Environmental, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences

Environmental Science Major

The major in Environmental Science is a broad-based interdisciplinary program designed to provide students with an understanding of the complex interrelationships that exist between the lithosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and atmosphere. A basic understanding of science and mathematics is fundamental to the program, and all concentrations require one year sequences in physics, chemistry, and calculus, plus additional science and mathematics courses as appropriate for the particular concentration. A three course sequence (Principles of Earth & Environmental Systems I & II and Environmental Geochemistry) provides an integrated understanding of the behavior of natural systems, a preliminary step to more focused study of a particular aspect of the natural environment. The program diverges at this point with students interested in the atmospheric environment and meteorology following the Atmospheric Science Concentration, those interested in the geologic environment following the Environmental Geoscience Concentration, and those interested in both the scientific and social aspects of environmental problems following the Environmental Studies Concentration.

The degree program also provides the basic course work, with a few additional courses required depending on the concentration, for students who wish to pursue a career in earth science teaching. For students interested in this career path, the College of Education offers a graduate degree program designed to prepare elementary and secondary teachers in earth sciences. This year-long program (September to June) provides the course work and the apprentice teaching experience required for certification in Massachusetts and thirty-three other states (see the Graduate Catalogue for admission requirements). Additional information may be obtained from the College of Education.