Program Director: Molly M. McGuire

Coordinating Committee: Maria A. Antonaccio (environmental ethics), Thomas DiStefano (civil and environmental engineering), Duane Griffin (geography), Ellen Herman (geology), Ben Marsh (geography), Molly McGuire (chemistry), Matthew McTammany (biology), Alfred Siewers (ecocriticism), Peter Wilshusen (environmental planning and policy), Amanda Wooden (politics and policy)

Professor: Ben Marsh

Associate Professors: Matthew McTammany, Peter Wilshusen, Amanda Wooden

Assistant Professors: Heather P. Bedi (visiting), Andrew Stuhl

Environmental Studies is the interdisciplinary examination of how natural sciences, policy studies, social sciences, humanities, and engineering combine to inform the consideration of humanity's effects on the natural world. This program educates the student to appreciate the complexity of environmental issues and solve them by working with citizens and experts in many fields. With a major in Environmental Studies, students have the latitude to create a course theme in an area of specialization while they simultaneously develop a breadth of interdisciplinary and methodological knowledge in the environmental fields.

Specifically, the program has two major tracks: a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Science. Each requires the interdisciplinary study of environmental issues and an understanding of the complexity of the relationship between humanity and the environment, while they allow the student to concentrate his/her studies in a field of particular interest to that student. The B.A. in Environmental Studies is designed for those who want to develop core concentrations in the social sciences, policy and law, or the humanities, although a science concentration is also possible with this choice. The B.A. in Environmental Science is designed for students who want a concentrated knowledge of science as the core of their interdisciplinary environment education. Environmental Science is a coordinate major and can only be declared as a second major by students also majoring in biology, chemistry, or geology.

Most Environmental Studies majors benefit from studying abroad. Field-based programs — such as School for Field Studies or School for International Training — are especially appropriate for Environmental Studies and Environmental Science students.

Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies

An interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts major in Environmental Studies is offered for the student with an abiding interest in the general environmental problems faced by humans, and with special concern for their humanistic, policy, and social sciences aspects. The B.A. in Environmental Studies is a strong, broad, liberal arts degree. It also is a preparation for one of the growing numbers of environmental careers in planning, business, non-profits, law, administration, or education.

The Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies major requires 10 courses distributed as follows:

  • ENST 201 Environmental Problems-Sustainable Futures
  • ENST 302 Environmental Research Design
  • GEOG 332 Evolution, Ecology, and Human Impact (ENST 208 may be substituted)
  • GEOL 106 Environmental Geology or GEOL 103 Physical/Environmental Geology (GEOL 150 may be substituted with permission)
  • Humanities core course* (see list A)
  • Human-environmental systems science course* (see list B)
  • Three (3) environmental studies electives* (see list C)
  • ENST 411 Environmental Community Projects (Senior Clinic)

Clusters of courses with a common theme have been designed from lists A, B, and C that fulfill the above *requirements while focusing on an area of Environmental Studies each student finds most interesting. See the Environmental Studies website for a full listing of these themes and their courses. All B.A. majors are expected to select a theme from this list, or consult with their academic adviser to design their own theme, by the fall of the third year.

Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Science

The B.A. in Environmental Science is only available as a second major to students who major in biology, chemistry, or geology and therefore may be thought of as a means of adding an environmental concentration to a B.A. science degree. These three disciplines form the core of Environmental Science, and consequently the first major ensures that students have sufficient depth of knowledge in a particular area of Environmental Science. Complementing the depth a student receives from the biology, chemistry, or geology major, the B.A. in Environmental Science provides breadth across the interdisciplinary field of Environmental Science. The major is not intended as — nor can it be declared as — a stand-alone course of study. No courses may be counted for both majors.

The B.A. in Environmental Science requires 8 courses distributed as follows:

1) ENST 201 Environmental Problems - Sustainable Futures

2 and 3) Two of the three introductory courses from the disciplines within the environmental sciences, but outside the student's primary major.

  • GEOL 103 Physical/Environmental Geology
  • BIOL 208 Population and Community Biology
  • CHEM 160 Introduction to Environmental Chemistry

4) One of the following courses:

  • ENST 245 Environmental Policy and Politics
  • ENST 240 Sustainable Resource Management
  • RELI 226 Environmental Ethics

5-7) Three science or engineering courses from list D. These may not be from the same department as the student's primary major. Other courses not included in the regular catalog offerings (e.g. special topics courses) may be counted with permission.

