The Environmental Science programs (Specialist, Major, Minor and Combined MScSM ) offer an opportunity to study the interdisciplinary sciences that are required to understand complex environmental problems involving the natural world and human impacts. Students can tailor the scientific focus of the program to their own interests, by choosing courses from Geographical and Earth Science Perspectives, Biological/Ecological Perspectives and Physical/Chemical Perspectives.
For example, one possible pathway through Environmental Science focuses on the relationships among biota, land, water and air, the structure and function of natural and managed ecosystems, and processes in the biogeochemical environment. This pathway would rely mainly on courses chosen from the Geographical and Ecological Perspectives. An alternative, more analytical pathway is better suited to students with a strong interest in laboratory sciences, who wish to apply their knowledge to problems of chemical, physical and biotechnical remediation and the control of environmental problems. This pathway would involve more course choices in the Physical and Chemical Sciences. Fieldwork, experiential learning and research opportunities are important to all of the Environmental Science programs.
No matter which pathway is followed, some courses on Social and Policy Perspectives are also part of the program. The premise is that those who will develop our scientific knowledge and technological capacities must also have a basic understanding of environmental management, policy and the human-environment relationship. Students who have concerns about identifying which pathway is best for them are encouraged to visit the Program Advisors and Academic Counselor early and often.
Students in Environmental Science Specialist or Major programs also have the opportunity to apply to the Combined Degree Program in Environmental Sciense (HBSc) and Master of Science in Sustainability Management (MScSM) .