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Environmental Science

The information on this page pertains to students who were admitted to Drake during the 2018-2019 academic year or were admitted to Drake prior to the 2018-2019 academic year and declared a change to the 2018-2019 catalog requirements.

Students can view the catalog year to which they belong by viewing MyDUSIS > Student Services & Financial Aid tab > Student Records link > View Student Information link. Students who do not belong to the 2018-2019 academic catalog should use the navigation menu on the left of this page to consult the requirements of their particular catalog.

Program Options

Environmental Science and Sustainability department web page


Program Overview

This interdisciplinary science degree prepares students in a liberal arts tradition to understand connections between human beings and their effects on the Earth's environment. Drake environmental science students are grounded in the natural sciences disciplines while also acquiring the ability to synthesize information across disciplines. Students develop technical and quantitative skills including laboratory and field methods, statistical analysis and the implementation of geographic information systems (GIS). Courses in the social sciences such as economics, politics, policy and ethics provide an important link to the human element associated with environmental issues. Graduates of the program will be well prepared to undertake graduate study in diverse fields of environmental sciences, as well as to work in governmental and nongovernmental capacities on environmental issues.

Field work is a key component of this degree, featured in biology, geology and environmental classes. Iowa's central location in the nation allows students to experience a diversity of ecosystems and human communities during frequently offered weekend and summer field trips. The program also connects students with ongoing environmental projects (for example an 8,000-acre prairie restoration project including bison and elk at the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge, 20 miles east of campus), with offerings at Iowa Lakeside Laboratory in Milford, Iowa (a biological field station), and with semester-long marine science experiences at the University of Southern Mississippi's Gulf Coast Research Laboratory in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.

Drake’s environmental science major is distinguished by its strong focus on interdisciplinary study, emphasis on field experiences, opportunities for research and independent study, and service learning approach in the Senior Capstone experience.


B.A. Degree Requirements

At least 25 credits in this major will include courses not counted towards another major or minor.

Environmental Science: Biological Conservation Track

Course Credits
ENSS 035 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science 3
ENSS 036 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science Lab 1
ENSS 037 - Environmental Case Analysis 3
ENSS 041 - Principles of Geology 4
ENSS 061 - Environmental Sociology 3
ENSS 065 - Geographic Information Systems 3
Life Science Base
 
BIO 012/012L - General/Pre-Professional Biology I (with lab) 4
BIO 013/013L - General/Pre-Professional Biology II (with lab) 4
BIO 117/118L - Ecology (with lab) 5
BIO 120/120L - Ecosystem Ecology (with lab), or
BIO 167/167L - Population and Community Ecology (with lab)
4
CHEM 001/003 - General Chemistry I (with lab) 4
Data Analysis
 
BIO 140 - Biology Research and Statistical Methods, or
STAT 060 - Statistics for the Life Sciences
4
3
ENSS 151 - Sustainability and Reslience, or
ENSS 154 - Environmental Decision-Making, or
ENSS 162 - Hydrology, or
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Modeling
3
ENSS 165 - Applications of Geographic Information Systems 3
Field Electives - advisor approved
6
A field elective is any course in the earth or life sciences that incorporates a significant field component.  This could be a laboratory with a large fraction of field activities, or it could be a course where field work is fully integrated into the course itself.  
Science-Policy Integration - Select six ENSS credits from courses numbered between 120 and 139, or advisor-approved elective that combines signifcant content within the context of important discussions in the policy realm.
6
ENSS 191 - Capstone
3
TOTAL 62

