Interdisciplinary Programs & Minors

Environment and Society Minor

Environment and Society is an interdisciplinary minor that provides students with analytical and communication skills, as well as the scientific foundation needed to succeed in environmental planning, environmental policy, environmental philosophy, sustainable development, environmental education, and other fields. Topics explored include climate change, sustainability, resource rights, law and regulation, environmental ethics, and the role of environmental issues in domestic and international conflicts.

Students are encouraged to participate in collaborative environmental research and service projects with government agencies, non-profit organizations, local businesses and other environmental actors such as state and national park systems.

A minor in Environment and Society requires completion of a minimum of 18 credits of coursework distributed as follows:


Foundation Course

  • POLI.1750 Introduction to Environmental Politics 

Capstone Course 

Choose one from the following:

  • BIOL.4160 Climate Change: Science, Communication, and Solutions 
  • FAHS.4970 Directed Study in Environmental and Society

Strongly Recommended

In addition to three semesters of Gen. Ed. Science, students are strongly urged to take a fourth science foundation course.

  • ATMO.1410 Weather and Climate
  • BIOL.3150 Principles of Ecology
  • BIOL.3170 Principles of Ecology Laboratory


3-4 courses selected from this list or by permission. Depending on whether student has elected the highly recommended fourth science course, student must select 3 or 4 courses from these regularly offered courses:

  • ARHI.4900 Art History Seminar
  • ECON.3150 Intro to Environmental Economics
  • ENGL.2490 Literature on Technology and Human Values
  • ENGL.3240 Writing About Place
  • HIST.3010 The World of Things: Consumer Cultures in the Modern West
  • HIST.3160 American Environmental History
  • LGST.3670 Environmental Law
  • PHIL.3270 Environmental Philosophy
  • POLI.3570 Thoreau in Our Time
  • POLI.3580 Global Environmental Policy
  • PUBH.2110 Sustainable Development
  • PUBH.3130 Principles of Environmental Health
  • SOCI.2360 Sociological Perspectives on the Environment 
  • SOCI.3300 Fast Food, Hot Planet: Sociol. Approaches to Climate Change, Food Justice, and Comm. Sustain.


The Environment and Society minor collaborates with the Climate Change Initiative to advance UML’s Climate Action Plan, and to serve the region, the state, and beyond.

For more information contact Charlotte Ryan, Sociology Dept., or Susan Gallagher, Political Sciences Dept.,