GEOG 205 : Environment and Society


2021 Summer School (1210) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

A critical exploration of the interconnectedness of environment and society. The course highlights the importance of understanding how different views and attitudes influence people's interactions with the environment. Key themes include governance, management and development, which are addressed through issues such as conservation, climate change adaptation, disasters and resource use. Classes draw on a variety of case studies from New Zealand and overseas.

Course Overview

In this course students will have gained an understanding of the interconnections between environment and society. Case studies from around the world highlight the ways in which people's knowledge, attitudes, social norms, and worldview influence how the perceive and interact with the environment, which includes how they respond to environmental issues (including pollution, biodiversity loss, climate change, and water scarcity) and how they engage with animals. Through lectures that cover everything from different understandings of nature, the management of freshwater and fisheries, food production and environmental justice, and responses to climate change, the lecturers highlight how different forms of knowledge (scientific, local, Indigenous) mediate individuals, communities and institutions interactions with the environment and the management of resources.

The course will be interesting to anyone interested in understanding the drivers and responses to the environmental problems confronting humanity, including climate change, water pollution, global fisheries crises, soil contamination, and loss of biodiversity. It also of interested to anyone interested in sustainability, sustainable development, and Indigenous knowledge and environmental management policies and practices. The course is designed for human geography students, but is also suitable for any student who is interested in the social dimensions of environmental issues and is designed as an introductory course into environmental geography. No past study experience in either human geography or social science is necessary in order to enrol in this course. The course could leads onto third year human geography courses, most notably GEOG 352, GEOG 320, and GEOG 324. 

 The course adopts an innovative mixed delivery method, with a mixture of online and face-to-face deliveries methods adopted. Each week lectures will be delivered online, and the lecturer will host also Question and Answer Session about the lecture material. Each week tutorials will be delivered face-to-face (as well as several online tutorial sessions available each week as well). The tutorials are designed as interactive activities to give students practical exercises that allow them to translate abstract concepts and theories discussed in the lectures into real-world applications. In addition, specific tutorials are designed to help students prepare their assignment and revise for their final exam. 

Course Requirements

Prerequisite: 60 points

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Bachelor of Science

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Evaluate key theoretical ideas about human-environment relations using place-based case studies from Aotearoa/New Zealand and beyond (Capability 1, 2, 5 and 6)
  2. Demonstrate an introductory understanding of the diversity and depth of human geography scholarship on environment and society interactions (Capability 1, 2 and 6)
  3. Be able to to investigate and critique complex environmental problems in Aotearoa/New Zealand, Oceania, and beyond (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 5)
  4. Be able to critically discuss ork to organise and synthesise environmental geographical knowledge about how different views, attitudes, and values influence people’s interactions with the environmentork to organise and and organise, and synthesise environmental geographical knowledge about how different views, attitudes, and values influence people’s interactions with the environment (Capability 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5)
  5. Develop and demonstrate an engagement with a diverse social groups’ positions by distinguishing multiple ways of seeing and valuing different knowledges (Capability 1, 4, 5 and 6)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Quizzes 15% Individual Coursework
Essay 25% Individual Coursework
Exam 60% Individual Examination
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5
Final grades will be based upon the sum of the marks earned in the coursework and exam
There is no plussage in this course


The Tuākana Programme encourages Māori and Pacific students to achieve their full academic potential. As part of the University-wide Tuākana community, The School of Environment Tuākana Programme aims to provide a welcoming learning environment for, and enhance the success of, all of our Māori and Pacific students. We are led by the principles of tautoko (support) and whanaungatanga (connection), and hope you find a home here at the School. Students who have identified as Māori and/or Pacific will receive an invitation to our online portal introducing the Programme, the resources we have available, and how you can get involved. 

This course is supported by a designated Tuākana tutor with appropriate knowledge of the course and related skills. They will organise group study sessions and facilitate direct assistance regarding material taught in this course. For more information regarding the Programme feel free to email our Programme Coordinator: Sonia Fonua 

Key Topics

  • Environment-society relationships in regard to human geography
  • Political ecology of meat
  • Food politics 
  • Environmental justice
  • Environmental degradation and disasters
  • Wildlife and disasters
  • Participation and environmental management
  • Climate justice
  • Climate change communication 
  • Climate change scepticism 
  • Climate change adaptation 
  • Indigenous knowledge and environmental management
  • Political economy of bottle water

Special Requirements

Tutorials are not compulsory but attendance is recommended to enhance your learning 

Workload Expectations

The course is designed with a budget of 150 hours of a student’s time. This conforms to the University and the Ministry of Education guidelines for a 15-point course. There are 30 hours lectures and approximately 25 hours for reading accompanying the lectures. This leaves the remainder to complete the coursework and study for your exam.

At University students are expected manage their own workload. Please be aware that time management issues are a significant cause of student anxiety. There are key crisis points, such as 4 and Week 6, when assessment due dates often overlap in multiple courses. Please try and be proactive and plan to avoid this by completing your course work as early as possible.

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience or Online

This course is offered in two delivery modes:

Campus Experience

Lectures are all online and will be delivered as pre-recorded lectures which will be released every week.

Face to face tutorials will be held on campus. Attendance is expected at scheduled activities including tutorials to complete components of the course.

Attendance on campus is required for the exam (unless based remotely).

The lectures will be released on Monday of each week, and tutorial activities for the course are scheduled as a standard timetable schedule. 


Lectures are all online and will be delivered as pre-recorded lectures which will be released every week. 

Attendance is expected at scheduled online activities including tutorials to complete components of the course.

The course will include live online events including tutorials and these will be recorded.