Environmental Science: Aquatic and Earth Science Track

Course Credits
ENSS 035 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science 3
ENSS 036 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science Lab 1
ENSS 037 - Environmental Case Analysis 3
ENSS 041 - Principles of Geology 4
ENSS 061 - Environmental Sociology 3
ENSS 065 - Geographic Information Systems 3
ENSS 162 - Global Biogeochemical Cycles 3
Introduction to Physical Science - Chose one of the following sequences:  
CHEM 001 and 003 - General Chemistry I (with lab)
CHEM 002 and 004 - General Chemistry II (with lab)
4
4
PHY 001 - Introduction to Physics I
PHY 002 - Introduction to Physics II
4
4
PHY 011 - General Physics I
PHY 012 - General Physics II
4
4
Outcome AreasTake two courses in each of the following outcome areas.  Any course may count toward only one outcome.  
Interdisciplinary ScienceSelect two courses from the following:  
ENSS 054 - Environmental Communication 3
ENSS 111 - International Environmental Seminar 3-4
ENSS 125 - Conservation Biology 4
ENSS 127 - Endangered Species Conservation 3
ENSS 135 - Global Climate Change 3
ENSS 138 - Water Resources Policy 3
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
Quantitative Analysis - Select two courses from the following:
 
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 3
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
PHYS 025 (or higher) 3
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
BIO 140 - Biostatistics 3
MATH 050 (or higher) 3-4
Physical Science - Select two courses from the following:  
ENSS 135 - Global Climate Change 3
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 3
PHYS 025 (or higher) 3
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
CHEM 097 (or higher)  
Systems Science - Select two courses from the following:  
ENSS 111 - International Environment Seminar 3-4
ENSS 119 - Regional Ecology 3
ENSS 125 - Conservational Biology 4
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
BIO 117 - Ecology 3
BIO 120 - Ecosystem Ecology 3
BIO 168 & 128L - Limnology 4
Professional Skills - Select two courses from the following:  
ENSS 101 - Restoration Ecology Practicum 1-3
ENSS 115 - Environmental Field Course 0-6
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approal) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 6
ENSS 165 - Advanced GIS 3
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
ENSS 196 - Environmental Internship 1-4
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
CHEM 097 (or higher)  
BIO 140 - Biostatistics 3
BIO 168 & 128L - Limnology 4
ENSS 191 - Capstone
3
TOTAL 62

B.S. Degree Requirements

The B.S. degree program is designed to provide significant experience in research.  Students will become collaborators with faculty and contribute to all aspects of a research project from proposal and hypothesis formation to data analysis, interpretation and presentation.  The research typically occurs at Drake University with Drake faculty, but it could also be completed during an off-campus experience with a non-Drake adviser (e.g., study abroad, local workplaces).  Off-campus research still requires an ENS faculty adviser (through enrollment in ENSS 197).

Additional requirements for the B.S. degree:

  • Collaboration with a faculty advisor in a significant research project (minimum of 2 semesters)
  • Research proposal submitted to the ENS program and approved before your senior year
  • BIO 140 - Biological Research and Statistical Methods, or its advisor-approved equivalent
  • A minimum of 2 credits of ENSS 197 - Undergraduate Thesis Research
  • Oral presentation of the research to ENS faculty and students
  • Research paper and a copy of the presentation submitted to the ENS program

Students planning to complete a B.S. in ENS should obtain a copy of the full description of the B.S. requirements from their advisor or the program director by their sophomore year.

Environmental Science: Biological Conservation Track

Course Credits
ENSS 035 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science 3
ENSS 036 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science Lab 1
ENSS 037 - Environmental Case Analysis 3
ENSS 041 - Principles of Geology 4
ENSS 061 - Environmental Sociology 3
ENSS 065 - Geographic Information Systems 3
Life Science Base
 
BIO 012/012L - General/Pre-Professional Biology I (with lab) 4
BIO 013/013L - General/Pre-Professional Biology II (with lab) 4
BIO 117/118L - Ecology (with lab) 5
BIO 120/120L - Ecosystem Ecology (with lab), or
BIO 167/167L - Population and Community Ecology (with lab)
4
CHEM 001/003 - General Chemistry I (with lab) 4
Data Analysis
 
