Published annually, the Course Catalog sets out the requirements of the academic programs--the majors, minors, and concentrations. Each Bryn Mawr student must declare her major before the end of her sophomore year. Students may also declare a minor or a concentration, but neither is required for the A.B. degree. Students must comply with the requirements published in the Course Catalog at the time when they declare the major, minor and/or concentration.

The Course Catalog also sets out the College requirements. Students must comply with the College requirements published at the time they enter Bryn Mawr College.

2017-18 Catalog
2016-17 Catalog
2015-16 Catalog
2014-15 Catalog

Students may complete a minor in Environmental Studies as an adjunct to any major at Bryn Mawr, Haverford, or Swarthmore pending approval of the student’s coursework plan by the home department and the home-campus Environmental Studies director. 

The Johanna Alderfer Harris Environmental Studies Program at Bryn Mawr College enables students and faculty to come together to explore academic interests in the environment. The program sponsors speakers, special events, and field trips, and offers support for student work during the summer, in the form of the college’s competitive Green Grants. In addition, The Harris Environmental Studies Program is the Bryn Mawr campus home for the Tri-College Environmental Studies Minor. The program benefits from two endowed chairs in Environmental Studies, The Johanna Alderfer Harris and William H. Harris, M.D. Chair in Environmental Studies and the Harold Alderfer Chair in Environmental Studies, currently held by Geology Associate Professor Donald Barber.

The Tri-Co Environmental Studies Minor

Bryn Mawr, Haverford and Swarthmore Colleges offer Tri-College Environmental Studies Interdisciplinary Minor, involving departments and faculty from the natural sciences, mathematics, engineering, the social sciences, the humanities, and the arts on all three campuses. The Tri-College Environmental Studies Minor aims to  bring students and faculty together to explore interactions among earth systems, human societies, and local and global environments.

The Tri-Co ENVS Minor aims to cultivate in students the capacity to identify and confront key environmental issues through a blend of multiple disciplines, encompassing historical, cultural, economic, political, scientific, and ethical modes of inquiry. Acknowledging the reciprocal  dimensions of materiality and culture in the historical formation of "the" environment, this program is broadly framed by a series of interlocking dialogues: between the "natural" and the "built"; between the local and the  global; and between the human and the nonhuman.

The minor consists of six courses, including an introductory course and capstone course, and the courses may be completed at any of the three campuses (or any combination thereof). To declare the minor, students should contact the Environmental Studies director at their home campus.

Minor Requirements

The Environmental Studies Interdisciplinary Minor consists of six courses, as follows:

  • A required introductory course to be taken prior to the senior year. This may be ENVS 101 at Bryn Mawr or Haverford or the parallel course at Swarthmore College  (ENVS 001). Any one of these courses will satisfy the requirement, and students may take no more than one such course for credit toward the minor.
  • Four elective course credits from approved lists of core and cognate courses, including two credits in each of the following two categories(A and B). No more than one cognate course credit may be used for each category (see course list below for more information about core and cognate courses).

 (A) Environmental Science, Engineering & Math: courses that build understanding and  knowledge of scientific methods and theories, and that explore how these can be applied in identifying and addressing environmental questions. At least one of  the courses in this category must have a laboratory component.

(B) Environmental Social Sciences, Humanities & Arts: courses that build understanding and knowledge of social and political structures as well as ethical considerations, and how these inform our individual and collective understandings of and responses to human and built environments.

  • A senior seminar with culminating work that reflects tangible research design and inquiry, but which might materialize in any number of project forms. Bryn Mawr or Haverford College's ENVS 397 (Environmental Studies Senior  Seminar) and Swarthmore College's ENVS 091 (Environmental Studies Capstone  Seminar) satisfy the requirement.

