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View the Environmental Program section of the Catalog of Courses.

Environmental Program

The Environmental Program includes coursework in environmental science and policy. The environmental science major includes an integrated major with an interdisciplinary focus, as well as disciplinary tracks in environmental physics and environmental chemistry. The environmental policy major offers an integrated environmental major with emphasis on political science and economics.

An environmental issues minor is available (see Thematic Minors) that can be used with any departmental major. There are also options under environmental studies LAS majors.

Students interested in the Environmental Program should carefully read the course requirements and listings, and we strongly encourage first- and second-year students to discuss their interests with the EV faculty.


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The environmental science major has three tracks:

Integrated Major

Chemistry Concentration

Physics Concentration

 All environmental science majors require the following:

  1. The integrated major or a major in environmental chemistry or environmental physics
  2. A capstone experience that includes Environmental Management (EV 321); Senior Seminar (EV 490, pass/fail, 0 units); and either Environmental Synthesis (EV 421) or Senior Thesis (EV 499) or Senior Paper (EV 420). (2 units)

Integrated Environmental Science major

(updated 4.20.15)

16 total units (14 required + 2 elective options)

Introductory EV base (2 units)
EV128 Introduction to Global Climate Change   

EV141 Sustainable Development        

Natural Science Sequence (7 units)

EV155 Intro Earth Systems Science or GY140 Physical Geology    

MA126 Calculus I

EV228 Analysis of Environmental Data or MA117 Probability & Statistics or MA217 Probability and Statistical Modeling or BY220 Biostatistics and Environmental Design

EV211 Human Impacts on Biogeochemical Cycles

EV209 Ecology  

EV212 Energy

EV311 Water or EV431 Air                                          

Social Science Sequence (3 units)                                

EV271 Environmental Policy or EV 274 Environmental Politics & Policy

SO130 Environmental Sociology or EV277 Eco Feminism or SW301 Political Ecology of the Southwest

EV281 Environmental Ethics or EV221 Environmental Inquiry, or EV 273 Environmental History, or EV 255 Nature & Society

Thematic Electives (2 units)

Chosen with your advisor, must include at least one 300-400 level course.

Note: After your advisor approves your electives, please send an email to the current EV program director, your advisor, and Sharon Johnson (sharon.johnson@coloradocollege.edu) to confirm your plan.  We will enter this information in your academic file.

  1. ______________________
  2. ______________________

Examples (for illustration – you need not select one of these options):

After EV209 Ecology: EV 422 Terrestrial Ecosystem Ecology + BY308 Advanced Ecology

After EV155: GY250 Hydrology or EV311 Water and GY320 Surface Processes and Geomorphology

After core, one methods + advanced thematic course (to prepare for capstone)

Capstones (2 units)       

EV321 Environmental Management

EV421 Environmental Synthesis, EV 420 Senior Paper, or EV499 Thesis 


Chemistry Concentration Requirements

Total of 15 units

A student interested in a major in environmental science with an emphasis in chemistry is required to take:

  • Sustainable Development or Microeconomics (EV 141 or EC 151)
  • Environmental Policy (EV 271 or PS 321)
  • General Chemistry I & II (CH 107 and 108)
  • Organic Chemistry I (CH 250)
  • Analytical Chemistry or Bioanalytical Chemistry (CH 241 or CH 345)
  • Calculus I and II (MA 126 and 129)
  • Classical Physics I and II (PC 241 and 242)
  • Environmental Management (EV 321)
  • Environmental Synthesis (EV 421) or Senior Thesis (EV 499) or Senior Paper (EV 420)
  • Senior Seminar (EV 490, pass/fail, 0 units)

And any three of the following:

Organic Chemistry II (CH 251); Environmental Chemistry (CH 210); Organic Chemistry III (CH 351); Instrumental Analysis (CH 342); Biochemistry I (CH 382), Biochemistry II (CH 383), Physical Chemistry I (CH 366); Physical Chemistry II (CH 367); Inorganic Chemistry (CH 475); Air: Atmospheric Physics and Chemistry (EV 431).

Students are encouraged to take the three advanced classes as a concerted sequence that can lead to graduate studies or careers in areas such as toxicology: CH 251, CH 382, CH 383 with CH 345, or atmospheric chemistry: CH 366, CH 367, and EV 431.

Research in Environmental Chemistry and a field biology or geology course are also recommended.


