Environmental Analysis & Policy

Students in the Environmental Analysis & Policy (EAP) major are trained broadly in the social sciences with a clearly defined specialization in the environmental field. Students receive an extensive introduction to the principle energy, resource, and environmental issues that confront society, and the analytical tools that are used to understand them. Such tools include cost-benefit analysis, basic computer modeling skills, policy formulation and analysis, technology assessment, and statistics. Students learn about the social and institutional framework in which environmental and natural resource planning, management, and policy making take place. Students take classes in the natural and physical sciences to ensure they understand the biophysical basis of environmental issues. Students are encouraged to utilize environmental courses in special programs such as the Washington Internship Program and the School for Field Studies. A number of students double major in related disciplines such as mathematics, economics, political science, international relations, and geography.

There are many career options for students with a degree in environmental analysis & policy. Graduate school is possible in several fields that include resource & environmental economics, law school, resource management, and environmental policy. Students gain a strong set of analytical tools that are needed by a growing number of government agencies, consulting firms, and nonprofit sectors that all deal with a wide range of environmental analysis or energy and environmental policy making.

As outlined below, the curriculum consists of a set of core classes and a specialization area. With the assistance of their faculty advisor, students choose an area of specialization in their junior year that allows them to focus on a particular subfield of environmental analysis & policy.

Required Courses

Introductory Core Courses (3)

  • CAS GE 100 Environmental Change & Sustainability
  • CAS ES 107 Introduction to Climate & Earth System Science
  • CAS GE 270 Data, Models, and Analysis in Earth & Environment*

ES 107 and GE 100 may be taken in either order; both must be taken before GE 270. Students who have previously completed CAS MA 213 may substitute that course for GE 270.

*With approval, students may substitute MA 213 or EC 305 for GE 270

Principal Courses (4 courses)

  • GE 309 Intermediate Environmental Analysis
  • GE 375 Introduction to Quantitative Environmental Modeling
  • GE 420 Environmental Policy Analysis
  • GE 425 U.S. Environmental Policy OR GE/IR 304 Sustainable Development

Required Related Courses (4 courses)

  • EC 101 Introductory Microeconomic Analysis
  • BI 107 Biology I: Evolution, Ecology, and Behavior
  • BI 306 Biology of Global Change OR GE/BI 307 Biogeography
  • MA 131 or MA 123

Electives (5 courses)

The topical areas are meant to be suggestive only. Students may, with their advisor’s approval, substitute equivalent courses, including those taken during summer and semester programs abroad or through the Washington Internship Program. All major courses (Principal, Required Related, and Electives) must be completed with a grade of C or higher. Any substitutions must be pre-approved by a faculty advisor.

