LNAK10010U Environmental Impact Assessment

Volume 2020/2021

MSc Programme in Biology
MSc Programme in Environment and Development 
MSc Programme in Environmental Science
MSc Programme in Geography and Geoinformatics


The aim of the course is to introduce the components and structure of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) as well as discuss how national guidelines and requirements for EIAs influence the outcome.
Modern EIA includes both environmental and social impacts of development projects, hence the course is interdisciplinary by nature and is relevant for a range of academic disciplines.
Students will obtain a comprehensive overview and thorough knowledge of EIA procedures and methodologies.
An EIA requires insights into a wide spectrum of methodologies and procedures, as well as a range of professional qualifications. Current EIAs include an evaluation of environmental, economic, social and cultural impacts. EIA is a rapidly evolving and expanding field of activity and an important professional field for candidates interested in natural resource management and development. The course will introduce basic concepts and generic methodologies, and will focus on EIA within the fields of agriculture and forestry, natural resource management, infrastructure and water resource management projects. The problems and pitfalls of EIA will be discussed. The course is mainly focusing on EIA in developing countries, but examples from Denmark and other countries are also used.
After completing the course, the students should have a comprehensive overview and thorough knowledge of EIA procedures and relevant EIA methodologies. In combination with the professional knowledge from their individual disiplinary backgrounds, the students should be able to contribute to design and implementation of EIAs.

Course contents:
-The aims and history of EIA
-Development of EIA, e.g. 'Strategic Environmental Assessment' and 'Social Impact Assessment'.
-Guidelines and administrative procedures
-Public involvement
-The EIA-process (initial work, screening, scoping, assessing, mitigation and impact management, reporting, reviewing, decision making, monitoring/implementing/auditing)
-Methodology: Checklists, matrices, models, expert systems, networks etc.
-EIA-management (incl. economic valuation)

The course will use case studies to illustrate the EIA process.

Learning Outcome

The aim of the course is to introduce the components and structure of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) as well as discuss how national guidelines and requirements for EIAs influences the outcome.

-Show overview of the components of an EIA and their respective requirements and outputs

- explain specific methods and tools used in EIA
- apply assessment principles and expand applicability to other cases

- apply methods and approaches used in environmental impact assessment (EIA) outside own disciplinary field.
- discuss impacts and weigh them against benefits from concrete development projects
- evaluate desirability of development plans based on an evaluation of impacts, mitigation options and the likely benefits.

The course is relevant for students with an interest in environmental management in developing countries. All disciplines are welcomed.

Academic qualifications equivalent to a BSc degree is recommended.
Lectures followed by class discussions and exercises with case material. Severeal guest lecturers with practical experience from developing countries and international donor organisations will be invited during the course. Group work, partly dealing with case studies. Role games. Individual preparation and group work. Guided excursion
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 30
  • Class Instruction
  • 30
  • Preparation
  • 88
  • Excursions
  • 7
  • Project work
  • 50
  • Exam
  • 1
  • Total
  • 206
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Feedback by final exam (In addition to the grade)

Feedback will be given continuously through discussions in class and with groups. Feedback on the ToR and group reports will be given after the exam.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Oral examination, 20 min
Written assignment
Two mandatory group reports are submitted during the course, which, together, contribute with 40% of the final mark. The rest of the final mark (60%) is based on an individual oral exam in the written reports and the general curriculum. In order to pass the course both the written and the oral parts of the exam have to be passed even if the weighted average is enough to pass.
Exam registration requirements

Participation in group assignments and full participation in 2 group reports.

All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship

As the ordinary exam.

If the exam requirement is not fulfilled three written assignments (2 exam cases and one review of the course curricula) must be handed in and approved no later than three weeks prior to reexamination

Criteria for exam assesment

See the learning outcome