Combined Major

Anthropology-Environmental Studies Major


How does culture mediate relationships with land, water, soils, climate, plants, and animals? And how have these more-than-human beings had reciprocal relationships with humans? Using a range of methodologies and theoretical perspectives, including ethnography, Anthropology-Environmental Studies majors will examine the multi-faceted character of the environment and environmentalism at a time widely heralded as the Anthropocene. With humans at the center of this proposed geologic epoch the Anthropology-Environmental Studies equips major students with a working grasp of fundamental natural and scientific concepts central to environmental studies, while also understanding how scientific knowledge is always embedded in specific cultural features and historical contexts. An anthropological approach stresses that, while environmental processes and phenomena have material existence, they work within diverse cultural frames of meaning. While as an environmental anthropologist you will be able to recognize the commonalities, coalitions and alliances that cut across cultures, as well as recognizing the political and economic agendas that guide and inform globalized environmental movements.

Total credit requirements for an Anthropology-Environmental Studies major: 55 (30 credits in Anthropology and 25 in required coursework for all Environmental Studies majors)

Common Requirements for all Environmental Studies Majors

  • Required Courses
    • Introductory Coursework: Environmental Studies 120 and 207
    • Foundation Coursework: Fulfill the following requirements for the two areas outside of your area of concentration (arts and humanities, natural and physical sciences, or social sciences).
      • Environmental Arts and Humanities: Take two elective courses from the list below.
      • Environmental Natural and Physical Sciences: Take 7 credits in elective courses from the list below. Credits must come from at least two departments, and include at least one course with a lab.
      • Environmental Social Sciences: Take two elective courses from the list below.
    • Interdisciplinary Coursework: Take one interdisciplinary elective from the list below.
    • Senior Coursework: Environmental Studies 479
  • Additional Requirements
    • Fulfill all of the requirements for a major in a specific area of concentration, chosen from:
      • Environmental Arts and Humanities: Art-Environmental Studies or Environmental Humanities
      • Environmental Natural and Physical Sciences: Biology-Environmental Studies, Chemistry-Environmental Studies, Geology-Environmental Studies, or Physics-Environmental Studies
      • Environmental Social Sciences: Anthropology-Environmental Studies, Economics-Environmental Studies, History-Environmental Studies, Politics-Environmental Studies, or Sociology-Environmental Studies
  • Senior Requirements
    • Environmental Studies 479
    • Further requirements as specified by the chosen major
  • Honors
    • Specified within each major
  • Notes
    • Up to 8 transfer credits may be applied to a major in Environmental Studies.
    • No courses taken P-D-F can be applied toward the major.

Requirements for Anthropology-Environmental Studies Majors

  • Complete the Common Requirements for all Environmental Studies Majors (25 Credits)
  • Required Anthropology Courses
    • Anthropology 101, 203, and 490
    • Anthropology 492 or 498
    • Two core Environmental Anthropology courses chosen from Anthropology 228, 313, 333, 345, and 360
    • Two elective courses in Anthropology at the 200- or 300-level, excluding Anthropology 201
  • Senior Requirements
    • Anthropology 490
    • Anthropology 492 or 498
  • Honors
    • Students do not apply for admission to candidacy for honors.
    • Students must submit a proposal for their thesis or project within the first six weeks of the two-semester period in which the student is eligible.
    • Accumulated at least 87 credits
    • Completed two semesters of residency at Whitman
    • Major GPA of at least 3.500
    • Complete a written thesis or research project prepared exclusively for the satisfaction of this program.
    • Earn a grade of at least A- on the honors thesis or project and the honors thesis course.
    • Pass the senior assessment with distinction.
    • Chair of the department will notify the Registrar of students attaining honors no later than the beginning of Week 12.
    • An acceptable digital copy of the honors thesis must be submitted to Penrose Library no later than Reading Day.
  • Notes
    • No more than eight credits in off-campus programs and transfer credits.
    • No P-D-F courses.
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