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Frequently Asked Questions

About our degrees

BASc degrees, the difference between single and joint honours, and why study GSD at Warwick.

Admissions

Entry requirements, personal statements, and changing courses.

Teaching and learning

Teaching style, contact hours, and course structure.

Modules

Core modules, optional modules, and studying a language.

Assessments

Types of assessments and the ratio of exams to coursework.

Student support

Stepping up from school to university, settling in as an international student, and support services.

Study abroad

Integrated study abroad, intercalated study abroad, and when you'll need to decide about studying abroad.

Professional development

Professional development certificates, work placements, and employability.

Offer holders

Recommended readings, meeting other offer holders, and advice for gap years.

About our degrees

The title of your degree will be the same as the title of the course which you applied for through UCAS.

Single honours:

  • BASc Global Sustainable Development

Joint honours:

  • BASc Global Sustainable Development and Business Studies
  • BASc Economic Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Education Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Hispanic Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc History and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Life Sciences and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Philosophy and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Politics, International Studies and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Psychology and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Sociology and Global Sustainable Development
  • BASc Theatre and Performance Studies and Global Sustainable Development

BASc stands for Bachelor of Arts and Sciences. Unlike most degree courses at UK institutions, our GSD degrees do not focus study on primarily an Arts or Sciences based subject or subjects. Each one of our courses takes a transdisciplinary approach. You will examine global sustainability issues and development from different disciplines (or subjects).

On our single honours GSD degree you will spend most of your time learning with the GSD Department.

On our joint honours degrees you will combine your core GSD modules with modules from one of our partner departments. You will spend half your time with the GSD Department and the other with the department named in the other subject in your degree title.

Transdisciplinary approach

The world faces many unprecedented challenges with widespread human and ecological ramifications. The consequences of which will occur across social equity, individual wellbeing, cultural cohesion, migration, governance, environmental change, and the production, distribution and use of food, material and resources. These challenges intersect and we won't solve them in isolation. Our degrees offer a transdisciplinary, problem-based approach to learning. You will engage with problems and explore creative resolutions.

Expert academics

Our staff are expert academics and researchers drawn from a variety of disciplines across the humanities, social sciences and scientific fields, including politics, anthropology, economics, history, sociology and many other fields of enquiry. All are passionate about defining, investigating and exploring solutions to those issues which are of vital importance to the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of society.

Research communities

Warwick’s Global Research Priorities (GRPs) undertake pioneering interdisciplinary research across the globe.

The GRPs respond to complex multi-faceted global problems that can only be tackled through collaborative research excellence. They unite academics from different disciplines to address some of humanity’s most urgent questions and create fertile ground for new ideas to flourish - enabling us to improve the lives of people around the world.

As a GSD student, you’ll be able to engage in rich debates beyond your course, with the opportunity to interact with researchers, attend lectures, and engage with events hosted by the GRPs.

Institute for Global Sustainable Development

Our School is home to Warwick’s Institute for Global Sustainable Development (IGSD), which provides a focal point for Warwick’s sustainable development research, contributing towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) but still challenging of them. IGSD’s vision is to be at the forefront of knowledge creation, enabling transformations towards a more sustainable, prosperous, healthier and just world for all.

It undertakes path-breaking transdisciplinary research and capacity development to tackle global challenges and enable changes in human-environment interactions. By establishing equitable partnerships with researchers and non-scientific stakeholders across the global North and the global South, IGSD works on challenge-led research projects that cross the boundaries of disciplines in the humanities, natural and social sciences, and achieve impact towards the SDGs.

IGSD contributes to GSD modules and we’re proud to host the Institute and be at the core of the University’s network of researchers addressing the world’s most pressing problems of sustainable development.

Unique study abroad programme

We’ll support you if you want to extend your learning and broaden your perspective by studying overseas. You’ll have the unique opportunity to spend part of your second year studying abroad at our partner institution, Monash University, home to the Monash Sustainable Development Institute. You may, alternatively, choose to spend an intercalated year at one of Warwick's many other partner institutions across the world.

More information on studying abroad.

Professional development skills

Employers need graduates who can consider global challenges from different perspectives, understand their complexity and competently contribute potential solutions using a variety of approaches. Our courses address this need by equipping you to work and live in a way that safeguards environmental, social and economic wellbeing in the present and for future generations, and by giving you the skills, knowledge and understanding to enable you to contribute to and lead on international debates at the highest levels on the world’s stage.

More information on professional development.

Admissions

Entry requirements

All our courses require a minimum of grade 6/grade B in English Language and Mathematics at GCSE or equivalent.

Our entry requirements depend on the course you wish to apply to. Please see the entry requirements for our degrees.