8) ENST 411 Environmental Community Projects

Minor in Environmental Studies

The minor in Environmental Studies requires five courses distributed as follows:

  • ENST 245 Environmental Policy and Politics or ENST 240 Sustainable Resource Management
  • BIOL 208 Population and Community Biology, ENST/GEOG 234 Human Ecology, GEOG 113 Human Impact on the Environment, GEOG 332 Evolution, Ecology, and Human Impact, GEOL 103 Physical/Environmental Geology, or GEOL 106 Environmental Geology
  • Three electives from list C.

Disciplinary Depth Requirements

Disciplinary depth requirements of the College Core Curriculum (CCC). For both the Environmental Studies and Environmental Science majors, ENST 411 will fulfill the Culminating Experience requirement. In this senior "clinic" course, students apply research methods and the broad perspectives gained in ENST courses in a group setting to a local environmental issue, thus culminating the major experience. Students will receive instruction in the other in-major components of the CCC (writing, speaking, and information literacy) as part of their major coursework.

Course lists

The Environmental Studies degrees are based on these lists of courses:

List A: Humanities Courses
ENGL 120 Literature and the Environment, ENGL 210 Nature Writing/Writing Nature, ENGL 340 Medieval Nature Writing and Ecosemiotics, ENST 205 Green Utopias, ENST 206 Environmentalism and Its Discontents, ENST 207 American Environmental History, ENST 216 Preindustrial Environment, ENST 224 Visions of the Susquehanna, ENST 225 Susquehanna Country, ENST 227 Ecopoetics, ENST 236 Environmental Ethics, ENST 255 Environmental Justice, PHIL 218 Ecology, Nature and the Future, RELI 229 The Ethics of Consumption, RELI 230 The End of the Nature and the Post-human Future.

List B: Human-Environment Systems Science Courses
ENST/GEOG 234 Human Ecology, ENST/GEOG 345 Food and the Environment, GEOG 257 Global Environmental Change, GEOG 332 Evolution, Ecology, and Human Impact, GEOL 310 Applied Environmental Geomorphology.

List C: Electives
All course with the ENST course designation, all courses in list A and B, ANTH 260 Environmental Anthropology, CENG 432 Sustainable Transportation Planning, ECON 231 Resources and the Environment, GEOG 231 Weather and Climate, GEOL 205 Introduction to Geochemistry, GEOL 207 Environmental Geohazards, GEOL 210 Geomorphology, SOCI 220 Environmental Sociology.

List D: Environmental-Science courses

BIOL 206: Organismal Biology
BIOL 245: Tropical Marine Biology
BIOL 266: Animal Behavior
BIOL 312: Comparative Vertebrate Anatomy*
BIOL 313: Mammalogy*
BIOL 318: Comparative Physiology*
BIOL 321: Behavioral Ecology
BIOL 334: Limnology
BIOL 341: Organic Evolution
BIOL 353: Ecosystem Ecology
BIOL 354: Tropical Ecology
BIOL 355: Social Insects
BIOL 356: Plant-Animal Interactions
BIOL 357: Ornithology*
BIOL 358: Invertebrate Zoology*
BIOL 359: Entomology*
BIOL 370: Primate Behavior and Ecology
BIOL 415: Conservation Biology

CENG 320: Water Resources Engineering*
CENG 340: Introduction to Environmental Engineering*
CENG 421: Hydrology*

CHEG 455: Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics*

CHEM 360: Advanced Environmental Chemistry*

ENST 211: Environmental Pollution and Control
ENST 221: Hazardous Waste and Society
ENST 234: Human Ecology
ENST 298: Stream Restoration
ENST 299: Watershed Systems Science
ENST 349/350: Senior Thesis

GEOG 204: Applied GIS
GEOG 231: Weather and Climate
GEOG 234: Human Ecology
GEOG 257: Global Environmental Change
GEOG 332: Evolution, Ecology and Human Impact

GEOL 205: Introductory Geochemistry
GEOL 207: Environmental Geohazards
GEOL 210: Geomorphology
GEOL 213: Paleontology*
GEOL 217: Mineralogy
GEOL 230: Environmental GIS
GEOL 298: Stream Restoration
GEOL 299: Watershed Systems Science
GEOL 301: Geophysics*
GEOL 310: Applied Environmental Geomorphology*
GEOL 324: Hydrogeology

*Additional coursework beyond the introductory course may be necessary as a prerequisite



Introduction to Environmental Studies (I or II; 3, 0)

A survey of environmental issues intended for non-majors. Students will understand the cultural, political, historical, economic and ethical complexities of environmental problems and their responses. Intended for first-year students and sophomores. Does not count toward either the Environmental Studies or Environmental Science major.


