The ES curriculum at UC Santa Barbara is designed to provide students with the scholarly background and intellectual skills necessary to understand complex environmental problems and formulate decisions that are environmentally sound. The academic process is interdisciplinary, drawing upon the diversity of environmentally related departments and disciplines throughout UCSB as well as practicing professionals from the local community. A student majoring in environmental studies will explore a wide variety of environmental issues, including:
The social and human environment, such as urban and regional planning, ethical and values systems, environmental law and policy, indigenous and religious beliefs, history and impact of past decisions, and environmental impact analysis
The physical environment, including the hydrologic cycle, waste management, coastal processes, energy production technologies, soil preservation, geography, and air/water pollution
The biological environment, including the function of ecosystems, population dynamics, and toxicology
A fundamental comprehension of all these topics produce an understanding of the complex interactions between humans and the world we live in and develop the intellectual tools needed to be an effective environmental problem solver and leader.