Attendance on campus is not required for the exam.

Where possible, study material will be available be released progressively throughout the course.

This course runs to the University semester timetable and all the associated completion dates and deadlines will apply.

Learning Resources

1. Lectures (Online)
GEOG205 uses a flipped classroom model, which means that you (the students) complete learning normally covered in class (by watching videos of lectures, going over the readings and accessing other resources provided online) before the class. Then in class (during your tutorials), you will be doing hands-on interactive activities that are designed to deepen your understanding of the topics and concepts discussed in the lectures and readings. In class, you will be applying the theories and concepts discussed in the lecture videos and utilising a range of techniques (including group problem-solving, role-playing simulations, and case study reviews) that are based on those used in the real-world (outside the classroom).
Each week the lecturers will put up learning segments. Every week the four video lectures will be uploaded on Monday, as well as additional e-learning materials. Each week’s video segments are all linked with the learning and assessment outcomes. In addition, pre-class activities will be available online. These are carefully designed to help you learn about key concepts in a schedule which suits you, develop your understanding of the topics, and ensure you feel confident in your classroom and assignment activities. Accordingly, there are no lectures to be given in class
2. Tutorials (in-class and online)
The tutorials will run each week face-to-face and/or online. Face-to-face tutorials will be held each week and run by lecturer Anthony Gampell and Tutor Martin Joel each week. In addition, several online tutorials will be delivered via Zoom by Anthony and Joel for those students who are not able to attend face-to-face tutorials (such as being overseas and/or working remotely). For those students who are studying remotely and may encounter difficulties attending Zoom-based tutorials please email Lecturer Anthony Gampell to discuss what alternative arrangements can be used to assist their learning.
During the tutorials, the tutor will run interactive activities designed to translate the lectures (the case studies) into tangible, practical, and engaging activities, as well as discussing the readings and lecture material. The tutor will also provide guidance about the assignments. All assignments are all clearly connected with pre-class (online) and face-to-face class learning experiences so that your learning is relevant and lasting.

3. Readings
There is no prescribed textbook for this course. Each lecturer provides you with readings relevant to their lectures. There will be a minimum of one key reading per lecture (which will be listed on second slide of each lecture and available through the Canvas Reading List tab as essential readings). You need to try to do the key readings (Essential Resources) before each tutorial. The Essential Reading is directly linked to the lecture material and by reading it you will deepen your understanding of the concept, argument or case study that the teacher talks about in their lecture. Additional readings (which are listed as further readings on Reading List) are also provided to you with more information, to deepen your knowledge on a particular topic that interests you, and to help you write your essay. You are expected to do read all the Essential Resources for the course (but not those marked "Additional Resources" which are optional extras).
You are expected to complete the key readings as part of your course workload. Best practice (for this class) is to do the readings before you attend your tutorials, because in-tutorial you will do practical activities designed to deepen your understanding of the topics and concepts covered in the online lectures and provide you the opportunity to analyse and discuss the readings in-depth. You should only be spending about an hour a week on your reading materials related to this course.
Lectures provide a comprehensive introduction to the topics to be examined but your grade will be greatly enhanced by reading widely and critically. We strongly urge you to take personal responsibility for your own learning, and increase your understanding and appreciation of the subject by following up lecture material with your own study programme.

4. Inclusive Learning
GEOG205 strives to be a safe, inclusive and equitable space that supports our social and environmental responsibilities (see the University of Auckland Graduate Profile). You are encouraged to discuss privately any learning-related requirements with Anthony Gampell via email or Zoom.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

The School of Environment values student feedback on its courses and programmes. Formal SET evaluations are held for the lecturer and the course each semester. Additionally feedback is encouraged at all times. Throughout the semester Anthony and other members of the teaching team will use Piazza to ask the students how the course is going. Anthony will run anonymous polls in Piazza to get feedback throughout the semester about how the course is running and student views about specific aspects of the course material (such as what video format is most popular or what is the best feature of tutorials). In addition, GEOG205 will have one class representative who will attend the School of Environment’s Staff-Student Postgraduate Consultative Committee. Contact details for the “class rep” will be posted on the syllabus page of Canvas.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

A document (available on Canvas) is provided on Canvas under the Assignments tab which contains helpful tips to avoid plagiarism (copying others work which is classified as cheating) and ensure that you are referencing properly. The requirement regarding correct referencing of sources also applies to sources on the world‐wide web. You must not have previously submitted your coursework in this or any other subject, so avoid self-plagiarism (which is actually a serious problem for both students and academics, so make sure you are using new words to describe things, even if you are writing about similar topics or drawing on the same sources of information in each of your assignments).

A student's assessed work will be automatically reviewed against electronic source material using Turnitin plagiarism software. You will be able to see your Turnitin scores when you submit your assignment through Canvas – you will be given a Turnitin score and a report from Turnitin which outlines if there is any plagiarism in your work – and are able to submit through Canvas multiple times (up until the deadline) to allow you the opportunity to correct your assignments and ensure that your Turnitin scores are as low as possible (below 10%).
• It is the student's responsibility to read and adhere to the University's policies, which may be viewed at:
• Staff encourage students to work together but do not share electronic copies of your coursework. Enabling another to cheat is also a form of academic misconduct.
• Referen©ite – this web resource provides guidance on correctly acknowledging sources of information:


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and your assessment is fair, and not compromised. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the University Website for information about how to proceed.

Level 1: Delivered normally as specified in delivery mode
Level 2: You will not be required to attend in person. All teaching and assessment will have a remote option.
Level 3 / 4: All teaching activities and assessments are delivered remotely

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 08/06/2021 05:57 p.m.