If you have any questions about our entry requirements, please contact the Undergraduate Admissions Team or our Department.

We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications. Find out more about our international entry requirements.

You will also need to meet our English Language requirements. Our courses fall under Band C.

If you are in any doubt, please contact Warwick’s Student Recruitment, Outreach and Admissions Team or our Department to discuss your application.

Specific subject requirements depend on the course which you wish to apply to.

For application to our single honours GSD degree, there are no specific subject requirements.

For application to our joint honours degrees, some of our courses require specific subjects. To find out more about the subject requirements for our joint honours courses, please see our entry requirements page.

If you are taking the IB you will be well-positioned to undertake any of our GSD degrees. You will find that many of the skills that you have been trained in will be utilised, enhanced and transformed on our programme.

Both the IB and our range of GSD degrees follow particular forms of teaching methods such as:

  • Inquiry-based learning
  • Problem-based learning
  • Constructivism
  • Facilitating metacognition
  • Cognitive apprenticeship
  • Collaborative learning

Like the IB, our degrees encourage you to build on your existing knowledge as you examine complex problems before taking principled action. Principled action means making responsible choices, sometimes including decisions not to act.  
“Individuals, organisations and communities can engage in principled action when they explore the ethical dimensions of personal and global challenges.” (IBO 2013: 4)

We do not typically interview applicants. Offers are made based on your UCAS form which includes predicted and actual grades, your personal statement and school reference. We will also consider your second personal statement when making offers.

Personal statements

As we offer unique degrees, we understand that you will need to write a personal statement suitable for five different courses. For this reason, we do not expect you to write anything about GSD at Warwick in your UCAS personal statement. In your UCAS personal statement, we are looking for a demonstration of your academic passion, and a sense of what motivates you.

Watch Warwick’s video on what we're looking for in the UCAS personal statement.

Read Warwick’s guide to writing the UCAS personal statement. 

Should you meet or are predicted to meet our entry requirements, we will ask you to submit a second personal statement to Warwick, outlining why you are interested in our course.

In your second personal statement, you will be asked to specify what you are hoping to gain from the course you wish to apply to, and you will be able to make reference to any examples from your studies and extracurricular activities that may be relevant. Above all, we are looking for your interest in your chosen subject(s) and your passion for the course.

We read your second statement very carefully as it is a statement you will only write for us, and not for other universities/courses.

Your second personal statement which is submitted to Warwick should be no longer than 3,000 characters in length (not including spaces).

Applicants have two weeks to submit their second statement to Warwick. You will be given the deadline for submitting your second personal statement in the email that we will send to you asking you to provide it.

We will provide further guidance and details of how and when to submit the second statement in an email request, should you meet or are predicted to meet our entry requirements.

If you are applying for one of our joint honours degrees, you will be asked to talk about both subjects in your second personal statement. You will be required to consider the combination of both subjects, thinking about how these subjects make sense to you and how they are connected.

After application

Changing courses after you’ve applied depends on a few factors, such as the entry requirements and whether there are spaces available on the course you’d like to change to. We will consider requests for a change of course on a case by case basis. Should you wish to discuss this with us, please get in touch with our Director of Undergraduate Admissions, Dr Peter Dwyer: peter dot dwyer at warwick dot ac dot uk.

To submit a change of course request, you will need to contact our Undergraduate Admissions Team with:

  • Your UCAS ID;
  • Your Warwick ID;
  • The course codes of the courses you would like to change from and to; and
  • A brief description of why you would like to change.

Teaching and learning

Year One

Both single honours and joint honours students study 60 CATS worth of core GSD modules.

For single honours students, the rest of your first year will be made up of 60 CATS worth of optional modules with a global sustainable development focus, from within the GSD Department or from other departments.

For joint honours students, the rest of your first year will be made up of 60 CATS worth of core and/or optional modules from within your joint department.

Year Two

If you are a single honours student you will take 60 CATS worth of optional core GSD modules. The other half of your second year will be made up of 60 CATS worth of optional modules with a global sustainable development focus, from within the GSD Department or from other departments.

If you are a joint honours student, the first half of your second year will be made up of 30 CATS worth of optional core GSD modules, and 30 CATS worth of optional modules with a global sustainable development focus (from within the GSD Department or from other departments). The other half of your second year will be made up of 60 CATS worth of core and/or optional modules from within your joint department.

Final Year

In your final year, both single and joint honours students take one core module worth 30 CATS (a dissertation/long project).

If you are a single honours student, the rest of your final year will be made up of 90 CATS worth of optional modules with a global sustainable development focus, from within the GSD Department or from other departments around the University.

