Sep 16, 2019  
Rensselaer Catalog 2019-2020 
    
Rensselaer Catalog 2019-2020

Environmental Science


This curriculum leads to a B.S. in environmental science. A typical four-year program is illustrated below. However, the order in which students take courses within the first two years is flexible.

First Year


Fall


  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
    (See footnote 1 below)

Spring


Choose one of the following:


Second Year


Fall


  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4

Spring


  • Concentration Course or Free Elective Credit Hours: 4

Third Year


The Arch Summer Semester*


*For students who have applied for and been granted an exception, please contact your adviser for course exemptions. For listing of the exception process go to: http://info.rpi.edu/arch/students/#ExceptionProcess.

  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 8
  • Concentration Course or Free Elective Credit Hours: 4

Fall or Spring


  • Concentration Course or Free Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4

Fourth Year


Fall


  • HASS Core Elective Credit Hours: 4
  • Culminating Experience Credit Hours: 4
    (See footnote 4 below) 
  • Concentration Course or Free Elective Credit Hours: 4

Spring


  • Concentration Course and Free Elective Credit Hours: 16

Concentrations


The environmental science degree program requires one concentration. There are four concentration areas—Biology, Chemistry, Geology, and Geoinformatics—that explore environmental applications of traditional scientific disciplines. The Geoinformatics concentration specifically addresses the increasing role of high volumes of complex data acquired from a variety of sources both in-situ and remotely sensed. Geoinformatics combines relevant computer science knowledge and skills with geotemporal and geospatial analysis and modeling, curation of geo-databases, information system design and development, human-computer interaction including visualization, use of modern cyberinfrastructure and networking technologies. Choose three courses within one concentration, and then one from any of the three remaining concentrations, e.g, if concentrating in geology, choose 3 courses within geology and one from any of Biology, Chemistry, or Geoinformatics.

Biology


Choose three of the following:


  • BIOL 4XXX, Credit Hours: 4 (Selected in consultation with the adviser.)

Chemistry


Choose three of the following:


  • CHEM 4XXX Credit Hours: 4 (Selected in consultation with the adviser.)

Geology


Choose three of the following:

  • ERTH 2960 - Introduction to Geobiology Credit Hours: 4
  • ERTH 4XXX (with permission of Director of Environmental Science)

Geoinformatics


Choose three of the following:


  • CSCI 4XXX - Data Science

Footnotes


  1. HASS courses should be selected in consultation with the adviser and the Environmental Science Faculty Committee. Examples of environmentally relevant options include: ECON 4230, ECON 4250, IHSS 2100, PHIL 4300, STSS 1110, STSS 2300, STSS 4320, and STSS 4540.
  2. With permission of the director of Environmental Sciences, a student may elect another math course (course numbers MATH XXXX, MATP XXXX, or courses cross listed with these numbers).
  3. With permission, a student may substitute ERTH 4540.
  4. With permission, a student may elect to substitute ERTH 2960, or ENVE 4360, or BIOL 4700 or 4850. Each student is required to elect one of the listed concentrations.

Minor in Environmental Science


A minor in Environmental Science will consist of at least 16 credit hours, eight of which must be at the 4000 level. Interested students should consult with the Director of Environmental Science to develop an appropriate list of courses.

Dual Majors


Students pursuing a dual major in Environmental Science and Biology, Chemistry, or Geology must choose a different concentration for their Environmental Science degree. Similarly, students enrolled as dual majors in Computer Science and Environmental Science cannot choose the Geoinformatics concentration.

Intensive Environmental Experience


In consultation with the adviser and with the approval of the director of the Environmental Science Program, students must select and engage in an intensive activity related to the environment. This culminating experience will be associated with earning 3 to 4 academic credits in a URP project, Independent Study, or Out of Classroom Experience (e.g., as a co-op or intern). To fulfill this requirement, students must document the experience and obtain prior approval from the Environmental Science Faculty Director.