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BSc in Environmental Science and Sustainability

Developing a strong understanding of environmental science and its interlinkages with sustainability, grounded in the Indian context


As we know, the world is facing considerable challenges of environmental change and sustainability. There is a real and growing need for a programme that helps students to develop a strong understanding of environmental science and its interlinkages with sustainability, grounded in the Indian context. 

A key feature of the BSc in Environmental Science and Sustainability (ESS) at Azim Premji University is its inherently interdisciplinary focus. 

Students will obtain an integrated understanding of environmental change, through a lab and field-based, hands-on approach to learning about environmental change, interacting with real-life examples and interacting with faculty members engaged in cutting-edge research on exciting new problems. 

Through this, students of ESS will develop a strong foundation of environmental science; understand its linkages with human behaviour, economy and policy; learn how to conduct qualitative and quantitative research on the environment, and end with a strong focus on environmental action to achieve change on the ground. 

We admit students from all streams, including science, social science and the humanities, and believe that diversity and interdisciplinarity is a key strength of this programme.

Visit this page to learn more about our 4‑year Undergraduate Programmes.

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Career path and academic avenues

The ESS degree will equip graduates with a strong understanding of environmental science, the capacity to assess and monitor pollution, conduct environmental impact assessments, generate GIS and remote sensing maps of environmental change, and engage with environmental policy and communication.

Potential careers in environmental science and sustainability are thus diverse and varied – the horizons are vast, and the sky is the only limit!

Careers can be indoors and lab-based, or outdoors and field based, and can draw on skills and interest in core environmental science; media, humanities and art; or issues of environmental justice, economics and policy. 

Students can explore work in pollution monitoring labs, environmental think tanks, urban municipalities, civil society organisations working on environmental restoration, and in CSR sustainability. 

Finally, students may also want to explore advanced degrees in environmental science, environmental economics, ecology, sustainability and allied areas.


Our degree encourages you to explore and follow your interests. We design our courses to ensure that you can specialise in a subject of your choice while learning a variety of subjects across disciplines.


You will meet all your classmates at the beginning of your degree to build all the tools you need for your three years of study. This includes foundational courses, an understanding of India, and a workshop in creative expressions.


We provide active academic assistance and ensure that you are able to meet the requirements of the academic programme to fulfil your aspirations.


We ensure that no student has to drop out of university because of financial trouble or social disadvantage. We provide financial assistance to deserving students.

Living on campus

We believe that learning happens both inside and outside the classroom. In living together, you can meet and encounter diverse people from different social and cultural backgrounds and experiences. Our campus has a range of activities from discussion groups to sports and clubs for our students and faculty to interact with each other and build meaningful relationships over their years of study.

Know more about the Bengaluru campus, here.

Know more about Azim Premji University at Bhopal, here.

Course structure

The Common Curriculum will introduce students to the study of the themes and areas that emphasise and build critical and analytical abilities, and sensibilities for dialogue, reflection and cooperative learning. The Common Curriculum has three sub-components organised as below:

Foundations: Build capacity for critical thinking, reasoning and communication.

Understanding India: India’s history, society and possible futures

Creative Expressions: Explore music, visual art, theatre, dance, martial arts, yoga, pottery, sport, and other creative areas.

The core courses of ESS programme will be of three main kinds:

1) Perspective building: Developing a social-ecological systems perspective on the environment, environmental economics, environmental policy and governance, and the science of the environment

2) Skills and competencies: Lab assessment of air, water, and soil quality; Geographical Information Systems (GIS); data analysis, environmental communication, sustainability action

3) Research: Qualitative and quantitative methods in environmental science, statistical analysis

Students of ESS will have the opportunity to take additional electives in a range of areas including remote sensing, ecological economics, data visualisation, climate change, energy, and the environment.

We also offer especially motivated students the opportunity to engage with specialised research projects in the final year, depending on their areas of interest.

Students must be prepared for the world of work at the end of the programme should they choose to enter it. We aim to provide the required skills and competencies for this through a Minor featuring courses in an Occupational or Interdisciplinary theme. These sets of courses are aimed to provide both conceptual understanding and skills and tools that will allow students to contribute through work and further study.

Students can opt for a minor in any one of the indicative areas listed below:

  • Education
  • Media and Journalism
  • Data and Democracy
  • Sports and Fitness
  • Climate Studies
  • Arts

The selection of these indicative areas is based on the availability of courses and our evaluation of the student’s interests and academic needs. For each cohort, a final list of available courses will be announced at the end of their second semester.

Students can craft their own educational experience by selecting courses in the following ways:

  • Students will have the option to take additional courses in their Disciplinary major
  • Interdisciplinary minor that will enable them for their further higher studies or career pathways.

These courses could also be selected to enhance and broaden their

  • Language skills and Quantitative reasoning capacities/​programming skills
  • Understanding of themes outside their Major subject