If you are a joint honours student, the rest of your final year will be made up of 30 CATS worth of optional modules with a global sustainable development focus, from within the GSD Department or from other departments around the University. You will also take 60 CATS of core or optional joint department modules.

Please see here for further information about our modules.

You'll attend lectures and take part in seminars, workshops and tutorials and work with other students in teams on controversial, topical problems that pose significant sustainable development questions. You'll undertake fieldwork, archival research and engage in peer discussion to propose alternative solutions.

Teaching is split equally between GSD modules and joint department modules, and you will be able to find interesting connections between the two.

If you are a joint honours student, in our GSD modules we will actively encourage you to share your knowledge from the learnings in your joint department. For example, in the past for the first-year GSD Project we have created groups with a mix of different joint honours students in order to have different perspectives investigating the problem of sustainable transport.

A lecture is usually given to the entire cohort of students taking a module. This is where the key content is presented to you by your lecturer. You will usually then be given work or reading related to your lecture, in preparation for a smaller teaching group such as a seminar/workshop.

A seminar/workshop is a smaller group where teaching is more interactive, and you can discuss and debate ideas based on the lecture and your work/readings.

Your contact hours will depend on the course you choose to study, and the optional modules which you select from those available.

Each module has a set minimum number of timetabled hours that you will be expected to attend, but these differ depending upon the way in which each module has been designed.

In each year, you’ll take core GSD modules and each of which typically involves attendance at one x 1 hour lecture per week plus a seminar or workshop lasting for 1.5 hours per week. Of course, the amount of contact time may be higher than that, depending on how many of the optional certificates you intend to do too.

In your first year, you take four core GSD modules (two per term), so you can expect to be required to attend formal timetabled sessions for approximately four hours per week for your GSD modules. This represents half of your workload.

If you’re a single honours GSD student, the other half of your workload for your first year will consist of your optional module choices. Your contact hours will depend on which optional modules you choose.

If you're a joint honours GSD student, the other half of your workload for your first year will consist of modules in your chosen joint degree discipline, which may involve more or less formal teaching time per week than our core GSD modules. You can find information about minimum number of timetabled hours for these modules on the joint department’s website.

Warwick has a range of study facilities and areas for private and group study work. Study spaces include, but are not limited to:

We also have our own common room in the GSD Department where our students can meet for group work.

Since March 2020, we have been hosting a virtual GSD common room. This is a group on Microsoft Teams that includes all GSD students and staff, designed to offer academic and pastoral support to students during the challenging time of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Yes. Your course will involve practical components of how sustainable development is practiced in the world around us, such as writing policy papers and delivering presentations. You will also have the opportunity to work on local sustainable development issues and attend field trips.

Beyond the classroom, the Warwick community is highly engaged in innovating and acting for a more sustainable campus. There is an array of student societies with a sustainable development focus for you to join, groups including food waste and climate campaign organisations. You may also apply for research bursaries in order to conduct your own individual research into sustainable development. Find out more about the opportunities available to practice sustainable development on campus and beyond.

GSD is not just worrying about the state of the world. It’s about undertaking in depth research and developing concrete proposals to better manage the development process. Here, our students learn as they are guided by our academics through collaborative and often personalised research, right from their first year.

In the classroom

Many of our GSD modules are research-based, designed to help you develop your research skills. For example:

GSD Project

This first-year core module is an innovative and practical module designed to give you crucial research and analysis skills linked to the important issue of sustainable transport. Working on your own and in a team, you’ll be required to carry out research that will advance your understanding of real-life application of theories you’ll have studied in your other first-year core modules.

Environmental Principles of GSD

Throughout the course of this module, you’ll undertake academically rigorous research into environmental problems to produce policy and practice relevant proposals.

Dissertation

This final-year core module will give you the opportunity to undertake research to explore an issue of your choosing. This will be a problem that concerns you most and which you’d like to tackle. Supported by an academic supervisor, you’ll take a transdisciplinary approach to your investigation in order to produce an original research output.

Beyond the classroom

Our students have previously been involved in a whole range of research activities beyond the classroom, including presenting their work at the British Conference of Undergraduate Research and the International Conference of Undergraduate Research, and completing research projects through the Undergraduate Research Support Scheme.

You can read more about student research in GSD here.

Assessments

In GSD we pride ourselves on having a wide variety of assessment types.

Our assessment methods are designed to prepare you to be effective and successful contributors in the world of work or further education. Traditional assessment methods are useful tools for testing your knowledge, and you’ll complete a number of essays and formal examinations throughout your degree. However, we also believe that you should be assessed based on skills adaptable for the workplace. You’ll complete alternative assessment methods such as research papers, policy briefings, posters, portfolios, reports, and presentations.