Core Courses for the Environmental Studies Minor

Every student should take an introductory course (101 or 001) before the senior year
Every student should take a capstone course (397 or 091) during the senior year

Bryn Mawr
ENVS 101 Introduction to Environmental Studies|
ENVS 397 Environmental Studies Senior Seminar

ENVS 101 Case Studies in Environmental Issues
ENVS 397 Environmental Studies Senior Seminar

ENVS  001 Introduction to Environmental Studies
ENVS 091 Environmental Studies Capstone Seminar

Approved Electives for the Environmental Studies Minor

  • Two courses are required from each category (A and B).
  • At least one course in Category A should have a lab.
  • Only one course in each category may be a "cognate" course. Cognate courses, marked with an asterisk, are valuable for minor but are not as centrally focused on environmental studies methodologies and materials as other courses on the list.
  • Pay close attention to "double-counting" rules for your major. You are encouraged to choose electives outside of your major.

Category A) Environmental Science, Math and Engineering

Bryn Mawr
BIOL 210 Biology and Public Policy
BIOL 220 (L) Ecology
BIOL 225* Biology of Plants
BIOL 250* Computational Methods
BIOL 255 Microbiology
BIOL 323 Coastal and Marine Biology
BIOL 332 Global Change Biology
GEOL 101 (L) How the Earth Works
GEOL 102 Earth:  Life of a Planet
GEOL 103 (L) Earth Systems and the Environment
GEOL 203 Paleobiology
GEOL 206* Energy Resources and Sustainability
GEOL 209 Natural Hazards & Human Populations
GEOL 302 Low Temperature Geochemistry
GEOL 314 Marine Geology
MATH 210* Differential Equations w/ Apps (Environmental Problems)

BIOL 118 Plants and People
BIOL 310* Molecular Microbiology (half-credit)
BIOL 314* Photosynthesis (half-credit)
CHEM 112*(L) Chemical Dynamics
CHEM 150 Intro to Oceanography
CHEM 358 Topics in Environmental Chemistry (half-credit)

BIOL 002 Organismal and Population Biology
BIOL 009 Our Food
BIOL 016*(L) Microbiology
BIOL 017*(L) Microbial Pathogenesis and Immune Response
BIOL 020*(L) Animal Physiology
BIOL 025*(L) Plant Biology
BIOL 026*(L) Invertebrate Biology
BIOL 031* History and Evolution of Human Food
BIOL 034*(L) Evolution
BIOL 036 (L) Ecology
BIOL 037* Conservation Genetics
BIOL 039 (L) Marine Biology
BIOL 115E Plant Molecular Genetics - Biotechnology
BIOL 116* Microbial Processes and Biotechnology
BIOL 137 Biodiversity and Ecosystem Function
CHEM 001*(L) Chemistry in the Human Environment
CHEM 043*(L) Analytical Methods and Instrumentation
CHEM 103 Topics in Environmental Chemistry
ENGR 003* Problems in Technology
ENGR 004A Environmental Protection
ENGR 004B * Swarthmore and the Biosphere
ENGR 004E Introduction to Sustainable Systems Analysis
ENGR 035*(L) Solar Energy Systems
ENGR 057*(L) Operations Research (also ECON 032)
ENGR 063 (L) Water Quality and Pollution Control
ENGR 066 (L) Environmental Systems
MATH 056* Modeling
PHYS 002E* FYS: Energy
PHYS 024 (L) The Earth's Climate and Global Warming

Category B) Environmental Humanities, Social Sciences and Arts

Bryn Mawr
ANTH 203 Human Ecology
ANTH 210 Medical Anthropology
ANTH 237 Environmental Health
ANTH 244 Global Perspectives on Early Farmers and Social Change
ARCH 104 Agriculture and Urban Revolution
ARCH 245 The Archaeology of Water
CITY 201 Introduction to GIS for Social and Environmental Analysis
CITY 229 Topics in Comparative Urbanism - Global Exurbia
CITY 250* Growth and Spatial Organization of Cities
CITY 278 American Environmental History
CITY 329 Advanced Topics in Urban Environments: Sensing the City
CITY 345 Advanced Topics in Environment and Society - Environmental Studies
EAST 352 China's Environment: History, Policy, and Rights
EAST 362 Environment in Contemporary East Asia
ECON 225* Economics of Development
ECON 234 Environmental Economics
ECON 242 Economics of Local Environmental Programs
ECON 335 East Asian Development
EDUC 268 Educating for Environmental Literacy
EDUC 285 Ecologies of Minds and Communities
ENGL 204* Literatures of American Expansion
ENGL 216 Re-creating Our World
ENGL 218 Ecological Imaginings
ENGL 251 Food For Thought
ENGL 268  Native Soil: Indian Land & American Lit 1588-1840
ENGL 275 Food Revolutions
HART 337 Topics in Modern Architecture
HIST 212 Pirates, Travelers and Natural Historians
HIST 237* Urbanization in Africa
PHIL 238 Science, Technology and the Good Life
PHIL 240 Environmental Ethics
POLS 222 Introduction to Environmental Issues
POLS 256 Global Climate Politics
POLS 310* Comparative Public Policy
POLS 321* Technology and Politics
POLS 354* Comparative Social Movements
SOCL 165 Problems in the Natural and Built Environment
SOCL 247 Environmental Social Problems
SPAN 203 La Naturaleza Como Identidad Politica

