Skip to Content

Environmental Science Major

Bachelor of Arts

Briar Cliff's Franciscan heritage includes an emphasis on a respect for and stewardship of the natural world. The environmental science program is geared toward students who desire to solve problems such as pollution, habitat destruction and the loss of biological diversity. Although this major emphasizes either chemistry or biology, students will also familiarize themselves with socially relevant disciplines such as economics, political science, geography, and philosophy. The program also features practical application of classroom activities through internships and field trips to destinations such as the Black Hills of South Dakota, Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest.

Upon graduation, students majoring in environmental science will be able to think critically and solve problems, effectively communicate using scientific language, identify and discuss key biological/environmental science principles, apply a basic understanding of chemistry and/ or earth science to environmental science, demonstrate skill in observation, demonstrate safe and effective lab technique, demonstrate a basic understanding of how social and economic issues relate to environmental science, and find employment in a science-related field or enter graduate/professional school.


Core Courses

BIOL 152 - General Biology II
BIOL 212 - General Botany
BIOL 213 - Invertebrate Zoology
BIOL 22IS - Scientific Writing and Research
ECON 210 - Principles of Microeconomics
ESCI 110 - Environmental Science
ESCI 211 - Earth Science I: Introductory Geology
ESCI 212 - Earth Science II: Earth Processes
ESCI 213 - Earth Science III: Weather and Climate
ESCI 237 - General Ecology
ESCI 300 - Entomology
ESCI 339 - Principles of Microbiology
ESCI 401 - Environmental Law and Policy
ESCI 412 - Field Botany
LIBA 200 - Black Hills Experience
PSCI 101 - American Government

Additional Program Requirements

Environmental science students are expected to complete an environmental internship, field station course or participate in a field experience such as ESCI 280.

Six one-credit IS courses (e.g. BIOL 22 IS) are also required.

No more than one D or D+ in any ESCI or BIOL course will count toward the major. A minimum 2.0 GPA is required for graduation.

NOTE: ECON 211 is interchangeable with ECON 210

Prairie Studies


Briar Cliff has a protected prairie sitting in its own backyard.

Learn more 

Ir 2

Nop -pc