2024-2025 Undergraduate Course Catalog 
    Jul 16, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate Course Catalog

Environment, Sustainability, and Policy BA

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Integrated Learning Major in Environment, Sustainability, and Policy

Program Director:

Jane Read
123 Eggers Hall

Core Faculty:

Jane Read, Associate Professor of Geography and the Environment
Phil Arnold, Associate Professor of Religion
Tripti Bhattacharya, Thonis Family Professor. Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Carmen Carrión-Flores, Research Assistant Professor of Economics
Melissa Chipman, Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Ethan Coffel, Assistant Professor of Geography and the Environment
Jay Golden, Pontarelli Professor of Environmental Sustainability and Finance, PAIA Department
Michael Goode, Professor of English
Gregory Hoke, Jessie Page Heroy Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Tomás Olivier, Assistant Professor of Public Administration and International Affairs
Susan Parks, Professor of Biology
Sarah Pralle, Associate Professor of Political Science
Chie Sakakibara, Associate Professor of Geography and the Environment
Chris Scholz, Professor of Earth Sciences
Takumi Shibaike, Assistant Professor of Political Science
Peter Wilcoxen, Professor of Public Affairs and International Affairs
Robert Wilson, Associate Professor of Geography and the Environment

This Integrated Learning Major (ILM) in Environment, Sustainability, and Policy is designed to introduce students to and ground them in the interdisciplinary study of environmental science, sustainability, and policy necessary to understand the nature of our changing planet, contribute solutions to advance sustainability, and become more engaged global citizens. 

As a growing human population seeks to meet its needs, competing demands on the environment threaten the planet’s systems for supporting and sustaining life. Rising to the challenge of planetary stewardship requires the integration of multiple scientific disciplines exploring the planet’s vital functions and an understanding of how the complexities of human societies across places and time periods shape views of and approaches to protecting or exploiting the planet’s resources and pursuing sustainability. The ILM’s foundation is built on two pillars integral to finding solutions to environmental problems and sustainability: (1) the science of the planet’s interacting natural systems (environmental sciences) and (2) the examination of human perceptions, institutions, and policies toward the environment from the social sciences and humanities (environmental studies). This major’s integration across traditionally isolated lenses of natural and human sciences provides a unique perspective toward understanding, examining, and addressing the environment and sustainability.

This ILM may be combined with any other undergraduate major with approval by the program director. While certain majors typically serve as the base major for this ILM, students are encouraged to meet with the program director to determine their best choice of a base major. Dually enrolled students must have a base major within Arts and Sciences|Maxwell.

Dual Enrollments:

Students dually enrolled in Newhouse* and Arts and Sciences|Maxwell will complete a minimum of 122 credits, with at least 90 credits in Arts and Sciences|Maxwell coursework and an Arts and Sciences|Maxwell major.

*Students dually enrolled in the College of Arts and Sciences|Maxwell as first year students must complete the Liberal Arts Core. Students who transfer to the dual program after their first year as singly enrolled students in the Newhouse School will satisfy general requirements for the dual degree program by completing the Newhouse Core Requirements.

Degree awarded: BA or BS, depending on base major.

Upper-division credits required: 18

Total credits required: 27

Student Learning Outcomes

1. Describe the Earth’s living and non-living systems.

2. Analyze the social, cultural, political, and economic factors that mediate human interactions with the environment.

3. Acquire a wide range of skills for solving global problems of the environment and sustainability.

4. Integrate data, concepts, and methods from multiple disciplines and apply them to studies of and communication about human and environmental systems and sustainability.

5. Identify and interact with key experts, organizations, and communities that need to be a part of sustainable solutions to environmental problems.

6. Link knowledge with actions for sustainable alternatives that integrate scientific, humanist, and social perspectives.

Prerequisites for Admission into the Major

Enrollment in one of the following base majors:

  • Anthropology
  • Applied Data Analytics
  • Architecture
  • Biology
  • Biotechnology
  • Communication and Rhetorical Studies
  • Chemistry
  • Civil Engineering
  • Earth Sciences
  • Economics
  • English and Textual Studies
  • Entrepreneurship and Emerging Enterprises
  • Environmental and Interior Design
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Television, Radio, and Film
  • Finance
  • Food Studies
  • Geography
  • History
  • International Relations
  • Management
  • Marketing Management
  • Policy Studies
  • Political Science
  • Philosophy
  • Political Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Public Health
  • Religion
  • Sociology
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Transmedia

Or students can petition additional base majors to be paired with this ILM. Students are encouraged to work closely with their base major advisor and with the ESP advisor to ensure that they are meeting the requirements of both programs.

Environmental Sciences Course (3 credits)

Required course: Environmental sciences, chosen from the list below.

Environmental Studies and Humanities Course (3 credits)

One required course: Environmental Studies and Humanities, chosen from 4 listed below.

Advanced Coursework and Focused Studies

Students are required to take one 3-credit, 300-level integrative science-policy course and four 3-credit electives. Two electives must be from the environmental sciences, and two must be from environmental studies or humanities. Students completing a capstone for their base major have the option of replacing one elective for this ILM with the capstone from the base major, if the capstone has sufficient environmental or sustainability content.  In addition, students can use independent study (research or policy project) or experience credit (fellowship/internship experience with approval), study abroad or international field experience for an elective, with approval by the ESP Faculty Advisory Committee.  

Students will consult with their undergraduate advisor and the ESP Director (in consultation with the ESP Faculty Advisory Committee) to develop a curricular track suited for their thematic interests or professional goals. Examples of suggested tracks include climate change, water, land use and ecosystems, environmental design, and environmental studies. Through these electives, students build on their foundation in environmental sciences, environmental studies, and the humanities and in data analysis established through the core courses listed above and gain an interdisciplinary perspective through the lens of a particular environmental theme or problem.  

Senior Capstone Seminar (3 credits)

Required course:  Senior capstone seminar (3 credits)

Electives (4 courses totaling 12 credit hours)

Electives (Four courses, two of which are environmental sciences courses and two of which are environmental studies or humanities courses, totaling 12 credit hours).

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