ANTH 112 The Anthropology of Architecture
ANTH 203 Imagining the Arctic: Reading Contemporary Ethnographies of the North
ANTH 224 Microbes-Animals-Humans:  Tthnographic Adventures in Multispecies Worlds
ANTH 281 Nature/Culture:  Introduction to Environmental Anthropology
ANTH 302* Oil, Culture, Power
ANTH 309 Anthropology and Urban Ecology
ECON 229 New Institutional Economics and Natural Resources
ECON 234 Environmental Economics
ECON 334 Natural Resource Economics
ENGL 257* British Topographies
ENGL 356 Studies in American Environment and Place
ENVS 201 Geographic Information Systems
ENVS 206 Introduction to Permaculture
HIST 119* International History of the United States
HIST 214 Early American Environmental History
HIST 237* Geographies of the Occult and Witchcraft
HIST 348 Walter Benjamin on Lancaster Avenue
POLS 261* Global Civil Society
PSYC 304 Environmental Psychology and Conservation
WRPR 172 Ecological Imaginaries:  Identity, Violence and the Environment

ANTH 023C Anthropological Perspectives on Conservation
ANTH 035* Pictured Environments: Japanese Landscapes and Cityscapes (part of 360°)
ANTH 080B Anthropological Linguistics:  Endangered Languages
CHIN 087 Water Policies, Water Issues:  China/Taiwan and the U.S.
CHIN 088 Governance and Environmental Issues in China (also POLS 088)
ECON 076 Environmental Economics
ENGL 009C FYS: Imagining Natural History
ENGL 070G Writing Nature
ENGL 089 Race, Gender, Class and the Environment
ENVS 001 Introduction to Environmental Studies
ENVS 002 Human Nature, Technology, and the Environment
ENVS 003 Environmental Policy and Economics
ENVS 004 Sustainable Community Action
ENVS 005 Changemakers
ENVS 043B Environmental Justice:  Theory and Action
ENVS 050 Sustainable Research Methods
ENVS 070 Geographic Information Systems
ENVS 071 Remote Sensing of the Environment
ENVS 072 GIS for Public Health
ENVS 090 Directed Readings in Environmental Studies
ENVS 092 Research Project
HIST 089 Environmental History of Africa
JPNS 035 Narratives of Disaster and Rebuilding in Japan (part of 360°)
LING 120* Anthropological Linguistics: Endangered Languages
LITR 022G* Food Revolutions: History, Politics, Culture
PHIL 035 Environmental Ethics
POLS 010F First-Year Seminar:  When Disaster Strikes
POLS 035 Environmental Ethics
POLS 037 Introduction to GIS for Social Environmental Analysis
POLS 043 Environmental Policy and Politics
POLS 043B Environmental Justice: Theory and Action
POLS 048* The Politics of Population
POLS 087 Water Policies, Water Issues: China/Taiwan and the U.S.
POLS 088 Governance and Environmental Issues in China
POLS 071 Applied Spacial Analysis with GIS (pre-reqs)
RELG 006 FYS:  Visions of the End:  Hope and Despair in the Last Days
RELG 022 Religion and Ecology
RUSS 086 Nature and Industry in Russian Literature and Culture
SOAN 020M Race, Gender and Environment

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