Environmental Studies

What is a Major in Environmental Studies?

Environmental Studies is the systematic study of human interaction with the natural environment. UCSB’s Environmental Studies Program was established more than 40 years ago and is one of the oldest and best known in the country. The department, field, and job outlook are growing rapidly, opening up more and more opportunities for student research. UCSB’s program explores environmental issues pertaining to: The social and human environment, such as urban and regional planning, ethical and values systems, economics, environmental law and policy, and environmental impact analysis. The physical environment, including the hydrologic cycle, waste management, coastal processes, energy production technologies, soil preservation, and air pollution. The biological environment, such as the structure and function of ecosystems, population dynamics, and toxicology.

UCSB offers the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Environmental Studies which emphasizes the social sciences and humanities, and the Bachelor of Science (BS) degree focusing on the natural and physical sciences. Both degrees recognize and address the important interrelationship between the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences and require students to take classes in a variety of departments. Students in the major are also able to create their own emphasis or outside concentration. The Environmental Science department also offers a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree in Hydrologic Sciences and Policy (see separate major page).

Major, General, and Career Information

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Resources and Professional Associations

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