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Goucher College    
  Jan 18, 2018
Goucher College 2012-2013 Undergraduate Catalogue [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Environmental Studies Major

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Upon declaring an environmental studies major, students choose one of two concentrations: environmental science (ESCI) or environment and society (ESOC). Students complete all required courses within their chosen concentration as well as a set of required courses designed to cultivate breadth. All environmental studies students complete the environmental studies core curriculum consisting of introductory, mid-level, and capstone courses. At the introductory level, all students (majors and minors) take courses spanning the natural and social sciences, in addition to statistics. Introductory courses in environmental science and environmental studies are designed to introduce students to the biological, physical, and chemical science of environmental change, as well as the human dimensions (social/political/cultural/economic) of such change.

Students choosing the ESOC concentration begin coursework in economics, political science, and/or anthropology sociology, while students choosing the ESCI concentration complete an introductory biology and chemistry sequence.

At the 200 level, all environmental studies majors complete the core course Biosphere and Society, which draws from and integrates a range of disciplines to help students master a set of key concepts and analytical methods fundamental to environmental studies. In the capstone course, students actively integrate the approaches and methodologies they have practiced and experimented with at the 100 and 200 levels toward further research on particular problem, issue, or theme of their choosing, based on their research and future career interests. Service-learning opportunities are embedded within the core courses, as well as within several elective courses. Completing an internship is encouraged, but not required.


Writing proficiency in the major is fulfilled in the Biosphere and Society core course.

Majors choose a concentration in either Environment and Society (ESOC) or Environmental Science (ESCI) and complete required courses and breadth requirements.

ESOC Concentration

Social Science Research Methods

Breadth for ESOC:

ESCI Concentration

Choose Life Science or Physical Science focus:


Only one seminar course may be used to meet the 300-level credit requirement in the life sciences concentration. Laboratories for BIO 333 , BIO 343 , BIO 354  are strongly recommended but not required. Refer to Biology Department listings for additional prerequisites for laboratories.

Qualifications Required to Graduate with Honors

Honors are decided by a vote of the program faculty just prior to Commencement using the following guidelines:

A student must acheive a grade point average of 3.5 or higher in all 200- and 300-level courses that count toward the major.

A student must demonstrate a superior grasp of environmental studies skills and theoris as well as their applications by completing either an academic thesis or a theoretical grounded body of analytical work that includes substantial written documentation.


Concentration in Prelaw Studies

Students interested in pursuing a legal career are encouraged to complete the prelaw concentration in conjunction with the requirements of the major (ESOC or ESCI). The prelaw concentration requires students to take courses outside of their major to expose them to methodologies and critical approaches not inherent to their own discipline but necessary for academic success in law school. A complete description can be found under Prelaw Studies.

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