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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Business School : Common Courses (Management School)

Postgraduate Course: Carbon and Environmental Accounting (CMSE11364)

Course Outline
SchoolBusiness School CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits15 ECTS Credits7.5
SummaryThe course aims to provide students with an understanding of the range of measurement, calculation, reporting and auditing - in short, accounting - requirements and challenges related to climate change and the policy responses to climate change. Students will come away from the course with the skills to both implement and critique carbon accounting methods. In addition to carbon accounting, the course will also explore broader aspects of environmental and natural capital accounting.
Course description The course provides an overview of the different forms of carbon accounting, and their different purposes. The course develops both practical knowledge for implementing different carbon accounting methods, and analytical skills for critiquing current accounting and reporting practice. We will also explore the main motivations for carbon accounting, the relationship between carbon accounting and carbon finance, and some of the ethical issues associated with carbon accounting.

The course complements the first semester course on Carbon Markets, covering aspects of monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) for regulated entities within trading schemes. The course also covers the accounting theory for emission reduction projects, which is relevant to both Carbon Markets and the optional second semester course on Baseline-and-Credit Methods and Applications. Carbon accounting also interfaces with the Climate Change and Environmental Policy course, in terms of the estimation and allocation of carbon budgets consistent with a 1.5 degree global temperature target.

1. Introduction to carbon accounting: overview of the different forms of carbon accounting, and their different purposes
2. Carbon accounting at the national and community Level
3. Carbon accounting at the firm/organisational Level
4. Carbon accounting for products and supply chains
5. Carbon disclosure and reporting
6. Consequential carbon accounting
7. Carbon accounting at the project/policy level
8. Carbon accounting at the global level
9. Carbon auditing and validation
10. Environmental and natural capital accounting

Student Learning Experience
The course includes a large number of guest speakers, both in person and via Skype for overseas speakers. This provides useful real-world insights alongside the more theoretical aspects of the course.

The course will be taught through weekly lectures and some weeks will include a case study, group exercise or other interactive discussion component.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2018/19, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 150 ( Lecture Hours 25, Formative Assessment Hours 5, Summative Assessment Hours 30, Revision Session Hours 3, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 3, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 84 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 70 %, Coursework 30 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Group coursework exercise - 30%
Exam - 70%

Feedback Students will gain formative feedback on their understanding of the course material through questions, answers, exercises and discussions during the lectures.

Summative feedback on assessments will be made available a maximum of 15 working days after the assessment completion.
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)Carbon and Environmental Accounting (CMSE11364)2:00
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand and critically discuss the range of measurement, calculation, reporting and auditing requirements related to climate change.
  2. Understand and apply methods at the forefront of carbon accounting practice.
  3. Explain and discuss the relationship between carbon/environmental finance and carbon/environmental accounting.
  4. Critically discuss the ethical questions raised by carbon and environmental accounting.
  5. Understand and critically discuss the importance and implications of carbon accounting choices for effective climate change mitigation.
Reading List
Please see the online Resource List for the Carbon Accounting course, which is available via Learn.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Knowledge and Understanding
After completing this course, students should have:
- A critical understanding of most of the methods, concepts and terminology related to carbon accounting.
- Detailed critical knowledge and understanding of developments at the forefront of carbon accounting.
-An understanding of the main forms of environmental accounting and recent developments in natural capital accounting.

Practice: Applied Knowledge, Skills and Understanding:
After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Undertake a corporate/organisational greenhouse gas inventory and a product life cycle assessment.
- Quantify the change in emissions/removals caused by a range of interventions.
- Critically evaluate the accuracy, transparency, comparability, completeness, and relevance of carbon disclosures.
- Critically evaluate the choice of carbon accounting method for specific purposes/applications.

Cognitive Skills
After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Critically evaluate and synthesize new and complex ideas.
- Make informed judgements in the absence of complete or consistent data.
- Offer creative solutions and insights on complex issues.

Communication, ICT, and Numeracy Skills
After completing this course, students should be able to:
- Communicate technical, conceptual and critical information clearly and concisely.
- Use on-line collaborative tools for group project work.
- Apply emission factors to activity data to calculate greenhouse gas emissions.

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with Others
After completing this course, students should be able to:

- Draw on critical reflection of own and others' work.
- Provide and receive peer-feedback.
- Cooperate with others from different professional, educational and cultural backgrounds.
Course organiserDr Matthew Brander
Tel: (0131 6)51 5547
Course secretaryMiss Yvonne Stewart
Tel: (0131 6)51 5333
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