Oct 24, 2021  
Undergraduate Catalog 2020-2021 - Phase II 
Undergraduate Catalog 2020-2021 - Phase II

Environmental Studies - BA

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The major offers two concentrations which are organized to promote an intensive understanding of contemporary physical science, specifically earth system science as it relates to environmental issues, and an intensive understanding of a system-based approach to the dynamic nature of human-environmental interactions particularly as manifest in contemporary politics and economics. The concentrations are Environmental Earth Science and Environmental Management and Policy. It is suggested that students select a concentration as they enter the major with the understanding that the choice is not final at this stage and students can switch concentrations as they advance in the program. To aid in this process, the curriculum offers a common core of required courses, as well as sufficient overlap within the required elective courses. It is strongly recommended that students considering this major meet with the adviser to discuss their interests and program of studies as courses may be added or deleted as the college’s and department’s offerings change. One or more courses not listed below may be included in a student’s concentration with the advice and consent of the adviser.

Hunter Core Requirement

Courses in this major may fulfill parts of the Hunter Core Requirement (CUNY Common Core Requirement [CCCR], Concurrent Requirements). When selecting courses, it may be to a student’s advantage to choose courses that count toward the Hunter Core Requirement and also advance the student on the path to the major. Details on the Hunter Core Requirement can be found here: General Education - Effective Fall 2019  

In the case of the Environmental Studies major, the courses that meet CCC are:

Course CUNY Common Core Requirement
GEOL 10100   Life and Physical Sciences
PGEOG 13000 (STEM)   Scientific World
GEOL 18000   Scientific World
GEOL 10000   Scientific World
GEOL 10500   Scientific World

(STEM) Life and Physical Sciences. Please note that no more than two courses from any one department will count for the CUNY Common Core Requirement.

Courses Required for the Major

Based on placement exams or transferred courses, students may place into some more advanced Mathematics and Statistics courses without taking Hunter College pre-requisites. See the Mathematics and Statistics department for details.

A) Earth System Science Track: Sub-Plan ENV ES (59-77 credits)

Sub-Plan Specific 20000- and 30000-Level Elective Requirement (15 credits)

Students must choose at least 15 credits from the GEOL, PGEOG and GTECH offerings with at least three courses selected at the 30000 level.

Advanced courses offered by complimentary disciplines may be considered and selected as appropriate electives for the major in consultation with the Major Advisor.

Students who are completing an additional major or minor may use courses required by both majors to fulfill requirements for the Environmental Studies major.

B) Human Dimensions of Earth Systems Track: Sub-Plan ENV MP (58-67)

Sub-Plan Specific 20000 and 30000 Level Elective Requirement (9 credits)

Students must choose at least nine credits of advanced courses from the GEOG, GEOL, PGEOG and GTECH offerings with at least two courses selected at the 30000 level.

Advanced courses offered by complementary disciplines may be considered and selected as appropriate electives for the major in consultation with the Major Advisor.


Students can receive from one to four credits for internships in government agencies, consumer and activist groups, business and industry and media organizations involved in energy issues (e.g., Council on the Environment of NYC, Energy Task Force, NY State Assembly, Sierra Club, International Earthcare Center, NY State Department of Energy, Brooklyn Union Gas, NYC Department of Environmental Protection and the American Museum of Natural History).

Teacher Education Pathway

Students planning to teach this subject in grades 7-12 should look at the School of Education: Program List  for information about their programs that lead to the recommendation for New York State Initial Certification required to be a lead teacher in NYS public schools.

Honors Work and Individual Study

To graduate with departmental honors, a major in the geography or environmental studies program must be admitted to


Several courses offer students an opportunity to study geography, geology and environmental situations in the field. They are usually offered during intersession periods, summer session or on weekends (consult Schedule of Classes). In addition to the regular field courses, special-topic field courses are offered periodically and fieldwork is conducted in connection with a number of the other courses. The department participates in the Study Abroad Program. It offers a field geography of selected world regions course (check with adviser for current location). An additional fee for transportation, lodging and food allowance is attached to these courses, depending on the focus of the course and its itinerary.

Graduate Study

Graduate-level courses may be taken for credit toward the bachelor’s degree by highly qualified seniors. Written permission must be obtained from the undergraduate and graduate advisers.

Intern Program

Internship provides opportunities for qualified majors and minors in both geography and environmental studies to work in positions of responsibility in professional institutions while earning from 1 to 4 academic credits. See a departmental adviser for details.

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