You’ll also be expected to present your work in a public forum such as the British Conference for Undergraduate Research or the International Conference of Undergraduate Research. You’ll contribute to group projects and deliver extended pieces of writing (for the final-year Dissertation) as well as sit mid and end of year short tests and traditional end of year written examinations.

Please see our modules list to find out more about how our modules are assessed. You can also see examples of policy pitches and briefings produced by our students here.

GSD core modules

Year One

Economic Principles of GSD

Social Principles of GSD

Environmental Principles of GSD

GSD Project

  • 20% group presentation
  • 40% exam
  • 40% essay
  • 25% group presentation
  • 25% online quizzes
  • 50% essay
  • 20% presentation
  • 40% exam
  • 40% essay
  • 10% online activities
  • 50% group research project
  • 25% reflective journal and 15-minute viva
  • 15% group presentation
Year Two

(Optional core modules)

Please see:

Final Year

Joint honours modules

Please note, assessment methods will vary depending on your joint honours course of choice. You can find a full list of joint honours courses available here, where you can view a breakdown of individual course structures. Assessment criteria is subject to change annually.

Global Sustainable Development and Business Studies

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Business Studies modules, the relative proportion of examined and coursework assessment will vary according to which Business Studies module(s) you choose in your first, second and final years.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Economic Studies and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Economics Studies modules, in your first year the core module is 70% assessed by examination. You then have a choice of other Economics Studies modules which have different assessment patterns, so the ratio will vary according to which modules you choose.

In your second year, there is one core module with an exam worth 60% of the module. You will also have a choice of two optional core Economics modules which each have an exam worth 60% of the module’s assessment.

In your final year, there are two core Economics modules with exams worth 70% and 80% respectively. You then have a choice of other Economics Studies modules which have different assessment patterns, so the ratio will vary according to which modules you choose.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Education Studies and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Education Studies modules, in your first year the core Education Studies modules are 100% assessed by coursework.

In your second year, you will select two modules from a choice of three optional core Education Studies modules. All three are assessed by coursework. You then have a choice of other modules offered by any department in the University which have an Education Studies focus, so the ratio of exams to coursework will vary according to which modules you choose.

In your final year, you will have a choice of modules offered by any department in the University which have an Education Studies focus, so the ratio of exams to coursework will vary according to which modules you choose.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Hispanic Studies and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year, the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Hispanic Studies modules, in your first year you will select two modules from a choice of a number of optional core Hispanic Studies modules. These optional core modules have varying assessment methods, so the ratio of exams to coursework depends upon your module choices.

In your second year, you will select one module from a choice of two optional core Hispanic Studies modules. Both are assessed 70% by examination. You then have a choice of other Hispanic Studies modules which have different assessment patterns, so the ratio will vary according to which modules you choose.

In your final year, the core Hispanic Studies module is 85% assessed by examination and 15% by coursework. You then have a choice of other Hispanic Studies modules which have varying assessment methods, so the ratio of exams to coursework depends upon your module choices.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

History and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year, the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your History modules, in your first year there is one core module which has an exam worth 20% of the module’s assessment.

In your second and final years, there are no core History modules and you are able to choose options from a range of modules offered by the History Department with varying assessment methods, so the ratio of exams to coursework depends upon your module choices.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Life Sciences and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Life Sciences modules, in your first year there are no formal exams for the core Life Sciences modules.

In the second year, we are making some exciting changes and the core second-year modules for Life Sciences are currently undergoing approval through the University's rigorous academic processes. As modules are approved, we will update the ratios in this section.

In your final year, you can choose from a range of optional core and optional modules. Your choice of modules will determine the proportions of coursework to formal examination.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Philosophy and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Philosophy modules, in your first year the core module is 80% assessed by examination. You then have a choice of optional Philosophy modules which have different assessment patterns, so the overall ratio of exams to coursework will vary according to which modules you select.

This is also the case for the second and final years of the course as you have a choice of optional Philosophy modules available to you, so you can design an assessment pattern to suit your own strengths.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Politics and International Studies and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your modules in Politics and International Studies, in your first year the two core modules are assessed 60% by examination in the Summer Term.

In both the second and final years of your course, you have a choice of assessment patterns to choose from for the core Politics modules and a choice of other optional modules with varying assessment patterns, so the ratio of exams to coursework will depend upon your choices.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Psychology and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Psychology modules, in your first year the ratio is either 60% (exam) to 40% (coursework) or 80% (exam) to 20% (coursework), depending upon your chosen modules.

