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Bachelor studies Natural Resource Sciences

An empirically-focused study programme dealing with issues such as the environment, nature, tourism, renewable energies, organic agriculture and horticulture, environmental systems and sustainable development, ecological engineering, nature management and urban ecosystems.

Why study Natural Resource Sciences?

Never before has the pressure on business and society to think and act in a resource-oriented and sustainable way been so great. Climate change in particular poses a major challenge to industry and governments. With a Bachelor's degree in Natural Resource Sciences, you will be able to tackle a variety of problems in areas where there are conflicting interests between economic and social demands, and have the opportunity to influence future developments in the fields of the environment, sustainability and energy.

«In my studies to become an environmental engineer, I am always facing new challenges, which is why I can improve my social skills in addition to my expertise. Furthermore, in the modules I choose myself, I have the opportunity to apply the theory I have learned in practice and am thus well prepared for my career entry.»

Domenika Bitterli, Environmental Engineering student,
Specialization Environmental Systems and Sustainable Development

Holding a Bachelor of Science in Natural Resource Sciences

Good reasons for studying Natural Resource Sciences at the ZHAW

Study programme and course content

The degree programme in Natural Resource Sciences comprises six semesters. The first year consists of the core curriculum followed by an individualised course of study, which you largely design yourself according to your specific interests and career goals. You choose your specialisation in the 2nd semester, of which there are five:

Please note: at the moment most of the information we can only offer in German.

«As a prospective natural resource scientist, you will study at the interface of the environment, society and technology.»

Danièle Lagnaz, BSc Programme Director at the Institute of Natural Resource Scienes

Specialisation «Agriculture and Horticulture»

Organic products - as a result of rising demands and high quality standards, the challenges for production, consulting and research are increasing.

Specialisation «Renewable Energies and Ecological Engineering»

The residential areas and cities of the future will be designed more sustainably and conforming to natural cycles, which calls for sustainable thinking and creativity.

Specialisation «Nature Management»

Solutions for the sustainable use of the nature and landscapes are in great demand. Here,  balanced consideration of economic, social and ecological factors is indispensable.

Specialisation «Environmental Systems and Sustainable Development»

The focus is on people and how they can be motivated to act in a resource-conserving manner. Sustainability must be rethought and a contribution made to sustainable development.

Specialisation «Urban Ecosystems»

As urbanisation progresses, we face the challenge of developing solutions to reduce negative environmental impacts and improve the quality of life in residential areas.

No matter which model you choose: In addition to contact lectures, you should allow enough time for follow-up work and exam preparation at home (self-study).

Flexible study modules

FULL-TIME Duration: 6 semesters (180 ECTS) over 3 years
30 lectures per week
PART-TIME Duration: 8 to 12 semesters (180 ECTS) over 4 to 6 years
Part-time studies are integrated into full-time studies. The individual timetable allows you to pursue a flexible professional career. Participation in the introductory week (Startwoche) at the beginning of your studies in addition to other project weeks are compulsory.
Planning part-time studies (PDF) (in German)

Module overview

«In my studies to become an environmental engineer, I was enabled to use the theory I had learned behind methods and tools in practical applications. The individual composition of the modules enabled me to sharpen my profile according to my own interests. I am ready to work in the environmental industry on innovative solutions for the future.»

Kim Jäggi, Environmental Engineering student

International exchange and mobility

Would you like to make your everyday life as a student truly international? We offer you attractive opportunities to do so: For example, you can experience an exchange semester in Europe, complete an internship module in an emerging country or write your Bachelor’s thesis in Asia - the offers are diverse and provide you with unique experiences.

Post-graduate employment opportunities

Environmental markets are developing rapidly and very dynamically. The areas of environmental technologies and services, energy and water supplies, regional agriculture, urban and landscape development are regarded as having high developmental potential both in the short and long term. In the course of (building) a sustainable economy, numerous new jobs are being created in the environmental sector.

The future relies on sustainability. With a Bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Sciences, you will be well equipped for this. The programme leads to professional qualifications, and thanks to the practically-oriented training, it will open up a wide range of career opportunities for you, be it as an employee in the private sector, public administration, a non-profit organisation, or as a self-employed entrepreneur.

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