necessary to evaluate how we might reshape energy systems to address the dual challenges of climate change and sustainability.

Are we missing a class that should be on the list? Email us!

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