Environmental Problems-Sustainable Futures (II; 3, 0)

Develops a working understanding of the core concepts linked to environmental studies and introduces skills such as posing researchable questions, gathering data, presenting oral arguments, and applying these skills in group projects. Intended only for students majoring or intending to major in Environmental Studies or Environmental Science.


Green Utopia (II; 3, 0)

Introduction to literary utopias and to the cultural writings of various ecological movements offering alternative concepts to the increasing destruction of nature.


Environmentalism and Its Discontents (I; 3, 0)

A survey of historical and contemporary efforts to protect nature and the backlash they have provoked.


American Environmental History (I; 3, 0)

This course examines how nature (soil, disease, water, climate, etc.) shaped American history and how Americans transformed the environment, from the colonial period to today.


Environmental Biology (II; 3, 3)

Introduction to ecology and evolutionary biology, organism interactions with environment, biodiversity, energy flow, nutrient cycling, and human influences on living systems and biological processes. Open to seniors by permission only. Not open to students who have taken BIOL 208.


Environmental Pollution and Control (I; 3, 2)

Introduction for non-engineering students to the major areas of environmental engineering. Topics include environmental chemistry, biology, and ecology, water and air pollution and treatment, solid and hazardous wastes, sustainability, and global climate issues. Not open to students in the College of Engineering.


Environmental Planning (I; 3, 0)

Explores the main approaches to planning theory and their environmental applications. Considers how environmental planning can promote the socio-ecological health and sustainability of democratic communities. Crosslisted as GEOG 215.


Preindustrial Environment (AI or AII; 3, 0)

An introduction to the environmental history of the Near East, Mediterranean Basin, and Europe from the Neolithic Period to the Industrial Revolution through three thematic lenses: how the natural environment shaped the patterns of human life, how ideologies towards nature shifted over time, and how human activities and ideologies reshaped the landscape. Crosslisted as CLAS 220.


Hazardous Waste and Society (II; 3, 3)

Hazardous waste regulation, risk assessment and toxicology, overview of treatment technologies and site investigation, environmental audits, facilities siting and public participation, pollution prevention. Not open to students in the College of Engineering.


Concepts in Sustainability (AI; 3, 2)

This course explores the definitions and concepts of economic, social and environmental sustainability and utilizes the tools to evaluate sustainability metrics including life cycle assessment, systems thinking, and economic analysis. Not open to engineering students.


Visions of the Susquehanna (I or II; 3, 0)

This course examines literature of the Susquehanna Valley. Crosslisted as ENGL 224. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Susquehanna Country (AI or AII; 2, 3)

Interdisciplinary studies in environment, philosophy, literature and communities of the Susquehanna region. Crosslisted as ENGL 225 and HUMN 290.


Water Politics and Policies (I; 3, 0)

Examines the evolution and philosophical foundations of water use as well as the politics surrounding current issues in water use.


Ecopoetics (II; 3, 0)

An exploration of poetry as site-specific ecological practice. Intended for students interested in both Creative Writing and Environmental Studies. Prerequisite: ENGL 204 or permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as ENGL 229.


The Loire. A Cultural Heritage or a “Wild” River of the Anthropecene? (I or II; 3, 0)

This course includes in-class lectures and on-site discovery of the river aboard traditional boats. Goals of the course are: to develop a good understanding of the links between a-biotic and biotic dynamics and human activities, to understand the importance and the necessity of the river management, especially on rivers like the Loire (wild aspects, hydrology, etc.) Prerequisite: Open only to students enrolled in the Bucknell en France program.


Introduction to Ecological Design (II; 3, 0)

The application of basic ecological principles to the design of buildings, landscapes, communities, and cities. Emphasis is placed on real situations in the local environment.


Human Ecology (AII; 3, 0)

A general science course in human ecology, to demonstrate the ways humans continue to adapt to their environment through biological, cultural, scientific, symbolic, political, and technical means. Crosslisted as GEOG 234.


Environmental Ethics (II; 3, 0)

A survey of the major theories of environmental ethics, with particular attention to the challenge of developing an ethic commensurate with increasing human power. Crosslisted as RELI 226.


Sustainable Resource Management (I; 3, 0)

Focuses on problem-oriented policy analysis of domestic and international environmental issues including ecosystem management, endangered species, protected areas, and community-based conservation.


