Environmental Science

Housed in RWU’s Marine and Natural Sciences Building, the interdisciplinary Environmental Science program integrates biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics into an understanding of the natural world. Through research and an array of electives in fields like earth sciences, resource management and law, you’ll discover how humans affect nature and learn how to protect the environment in your career as a scientist, policymaker or educator.

Degree Requirements

The Environmental Science Major

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Students who declare Environmental Science majors must complete NATSC 103 and BIO 104 with an average grade of C- or higher in order to continue in the program.

Environmental Science majors pursuing the Bachelor of Science degree must complete two semesters of calculus and one semester of Biostatistics. The Bachelor of Arts degree requires a statistics class (MATH 124 or MATH 250) and MATH 136 or above. A paper or other evidence of the student’s ability to conduct investigations, use library resources, and write a report following a standard format is required in each advanced-level course. A 200-level or higher Critical Writing course is prerequisite to advanced courses and should be completed prior to the junior year.

Environmental Science majors must satisfy all University Core Curriculum requirements and the College speech requirement, COMM 210. In addition, environmental science majors must successfully complete the following courses and sufficient electives to total 120 credits. Majors are encouraged to apply electives toward a minor or second major.

Foundation Requirements:

SubjectNumberTitle
NATSC103Earth Systems Science and Lab
NATSC203Humans, Environmental Change and Sustainability
NATSC204Principles of Oceanography
BIO104Biology II and Lab
CHEM191, 192Principles of Chemistry I and II and Labs
MATH250Introduction to Biostatistics
and
MATH213Calculus I and Lab (B.S. degree)
MATH214Calculus II and Lab (B.S. degree)
or
MATH136Precalculus or above (B.A. degree)

Intermediate Level Requirements:

SubjectNumberTitle
*BIO240Concepts of Ecology
*BIO360Limnology and Lab
CHEM201, 202Environmental Chemistry I and II and Labs
PHYS201, 202Principles of Physics I and II and Labs (B.S. degree)
or
PHYS109, 110Physics I and II and Labs (B.A. degree)

and

Environmental Science Upper Level Electives: Select five (5) courses chosen from list:

SubjectNumberTitle
ANTH222Environmental Anthropology
BIO230Microbiology and Lab
BIO312Conservation Biology
CHEM312Instrumental Methods of Analysis
CHEM434Advanced Environmental Chemistry
ENGR320Environmental Engineering
ENGR405Air Pollution and Control
ENGR407Solid and Hazardous Waste Management
LS200Environmental Law
NATSC301Marine Resource Management
NATSC305Marine Geology
NATSC310Biogeochemical Cycling
NATSC315Meteorology and Climatology
NATSC333Environmental Monitoring and Lab
NATSC/BIO375Soil Ecology and Lab
NATSC401Environmental Toxicology and Lab
NATSC469Environmental Science Internship

and

Three (3) free electives for B.S.

*Note: Environmental Science majors may apply a maximum of two (2) courses from the major requirements towards minors in Biology or Marine Biology. Environmental Science majors may use a maximum of two (2) upper-level electives towards the elective requirements for majors in Biology or Marine Biology.

The Environmental Science Minor

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Requirements for the Minor in Environmental Science

SubjectNumberTitle
BIO104Biology II and Lab
NATSC103Earth Systems Science and Lab
NATSC203Humans, Environmental Change and Sustainability
and
At least seven (7) credits from Environmental Science Upper

Level Electives (total of 18 credits):

SubjectNumberTitle
ANTH222Environmental Anthropology
BIO230Microbiology and Lab
BIO240Concepts of Ecology
BIO312Conservation Biology
BIO332Fisheries Science
BIO360Limnology and Lab
BIO367Urban Ecosystems
CHEM312Instrumental Methods of Analysis
CHEM434Advanced Environmental Chemistry
CIS350Geographical Analysis of Data: An Introduction to GIS
ENGR320Environmental Engineering
ENGR340Sustainable Energy Systems
ENGR405Air Pollution and Control
ENGR407Solid and Hazardous Waste Management
LS200Environmental Law
NATSC204Principles of Oceanography
NATSC301Marine Resource Management
NATSC305Marine Geology
NATSC310Biogeochemical Cycling
NATSC315Meteorology and Climatology
NATSC333Environmental Monitoring
NATSC/BIO375Soil Ecology and Lab
NATSC401Environmental Toxicology and Lab

To read more about our academic offerings, or to view full course descriptions, please refer to our University Catalog.

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