Environmental Engineering

Study Environmental Engineering at the University of Waikato for a career where you'll make a lasting impact on society by helping to protect and enhance our natural and man-made environments, while enjoying excellent job prospects.

Environmental engineers work to protect water, air, soil and built environments. They evaluate and assess options, design equipment and systems, and develop regulations and controls, seek to solve issues of water quality, water supply, waste reduction and disposal, soil and air quality management, and noise.

As the world’s demand for materials, food and energy grows, so does the need for environmental engineers. Environmental Engineering graduates with strong technical and communication skills are in demand, in New Zealand and around the world.

During your degree you will learn how to identify, monitor and solve important problems associated with the environment, resource allocation and use, and sustainability. Our programme is multi-disciplinary, combining the fundamentals of engineering, science, mathematics, and computing, with the study of water resources and quality, earth and ocean environments, environmental planning, modelling and sustainability, process energy and management.

An important part of the Environmental Engineering programme at the University of Waikato is supported work placements into relevant industries. This gives you the opportunity for paid work experience while exploring first-hand the field of Environmental Engineering you could choose for your career.

You'll work on major research design projects, creating products with commercial applications, which are then showcased at our annual Oji Fibre Solutions Engineering Design Show. There is also a focus on developing well-honed communication skills that are such a vital part of the profession.


Students can work in specialised laboratories including the Large Scale Lab complex that features a suite of workshops and laboratories dedicated to engineering teaching and research, such as 3D printing, a mechanical workshop and computer labs with engineering design software.

 Career opportunities

  • Environmental Engineer
  • Water and Sanitary Engineer
  • Public/Environmental Health Engineer
  • Infrastructure Engineer
  • Sustainability Engineer
  • Restoration Engineer
  • Resource/Waste Management Engineer


Study Environmental Engineering in any of these qualifications

Year 1

Students must take the following papers:

Economics and SocietyECONS10215.0 Points
Engineering ComputingENGEN10315.0 Points
Materials Science and EngineeringENGEN11215.0 Points
Engineering and SocietyENGEN17015.0 Points
Foundations of EngineeringENGEN18015.0 Points
Linear Algebra and Statistics for EngineersENGEN18315.0 Points
Calculus for EngineersENGEN18415.0 Points

Plus 30 points of electives from their chosen elective path:

Introduction to Ecology and BiodiversityBIOEB10215.0 Points
Structure and SpectroscopyCHEMY10115.0 Points
Chemical ReactivityCHEMY10215.0 Points
Introduction to Earth System SciencesEARTH10115.0 Points
Discovering Planet EarthEARTH10215.0 Points
Economics and SocietyECONS10215.0 Points
Engineering MechanicsENGEN11015.0 Points
Electricity and ElectronicsENGEN11115.0 Points
People and PlaceGEOGY10115.0 Points
Environment and SocietyGEOGY10315.0 Points

Year 2

Process Engineering Design 1ENGCB28015.0 Points
Water Engineering 1ENGCV22315.0 Points
Geotechnical Engineering 1ENGCV23115.0 Points
Engineering Mathematics 2ENGEN20115.0 Points
Engineering Professional Practice 1ENGEN27015.0 Points
Industry Placement 1ENGEN2710.0 Points

30 points of electives

Principles of EcologyBIOEB20215.0 Points
MicrobiologyBIOMO20315.0 Points
Analytical ChemistryCHEMY20415.0 Points
Earth Resources and MaterialsEARTH21115.0 Points
Soil ScienceEARTH22115.0 Points
Water Resources, Weather and ClimateEARTH23115.0 Points
Civil Design Challenge 1ENGCV28015.0 Points
Engineering ThermodynamicsENGME22115.0 Points
Maori Lands and CommunitiesGEOGY21915.0 Points
Public LawLEGAL20130.0 Points

Year 3

Students must take the following papers:

Plus 20 points of electives from their chosen elective path:

Applied Terrestrial EcologyBIOL31220.0 Points
Applied Freshwater EcologyBIOL31320.0 Points
Marine Biology and MonitoringBIOL31420.0 Points
Microbial Physiology and EcologyBIOL34120.0 Points
Analytical and Inorganic Chemistry 2CHEM31120.0 Points
Organic and Physical Chemistry 2CHEM31220.0 Points
Environmental and Natural Resource EconomicsECON31520.0 Points
Geomechanics 2ENCV33010.0 Points
Special Topic in EngineeringENGG30120.0 Points
Materials and Processing ElectiveENMP40710.0 Points
Planning in Aotearoa/New ZealandENVP30620.0 Points
VolcanologyERTH32120.0 Points
Sedimentary and Petroleum GeologyERTH32220.0 Points
Pedology and Land EvaluationERTH33310.0 Points
Soil and Land ManagementERTH33410.0 Points
Coastal Oceanography and EngineeringERTH34420.0 Points
Catchment HydrologyERTH34510.0 Points
Freshwater Resources and HazardsERTH34610.0 Points
Geographic Information SystemsGEOG32820.0 Points
Negotiation and PersuasionMCOM33620.0 Points
Leading Change for SustainabilityMCOM39220.0 Points
Research ProjectSCIE30120.0 Points

Year 4

Students must take the following papers:

Plus 30 points of electives from their chosen elective path:

Work placements are a major feature of the Environmental Engineering programme and you will complete 800 hours of relevant work experience during your degree.

Our Cooperative Education Unit actively seeks and oversees your industrial work placement, ensuring a good fit for your area of study and career goals, and monitoring the quality of your work experience.  They are the leader in New Zealand for co-operative education programmes, with an average 250 students placed in industry every year.

By the time you graduate you will have the credibility of paid experience to take to your interviews.

Brian Perry Charitable Trust Undergraduate Scholarship in Science & Engineering

For students who are enrolled in the second year of full-time study towards an undergraduate degree, in the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Waikato. The scholarship will have a value of up to $2,000.

Closing Date: 2017-05-31 23:59:00

Engineering Admission Fees Scholarship

For students who are intending to enrol full-time (120 pts) in the first year of a Bachelor of Engineering(Honours) degree in the Faculty of Science & Engineering at the University of Waikato and are currently completing the final year of secondary school. The Scholarship has a value of up to $4,000

Closing Date: 2017-08-31 23:59:00

School of Engineering Postgraduate Study Scholarship

For students who qualify to enrol at the University of Waikato, and are intending to study part or full-time in semester B 2016 in the School of Engineering in either a masters degree 90 or 120 point thesis or the first year of a PhD degree.

Closing Date: 2016-07-18 23:59:00

Science and Engineering Masters Fees Awards

For students enrolling full-time in the first year MSc (research), MSc, MSc (Tech) ME or MEnvSci programme in the faculty of Engineering. Part-time applicants may be considered but any scholarship awarded will be on a pro-rata basis. The Scholarship will have a value of up to $2,000.

Closing Date: 2017-03-15 23:59:00


Faculty of Science & Engineering

Phone: +64 7 838 4625 / 0800 438 254