Environmental Degree Programs

Environmental education is essential to solving many of the complex global challenges we face today.

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) offers environmental degree programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. These programs span the life, physical, and social sciences, and allow you to explore our planet from many different perspectives.

What You'll Learn

Students in CLAS environmental degree programs:

  • Tackle important topics, including biodiversity, climate change, and sustainability.
  • Participate in immersive, unforgettable hands-on research and field experiences.
  • Develop problem-solving skills, a global worldview, and a deep understanding of the links between humans and the natural world.
  • Learn to advocate for a better future, for both our world and its inhabitants.

Careers and Outcomes

UConn students who pursue CLAS environmental degree programs can meet the growing demand for skilled employees in the earth science and environmental sectors.

Our students train in classrooms, in laboratories, and in the field, helping them prepare for high-paying jobs where they can make a difference. Our graduate programs also prepare students to pursue professional certifications, like the Licensed Environmental Professional Program from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (CT-DEEP).

Undergraduate Degree Programs

Earn a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) degree from UConn.

Physical and Life Sciences

Earth Sciences (BS/BA)

Formerly Geoscience

Study the Earth’s present features and past evolution, and how to use this knowledge to benefit humankind. You’ll learn about climate change and adaptation; locating and protecting water, mineral, and energy resources; predicting geological hazards; paleontology; and landscape evolution.

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (BS/BA)

Discover the diversity of life, and the ecological and evolutionary processes that sustain it. Coursework spans ecology, evolution, animal biology (zoology), plant biology, and applications of these topics, including conservation biology, animal behavior, and environmental change.

Environmental Sciences (BS)

Explore the living and nonliving parts of Earth that make up critical environmental systems – and learn how human activities impact these systems. You’ll take classes that help you understand the scientific principles that make the planet function, and how social factors underlie environmental issues locally and globally.

Environmental Studies (BA)

Investigate interactions between human societies and their environments. Study the geopolitics of climate change, the economics of renewables, and the social dimensions of biodiversity conservation. Develop the skills and perspective needed to protect environmental quality, public health, and social justice.

Marine Sciences (BS/BA)

Dive deep into studying our oceans, the environment that covers two-thirds of the planet. You’ll not only take classes in topics like marine biology, chemistry, geology, and physics; you’ll also get your feet wet and your hands dirty through experiences at the coastal UConn Avery Point campus and many of the region’s marine habitats.

Social Sciences

Anthropology (BA)

Study the human experience on Earth throughout time and space. Through subfields like environmental anthropology, you’ll engage with important topics like climate change, environmental degradation and conservation, environmental justice, energy equity, migration, natural disasters, and sustainability.

Geography (BS/BA)

Analyze the relationships between people and their environments. You’ll engage with coursework and research on topics like urban sprawl, the nature and impact of migration, the spatial prevalence of disease, global climatic change, environmental degradation and restoration, and watershed and landscape change.

Political Science (BA)

Learn how to think critically about the politics of environmental decision making. Through coursework and research, you’ll analyze the interests, power dynamics, and institutions that shape policymaking with implications for conservation, adaptation, environmental justice, and activism.

Accelerated Degree Programs

Current UConn undergraduate students can earn both their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in five years.

Biodiversity and Conservation Biology (Fast-Track MS)

Take coursework in ecology, evolution, systematics, and natural history. Gain relevant training in public policy, economics, and ethics. You’ll prepare to work in non-governmental organizations, state and federal agencies, and environmental consulting firms.

Environmental Earth Sciences (Fast-Track MS)

Gain training needed to pursue a career in the environmental sector and certification as a Licensed Professional Geologist or Environmental Professional. Coursework focuses on the Earth’s surface and subsurface; and its resources, history, and hazards, allowing you to develop solutions to critical challenges of the 21st century.

Marine Sciences and Oceanography (Fast-Track MS)

Dive into coursework in biological, chemical, physical, and geological oceanography. You’ll gain the skills and training needed to pursue careers in non-governmental organizations, state and federal agencies, secondary and postsecondary educational institutions, and environmental consulting firms.

Graduate Degree Programs

Earn a doctoral degree (Ph.D.), a Master of Science (MS), a Master of Arts (MA), or a graduate certificate.

Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (MS/Ph.D.)

Study biodiversity maintenance, function, conservation, and loss. Receive training in ecology, systematics, functional morphology, evolutionary development, phenotypic evolution, genetics, evolutionary genomics, and more. Prepare to work with nature centers, non-profits, museums, academic institutions, governments, and environmental consultants.

Geography (MA/Ph.D.)

Explore the interconnections among people, places, infrastructure, and the environment. Learn with scholars who study spatial analysis of social issues, geographic information science and systems, earth system science, and human-environment dynamics. You’ll examine environmental and social problems addressing questions related to equity and justice for communities, cities, countries, and regions.

Energy and Environmental Management (MS)

Gain the skills needed for green jobs in renewable energy, one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy. This online certificate program is designed for college graduates looking for advanced study in energy and environmental management fields, and working professionals looking to enhance their skills and knowledge in science, management, and policy.

Geological Sciences (MS/Ph.D.)

Investigate earth systems and how they have interacted to produce changes in environment, evolution, and climate through time. Contribute new earth science knowledge through independent, supervised research and peer-reviewed publications. You’ll receive training in all facets of research and become proficient in communicating effectively with the public.

Oceanographic Science and Technology (Certificate)

Gain an in-depth education you can apply to the growing fields of marine technology, ocean engineering, and marine renewable energy. This program trains engineers and environmental scientists and focuses on the issues and design challenges of working in the marine environment.

Oceanography (MS/Ph.D.)

Become a highly trained researcher and scholar in the ocean sciences. This degree program will prepare for you careers at academic and research institutions; careers in industry (consulting and ocean technology); and careers in governmental and non-governmental organizations focused on management and conservation of oceanic resources.