Majors & Minors

Declaration of Major in Environmental Studies

Declaring a major in environmental studies requires the student to complete a Declaration of Major form that must be signed by the department chair. Before declaring a major, students must satisfy the LANG 120 requirement.


  • Earth Science: Mineralogy/petrology, structural geology, hydrology, and soils related courses meld to provide an understanding of earth processes with an environmental emphasis. All students are required to take core lab courses, but may tailor additional courses to emphasize soils, mineral processing, economic geology, and/or hydrology and water quality. Students seeking teacher licensure must fulfill all requirements for the Earth Science concentration, as well as other requirements in the education department.

  • Ecology and Environmental Biology: Forest and wetland ecology, freshwater biology, and wildlife management are just a few of the areas that may be explored, depending on the student's professional interests. Students may choose from a variety of advanced environmental science, ecology, botany, and zoology courses.

  • Environmental Management and Policy: This concentration's interdisciplinary curriculum provides students with a solid understanding of the scientific, economic, political, and social complexities of contemporary environmental management challenges. As well, students learn about the tools for evaluating and carrying out management strategies. The goal of the concentration is to provide students with the broad education and experience necessary for careers in natural resource and environmental management.

    Recommended courses:
    ECON 242 - Economics of Food
    ECON 245 - Land Economics
    ECON 337 - Environmental Economics and Policy
    ECON 345 - Economics of Natural Resources
    MGMT 230 - Organizational Behavior and Theory
    MGMT 300 - Legal and Ethical Environment
    POLS 235 - Intro to Law
    POLS 327 - Constitutional Law
    POLS 354 - Environmental Politics

Other courses:
ECON 250 - Economic Globalization
ECON 314 - Economic Growth and Development
MGMT 388 - Strategies for Leading Change
MGMT 423 - Seminar in Public Management and Leadership
MGMT 424 - Seminar in Organizational Power and Politics
POLS 220 - Introduction to American Politics
POLS 281 - Principles of International Relations
POLS 333 - United States Courts and Public Policy
POLS 336 - Money in Politics in the United States
POLS 351 - Public Policy and Administration
POLS 383 - International Political Economy
POLS 387 - International Organizations
POLS 389 - International Law
SOC 387 - Gender, Globalization, and Development
Or other approved by advisor

  • Individualized: This concentration provides the opportunity for design of a curriculum unavailable in the concentrations above. Like all majors, students complete the core courses in environmental studies but specialized courses are tailored to a common theme through consultation between the student and department chairperson. Examples of individualized options completed include environmental education, environmental planning, environmental journalism, and human ecology.

Environmental Studies Minor 

Students may also minor in environmental studies by completing 19 hours of specified courses.

Course Requirements

Review the course requirements in the UNC Asheville Course Catalog for each of the environmental studies concentrations and environmental studies minor. Graduation checksheets can also be used to see what courses are required for the major/minor.