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

Overview of EAP major requirements (PDF)

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 Global Ecology
  • BI 306 Biology of Global Change OR GE/BI 307 Biogeography
  • MA 131 or MA 123

Track 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.

  • Environmental Modeling
  • Economic & Policy Analysis
  • Human Institutions
  • International Environmental Policy

Please note: All major courses (Principal, Required Related, and Track Electives) must be completed with a grade of C or higher. Any substitutions must be pre-approved by a faculty advisor.