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Division of Natural Sciences & MathematicsDepartment of Geography & the Environment

Degree Programs

Minor in Sustainability

Sustainability is a concept that is becoming increasingly used as human societies recognize the finite nature of many natural resources and the lingering ill effects of overconsumption, pollution, and poorly planned land uses. Sustainability is defined as meeting the needs of the current generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs, and to do so while maintaining ecological processes, functions, biodiversity, and productivity into the future. An understanding of sustainability includes the scientific basis for sustainable resource use as well as the social and economic implications and/or costs of sustainable practices. Given the state of the global economy, the heavy reliance of both developed and developing nations on increasingly limited supplies of non?renewable energy sources, and the resultant social unrest that is building throughout many parts of the world, understanding the challenges facing society today requires an interdisciplinary perspective of the problems we face in moving toward a sustainable future.

Hours Required: Minimum 24 qtr hrs

A minimum of 24 hours from the following courses:

Required Courses

Gateway course: 4 credit hours

GEOG 2500: Sustainability and Human Society. This course serves as the first course in the minor, addressing the three pillars of sustainability: environmental, economic, and social equity.

Elective courses: 16 elective credits are required from a minimum of three "breadth" fields

Minors matriculated before Fall 2015: Select from "Pillars" elective class lists: Environmental Sustainability, Economic Sustainability, and Social Equity.  Please see course bulletin for elective listings: 2014-2015 Bulletin 

Minors matriculated after Fall 2015: Select from "Lenses" elective class lists: Natural & Physical Science, Social Sciences & Korbel, and Arts & Humanities.  Please see course bulletin for approved elective listings: 2015-2016 Bulletin

Sustainability internships and study abroad classes may be approved as elective classes; please meet with the minor advisor. 

Capstone seminar: 4 credit hours

GEOG 2550: Current Issues in Sustainability. Seminar topics vary by instructor.