In your second year, the ratio of exam to coursework depends upon which combination of optional core Psychology modules you choose, but all modules have an examined element.

In your final year, the proportion of exams to coursework depends upon your choice of optional Psychology modules.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Sociology and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your Sociology modules, in your first year three of the core modules are 100% assessed by coursework. The remaining core module is 75% assessed by examination and 25% assessed by coursework.

In your second year, there are no formal exams for the core or optional core Sociology modules.

In your final year, the proportion of exams to coursework depends upon your choice of optional modules.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Theatre and Performance Studies and Global Sustainable Development

In your first year the ratio of exams to coursework for the GSD core modules is 40% (exam) and 60% (coursework). There are no exams in your second and final years for the GSD half of the course.

For your modules in Theatre and Performance Studies, one of the core modules is 100% assessed by coursework. The other core module is assessed by multiple methods which include a practical exam (35%), a Director’s Pitch (30%) and a critical review (35%).

In your second and final years of the course, you have a choice of optional Theatre Studies modules with varying assessment methods so you can design your assessment to suit your own strengths.

Please note that if you choose to spend part of your second year studying abroad, these ratios will be affected by your choice of courses from those available at Monash University.

Yes. Some of our GSD core modules require you to sit an exam as well as complete other types of assignments such as written essays, project portfolios, and group presentations.

If you’re considering taking one of our joint honours degrees, the assessment methods in your joint department may also require you to sit exams.

Modules

During each year of the course, you will spend time studying core modules in GSD alongside other GSD students. In your core modules, you will have the opportunity to examine a range of local, national and global problems which pose issues of sustainability. You will examine these questions from the economic, social and environmental perspectives. Experts in those fields will teach you the methods and techniques which they employ to investigate these questions. You will learn how to evaluate the evidence obtained, draw conclusions from it, make critical judgments and develop solutions.

Year One

You will undertake four required core GSD modules, three of which focus on providing you with a critical understanding of the ‘three pillars of sustainability’: economy, environment, and society. Your fourth required core module will be a GSD Project.

In the GSD Project you will have the chance to apply the techniques and skills learned in the year’s core modules to a real-life case which is of concern in the area local to the University. You will work with other GSD students to examine the issues, formulate hypotheses and test them using the most appropriate methods, to undertake research including archival searches, interviews and focus groups, before drawing your findings together in a report which makes recommendations concerning a way forward.

Year Two

As you begin to apply the perspectives you were introduced to in year one, you will have the opportunity to engage with a key issue in sustainability. You’ll choose from the following optional core modules:

Final Year

There is one core GSD module during your final year, a dissertation. You will bring together your knowledge, ideas and conclusions, focusing on an issue or question which is of particular concern or interest to you from a GSD point of view. You’ll be supported by an academic supervisor to devise a suitable project and to undertake research to explore the issue, taking a transdisciplinary approach to your investigation in order to produce an original research output. This may be a concept paper, a practical project, a film production, a long essay, an advocacy campaign etc. – use your creativity!

Hear from single honours GSD alumnus Rhys about his research into student mental health for his final-year dissertation.

Flexibility depends on the course you wish to apply to. Our single honours course is very flexible and you will be able to take modules from other departments. Please see the structure of our single honours degree here.

As a joint honours student, in your first year you will take core modules from both GSD and your joint department. In your second and third years, you will have more flexibility to select optional modules (with a global sustainable development focus) from within GSD or other departments. Please see the structures of our joint honours degrees here.

You can find a list of optional modules offered by the GSD Department here. If you would like to explore optional modules from other departments, please see the University’s module catalogue.

Please keep in mind that for both single honours and joint honours students, the optional modules you choose in the GSD part of your degree should have a global sustainable development focus.

You will choose your optional modules in Welcome Week. You will be supported by your personal tutor (a staff member who supports your academic progress). Our Directors of Student Experience will also be available to help you choose your optional modules.

For all Warwick students there are some restrictions and it may not always be possible to get every first-choice module. For example, some optional modules will require you to have studied another module first. In addition, some modules have limited capacity or are reserved for specific degree programmes. However, we'll always work with you to help you select optional modules that are in line with your interests.

If you are considering our single honours GSD degree, you will be eligible to take modules at Warwick’s Language Centre when selecting your optional modules.

If you are considering one of our joint honours degrees, the structure of our joint honours programmes requires you to split your study equally between your core GSD modules and modules in your joint department. Therefore, there is no space for a language module to be taken as part of your degree (unless, exceptionally, you are given special permission by your tutors to take a particular language that is related to your joint degree discipline or focus of GSD study, or, if you're studying Hispanic Studies and GSD). If you decide that you want to learn a language whilst studying one of our joint honours degrees, this will need to be separate to your degree and you can do so by paying a fee.

