Majors and Courses

Environmental Analysis (PITZER)

Environmental Analysis is an interdisciplinary major focusing on the interaction between human and non-human components of the biosphere.  The major applies approaches in the social sciences, arts and humanities, and natural sciences to understanding and solving environmental problems.  Environmental Analysis offers an integrated, unifying perspective on life, as well as a program for affecting positive change.  The major prepares students for graduate work and careers in teaching, public policy and administration, law, environmental sciences, international affairs, environmental design, and the non-profit sector.  Developing sustainable ways of living is one of the greatest challenges of our time.  The Environmental Analysis Program combines the strengths of the five Claremont Colleges to provide robust interdisciplinary training for students interested in environmental issues.  Resources for field research include the Pitzer in Costa Rica Program, the John R. Rodman Arboretum, the Bernard Biological Field Station, and numerous local partnerships.

The Environmental Analysis Program regards external study as a valuable, though not required, part of the curriculum, enabling students to secure deeper appreciation of the global dimensions of environmental challenges. Additionally, the Program encourages students to engage in internships and fieldwork that move them beyond the classroom and library to engage in research and action. 

MAJOR REQUIREMENTS:

The Environmental Analysis major offers three Tracks: Environmental Science, Environmental Policy, and Environment & Society and Sustainability and the Built Environment. For the Environmental Policy and Environment and Society Tracks of the major, students take 11 to12 courses, depending on how they fulfill the internship requirement. Students in the SBE track take 12 to 13 courses. Students who craft a thesis for honors do an additional course of independent research and writing (ENVS 198).

The major consists of five sets of requirements:

  • Core set of courses
  • One natural science course
  • Track with Course Plan
  • Environmental Internship for the Environment & Society and Environmental Policy Tracks
  • Capstone Seminar or Thesis depending upon Track

 Environment & Society Track
4 Core courses:
a) EA 10 Introduction to Environmental Studies
b) EA 86 Introduction to Environmental Justice
c) EA 30L Science and the Environment
d) An Ecology course for those in the Environmental Policy and the Environment and Society Tracks
6 Track-related Courses (including 1 additional natural science course and 1 environmental policy course)
Environmental Internship
Capstone Seminar: Critical Environmental News

Environmental Policy Track
4 Core courses:
a) EA 10 Introduction to Environmental Studies
b) EA 86 Introduction to Environmental Justice or POLI 136PO Politics of Environmental Justice
c) EA 30L Science and the Environment
d) An Ecology course for those in the Environmental Policy and the Environment and Society Tracks
6 Track-related Courses (including 1 additional natural science course and 1 course outside of the policy sciences)
Environmental Internship
Capstone Seminar: Critical Environmental News

Environmental Science Track
2 Introductory Core courses:
a) EA 10 Introduction to Environmental Studies
b) EA 20 Environmental Values, Literature, and Current Affairs
Introductory Biology: Bio 43L, Bio 44L
Introductory Chemistry: Chem 14L, Chem 15L or Chem 29L
[The requirement for Introductory Biology and Introductory Chemistry may be met by completion of both semesters of the Accelerated Integrated Science Sequence (AISS)]
At least one earth sciences course – e.g., PO GEOL 20x
6 upper-division EA science courses, including one in ecology (Bio146L, Bio169L, or equivalent)
1 environmental policy course – e.g., EA 95; EA 120; HM POST 114
Environmentally focused study abroad semester strongly recommended
Senior Thesis/Capstone (2 courses) - A one-semester thesis (Bio/Chem/Phys 191 plus EA 190PO) or a two-semester thesis (Bio/Chem/Phys 188l and 190L) 

Keck Science Common Learning Outcomes

Students completing a major in the Keck Science Department should demonstrate the ability to:

1. Use foundational principles to analyze problems in nature.
2. Develop hypotheses and test them using quantitative techniques.
3. Articulate applications of science in the modern world.
4. Effectively communicate scientific concepts both verbally and in writing.

Student Learning Outcomes
An Environmental Analysis Major should be able to:

    • Understand and describe the complex social, scientific and humanistic aspects of environmental issues.
    • Understand and apply both disciplinary and interdisciplinary analysis to environmental issues.
    • Critically analyze, evaluate, and interpret scholarly arguments and popular discourse and be able to communicate this analysis to a variety of communities.
    • Develop well-reasoned solutions to environmental predicaments, testing them against relevant criteria and standards.
    • Be able to craft well-researched, informative and effective scholarly presentations.
    • Contribute knowledge and action regarding environmental issues to the public through service learning, internships, community-based-research, and other activities.