BIO 140 - Biology Research and Statistical Methods, or
STAT 060 - Statistics for the Life Sciences
4
3
ENSS 151 - Sustainability and Reslience, or
ENSS 154 - Environmental Decision-Making, or
ENSS 162 - Hydrology, or
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Modeling
3
ENSS 165 - Applications of Geographic Information Systems 3
Field Electives - advisor approved
6
A field elective is any course in the earth or life sciences that incorporates a significant field component.  This could be a laboratory with a large fraction of field activities, or it could be a course where field work is fully integrated into the course itself.  
Science-Policy Integration - Select six ENSS credits from courses numbered between 120 and 139, or advisor-approved elective that combines signifcant content within the context of important discussions in the policy realm.
6
ENSS 191 - Capstone
3
TOTAL 62

Environmental Science: Aquatic and Earth Science Track

Course Credits
ENSS 035 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science 3
ENSS 036 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science Lab 1
ENSS 037 - Environmental Case Analysis 3
ENSS 041 - Principles of Geology 4
ENSS 061 - Environmental Sociology 3
ENSS 065 - Geographic Information Systems 3
ENSS 162 - Global Biogeochemical Cycles 3
Introduction to Physical Science - Chose one of the following sequences  
CHEM 001 and 003 - General Chemistry I (with lab)
CHEM 002 and 004 - General Chemistry II (with lab)
4
4
PHY 001 - Introduction to Physics I
PHY 002 - Introduction to Physics II
4
4
PHY 011 - General Physics I
PHY 012 - General Physics II
4
4
Outcome AreasTake two courses in each of the following outcome areas.  Any course may count toward only one outcome.  
Interdisciplinary ScienceSelect two courses from the following:  
ENSS 054 - Environmental Communication 3
ENSS 111 - International Environmental Seminar 3-4
ENSS 125 - Conservation Biology 4
ENSS 127 - Endangered Species Conservation 3
ENSS 135 - Global Climate Change 3
ENSS 138 - Water Resources Policy 3
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
Quantitative Analysis - Select two courses from the following:
 
BIO 140 - Biostatistics 3
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 3
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
MATH 050 (or higher) 3-4
PHY 025 (or higher) 3
Physical Science - Select two courses from the following:  
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
CHEM 097 (or higher) 3
ENSS 135 - Global Climate Change 3
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 3
PHY 025 (or higher) 3
Systems Science - Select two courses from the following:  
BIO 117 - Ecology 3
BIO 120 - Ecosystem Ecology 3
BIO 168 & 128L - Limnology 4
ENSS 111 - International Environment Seminar 3-4
ENSS 119 - Regional Ecology 3
ENSS 125 - Conservational Biology 4
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approval) 0-4
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
Professional Skills - Select two courses from the following:  
BIO 140 - Biostatistics 3
BIO 168 & 128L - Limnology 4
CHEM 081 - Quantitative Chemical Analysis 3
CHEM 097 (or higher) 3
ENSS 101 - Restoration Ecology Practicum 1-3
ENSS 115 - Environmental Field Course 0-6
ENSS 150 - Advanced Topics (with advisor approal) 0-4
ENSS 162 - Hydrology 6
ENSS 165 - Advanced GIS 3
ENSS 168 - Dynamic Environmental Models 3
ENSS 196 - Environmental Internship 1-4
ENSS 191 - Capstone
3
TOTAL 62

 


 

Environmental Science Minor

All minors must have an adviser in the program and must successfully complete a minimum 22 credit hours that fulfill the following requirements:

Course Credits
ECON 002 - Principles of Microeconomics 3
ENSS 035 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science 3
ENSS 036 - One Earth: Global Environmental Science Lab 1
Select one course from the following:  
ECON 198 - Environment and Natural Resource Economics 3
ENSS 107 - Civic Environmentalism 3
ENSS 151 - Sustainability and Resilience 4
ENSS 135 - Global Change: Science and Policy 3
ENSS elective in Environmental Policy 3
ENSS 100-level elective 3

 


2018-2019 Drake University Undergraduate Catalog
University Events
University News
August 17, 2018
Neil M. Gorsuch, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, gave a special lecture to approximately 350 Drake Law students, faculty, and staff on Aug. 16.