Environmental Studies Major (52-58 credit hours)

The Environmental Studies major requires that students understand both natural and human systems, develop proficiency in communicating ideas and basic quantitative analytical skills, and build other skills that support their individual goals.  Students majoring in Environmental Studies proceed through three key integrative courses, take a series of required courses to build a multidisciplinary foundation, complete a 120-hour internship, and select three elective courses (for  9-12 credits) to complete an emphasis in either Natural Systems, Human Social Systems, or Communicating Complexity. 


Integrative Course Sequence  (9 cr. hrs.)

  • Humans and the Environment (INTD 22500) (typically taken in the first- or second-year)
  • Interdisciplinary Readings in Environmental Studies (EVST 21000) (typically taken in the second-year)
  • Senior Seminar (EVST 48000)

Supportive Skills & Experience (1cr. hr.)

  • Internship Experience (EVST 49800) see Internship Guidelines for details (typically conducted at some point between the end of  sophomore year and the beginning of senior year)  

Additional elective skills courses may be drawn from any department and may include such diverse subjects as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), field experience, photography, and scuba diving.

Natural Systems (11-12 cr. hrs)

  • Ecology  (EVST 27800 or EVST 24100)
  • Two additional courses in Chemistry, Physics, or Geology chosen from the following list: 
    • Chemistry in Context (CHEM 10100)
    • General Chemistry I (CHEM 12000)
    • General Chemistry II (CHEM 12100)
    • Principles of Physics I (PHYS 11300) or Fundamentals of Physics I (PHYS 21300)
    • Principles of Physics II (PHYS 11400) or Fundamentals of Physics II (PHYS 21400)
    • Earth, Space, Science (EDUC/EVST 28000)
    • Alternative course in Geology with approval

Additional elective courses in this area may be drawn from any of the natural and physical sciences.

Human Social Systems (12 cr. hrs.)

  • Principles of Microeconomics (ECON 20100)
  • Environmental Activism and Policy (EVST 33800) 
  • Either Environmental History  (HIST 24000) or Environmental Ethics (PHIL 27000) or Wild and Sacred (RELG 38000), or alternative approved by EVST faculty

Additional elective courses in this area are typically drawn from the social sciences and humanities but can be found in many other departments, as well as the College’s INTD offerings.

Communicating Complexity (10-12 cr. hrs.)

  • Two courses in Communication or Writing
  • Statistics (MATH 10800) or Methods in Decision Making (MATH 13200) 

Additional elective courses in this area are typically drawn from Communication and Writing but may include Art, Computer Science, Math, Music, and Theater

Area of Emphasis (9-12 cr. hrs.)

Selected in consultation with EVST advisor, students will complete an emphasis in one of the following areas:

  • Natural Systems
  • Human Social Systems
  • Communicating Complexity

A Note about General Education Requirements:  It is relatively common for EVST majors to complete at least five Core Curriculum Requirements  (CA, CM, ES, MM, SM, and UD—see College Catalog for descriptions) while meeting course requirements for the major.  Additionally, completion of the EVST major fulfills the College’s INTD general education requirements.

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