For further information about studying a language module, please see The Language Centre’s FAQs page.

The Language Centre's modules are offered at a range of levels from beginners to advanced, depending on the language. There are accelerated options for those who wish to develop their language skills at a faster pace.

Student support

We have two dedicated Directors of Student Experience in GSD who are there to work with you and to work for you in your first year. We recognise you will be making a big change in your life as you become part of our exciting community of students and academics. We have several structured systems, processes and spaces in place to provide you with that all-important extra support as you make the transition to life at university. This includes having your own personal tutor to meet with regularly. Additionally, as the Senior Personal Tutors who oversee the personal tutorial system, you can also request to meet with one of the Directors of Student Experience to discuss any aspects of your studies.

Furthermore, any first-year student enrolled on a GSD degree can request the support of a second- or third-year GSD student mentor. Mentors are specially selected, trained, and are current students who can provide guidance and advice within a limited scope of activities.

"When a person moves to a new country the experience, despite much preparation beforehand, can feel overwhelming. Whether an individual moves to a country with the same first language or not, the process of assimilating the new culture can be a time of great emotional turbulence. This can apply to international students and it is helpful to realise that is quite normal to feel this way." (Warwick Wellbeing Services, Self-Help Resource, Culture shock)

Your personal tutor and our Directors of Student Experience in GSD will be here to support you as you learn to live and work in our community. We will also encourage you to join student societies and sports clubs, where you may find people from your country or background.

If the challenges you may experience in adjusting to a new culture impacts your overall wellbeing in any way, we will be able to refer you to Warwick’s Wellbeing Support Services for professional help and guidance.

At Warwick, Disability Services are part of our Wellbeing Support Services. Our Disability Services are designed to assist with academic adjustments, as well as provide emotional support and promote wellbeing.

You will be able to book an appointment with the Disability Services team to discuss how best they can help you. For example, they will be able to advise on available funding for support, such as the Disabled Student’s Allowance.

Read the University's Disability Strategy Statement to find out about the work we're doing on disability equality and accessibility.

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Study abroad

No, it’s not. In GSD we certainly encourage our students to consider our study abroad options - in particular, our unique integrated programme with Monash - and students who have studied abroad have found it extremely beneficial.

If you are considering a year-long study abroad placement: you are automatically enrolled on a three-year course, and we will transfer you to the four-year course once your application to the partner institution is finalised.

All of our GSD courses offer two options for studying abroad:

  1. Integrated year abroad: Spend terms 2 and 3 of your second year studying at Monash University, either in Australia or Malaysia. Your time at Monash will be part of your degree, so you will graduate in three years. You will therefore gain the benefits of studying abroad without extending the length of your course. Your grades that you get in Monash will count towards your degree awarded by Warwick. This is a unique opportunity exclusively available to you as a GSD student. Find out more.
  2. Intercalated year abroad: You can choose to spend a year at one of Warwick’s partner institutions. You will spend your first and second years at Warwick, studying abroad in your third year. You will then return to Warwick for your final year. Your year abroad won’t count towards your overall final mark (but it will be recorded on your Higher Education Achievement Report). Find out more.

The integrated year abroad does not extend the length of your degree, so you will graduate in three years. You will spend time abroad in your second year, during terms 2 and 3. The work you complete during your time abroad will count towards your degree awarded by Warwick.

The intercalated year abroad extends the length of your degree by one year, so you will graduate in four years. Your year abroad will not count towards your overall final mark (but it will be recorded on your Higher Education Achievement Report).

It’s technically possible for you to do both, but our advice is that you discuss this as soon as possible with your Director of Student Experience when you arrive at Warwick.

You won’t need to make a decision about studying abroad or enrol onto a year abroad before you arrive at Warwick.

Information about studying abroad is provided once you arrive. In your first year, you will receive information about the Monash integrated programme.

In Term 1 of your second year (when possible destinations are confirmed), you will be asked to express your interest in the intercalated study abroad programme.

Yes. The GSD Department will have to nominate you and will base this decision on your overall academic performance in your first year. Once you have been nominated, the other university will send you the relevant applications form, which sometimes includes a statement. More information about the process will be provided to you nearer the time.

Integrated study abroad at Monash

The GSD Department needs to support your application (typically, we collect expressions of interest forms in your first year). You will apply to Monash through their processes (typically in Term 1 of your second year).

The eligibility criteria are set by the partner university. We usually recommend students with a 2:1 degree classification to consider taking a study abroad year, and we will also consider your motivation in choosing to study abroad.

