Integrate knowledge and research from across scientific fields
to examine "the economy of nature" from bottom to top.


B.S. in Environmental Science, concentration in Ecology

All Environmental Science majors at Sierra Nevada College build a strong foundation in basic science, including courses in biology, chemistry, geology, environmental science, physics, statistics, calculus, and graphical information systems. Courses in ecology, animal behavior, ecology of aquatic ecosystems, and microbiology emphasize the interactions among living organisms in their ecosystems. Students study conservation biology, environmental engineering and planning, and natural resource economics, to understand the complexities of environmental problem-solving.

Experiential learning – learning how to think like a scientist by doing real science research in lab and field courses – is emphasized throughout the program, and all students complete an original senior research project.


The fall salmon spawning run at Taylor Creek


Anti-poaching training at a South Africa wildlife reserve


Researching crayfish population size in Lake Tahoe

Graduates are qualified for entry level work as wildlife biologists, field scientists, or in environmental policy, or for graduate programs in environmental science or wildlife biology.

Recent graduates have continued on to PhD programs in Biochemistry, Toxicology, and Ornithology, and Masters programs in GIS, Environmental Policy, Zoology, Environmental Assessment, and Hydrogeology.

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Suzanne Gollery
Chair, Department of Science and Technology

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Lower Division

Students must take MATH 130 (Calculus I) to fulfill their General Education Math requirement.

BIOL 101,105 Biology I and Lab 4
BIOL 102,106 Biology II and Lab 4
CHEM 101,105 Chemistry I and Lab 4
CHEM 102, 106 Chemistry II and Lab 4
ESCI 101, 105 Geology and Lab 4
PHYS 101, 105 Physics I and Lab 4
PHYS 102, 106 Physics II and Lab 4
MATH 251 Statistics 4
Total Credits 24
Upper Division
BIOL 381,385 Ecology and Lab 4
ENVS 355, 356 or ESCI 301, 305 Environmental Engineering and Lab or Hydrology and Lab 4
MATH 351 Biological Statistics 3
ENVS 423 or ENVP 401 Environmental Planning and Public Policy or Natural Resource Economics 4
ENVS 421, 425 Graphic Information Systems and Lab 4
ENVS 471 Research Methods in Environmental Science 3
ENVS 481 Senior Research Project 3
Electives with Lab –  Select one 4
BIOL 301,305 Animal Behavior and Lab
BIOL 341,345 Microbiology and Lab
BIOL 410,425 Genetics and Lab
BIOL 421,425 Ecology of Aquatic Systems
CHEM 311,315 Organic Chemistry I and Lab
Electives – Select six credits  6
BIOL 356 Birds of the Eastern Sierra and Great Basin
BIOL 357 Lake Tahoe Basin Ecosystems
BIOL 358 Desert and Montane Ecosystems
BIOL 359 Great Basin Flora
BIOL 386 Intertidal Ecology of the Cent. Pacific Coast
BIOL 420 Tropical Field Biology
ESCI 420 Geology of Death Valley and the Eastern Sierra
Elective Field Course
Total Upper Division Credits 35

*Requirements listed above are based off the 2015-2016 Catalog, for other information check past catalogs or graduation requirements.