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The environmental studies concentration focuses on the study of nature, the interactions between people and nature, and the efforts of people to protect nature. Our concentration offers a wide variety of courses that can prepare you for a broad range of careers both in the environmental field and also in the many other fields that are connected to environmental studies. Our curriculum is an excellent preparation for graduate education as well, and a number of SUA environmental studies graduates have continued their studies at distinguished graduate schools in the United States, Canada, Britain, and Japan (including Yale, Oxford, University of Michigan, Indiana University, University of Calgary, Monterey Institute of International Studies, and Soka University in Japan).
The environmental studies concentration has an interdisciplinary curriculum that includes extensive course offerings in the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities. Our concentration requires the completion of five courses in environmental studies and a capstone project on a topic in environmental studies; the mix of those concentration courses is flexible and allows you to choose different paths of study that follow your own interests. You can therefore complete your environmental studies concentration requirements by taking courses exclusively in the area of social sciences, or by taking courses exclusively in the area of natural sciences, or by taking a mixture of courses that combine coursework in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities.
Most of our courses are taught by five full-time environmental studies faculty members who have together received widespread international recognition for their research. Additional cross-listed environmental studies courses are taught by faculty in other programs across the University. The environmental studies curriculum has several major clusters of courses that are described below:
Ecology (ECOL). These natural science courses allow students to study animals, plants, and their interactions through lecture, field, and laboratory studies.
Environmental Management and Policy (EMP). These social science courses focus on the efforts of people to protect and manage the environment, with an emphasis on the practical realities of planning and implementing policies for environmental protection at the local, regional, national, and international levels.
Earth and Ocean Sciences (EOS). These natural science courses allow students to understand planet Earth as a physical and chemical system. Through lecture, field, and laboratory studies, students learn about the interaction of human and biological activity with the air, water, and soils of Earth.
Geography (GEOG). These courses focus on the mapping and analysis of the interactions of natural and human activities across the world and across time. Geography courses include perspectives from both the natural and social sciences, and some of these courses include instruction in computer-based mapping through Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Global Positioning Systems (GPS).
Cross-listed Environmental Studies (ENVST). These courses offer a wide variety of additional perspectives on environmental studies taught by faculty across the University, including courses in the humanities and social sciences.
In addition to our courses, research and laboratory assistantships give you opportunities to work alongside our internationally recognized faculty in their research and teaching activities. Our concentration fulfills one of the University Principles - to “foster leaders for the creative co-existence of nature and humanity.” Environmental protection is one of the greatest challenges facing the world in our time. We welcome you to take our courses to learn more about the environment and the efforts of people across the world to protect the environment. We believe you will find our courses to be interesting, meaningful, and useful. Please feel welcome to contact any member of the environmental studies concentration faculty for more information about our concentration, and please see the links to further information below:
Environmental Studies faculty