Future global resource limitations require creative responses to ensure a sustainable environment. Environmental Studies integrates natural and physical science in the fields of biology, chemistry, geology, and ecology to understand and address the complex scientific, economic, political, and ethical issues relating to the environment. This minor will provide an integrative scientific literacy that can enhance students' work in their majors.
Thus, the goal of the Environmental Studies minor is to have all students complete coursework and hands-on laboratory experience to gain a comprehensive understanding of natural and physical sciences related to the environment. Students will complete a core course in Environmental Science, then have the option to choose the discipline within the program that they wish to pursue in greater detail. Finally, students are required to complete an independent study project or skill-based class in environmental science depending on their interests.
As a result of successfully completing program requirements, students should be able to:
- understand basic concepts, principles, facts, theories, and unifying concepts in environmental science that enable them to distinguish science from non-science topics;
- recognize the interdisciplinary nature of environmental studies and how it draws upon both the natural sciences and social sciences;
- understand the earth's natural processes and how these impact human civilization;
- explain the human impact on the environment, how we can combat the environmental problems we face, and appreciate what it means to become an informed citizen with regard to the environment; and
- communicate science effectively in both written and oral formats, to think critically and logically and to apply these skills.