Environmental Geoscience

Investigate Planet Earth to Understand Environmental Interactions Between Geology, Biology, and Hydrology

Investigate planet earth to understand environmental interactions between geology, biology, and hydrology.

The Harquail School of Earth Sciences and its Mineral Exploration Research Centre (MERC) are housed in the Willet Green Miller Centre in the world’s largest mineral exploration and mining-service cluster. Located on the southern rim of one of the world’s largest, oldest and best-exposed meteorite impact sites, close to numerous base metal mines and a large variety of rock types, Sudbury’s geology provides unique opportunities for field instruction, pure and applied research. This includes for example the exploration of ore deposits, understanding geological processes in the Earth interior and on its surface and the study of environmental processes. The success of more than 40 continuous years of environmental reclamation efforts has led to numerous national and international awards, including a Government of Canada Environmental Achievement Award, a United States Chevron Conservation Award, and a United Nations Local Government Honours Award.

With over 330 lakes and access to over 1000 km of trails, your backyard becomes both your recreational space and laboratory!

Visit the Harquail School Website

Academic Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth Turner

Telephone: 705-675-1151 ext 2267

Email: ETurner@laurentian.ca

How to Apply Interested in this program? Stay up to date and receive exclusive updates and offers.
Laurentian University aerial view
By land area, Greater Sudbury is the largest city in Ontario and as such, the great outdoors beckon with its vast expanse of lakes and waterways, varied terrain, forests and comprehensive network of trails.
Delivery Method: On campus
Program Language: English

Positioning students for employment and success

Take advantage of small class sizes that provide an open and hands-on learning environment with a high focus on field-based instruction. The School is comprised of 20 faculty who are proven leaders in their fields, recognized through reputable awards including three Duncan Derry Medal winners. Located in the Willet Green Miller Centre, one of the largest earth science resource centres in North America, the location provides ample opportunities for students to find employment within their field while at Laurentian University. The building houses several geology-related research centres such as the Ontario Geological Survey, the Ontario Geoscience Laboratories (Geo Labs), and the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines.

The School contains a wide array of analytical instrumentation to support both the research and educational needs, and benefits from sharing laboratory facilities with one of the largest and most advanced geoscience analytical facilities in North America, the Geoscience Laboratories.

Students may continue their studies with the Harquail School of Earth Sciences in the MSc Geology program and the PhD in Mineral Deposits and Precambrian Geology program. 

Professional Accreditation

The four-year B.Sc. in Environmental Geosciences is designed to meet the minimum knowledge (academic) requirements for registration as a professional geoscientist (P.Geo.) with the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario (APGO). Registration with the APGO will significantly enhance career prospects of Environmental Geosciences students.

Ontario High School Applicants

1 grade 12 English U/M course

1 grade 12 4U Advanced Functions

1 grade 12 U/M Science course

1 additional grade 12 U/M Math or Science course

2 other grade 12 U/M courses 

A minimum overall average of 70% in the 6 best grade 12 U/M courses

Additional information for applicants who have completed Advanced Placement courses.

Additional information for applicants who have completed the International Baccalaureate.


Applicants from outside an Ontario High School 

International Students

Canadian High School Applicants from outside Ontario

Applicants from Colleges

Applicants from other Universities

Mature Students

For Current Students

The degree options listed below are for the upcoming academic year, not the current academic year. If you are a current student looking for which courses to take in order to complete your degree options from a previous academic year's curriculum, please consult with an academic advisor.

Specialization in Environmental Geoscience B.Sc. (Honours)

Total: 120 credits (with a minimum of 63 credits of GEOL/ENSC courses plus 27 credits of foundation science plus electives)*

*B.Sc. students are required to take at least 12 cr from outside the Faculty of Science and Engineering.  No more than 72 cr can be taken from any one subject area.  

The four-year B.Sc. in Environmental Geoscience designed to meet the minimum knowledge (academic) requirements for registration as a professional geologist (P.Geo.) with the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario (APGO).  

1st year
CHMI 1006E    General Chemistry I
CHMI 1007E     General Chemistry II
ENSC 1406E     Earth’s Environmental Systems
GEOL 1006E     Introductory Geology I
GEOL 1007E     Introductory Geology II   
MATH 1036E     Calculus I
PHYS 1006E     Introductory Physics I  or  PHYS 1206 - Physics for the Life Sciences I
PHYS 1007E     Introductory Physics II  or  PHYS 1207 - Physics for the Life SciencesII

+ electives (6 cr) (3 cr of foundation science* and 3 cr of ARTS** are recommended)
* A foundation science is a course in biology, chemistry, computer programming, mathematics, physics or statistics at the first year level or higher (remedial secondary school level or transitional courses will not be accepted for credit). Introductory biology is recommended.   

