Combined Major

Economics-Environmental Studies Major


The Economics- Environmental Studies major allows you to explore, examine and analyze the most significant environmental issues of our times — global climate change, toxic waste, and habitat loss — through a perspective that emerges from within the field of economics as you join humanity’s efforts to find innovative, practical, and lasting solutions to environmental degradation.

Total credit requirements for an Economics-Environmental Studies major: 52 (27 credits in Economics 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.

Economics-Environmental Studies Major Requirements

  • Complete the Common Requirements for all Environmental Studies Majors (25 Credits)
  • Required Economics Courses
    • Economics 100 or 101; and 102
    • Economics 227 (or Mathematics 128 or 247)
    • Economics 307, 308, and 477
    • One additional course in Economics
  • Additional Required Courses
    • One additional relevant foundational course in Environmental Social Sciences outside of Economics
  • Senior Requirements
    • Major Field Test (MFT)
    • Oral exam in Economics
    • Those not writing a suitably interdisciplinary honors thesis are required to complete an oral exam in Environmental Studies.
  • Honors
    • Students submit an “Honors in Major Study Application” to their department.
    • Students must submit a proposal for their thesis or project within the first six weeks of the two-semester period in which they are 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 project and the honors thesis course.
    • Pass the senior assessment with distinction.
    • The department will submit the honors applications to the Registrar’s Office of students pursuing honors by the specified deadline.
    • The department will submit the “Senior Assessment/Major Study Certificate” to the Registrar’s Office no later than Reading Day.
    • An acceptable digital copy of the honors thesis must be submitted to Penrose Library no later than Reading Day.
    • For details, visit
  • Notes
    • Mathematics 124 or 125 is a prerequisite for Economics 307 and 308.
    • A minimum grade of C is required in Economics 307 and 308.
    • No courses taken P-D-F, including Economics 493 and 494, may count toward major requirements.
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