Environmental Sciences, Queens College-CUNY

Information for this profile was provided by Gillian Stewart in 2009. Queens College is a university with graduate programs, primarily masters programs . Students in this program are pursuing a BA/BS degree.

Program Design & Assessment


The Environmental Sciences curriculum has just been redesigned and requires mutliple courses in each of the basic sciences: physics, biology, chemistry, and geology. It also requires calculus and a core curriculum of courses covering the hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, and lithosphere. It concludes with a topical seminar capstone course addressing current issues in Environmental Science. Please see Environmental Sciences at Queens College (Microsoft Word 33kB May9 09) for more information.

The School of Earth and Environmental Sciences offers a B.A. and B.S. in Environmental Sciences for students interested in pursuing a career in the Environmental Field. We also offer a B.A. in Environmental Studies for students interested in social aspects of the Environment. And we offer a B.A. and B.S. in Geology. Further, we offer a M.A. in Geology and Environmental Sciences, and a M.S. in Applied Environmental Geosciences.

Strengths of this program

This curriculum is designed to give students a solid foundation in the basic sciences while exposing them to the multiple fields of Environmental Science. This is a brand new curriculum; the old Environmental Science curriculum offered "concentrations" in Biology, Chemistry, and Geology, but was dependent on other departments offering supporting courses. We now offer almost all the required courses within our department.

Types of students served

Program Goals

The goals of this program are as follows:

Students should feel comfortable working in the lab or in the field and reading literature about the Hydrosphere, Atmosphere, Lithosphere, and Biosphere. We hope that B.S. students would be well-prepared to pursue a higher degree in Environmental Sciences including Atmospheric Science, Oceanography, Geology, Hydrology, Soil Science, Microbiology, Ecology and Conservation Biology, Environmental Engineering, Environmental Policy, and Environmental Law.

The learning goals were informed by the following resources:

How program goals are assessed

Again, this is a new curriculum. We plan to track the success of our alumni and contact local employers (esp. Environmental Consultants) to ensure that our students have the required skills to go directly into the workforce.

Design features that allow goals to be met

Alumni Careers

Graduation rate

Careers pursued by our alumni

Courses and Sequencing

Diagram of course sequencing and requirements

Entry into the program

  • Our Planet in the 21st Century

Core courses (3 required for BA, 4 for BS)

  • Earth Systems Science
  • Surficial Processes
  • The Atmosphere and Oceans
  • Environmental Microbiology


There are numerous courses in Geology (see below), Biology, Chemistry, Urban Studies, Anthropology, English, Philosophy, and Psychology that can be taken as electives. Electives must total 40 credits (about 12 courses) for the BA and 64 credits (about 20 courses) for the BS.
  • Physical Geology
  • Soils in the Environment
  • Meteorology and Climate
  • Limnology
  • Principles of Hydrology
  • Environmental geology
  • Advanced Oceanography
  • Environmental Biogeochemistry
  • Environmental Field techniques
  • Advanced Geomicrobiology
  • GIS
  • Environmental Modeling
  • Ecology
  • Environmental Problem Solving
  • Intro Statistics
  • Historical Geology
  • The Economics of the Environment
  • Philosophy of the Environment
  • Special Topics
  • Special Problems

Other required courses

  • General Chemistry I and II
  • General Biology I and II
  • Calculus I and II
  • General Physics I and II


  • Environmental Problem Solving

Other key features of this program:

Supporting Materials

Environmental Sciences at Queens College (Microsoft Word 33kB May9 09)