Intercalated year abroad at one of Warwick’s partner institutions

In order for us to support your study abroad ambitions, we would expect you to be performing academically at the level of a 2:1 degree classification. We will also consider your motivation in choosing to study abroad.

Yes. You will need to arrange a student visa in order to study abroad. It is your responsibility to have a valid passport which will cover the time of your stay abroad, and to acquire a visa in time to travel. All guidance will be provided by the Student Mobility team.

Integrated study abroad at Monash

You will be able to pick the modules that you are most interested in that Monash University offers. As this is an integrated programme, please note that your module choice must be approved by your GSD Director of Student Experience.

If you are a single honours student, you must continue to study modules related to GSD.

If you are a joint honours student, you must continue to study modules related to GSD and your joint subject discipline.

Intercalated year abroad at one of Warwick’s partner institutions

You are free to study whichever modules offered by the partner institution interest you most, provided that you fulfil the academic requirements set by the partner institution for you to be able to complete your study placement. This is because the modules you take whilst abroad will not contribute to your final degree grade. Your personal tutor at Warwick will be able to guide you in your module choices and will need to sign off your final selections.

Whilst you are abroad, your principal point of contact in GSD at Warwick will be our Study Abroad coordinator. Your Warwick personal tutor will also be available to support you throughout your study abroad experience, particularly if you encounter any issues or have any concerns about your progress. Towards the end of the year abroad, you will need to advise us on your choice of modules for your final year of study back at Warwick. You will also be required to maintain regular contact with Warwick staff as part of your compliance with our Student Attendance and Monitoring Scheme.

The partner institution will send you any relevant information and they will support you when making arrangements for your accommodation, but you will still need to apply for it.

The cost to study abroad will depend on your destination:

Integrated study abroad at Monash

You will continue to pay full fees to Warwick for the two terms that you are abroad. Please see our Student Finance website for more information.

You will not pay tuition fees to your host institution abroad.

You will be responsible for covering your travel costs and you will need to meet your living costs whilst you are abroad (as you would have to do if you stayed at Warwick).

The Student Mobility Team will be able to provide further information about fees and finance. For example, you will need to factor in the costs of the compulsory student visa and health insurance that is required, whether you are going to Australia or Malaysia, and you may wish to take out travel insurance.

Intercalated study abroad at one of Warwick’s partner institutions

You will pay a heavily reduced fee to Warwick for the year of your intercalated year abroad. Please see the Student Mobility study abroad pages for more information.

You will not pay any tuition fees to your host institution.

The Student Mobility Team will be able to provide further information about fees and finance. For example, you will need to take into account the cost of visas, health insurance, flights, accommodation, and living costs.

At the time of your application, you may find that bursaries are available from a variety of sources. Please speak to the Student Mobility Team for more information.

Professional development

Certificates

We offer unique certificates outside of the curriculum as a way of continuing your professional development. These certificates are designed to develop skills identified by employers as being vital for success in the workplace. Your achievement will be recorded on your Higher Education Achievement Report which you can show to employers.

The Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR) is an electronic document issued to you at the end of your studies which records all your academic and non-academic achievements at Warwick, as verified by the University. It includes information about achievements such as volunteering and prizes awarded as well as information about module marks and the Degree Classification awarded. You can show your HEAR to potential employers in order to prove your attainments.

Work placements

No, it is not compulsory to take a work placement as part of the GSD degrees. If you are studying Education Studies and GSD, you will have the opportunity to select an optional core work placement module in your second year.

We would strongly encourage you to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the GSD team to gain some professional experience during your time at Warwick.

This can be obtained either via our bespoke short term placements programme associated with our Certificate of Professional Communication, or through the intercalated year-long work placement which takes place in your third year.

Our dedicated Employability and Placement Manager can guide you through the entire process from sourcing opportunities, applications, interviews, and supporting you whilst on placement as well as when you return to Warwick.

As part of your degree you will have the option to take part in both short and long work placements which are formally recognised on your Higher Education Achievement Report. The two work placement options are:

Intercalated year-long work placement

You will complete a four-year degree and your work placement will take place in your third year. The work placement can take place in the UK or globally and after completion, you will return to university for your final year.

Short work placement

As part of the Certificate of Professional Communication, you will undertake a short four-week work placement which takes place during the summer.

For the intercalated year-long work placement you need to pass your second year.

For the short work placement associated with the Certificate of Professional Communication, there are no requirements.

Yes. We really encourage our students to engage in as many work experience opportunities as possible. This can be outside of the short work placement attached to the Certificate of Professional Communication and the intercalated year-long work placement.

