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Earth and Environmental Sciences, Wesleyan University

Information for this profile was provided by Martha Gilmore in 2009. Information is also available on the program website.

Wesleyan University is a university with graduate programs, primarily masters programs .

Overview and Context

Illustration of the Wesleyan earth and environmental sciences curriculum, constructed by Monica Bruckner, based on information provided by Martha Gilmore. Click on the image to see a larger version.
Our department offers a B.A. and an M.A. in Earth and Environmental Sciences. The B.A. program is designed to give students flexibility to pursue interests across the earth, planetary and environmental sciences.

Program Design

The B.A. program is designed to give students flexibility. Informal tracks, including Geology, Environmental Science/Environmental Chemistry, Environmental Science/Ecology, and Planetary Geology are enumerated on our department website.

Goals and Assessment

The E&ES major is designed to prepare students for graduate school as well as provide a basis for a variety of careers in the private or public sectors. We seek to teach our students basic problem solving and quantitative skills and field and laboratory methods. We emphasize student research through tutorials and thesis work.

We primarily assess our program by talking with and tracking our graduates.

Courses and Sequencing

Entry into the program

  • Dynamic Earth
  • Introduction to Oceanography
  • Introduction to Planetary Geology
  • Introduction to Environmental Studies
  • Introduction to Environmental Science

Core courses

Students must take 3 of:
  • Mineralogy with Laboratory
  • Geomorphology with Laboratory
  • Structural Geology with Field Geology
  • Sedimentology with Stratigraphic Techniques
  • Geobiology with Laboratory
  • Environmental Geochemistry with Laboratory
  • Oceans and Climate with Techniques in Ocean and Climate Investigations


Students are required to take 4 elective courses, chosen from the following list:

  • Astrobiology
  • Soils with Laboratory
  • Tropical Ecology and the Environment
  • Conservation of Aquatic Ecosystems
  • Marine Biogeochemistry
  • Petrology with Laboratory
  • Hydrology with Laboratory
  • Quantitative Methods for the Biological and Environmental Sciences
  • Introduction to GIS
  • Remote Sensing with Laboratory
  • Isotope Geochemistry: Tracers of Environmental Processes
  • Global Climate Change
  • Volcanology with Laboratory
  • Planetary Geology Seminar
  • Field Camp (taken elsewhere)
  • Geodynamics

Other required courses

  • One year of courses in each of 2 other science or mathematics disciplines.


  • Senior Seminar with Field Course. This course is offered in the Fall and followed by a field research course in Death Valley or Puerto Rico.

Additional Comments

Many of our elective courses are cross-listed as graduate level courses.

Additional Materials

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