• Offered by Fenner School of Environment and Society
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Environmental Science
  • Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Environmental Science, Biodiversity Conservation

This course includes on campus activities 23 Nov - 4 Dec. Contact FSES.Coursework.Enquiries@anu.edu.au if you are unable to travel to Canberra.

Evidence based policy, management and research require fundamental understanding and skills in environmental measurement, modelling and monitoring. This course provides grounding in the statistical and ecological theories that underpin environmental quantification. It also develops the essential quantitative skill-set that environmental scientists, natural resource managers and policy makers need to master.

Measurement theory, sampling, allometry, modeling and assessing environmental function and change will be explored during the course. Field-based case studies, especially long-term ecological sites and the ANU Research Forest but also including a range of different applications across the biophysical and social sciences, will support integration of lecture, workshop and reading material as well as providing examples of leading research and general application. Students will also research case studies relevant to their postgraduate programs or interests.

Workshops, including short field visits, will focus on specific examples of measurement and the impact of instrument selection and use; experimental design and implicit consequences; common and advanced analysis techniques including regression modeling; and storage and presentation of raw and processed data for future understanding and re-analysis. A range of experts from organisations including CSIRO and public service departments will share their knowledge and perspectives with students during the course.

Specific examples of applications of quantitative tools and systems explored and critiqued may include:

  • Biometric/HabitatHectares/McElhinney indices for environmental impact assessment;
  • BushTender/ReefTrust/SavingOurSpecies for benefit:cost metrics
  • Atlas of Living Australia for collection and presentation of presence only data;
  • National Carbon Assessment Tool for forest, woodland and farm biomass
  • Landscape Functional Analysis
  • Plot and plotless, equal and unequal probability samples

This course is co-taught with undergraduate students but assessed separately.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Demonstrate advanced conceptual understanding of measurement and modeling approaches in ecological studies;
  2. Critically apply advanced concepts and methods of quantitative analysis in the context of environmental data, with special reference to experimental design and monitoring environmental dynamics and change;
  3. Effectively critique and communicate quantitative outputs and data collection/analysis strategies to a scientific/management community.

Other Information

If you do not meet the requisites for this course, it may be possible to receive a permission code. If you are prompted for a permission code on ISIS, please request one online via the following form

Indicative Assessment

  1. Computer-based assignments to demonstrate student learning of underlying theories and practice of quantification. These quizzes will draw extensively from workshops and field-trips. (25) [LO 1,2]
  2. A major report on the quantification of a biome or case study area to meet specified objectives. Students will justify their approach and outline a monitoring approach to provide quantitative evidence of system dynamics or change as appropriate. This assessment requires students to demonstrate ability to integrate knowledge of measurement, modeling and monitoring, in the format of a 2500-word report. (50) [LO 1,2,3]
  3. A critique of an environmental quantification system or sub-system (e.g. monitoring design, analysis system or retrieval communication system). (25) [LO 1,2,3]

In response to COVID-19: Please note that Semester 2 Class Summary information (available under the classes tab) is as up to date as possible. Changes to Class Summaries not captured by this publication will be available to enrolled students via Wattle. 

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the session including:

  • Face-to face component from 9-5 with daily workshops and other activities such as lectures, practicals and field-trips.
  • Approximately 32 hours of self-study which will include preparation for lectures, presentations and other assessment tasks.

Students are expected to actively participate and contribute towards discussions.

Inherent Requirements

To be determined

Requisite and Incompatibility

Incompatible with ENVS2002

Prescribed Texts

Not applicable.

Preliminary Reading

Forest Measurement and Modeling / C.L.Brack (http://fennerschool-associated.anu.edu.au/mensuration/home.htm)

Assumed Knowledge

Knowledge and/or professional experience equivalent to ENVS1003 Introduction to Environmental and Social Research is strongly recommended.



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $4050
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2020 $5760
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6619 22 Nov 2021 22 Nov 2021 03 Dec 2021 18 Dec 2021 In Person N/A

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