Environmental Sciences
Image courtesy of the University of Waikato

“Reason, observation, and experience – the Holy Trinity of Science.” – Robert G. Ingersoll

Science represents the bedrock of modern life. From chemistry, to physics, to earth science, biology and beyond, these are the tools of discovery used to translate and make sense of the natural world.

To be ‘scientifically-literate’ is to understand the most complex workings of our planet. Lying at the heart of the global innovation culture, revelations of these subjects also form the backbone of the world’s most crucial political policies and decisions, making technology, innovation and science itself increasingly important for economic well-being and quality of life.

“To understand why science is so important, it’s essential to take a broad view of history,” Noah Smith writes for Bloomberg View. “Economic historians estimate that modern developed countries are more than 25 times as rich as they were in the Middle Ages.

“The developing world is now repeating that transformation, following in the footsteps of places like Britain,” he explains. “In the space of just a couple of centuries, the human race went from scratching dirt for a living to driving cars and ordering pizza…there’s no question that science was essential to the process.”


From germ theory, to Einstein’s theory of relativity, to the Copernican System letting us comprehend the most intricate complexities of the universe; it was the meticulous procedures that surround the experimentation and applied mathematical theory we now describe as science that soon became civilization’s most influential tool.

“It has let us master the natural world and improve the human condition,” adds Smith. “Science was…the secret sauce of Western civilization.”

But it’s no longer just the West standing at the helm of humanity’s progression – some of the most powerful contemporary developments in science comes out of the Asia-Pacific (APAC).

Last October, for example, Kenji Kansaku and his team at the National Rehabilitation Center for Persons with Disabilities in Tokorozawa, Japan, made a ground-breaking discovery via the ‘rubber hand illusion’, which can now be used to develop new kinds of prosthetic limbs; while scientists from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO Lab) in Louisiana, USA, also confirmed the existence of gravitational ripples in the fabric of space and time, an aftermath created when massive objects move.

These revolutionary discoveries affirm the region’s position as a global force in scientific progression. And while many aspects of modern life are marked by turbulence and distrust, one thing we can be sure of is science’s ability to innovate and inspire.

Read on to learn about 4 leading APAC Universities for Natural Science study…


Biological Sciences University of Waikato

Image courtesy of University of Waikato

The School of Science lies at the heart of Waikato’s outstanding reputation, supported by experienced teaching staff, highly relevant and readily accessible field sites, and some of the world’s most advanced laboratory facilities.

Here, students learn from academics whose research expertise receive international-recognition, with comprehensive programmes allowing students to meet the needs of the globe’s most rewarding graduate fields.

Waikato’s Science faculty offers the full-range of natural science programme disciplines, including: Biochemistry – the study of life in chemical terms; Biological Sciences – incorporating molecular and cellular understandings of life and ecological and biodiversity approaches to understand terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems; Chemistry – allowing students to grasp complex chemical theory and gain practical expertise; Earth Sciences – develop critical understandings of our soil, water, minerals, energy, coastal and marine environments; and Environmental Science  – letting us effectively manage our ecosystems and natural resources.

One thing students love about Waikato’s School of Science is the opportunity to pursue hands-on field and lab-based experiences with direct engagement from research academics. A practical approach to learning gives students the tools needed to succeed long before they graduate. This is part of what made the BSc (Earth Sciences) programme so attractive to student Ryan Lee.

“Many of the field trips took me to exciting places which I would never previously have had the opportunity to visit, ranging from volcanoes to the inside of hydroelectric dams and power stations,” he says. “I’m really interested in geology and geochemistry, and I’m hoping that an MSc will help me to gain a top job in a geology company.”


SNU’s College of Natural Sciences is a cutting-edge research institution that observes the underlying laws and principles of nature. Through ground-breaking research and systematic education, the college serves as the ideal preparation for students looking to become leaders of the diverse science realm.

Offering reputed programmes in Physics, Astronomy, Chemistry, Biophysics and Chemical Biology, Earth Science and everything in between, the college consistently strives to break through existing boundaries of the Natural Science field.

With 230 faculties and more than 1,100 graduate students participating in the college’s interdisciplinary research projects, many of its students, alumni and expert members of faculty are considered pioneers of the world’s scientific community. Exceptional support networks and unparalleled learning facilities provide unrivalled standards both for staff and student, also serving as the foundation for science competency and achievement worldwide.

“A total of 230 faculty members, 1000 undergraduates, and 2000 graduate students and researchers are working round the clock in their endeavor to unravel the ultimate secrets of nature,” says Seong Keun Kim, Dean of the College. “Today’s young students at SNU, inspired by the wonders of nature, will be tomorrow’s scientists lighting up the future of humanity.”


Image courtesy of University of Adelaide

With an overarching emphasis on teaching, learning and research that nurtures graduates with the skills and knowledge needed to make a difference in the world, Adelaide’s Faculty of Sciences is an influential force in scientific exploration.

Encompassing the School of Biological and the School of Physical Science, the faculty perfectly blends innovation in research and teaching to give its students leading roles in shaping a successful global future. Outstanding industry partnerships ensure students are exposed to the most current industry innovations, with the co-location of major state and national research organisations Adelaide’s stunning campus keeping both students and researchers at the forefront of developing technologies.

“I chose my degree because I have a deep fascination with biological sciences, and have always wanted to explore how sciences can be used to benefit humankind,” says Arthur Eng Lip Yeow, an international student originally from Malaysia.

“I chose to study at the University of Adelaide because of [its] excellent research culture and focus,” he adds. “I am not only able to enjoy a world-class education by the professors, but to immerse myself in the research culture even during my undergraduate years.”


As one of the world’s most influential providers of insight on the tropics, JCU is a recognised powerhouse of natural science education, with its distinct location surrounded by some of the planet’s most breath-taking ecosystems – including rainforests, dry savannahs and the iconic Great Barrier Reef – making it a real-life living laboratory for students of the field.

Image courtesy of James Cook University

Part of the Division of Tropical Environments and Societies, JCU’s College of Science and Engineering promotes, supports and administers elite teaching, diverse hands-on experiences, plus industry and research placements within the disciplines of Marine Biology and Aquaculture; Zoology and Ecology; Geoscience; Environmental Management; and Physical Science.

JCU’s Science Honours Programme offers students the chance to pursue their first original scientific research project. Staff that are world experts in their chosen field and experienced in Honours supervision enable students to execute research at the cutting-edge of their chosen discipline. As an internationally-recognised programme, students here work alongside with staff in a close-knit mentor relationship, learning to apply scientific theory among some of the industry’s most respected figures.

Ranked in the top 2 percent of the world’s tertiary institutions, JCU strives to nurture a brighter future for life in the tropics and worldwide.

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International

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