The curriculum for the Master of Arts in Environmental Studies is designed to allow students to gain an understanding of ways to balance social and economic needs with environmental realities, to learn how to use resources imaginatively for sustainable development, and to become aware of the role of values in issue formulation and policy making. Objectives are to enable students to:
- develop basic literacy in the natural and social sciences and the humanities as they contribute to an understanding of environmental affairs;
- critically analyze environmental problems; and
- identify, research, and evaluate environmental problems.
Three concentrations are available on campus:
Environmental Planning and Management
Curriculum prepares students for professional positions in environmental planning and management. Objectives are to enable students to:
- understand principles and practices of environmental planning and management,
- analyze United States environmental policies as they relate to environmental planning,
- apply tools and techniques for preparing and implementing effective environmental plans, and
- evaluate effectiveness of environmental management plans.
Sustainable Development and Policy
Explores theories of sustainable development and policy in order to:
- understand the historical context and critically evaluate the current framework of natural resources and environmental policy,
- gain a comprehensive understanding of the three conceptual elements of sustainability (biophysical, policy/social, and economic),
- communicate and evaluate issues in sustainable development policies and practices, and
- assess the feasibility of and strategies for natural resources and environmental policy changes toward sustainable development.
Provides a broad-based humanities curriculum to enable students to:
- understand the ethical, social, communicative, literary, historical, artistic perspectives as they relate to ecological systems;
- examine historical development of theoretical perspectives from humanities on the interaction of social and ecological systems, and
- apply ethical criteria and critical thinking in the analysis of environmental issues in comparative cultural contexts.
Because Environmental Studies faculty consider that a period of time working in an environmental agency or organization can be a vital part of professional training, students may take ENS 530 Internship (1 to 4 hrs.) as an elective. However, students may not count both ENS 530 and ENS 550 toward their degree requirements. Students who hold Graduate Public Service Internships may use one hour of GPSI internship seminar toward their Environmental Studies degree.