Jul 14, 2024  
Undergraduate Record 2024-2025 
Undergraduate Record 2024-2025

Environmental Sciences, B.A.

The Department of Environmental Sciences offers both Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) and Bachelor of Sciences (B.S.) degrees. The B.A. degree is intended for students interested in environmental sciences, environmental regulation, environmental planning, or secondary school teaching positions. Additionally, this degree can provide a strong base for entry into graduate studies in any of the environmental sciences or in other areas such as medicine, law, or business. The B.S. degree is a more course-intensive experience, excellent for students planning for graduate school or especially for professional careers in the environmental sciences. Each program has an optional thesis program that is an excellent entry into research, and it is recommended for students planning on going to graduate school.

Universal Curriculum Requirements

To be awarded a degree from the College of Arts and Sciences, students are required to complete universal curriculum requirements in addition to the program requirements provided below. The school universal curriculum requirements can be found on the school Degree Programs page .

Program Requirements

Students must complete 30 graded credits of departmental course work with a 2.000 cumulative grade point average in major’s courses. The following are core courses:

Grading Standards

Students must complete 30 graded credits of departmental course work with a 2.000 cumulative grade point average in major’s courses.

Transfer Courses

Once a student is enrolled at the University, transfer credits that count toward the major must be approved prior to taking the course and must be consistent with the curricular goals of the department. The department’s Director of Undergraduate Studies is responsible for overseeing the pre-approval of transfer credits.

For all degree programs, students who score a 4 or 5 on the Environmental Science Advanced Placement exam will receive 3 credits for EVSC 1010.

Any three credits of non-core, lower division courses, or advanced placement credit on the Environmental Science exam, may be counted toward the major if taken prior to the declaration of the majors.

NOTE: Only 3 credits of non-core courses below the 3000 level may count toward the major.


Requirements for Specialization in Environmental and Biological Conservation

The Department of Environmental Sciences, in conjuction with the Department of Biology, offers an opportunity for students to obtain the Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Sciences with a Specialization in Environmental and Biological Conservation. Canidates for the Specialization must fulfill all the requirements for the Environmental Sciences major. 

The requirements for the Specialization are as follows: 

Environmental Sciences Organization

The Environmental Sciences Organization, recognized by Student Council, presents an undergraduate professionalization semnar, field trips, career and job search activities, curriculum review and planning, and many social events. All University students are welcome to join.

Distinction and Prizes

The department participates in the College’s Distinguished Majors Programs designed for highly qualified students. This program must be started early. Information can be obtained from an advisor.

Each year, the department gives the following awards to members of the graduating class who have distinguished themselves academically during their four years of study at the University.

  1. The Wallace-Poole Award to the most outstanding major.
  2. The Wilbur A. Nelson Award, the Mahlon G. Kelly Award, the Michael Garstang Award and the Hydrology Award to students who are outstanding in the areas of geoscience, ecology, atmospheric sciences, and hydrology.
  3. An Interdisciplinary Award to the student who has performed the most meritorious interdisciplinary research.
  4. The Joseph K. Roberts Award to the student who delivered the best paper at the national conference.
  5. The Trout Unlimited Award for excellence in aquatic ecology.

Each year, the department also offers the Bloomer and Mitchell Awards for geosciences-oriented students, and the Hart Family Award to support a student pursuing supervised research during their fourth year.

Research Opportunities

Research projects throughout the department provide a number of employment and experience opportunities for undergraduates.

Students in their third and fourth years are encouraged to gain research experience by participating in faculty research or their initiating their own research projects with faculty supervision. These projects can be conducted for credit arranging with a faculty member to oversee a Supervised Research project (EVSC 4995) or by conducting an Independent Study (EVSC 4993).

Students with a qualifying overall GPA may complete a senior thesis through the Distinguished Majors Program.

Additional Information

For more information, contact the Director of the Undergraduate Program, Department of Environmental Sciences, Clark Hall, P.O. Box 400123, Charlottesville, VA 22904-4123; (434) 924-7761; www.evsc.virginia.edu