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Bachelor of Environmental Science (Freshwater Biology)

Course summary for current students

Award granted Bachelor of Environmental Science (Freshwater Biology)
Duration3 years full-time or part-time equivalent
CRICOS course code075362J
Deakin course codeS382

Note: Offered to continuing students only.

Continuing students should contact their course advisor for further information.

Further course structure information can be found in the handbook archive.

Course sub-headings

Course overview

The Bachelor of Environmental Science (Freshwater Biology) is a course of study designed to provide theoretical and practical expertise in a range of biological, ecological and environmental processes and issues in the freshwater environment. The course is designed to enable graduates to contribute in a professional capacity to the study and management of waterways in Australia and overseas.


You will gain knowledge, understanding and skills in the interdisciplinary study of freshwater organisms and their interactions with the living and non-living environment; the influence of biotic, physical and chemical processes on the dynamics of freshwater ecosystems; and the impacts of humans on, and management of, the freshwater environment and its resources.


This unique course is delivered in a novel way to ensure that you are provided with an undergraduate experience that is exciting and provides marketable skills. The course features hands-on work, field-based practical experiences, and training in high demand professional skills in a variety of freshwater habitats in western Victoria.

Students who do well in their Bachelor of Environmental Science (Freshwater Biology) studies may apply to undertake a fourth (honours) year. Honours courses lead to the postgraduate research degrees of Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy.


Units in the course may include assessment hurdle requirements.

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Course expenses

In addition to student contribution fees, students may be required to meet their own expenses in connection with food and accommodation while on fieldwork.

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Fees and charges

Unit fees can be viewed within individual unit descriptions. You can search for a unit using the Unit Search.


Please be aware:

  • Fees are calculated on a per unit basis
  • Fees charged will depend on the individual units chosen
  • Fees per unit/credit point may increase annually due to rises in the cost of course delivery and services

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Course rules

The course comprises a total of 24 credit points, which must include the following:

  • Completion of SLE010 Laboratory and Fieldwork Safety Induction Program (0 credit-point compulsory unit)
  • level 1 - up to 10 credit points
  • levels 2 and 3 - at least 14 credit points over both levels
  • level 3 - at least 6 credit points of which at least 4 must be science course-grouped

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Course structure

Level 1

Trimester 1

SLE103 Ecology and the Environment  

SLE144 Aquatic Life  

SLE104 The Blue Planet: Water and Life  

SLE106 Unit description is currently unavailable  ^

SLE010 Laboratory and Fieldwork Safety Induction Program  *


Trimester 2

SLE161 Aquaculture and the Environment  

SLE105 Human Impacts - Pollution  

SLE150 Environmental Chemistry  

plus one elective unit


Level 2

Trimester 1

SLE251 Research Methods and Data Analysis  

SLE231 Hydrology and Water Resources Management  

SLE244 Aquatic Ecology  

plus one elective unit


Trimester 2

SLE232 Freshwater Biology  

SLE261 Diversity of Fishes  

SLE223 Water Quality and Ecological Health  

plus one elective unit


Level 3

Trimester 1

SLE301 Professional Practice  

SLE304 Geographic Information Systems: Uses in Aquatic Environments  

plus two elective units


Trimester 2

SLE319 Environmental Planning - Catchments to Coast  

plus three elective units


* SLE010 is a compulsory 0-credit point unit.

Available elective units:


SLE254 Genetics  

SLE315 Comparative Animal Physiology  

SLE314 Research Project  

SLE162 Marine and Coastal Environmental Communications  

SLE263 Marine and Coastal Ecosystems  

SLE350 Marine Wildlife  

SLE328 Oceans, Coasts and Climate Change  


^ Not available as of 2013


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8th June 2007