ENVIRONMENTAL POLITICS AND POLICY CONCENTRATION
The Department’s Environmental Politics and Policy concentration is designed to help students develop the knowledge and skills to analyze the connections between politics and the natural world and pursue careers in environmental politics and policy-making. The Political Science Department at Colorado State University is one of the few political science departments in the world with a particular specialization in environmental politics and policy. More than half of our faculty and graduate students actively teach and conduct research in this area. Graduates may work as policy analysts, advocates, planners, educators or decision-makers in government agencies, non-profit organizations, businesses and consulting firms at the local, state, national and international levels. Students will learn about how political forces contribute to environmental degradation, the process for developing environmental policies, strategies to assess the strengths and weaknesses of different policy approaches, and how political forces can be harnessed to develop effective responses to problems such as climate change, water and air pollution, food security, and energy provision. Students will explore these issues from both domestic and global perspectives. Environmental Politics and Policy students are strongly encouraged to complete an internship to gain practical experience working in the field.
Requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Political Science – Environmental Politics and Policy Concentration include a minimum of 36 credits of political science courses as well as a support option such as a second major or minor. An additional 52 - 54 credits are required to meet college-wide and university-wide distribution requirements. Many of the department, college, and university requirements can be met in a number of ways, thereby affording students the opportunity to shape their own programs of study. Further unrestricted choice of courses is provided in the free electives that students take in meeting the minimum total of 120 credits required for the B.A. degree.
For a detailed description of university, college and departmental requirements as well as course descriptions, please consult the current Colorado State University catalog.
Introductory courses (12 credits)
POLS 101 American Government and Politics
POLS 103 State and Local Government
POLS 232 International Relations
POLS 241 Comparative Politics
Upper-division course in general political science (9 credits)
Students must take one course in political theory as well as one course in two additional sub-fields (American politics, comparative politics, and international relations).
Upper-division courses in environmental politics and policy (12 credits)
Students may choose from political science courses focused on environmental politics and policy. Students may substitute 3 credits with a related course in History, Sociology or Agricultural and Resource Economics. Students may apply up to 3 credits for POLS 486 Political Science Internship toward the major requirements.
Capstone Seminar (3 credits)
Special topics courses that allow students to apply their political science knowledge to more in-depth exploration of a particular issue. The department offers at least one capstone seminar focused on environmental politics and policy each year.
Political Science majors are required to add a second major or minor in another field to complement their political science training with additional skills and knowledge. These are some suggestions that may be of particular interest to students in the Environmental Politics and Policy concentration:
- Second major in Sociology with an environmental sociology concentration
- Interdisciplinary minor in Environmental Affairs
- Interdisciplinary minor in Global Environmental Sustainability