BSEN30360 Life Cycle Assessment

Academic Year 2021/2022

This module introduces the principles and methods of life cycle thinking and life-cycle assessment (LCA) with specific reference to agriculture, food and energy systems using attributional LCA. The module will be based around the ISO 14040 methodology andILCD handbook. The module will focus on the four common stages of LCA: (i) definition of the Goal and Scope; (ii) Life Cycle Inventory Analysis; (iii) Life Cycle Impact Assessment and (iv) Interpretation. Case studies will consider LCA studies of agriculture, food and energy systems. Learning will be faciitated through completion of an example project that will be completed throughout the module.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

(1) Prepare a goal and scope statement for an LCA of a product or process;
(2) Organize and manipulate data sources to build an LCI in order to undertake an LCA of a product or process;
(3) Calculate a simple LCIA (for climate change impact) of a product or process; and
(4) Communicate LCA findings using ISO standard reporting and oral presentation.

Indicative Module Content:

Introduction to life cycle thinking, structure of an ISO standard life cycle assessment. The goal and scope, Life cycle inventory. Life cycle impact assessment. Interpretation and uncertainty. Example applications.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning




Online Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
- Problem based assignments that build to a completed LCA project
- Directed reading
- Online lectures
- Online tutorials to progress through the LCA project 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Recommendations:

Experience using Excel or similar speadsheet software
Some knowledge of system modelling
Search strategies
Some knowledge of agriculture, food and energy systems

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
BSEN30420 - Environmental Footprint Method

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Assignment: Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) of chosen system Week 7 n/a Graded No


Assignment: Final LCA report including Interpretation for chosen system Week 12 n/a Graded Yes


Assignment: Goal and Scope definition for LCA of chosen system Week 4 n/a Graded Yes


Assignment: Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) of chosen system Week 9 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Remediation Type Remediation Timing
In-Module Resit Prior to relevant Programme Exam Board
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Feedback will be provided using the VLE on each assessment as it is graded during the module.

Name Role
Julia Lessa Feitosa Virgolino Tutor
Ms Nishtha Talwar Tutor
Timetabling information is displayed only for guidance purposes, relates to the current Academic Year only and is subject to change.
Tutorial Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Fri 14:00 - 14:50
Lecture Offering 1 Week(s) - Autumn: All Weeks Wed 14:00 - 15:50