Environmental Policy and Politics (I; 3, 0)

An introduction to understanding the role of political institutions, stakeholders and policy processes (in the U. S. and internationally) in addressing environmental problems. Crosslisted as POLS 291.


Environmental Justice (II; 3, 0)

Utilizing the literature of moral, social and political philosophy, we will analyze how variations in our definition of justice dictate distinct public policies toward nature.


Feeding the Global City (AI or AII; 3, 0)

This Bucknell in London course will explore the contemporary transformation of European food systems from a social, political, and ecological perspective.


Environmental Law (I; 3, 0)

This course will examine the statutes, regulations and common law pertaining to risk and pollution abatement. We will both analyze current law and propose changes to better address the environmental problems involved.


Introduction to Energy Resources (AI or AII; 4, 0)

Introduction for non-engineers to energy concepts including First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics; examination of energy demand; technologies for meeting demand, effects on the environment. Not open to students who have taken ENGR 200, MECH 213, CHEG 200, PHYS 145, PHYS 147, PHYS 211, PHYS 211E, PHYS 211P, PHYS 212, PHYS 212E, PHYS 212P, PHYS 221, PHYS 222, PHYS 235. Crosslisted as ENGR 262.


Bucknell on the Susquehanna Watershed SCI/Natural History (I; 4, 4)

The study of watershed processes and regional natural history of the Susquehanna River. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Bucknell on the Susquehanna Land Use Planning and Social Processes (I; 4, 4)

The study of land use planning and social processes involved with watershed management of the Susquehanna River Valley region. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Bucknell on the Susquehanna Human Dimensions and Environmental History (I; 4, 0)

The history of human settlement and culture in the Susquehanna River Valley and its relationship to resources and the environment. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Topics in Environmental Studies (I or II; R; 3, 0)

Topics can vary each year. Consult the course guide for more information.


Stream Restoration (AI or AII; R; 3, 4)

Scientific principles to integrate physical and biological approaches to stream restoration in watershed management. Team-taught field course highlights developing restoration plan for Bucknell's Miller Run. Crosslisted as GEOL 298.


Watershed Systems Science (AI or AII; R; 3, 4)

Watersheds regulate water flow and ecosystem health on our landscape. Team-taught field course integrating physical, chemical, and biological processes in watersheds, using the Susquehanna and tributaries. Crosslisted as GEOL 299.


Environmental Research Design (I; 3, 1)

Students will learn quantitative and qualitative research methods related to environmental studies including research design, data collection, and analysis. Not open to students who have completed ENST 202. Prerequisite: junior or senior status. Preference to Environmental Studies majors, others by permission of the instructor.


Directed Research (I and II; R) Half or full course.

Supervised research or thesis work on environmental issues. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Nature, Wealth and Power (I or II; 3, 0)

A seminar in political ecology that explores the historical, social political and economic dimensions of environmental change in developing regions. First-year students and sophomores by permission only. Crosslisted as GEOG 325.


Seminar on Ecocriticism and Ecosemiotics (AI or AII; 3, 0)

This seminar will focus on research and discussion of ecocritical and ecosemiotic approaches to literature. Crosslisted as ENGL 341.


Food and the Environment (I; 3, 3.5)

Nothing from the environment is more important than food production, nothing affects the environment more; we'll study both environmental and social circumstances. Laboratory science course. Crosslisted as GEOG 345.


Sustainable Cities (I; 3, 2)

This team-taught course introduces students to the core concepts of sustainability and how they have been applied to promote sustainability in London, the UK, and Europe. This course is part of the Bucknell in London core course. Crosslisted as CENG 447.


350. Senior Thesis (I and II; R) Half to full course.

Independent thesis work under adviser's supervision. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.


Advanced Topics in Environmental Policy (I; 3, 0)

Advanced seminar on environmental policy. Focus varies by semester. Consult class schedule for current topic.


International Environmental Aid (I or II; 3, 0)

This advanced seminar on international environmental politics focuses on applied examination of international and bilateral aid for solving environmental problems. It explores discussion topics including: theories of international environmental relations and development, roles of international organizations and non-governmental actors, and environmental problem-solving case studies. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. Crosslisted as POLS 393.


Environmental Community Projects (I or II; 3, 0)

Community-based "clinic" course on environmental problems or projects for local stakeholders, based on integrative, interdisciplinary research and design. Preference to senior ENST and GEOG majors. Crosslisted as GEOG 420.


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