As our students have very diverse interests, they have chosen to go on to complete very different types of work placements in the past. Our students have been successful in securing work placements with employers from the private, public, and third sectors. This includes research institutions, governmental bodies, NGOs, intelligence agencies, environmental consultancies, and many others. They have undertaken diverse roles as Marketing Assistant, Sustainability Officer, Human Resource, Intelligence Analyst, and Researchers.

Yes. On campus you will be able to apply for jobs via our own employment agency, Unitemps. There are also other opportunities for part-time work, such as through Warwick’s Welcome Service and our Students’ Union. You can find out more information about part-time work here.

We have a dedicated Employability and Placement Manager in GSD who will provide you with one-to-one careers guidance. They work in collaboration with employers, so you will be supported in securing appropriate work placements. You will have access to specialist pre-placement advice, guidance and preparation, as well as on-going support during your placement.

The University also has a Student Opportunity team which offers a range of services designed to support you as you think about and plan your future. These range from one-to-one appointments with a careers adviser who can provide advice on developing your C.V. and making applications, careers fairs, employer presentations, mock job interviews, providing information about opportunities to help you get work experience (e.g. through volunteering schemes or internship programmes both in the U.K. and abroad), and access to relevant networks and workshops to help you to acquire and hone the skills which employers value. Take a look at the website for more details of the services available.

After university

A degree in GSD from one of the UK’s top universities will set you up to compete for some of the most competitive jobs for employers within the public, private and third sector. Warwick graduates are targeted by employers who value their creativity, the depth of their knowledge and their ability to adapt to the professional demands of the work environment.

In recent years, the demand for graduates with expertise in sustainable development has increased dramatically. Employers from different sectors including transport, conservation, environment, energy, information technology, retail, finance, education, government bodies and think tanks are all seeking graduates who are passionate about sustainability. The Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment maintains that:

“Even industries that were not previously aligned with environmental principles are now required to employ environmentally knowledgeable professionals and therefore the profession is on the move, making its way to the centre of organisations’ business plans. That means, more jobs being created, opening up opportunities for those with an interest in the environment.”

Our GSD courses and the professional development certificates have been designed to equip you with a range of transferrable and practical skills that are highly valued by employers within the UK and globally. These include research, analysis, problem-solving, critical thinking, communication, organisation and team working.

Studying GSD will maximise your career options. What you decide to do will largely depend on your individual interests and you will have the opportunity to experience the world of work as well as explore different career paths through a work placement. This will support you in making an informed career choice after you graduate. Careers you may want to pursue include project management, corporate governance, resource management, corporate social responsibility, environmental planning, research, teaching, consultancy and many more.

Our graduates have applied for all sorts of postgraduate programmes, from further study in the area of sustainable development, to ‘subject-specific’ programmes, for example, in the areas of Environmental Policy, Health, and Politics. The transdisciplinary approach of GSD will provide you with a range of skills that you will be able to apply to your preferred area, and you will have the chance to specialise in a specific area through your dissertation.

We are currently developing our own Master’s programme in GSD and we will be able to provide more information about this exciting opportunity in the near future.

Offer holders

Once you have responded to UCAS and placed Warwick as either your Firm or Insurance choice, you will be able to apply for accommodation at Warwick. Please see the University’s accommodation page where they will publish further information about when applications for accommodation will open.

If you have received an offer to study one of our courses, you should have received an email from us about our online Offer Holder space which provides a list of recommended readings. There are also several video interviews on this page which we think you might be interested in. If you have not received this email with the link to this online space, please get in touch with us.

We’d also recommend, if possible, that you get hold of a good guide to studying. You can find a range of useful books here. This will help you to prepare for the step up from school to university.

It’s also a great idea to keep up to date with the news and current affairs. Our current students tell us that this helps them with understanding sustainability challenges, and it also helps them draw on real-world examples in seminars.

On receiving your offer from Warwick you will receive an email inviting you to join OurWarwick, the University’s online social platform exclusive to offer holders. You will be able to talk to other offer holders and current students via this platform.

Stay in touch with us! We're happy to work with you one-to-one to help you think about what you might want to do during your time with us. You can email us on: globalsustainabledev at warwick dot ac dot uk.

Contacting us

If you have a question about GSD or life at Warwick, please send us an email: globalsustainabledev at warwick dot ac dot uk.

We're also hosting online live chats where you can speak directly to our staff and current GSD students, who'll be happy to answer any of your questions about GSD at Warwick. Join us for one of our upcoming live chats.

We are more than happy for you to speak to one of our current students. Please send us an email and we will be able to arrange this for you: globalsustainabledev at warwick dot ac dot uk.