Environmental Modeling
  • CAS GE 302 Remote Sensing of the Environment
  • AUK AK 314E Introduction to GIS and Spatial Thinking (taught in New Zealand)
  • CAS EE 348E Monitoring and Management of Coastal Wetlands, Lagoons, and Estuaries (taught in Italy)
  • CAS EE 349E Global Climate Change: Science, Economics, and Policy (taught in Italy)
  • CAS GE 365 An Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • CAS GE 440 Digital Image Processing—Remote Sensing
  • CAS GE 445 Physical Models in Remote Sensing
  • CAS GE 501 Advanced Topics in Remote Sensing
  • CAS GE 502 Field Measurements in Remote Sensing
  • CAS GE 505 Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • CAS GE 512 Global Climate Change: Policy Modeling and Analysis
  • CAS GE 516 Multivariate Analysis for Geographers
  • CAS GE 519 Energy, Society, and the Environment
  • CAS GE 550 Modeling Environmental and Social Systems
Economic & Policy Analysis
  • CAS EC 201 Intermediate Microeconomic Analysis
  • CAS EC 320 Economics of Less-Developed Regions
  • CAS EC 371 Environmental Economics
  • CAS EC 337 Economic Analysis of Legal Issues
  • CAS EC 571 Energy and Environmental Economics
  • CAS EE 349 Global Climate Change: Sciences, Economics, and Policy (taught in Italy)
  • CAS GE 250 The Fate of Nations: Climate, Resources, and Institutions
  • CAS GE/IR 304 Environmentally Sustainable Development
  • CAS GE 460 Resource Economics and Policy
  • CAS GE 519 Energy, Society, and the Environment
  • CAS GE 524 Environmental Justice
  • CAS GE 598 Key Debates and Emerging Research in Land Change Science
  • CAS HI 292 Capitalism in America: Economic History of the US
  • CAS HI 589 Nature’s Past: Histories of Environment and Society
  • CAS IR 552/PO 544 Nordic Europe
  • CAS IR 592 Economic Development and International Institutions
  • CAS PO 522 American Politics and Social Policy
  • CAS SO 313 Economic Sociology
  • CAS SO 448 Culture, Markets, and Inequality
Human Institutions
  • CAS AN 368E Australian Culture and Society (taught in Australia)
  • CAS EC 320 Economics of Less-Developed Regions
  • CAS EE 395 and CAS EE 396 Earth House Practicum
  • CAS GE 201 World Regional Geography
  • CAS GE 250 The Fate of Nations: Climate, Resources, and Institutions
  • CAS GE/IR 304 Environmentally Sustainable Development
  • CAS GE 330 Sustainable Sydney
  • CAS GE 400 Environment and Development: A Political Ecology Approach
  • CAS GE 520 Topics in Energy and Environmental Policy
  • CAS GE 521 Law for Sustainability
  • CAS GE 524 Environmental Justice
  • CAS GE 533 Risk and Hazards
  • CAS HI 281E/IR 356E/PO 201E American Governance: Foreign Affairs (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS HI 291 Politics of the American Environment
  • CAS HI 351/GE 394 Environmental History of Africa
  • CAS HI 525 Development in Historical Perspective
  • CAS IR 391E/PO 246E Democratization: Its History and Future Challenges (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS IR/GE 594 Global Environmental Negotiation and Policy
  • CAS PO 202E Introduction to Congressional Policy Making (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS PO 203E/COM CM 556E: Strategies for Issue Development and Policy Change (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS SO 277 Technology and Society
  • CAS SO 448 Culture, Markets, and Inequality
  • COM CM 305E: Public Relations Inside the Beltway (taught in Washington, D.C.)
International Environmental Policy
  • CAS EC 320 Economics of Less-Developed Regions
  • CAS GE 201 World Regional Geography
  • CAS GE 250 The Fate of Nations: Climate, Resources, and Institutions
  • CAS GE/IR 304 Environmentally Sustainable Development
  • CAS GE 521 Environmental Law and Policy
  • CAS GE 524 Environmental Justice
  • HI 281E/IR 356E/PO 201E American Governance: Foreign Affairs (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS HI 351/GE 394 Environmental History of Africa
  • CAS IR 310 The Sea and International Relations
  • CAS IR 333 Non-State Actors in International Relations
  • CAS IR 373 Global Governance and International Organization
  • CAS IR 390/PO 329 International Political Economy
  • CAS IR 391E/PO 246E Democratization: Its History and Future Challenges (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS IR 395/PO 328 North-South Relations
  • CAS IR 520/PO 550 The State and Public Purpose in Asia
  • CAS IR 573 Introduction to Public International Law
  • CAS IR/GE 594 Global Environmental Negotiation and Policy
  • CAS IR 596/PO 529 Globalization and Contemporary Capitalism in Advanced Industrialized Nations
  • CAS IR/GE 597 Development and Environment in Latin America
  • CAS IR/GE 599 Science, Politics, and Climate Change
  • CAS PO 202E Introduction to Congressional Policy Making (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS PO 203E/COM CM 556E: Strategies for Issue Development and Policy Change (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • CAS PO 331 The Policy Making Process
  • CAS PO 381/HI 287 History of American Foreign Relations Since 1898
  • CAS SO/IR 242 Globalization and World Poverty
  • CAS SO 320 Political Sociology
  • CAS SO 440 Seminar: Political Sociology
  • COM CM 305E: Public Relations Inside the Beltway (taught in Washington, D.C.)
  • Additionally, any two of the following courses may be applied as electives:Ecuador Tropical Ecology Program
    • CAS BI/EE 438E Tropical Montane Ecology
    • CAS BI/EE 439E Tropical Rainforest Ecology
    • CAS BI/EE 440E Tropical Coastal Ecology
    • CAS BI/EE 441E Studies in Tropical Ecology