Program Information

Environment and Society

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  Environment and Society Minor

Robert Wilson, Coordinator
Department of Geography
533 Eggers Hall

The Environment and Society (E&S) minor examines the social dimensions of environmental issues and sustainability. Through a range of interdisciplinary course offerings, it seeks to foster environmental literacy and citizenship among students. Those completing the minor will gain a deep understanding of the political, cultural, and economic factors that affect our use of the environment. Courses in the minor draw primarily from the social sciences and humanities and ask a variety of questions. Who determines how the environment is used? How has the way we value nature and wildlife changed over time? How do social divisions influence who is affected by climate change, pollution, or natural disasters? How can we create a more sustainable society?

The Environment and Society minor is an excellent accompaniment to majors in other fields. For those interested in the natural sciences, the minor offers perspectives on the social dimensions of nature less emphasized in science courses. For those interested in public policy and economics, it allows students to delve more deeply into environmental matters. For those interested in business, finance, or management, the minor offers an opportunity to learn more about the relationships between environment, economy, and society. Finally, for those seeking a future in the media, it enables students to learn more about the environmental issues they will report on during their career. In short, the E&S minor is a program for those who care about nature and want to find solutions to environmental problems. It is also a way for students to document their knowledge and expertise in environmental issues for the growing number of ‘green’ jobs and industries.


The program leading to a minor in Environment and Society requires the completion of six courses (18 credits), two of which are mandatory and four of which are electives. Of the four elective courses for the minor, two must be in departments outside Geography. Students should work closely with their major advisor and the E&S minor coordinator to ensure they are meeting the necessary requirements for both programs.

Minors must take the following TWO lower-division courses:

GEO 103 America and the Global Environment
GEO 155 The Natural World

Minors must take FOUR of the following courses, at least two of which must be from departments outside Geography. Please note that many courses offered through SU Abroad may also count toward the minor and that this list is subject to change as new relevant courses are created:

BIO 415        Conservation Biology
CIE 274        Civil and Environmental Systems
CIE 341        Introduction to Environmental Engineering
ECN 437       Environmental & Resource Economics
ECS 354       Green Technology and Sustainability
EDU 300       601 Tully Project
GEO 215       Global Environmental Change
GEO 300       Animals and Society
GEO 314       Hazardous Geographic Environments
GEO 316       River Environments
GEO 317       Geography of Mountain Environments
GEO 318       Tropical Environments
GEO 319       Cold Environments
GEO 322       Globalization and Environment in Latin America
GEO 326       Geography of Climate and Weather
GEO 327       Coastal Environments
GEO 347       Art and Environment in American Culture Since 1800
GEO 353       Geographies of Environmental Justice
GEO 354       American Environmental History and Geography
GEO 356       Environmental Ideas and Policy
GEO 374       Environment and Development in the Global South
GEO 482       Environmental Remote Sensing
GEO 555       Biogeography
GEO 583       Environmental Geographical Information Science
HNR 350       Water for Gotham
HTW 303       Community and Environmental Health
LPP/SHR 450    Sustainable Enterprise
NSD 555       Food, Culture, and Environment
PAF 451        Environmental Policy
PHI 394         Environmental Ethics
PSC 302       Environmental Politics and Policy
PSC 318       Technology, Politics, and Environment
REL 395       Religions and the Natural World
SOC 400       Environmental Sociology