Environmental Science Studies

Two Houghton programs emphasize Christian stewardship of the creation as well as environmental awareness and analysis. The major in biology with environmental emphasis prepares students for careers in environmental education, research and analysis, and further study in graduate programs. Field-oriented courses complement a strong biology background, including at least one course at Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies, a center for Christian environmental stewardship.  The program prepares students to take the New York state civil service exam for application as a conservation biologist with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation as well as those planning on further graduate study.

The environmental stewardship minor for science and non-science majors provides background for responsible stewardship. The minor is supradisciplinary with courses from biology as well as other areas (e.g. English, recreation). The minor can be completed by the following on-campus courses:

The minor can be completed by the following on-campus courses: BIOL 215 Local Flora and Vegetation, REC 401 Natural Resource Management, WRIT 320 Writing About Nature and the Environment, BIOL 475 Environmental Stewardship Senior Seminar.

Broadening Your Educational Opportunities 

Environmental programs at Houghton take advantage of the college’s location in the Allegheny Plateau (ranging in elevation from 1000 to 2500 feet), with access to forest, river, and lake ecosystems, and within a day’s drive of the Adirondack Mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. In addition, Houghton’s 1300-acre campus has forest and field areas for study. The 91-acre Spring Lake preserve, incorporating an old growth forest and undeveloped kettle lake within eight miles of the campus, is available for environmental research.

Additionally, three off-campus courses are offered through the Biology Department. Biological Oceanography is offered during Mayterm on even-numbered years at Acadia National Park in Maine. In odd-numbered years, the three-week on-site Ecology of Alaska course provides students a comprehensive field exposure to the wide diversity of Alaska’s ecosystems, ranging from rocky and sandy beaches to taiga, glaciers, and alpine tundra. Every fall, Wildlife Behavior in East Africa is offered on-site as part of the Houghton in Tanzania program.

 Recommended Courses8
SOC 309 Statistics 4
REC 401 Natural Resource Management 4
CHEM 151 General Chemistry I 4
CHEM 152 General Chemistry II 4
ESCI 101 Physical Geology 4
ESCI 212 Environmental Earth Science 4
*Those pursuing the BS in Biology with environmental emphasis must take: Organic Chemistry (CHEM 241, 242), General Physics (PHYS 151, 152) and Calculus I (MATH 181) or Calculus and its Origins (MATH 180).
 Major Requirements
BIOL 251 Genetics 4
BIOL 301 Field Botany 4
BIOL 322 General Ecology 4
BIOL 482 Senior Seminar 2
BIOL XXX At least one course with zoological emphasis 4

Biology Major with Environmental Emphasis BA/BS, 26 hours


Field experience requirement can be fulfilled by:

View Audit Sheet for B.A. (PDF, 169 KB)

View Audit Sheet for B.S. (PDF, 170 KB)

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