** ENVI 1507 - Introduction to Environmental Studies is recommended as an ARTS elective. 

2nd year 
GEOL 2006E     Field Geology I  
GEOL 2066E     Near-surface Geophysical Methods*  
GEOL 2106E     Introductory Geomorphology
GEOL 2126E     Mineralogy I
GEOL 2237E     Sedimentary, Igneous & Metamorphic Rocks
GEOL 2406E     Paleobiology I
GEOL 2807E     Geochemistry I  
STAT 2246E     Statistics for Scientists

+  electives (6 cr) (at least 3 cr of ARTS are recommended)
*GEOL 2066E     Near-surface Geophysics is offered in alternate years and should be taken in 2nd or 3rd year as available. 

3rd year 
BIOL 3056E     Mineral Exploitation & the Biosphere   OR   BIOL 3376E     Restoration Ecology I 
CHMI 3326E     Aquatic Chemistry   OR   CHMI 3116E     Instrumental Techniques  

GEOL 3006E     Field Geology II   OR   GEOL3007E     Environmental Field Geology*
GEOL 3056E     Computer Applications in the Geosciences   OR   GEOG 3056E     GIS Application  
GEOL 3217E     Sedimentology and Stratigraphy
GEOL 3306E     Structural Geology  
GEOL 3397E     Introductory Soil Science   OR   BIOL 3397E     Soil Biology)

+ electives (9 cr) (3 cr from addiotional GEOL credits + 6 cr of Arts  are recommended if not already taken)
*Subject to approval another advanced environmental field methods course may be used to meet this requirement.   

4th year    
GEOL 4226E     Pleistocene & Glacial Geology
GEOL 4706E     Hydrogeology 
GEOL 3417E     Oceanography
GEOL 4416E     Global Change - The Geologic Record
+ 6 additional GEOL credits not already taken above or from the Additional Geoscience course list below:

+ electives* (12 cr) 

*Additional GEOL courses (including GEOL 4005 - Thesis) may be taken up to a maximum of 72 credits. Students must ensure their overall degree requirements are met. 

Additional geoscience courses eligible for APGO credit:* 
BIOL 4076E     Ecosystem Ecology
CHMI 4197E     Environmental Analytical Chemistry
ENSC 3716E     Environmental Impact Assessment
GEOG 2037E     Introduction to Remote Sensing
GEOL 2127E     Optical Mineralogy
GEOG 2126E     Climatology I
GEOG 3036E     Air Photo Interpretation GEOG 3056 - GIS Application
GEOL 3206E     Igneous Petrology
GEOL 3207E     Metamorphic Petrology
GEOL 3607E     Ore Deposits & Their Geological Environment
GEOL 3807E     Geochemistry II
GEOL 4005E     Thesis
GEOL 4016E     Precambrian Geology
GEOL 4026E     Field Geology III
GEOL 4037E     Applied Remote Sensing
GEOL 4127E     Advanced Mineralogy
GEOL 4206E     Advanced Igneous Petrology
GEOL 4217E     Carbonate Sedimentology
GEOL 4307E     Polyphase Metamorphism & Deformation
GEOL 4607E     Ore-Forming Processes
GEOL 4956E     Mineral Exploration Geophysics 

*Courses may have prerequisites not listed here.  GEOL 2127 - Optical Mineralogy is prerequisite for higher level courses in petrology and ore formation.


Minor in Environmental Geosciences

GEOL 1006E     Introduction to Geology I
ENSC 1406E     Earth’s Environmental Systems

6 credits from the following:

     GEOL 1007E     Introduction to Geology II
     GEOL 2237E     Sedimentary, Igneous & Metamorphic Rocks
     GEOL 2021E     Geology of Earth Resources
     GEOL 2022E     The Dynamic Earth
     GEOL 2046E     Natural Disasters
     GEOL 2066E     Near-surface Geophysical methods
     GEOL 2106E     Introductory Geomorphology
     GEOL 2807E     Geochemistry I
     GEOL 4226E     Pleistocene and Glacial Geology

9 credits from the following:

     BIOL 3056E     Mineral Exploitation and the Biosphere
     BIOL 3376E     Restoration and Ecology I – concepts and principles
     GEOL 3136E     Watershed Hydrology
     GEOL 3397E     Introductory Soil Science
     GEOL 3417E     Oceanography
     GEOL 3811E     Chemistry of Earth Materials
     BIOL 4076E     Ecosystem Ecology
     BIOL 4396E     Current issues in Environmental Sustainability
     GEOL 4416E     Global Change
     GEOL 4706E     Hydrogeology

3 credits from the following:

     COMM 1206E     Business communications
     COST 2446E     The Dynamics of Interpersonal Communications I
     COST 2447E     The Dynamics of Interpersonal Communications II
     ENGR 1016E     Engineering Communications
     ENGL 1706E     Intro to writing English studies I
     ENGL 3536E     Environmental Communications
     ENGL 3556E     Principles and Practices of Workplace Communications
     ENVI 1507E     Communication skills, Ethics, and Environmental Issues
     PHIL 2217E     Environmental Ethics


CHMI-1006EL - General Chemistry I CHMI-1007EL - General Chemistry II ENSC-1406EL - Earth's Environmental Systems GEOL-1006EL - Introductory Geology I GEOL-1007EL - Introductory Geology II MATH-1036EL - Calculus I PHYS-1006EL - Introductory Physics I PHYS-1007EL - Introductory Physics II GEOG-2037EL - Introduction to Remote Sensing GEOG-2106EL - Geomorphology I GEOG-2126EL - Climatology I GEOL-2006EL - Field Geology I GEOL-2066EL - Near-Surface Geophysical Methods GEOL-2126EL - Mineralogy I GEOL-2127EL - Optical Mineralogy GEOL-2237EL - Sedimentary, Igneous and Metamorphic Rocks GEOL-2406EL - Paleobiology I GEOL-2807EL - Geochemistry I STAT-2246EL - Statistics for Scientists BIOL-3056EL - Mineral Exploitation and the Biosphere CHMI-3326EL - Aquatic Chemistry ENSC-3716EL - Environmental Impact Assessment GEOG-3056EL - Topics in Geographic Information Systems Application
GEOL-3007EL - Environmental Field Geology GEOL-3056EL - Computer Applications in the Earth Sciences GEOL-3206EL - Igneous Petrography GEOL-3207EL - Metamorphic Petrography GEOL-3217EL - Sedimentology and Stratigraphy GEOL-3306EL - Structural Geology GEOL-3397EL - Introductory Soil Science GEOL-3607EL - Ore Deposits and Their Geological Environment GEOL-3807EL - Geochemistry II GEOL-4005EL - Thesis GEOL-4016EL - Precambrian Geology GEOL-4026EL - Field Geology III GEOL-4037EL - Applied Remote Sensing GEOL-4127EL - Advanced Mineralogy GEOL-4206EL - Advanced Igneous Petrology GEOL-4217EL - Carbonate Sedimentology GEOL-4226EL - Pleistocene and Glacial Geology GEOL-4307EL - Polyphase Metamorphism and Deformation GEOL-4416EL - The Global Change-The Geologic Record GEOL-4607EL - Ore-Forming Processes GEOL-4706EL - Hydrogeology GEOL-4956EL - Mineral Exploration Geophysics

Sessional Instructors (June 2019)

Christopher Beckett-Brown

Manuel F. Duguet

Cun Hai George Gao

Evan Hastie

Richard S. James

Taus Jørgensen

Jordan Mathieu

Rémy Poulin

Tobias M. Roth

Don H. Rousell

Kate E. Rubingh

Renée-Luce Simard

Margaret S. Stewart

Robert C. Stewart

Phillips C. Thurston

Leonardo Feltrin

Leonardo Feltrin

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Harold Gibson

Harold Gibson

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Alessandro Ielpi

Alessandro Ielpi

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Pedro Jugo

Pedro Jugo

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Daniel Kontak

Daniel Kontak

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Bruno Lafrance

Bruno Lafrance

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Carl Lesher

Carl Lesher

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Andrew McDonald

Andrew McDonald

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Nadia Mykytczuk

Nadia Mykytczuk

School of the Environment
Mostafa Naghizadeh

Mostafa Naghizadeh

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Stéphane Perrouty

Stéphane Perrouty

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Ross Sherlock

Ross Sherlock

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Richard Smith

Richard Smith

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Graeme Spiers

Graeme Spiers

School of the Environment
Douglas Tinkham

Douglas Tinkham

Harquail School of Earth Sciences
Elizabeth Turner

Elizabeth Turner

Harquail School of Earth Sciences