Physics Concentration Requirements

Total of 14 units

A student interested in a major in environmental science with emphasis in physics is required to take:

  • Sustainable Development or Microeconomics (EV 141 or EC 151)
  • Environmental Policy (EV 271 or PS 321)
  • Calculus I, II, & III (MA 126, 129, and 203)
  • Introductory Classical Physics I & II (PC 241 and 242)
  • Modern Physics (PC 251)
  • Electronics (PC 261)
  • Techniques of Experimental Physics (PC 361)
  • Mechanics I (PC 341)
  • Air: Atmospheric Physics and Chemistry (EV 431)
  • Environmental Management (EV 321)
  • Environmental Synthesis (EV 421) or Senior Thesis (EV 499) or Senior Paper (EV 420)
  • Senior Seminar (EV 490, pass/fail, 0 units)

A field biology or geology course is also recommended. A student interested in graduate school or an environmental science career in fields such as atmospheric physics, meteorology, geophysics, and oceanography should take additional courses, such as differential equations, computer science, chemistry, and more physics.


Environmental Policy major

(updated 4.20.15)
14 total units (12 required + 2 elective units)

Introductory framework: (2 units)

EV128 Introduction to Global Climate Change 

EV141 Sustainable Development 

Natural Sciences/Quantitative (3 units)

EV211 Human Impacts on Biogeochemical Cycles or EV209 Ecology and the Environment

MA126 Calculus 1 (or equivalent)

MA117 Probability and Statistics (or equivalent)

Economics (1 unit)

Must be EC 201 Economic Theory I

* Note: The Economics Department will not be teaching EC 150, EC 151, or EC 152 after Spring 2015.  During the transition, students who have taken EC 151 or EC 152, but not both, can complete the requirement by taking EC 201 Economic Theory I.                              

Domestic Policy (2 units)

EV271 Environmental Policy or EV 274 Environmental Politics & Policy                                     

EV373/PS321 Public Policymaking (1 unit)

International Environmental Policy (1 unit)

EV374 Environmental Law and Policy for the Global Commons or PS356 Global Environmental Policy or SW301 Political Ecology of the Southwest or SO130 Environmental Sociology

Environmental Humanities (1 unit)

EV255 Nature and Society or EV281 Environmental Ethics or EV221 Environmental Inquiry

Thematic electives (2 units)

1 unit must be 300 or 400 level; both are to be chosen with your advisor.

Note: After your advisor approves your electives, please send an email to the current EV program director, your advisor, and Sharon Johnson (sajohnson@coloradocollege.edu) to confirm your plan.  We will enter this information in your academic file.

 

  1. ______________________
  2. ______________________

 

Examples (for illustration – you need not adopt any of these options):

EV 335 Environmental Economics + EV341 Ecological Economics

EV 277 Ecofeminism + SW301 Political Ecology of the Southwest

EV 272 Cities, Sustainability, & Environmental Justice + EV 374 Environmental Law & Policy for the Global Commons

Capstones (2 units)

EV321 Environmental Management

EV421 Environmental Synthesis, EV 420 Senior Paper, or EV499 Thesis 


New Environmental Issues Minor Requirements

Approved December 2013
Advisors - Hourdequin, McKendry

This minor is intended to provide a foundation for understanding the interdisciplinary nature of environmental problems and opportunities. For exceptions to the list below, a formal written proposal of the alternative(s) desired should be given to the minor advisors before taking the course(s), especially if the course is not a Colorado College course. Note also: No more than ONE course from your major department may be used to fulfill requirements in the minor. The environmental issues minor is comprised of six courses: an introductory course, four core courses, and a capstone course.

Introductory course:
EV128 - Introduction to Global Climate Change

Core Courses:
Students must take one course in each of the following areas, plus a second course in one area. One of the four courses must be at the 300- or 400- level. Selected environmentally related topics courses in science, social science, and humanities may count toward these requirements with prior approval of the student's environmental issues minor advisor.

Environmental Science:
Any EV science course can count toward this requirement. Recommended courses include:
EV135 - Meteorology
EV155 - Introductory Earth Systems Science
EV209 - Ecology and the Environment
EV211 - Human Impacts on Biogeochemical Cycles
EV212 - Energy: Environmental Thermodynamics and Energetics
EV228 - Analysis of Environmental Data
EV311 - Water: Hydrology, Aquatic Chemistry, and Ecology
EV422 - Biogeochemistry and Ecosystem Ecology
EV431 - Air: Atmospheric Physics and Chemistry

Environmental Social Science:
Any EV social science course can count toward this requirement, as well as a number of courses in other departments. Recommended courses include:
EV141 - Sustainable Development
EV271 - Environmental Policy
EV277 - Ecofeminism
EV341 - Ecological Economics and Sustainability
EV374 - Environmental Law and Policy for the Global Commons
ED385 - Environmental Education
PS272/EV272 - Cities, Sustainability, and Environmental Justice
PS31/EV373 - Public Policymaking
PS334/EV334 - United States Environmental Movement
PS356 - Global Environmental Policy
PS358 - Environment, Health and Security
SO130/EV161 - Environmental Sociology
SW220 - Environmental Justice in the Southwest
SW230 - Native Americans Under Federal Law
SW272 - Nature, Region, and Society of the Southwest
SW301 - Political Ecology of the Southwest

