Center For Environmental Studies

Williams College


The Program in Environmental Studies offers three distinct curricular options: students may decide to pursue either a major in Environmental Policy or Environmental Science or to complement a major in a different area with a concentration in Environmental Studies. Students may not double–major in Environmental Policy and Environmental Science or combine either major with a concentration in Environmental Studies.

The majors and the concentration share a common “core” of four courses: ENVI 101, 203, 302, and 402. The core courses are designed to be taken in sequence, with ENVI 302 and ENVI 402 normally reserved for senior majors and concentrators. ENVI 101 is a broad introduction to the field, emphasizing the humanities and social sciences. ENVI 203 is a course in ecology (offered by the Biology Department) that provides a unified conceptual approach to the behavior of living things in the natural world. ENVI 302 is an experiential course that puts teams of students to work on projects of immediate significance in the Berkshires. ENVI 402, the senior seminar, is an opportunity for majors and concentrators to draw together their interdisciplinary educational experiences and apply what they have learned to specific environmental issues. The core course structure affords students freedom to explore and to specialize in diverse fields of study, while sustaining a focus on environmental questions throughout their time at Williams.

An interdisciplinary course emphasizing field science, ENVI 102, is also required for students majoring in Environmental Policy or Environmental Science. Environmental Studies concentrators are also strongly encouraged to take ENVI 102.