Environmental Humanities:
The following courses count toward this requirement:
EV221 - Environmental Inquiry
EV281 - Environmental Ethics
EV261 - Topics in Environmental Humanities
EN280 - Literature and the Environmental Imagination
HY212/EV273 - American Environmental History
HY255/EV255 - Nature and Society
TH240 - Environmental Design for Performance and Community Engagement

Capstone course:
EV321 - Environmental Management

Courses Found in Environmental Program

EV109: Winter Ecology

An introduction to winter-specific processes on the level of ecosystems, populations, and physiological adaptations of individual organisms. Includes hands-on field investigative projects for each of these three areas in snow-covered montane and high alpine environments. Topics include snow pack dynamics, vegetation-atmosphere-snowpack coupling, habitat use by non-hibernating animals via animal tracking, winter-specific plant adaptations, and aquatic ecosystem ecology under ice. Emphasis on how winter-specific processes constrain dynamics during the growing season. (Not offered 2017-18).

.5 unit

EV120: Topics in Environmental Science

Selected topics of current societal interest that relate to our environment offered when interest and opportunity arise. Counts as one unit of natural science credit, a few of which may meet the lab or field requirement. Only one such unit may be counted toward the natural science requirements.

1 unit — Tyler Cornelius, Howard Drossman, Boyce Drummond, Miroslav Kummel

EV121: Energy: Environmental

This course provides an overview of this interdisciplinary field at a level appropriate even for non-science majors, applying concepts, methods, and models from many disciplines to the major problems facing a sustainable management of the environment. The complex interactions of the 'biosphere,' the human systems that make up the 'sociosphere,' and the physical Earth systems that support them are considered. (Does not meet the field/lab credit.) (Not offered 2017-18).

1 to 2 units

EV127: Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Explores the basics of computer-based information analysis and manipulation. Teaches students fundamentals of basic GIS tasks: mapmaking, spatial analysis, and database creation. Students learn to use software that links these three functions together. Computer-based exercises are used both in class to teach fundamentals, and in labs that assist students to learn and use basic GIS tools.

.5 unit — Matthew Cooney

EV128: Introduction to Global Climate Change

Introduction to the contemporary Earth climate system that focuses on the roles of the atmosphere, oceans, cryosphere, and land surface, and an overview of how this system has changed in the past and is predicted to change in the future. Includes the use of mathematical models to describe complex systems and the role of policy, economics, and ethics in mitigating human impact. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Quantitative Reasoning requirement.

1 unit — Rebecca Barnes, Tamara Barriquand, Michael Burns, Henry Fricke

EV135: Meteorology

Basic physics principles introduced and used to study dynamic processes in the atmosphere: atmospheric energy flow, solar radiation, green house effect, large-scale circulation of the atmosphere, small scale processes including clouds and storms, weather forecasting, humanity's impact on weather and climate. Laboratory and field experiments and trips will be utilized. (Not offered 2017-18).

1 unit

EV141: Sustainable Development

Investigates the concept of sustainable development by first introducing students to necessary economic terms and concepts. It next explores traditional economic models of production and distribution. Finally it introduces the concept of sustainable development (meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs). The course includes fieldwork to explore the behavior of traditional economic models and examples of sustainable development. May involve additional expense $$$. Students can choose to take this course for credit either in Economics (EC 141) or Environmental Science (EV 141) (Fulfills one unit of the divisional requirement in the Social Sciences, but not in the Natural Sciences.) (Also listed as EV 141.)

1 unit — Tyler Cornelius, Jean Lee

EV155: Introductory Earth Systems Science

An overview of the Earth's surface systems including lithosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere. Course will also examine fluxes among these systems such as soil-forming processes, hydrologic processes, and biogeochemical cycles. (Meets the laboratory/field requirement for natural sciences.) Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement. (Not offered 2017-18).

1 unit

EV161: Environmental Sociology

The relationship between human societies and their natural and built environments. Topics may include the social construction of nature; the relationships between capitalism, materialism, and environmental degradation at local and global levels; urban development and growth; environmental racism; environmental justice and activism; the politics of environmental regulation and resource management; and the prospects for environmental sustainability. Meets the Critical Perspectives: Social Inequality requirement. (Not offered 2017-18).

1 unit

EV209: Ecology and the Environment

The analysis of distributions, abundances, and interrelationships of organisms, populations, communities, and ecosystems with an emphasis on environmental applications. (No credit if taken after BY 208). Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement.

Prerequisite: Environmental Program 211.

1 unit — Shane Heschel, Miroslav Kummel