Master of Arts in Environmental Studies

Course of Study


The Environmental Studies program is a collaborative effort among three colleges at CSU to cultivate an integrated, multi-disciplinary experience for students pursuing careers in environmental policy, administration, planning, and related fields. This collaboration is organized and coordinated by faculty through the Center for Research on the Urban Environment (CRUE). More information about CRUE can be found at

The M.A. in Environmental Studies degree consists of four components: core competencies, core classes, electives, and a capstone course. Core courses are shared with the M.S. in Environmental Science and the M.S. in Environmental Engineering, to allow students from the three masters programs in environmental studies, science, and engineering to interact and learn in a cross-disciplinary setting. Four electives may be used to specialize in a track. Finally, all students complete the capstone course.

Required Core Courses:
Students in the M.A. in Environmental Studies Program must successfully complete the following course work:

Core Competencies: 10 credit hours
Core Courses: 17 credit hours
Electives: 11 credit hours (three class minimum)
UST 689 Capstone: 4 credit hours
Total: Minimum 42 credit hours

All students complete the following core and core competency courses:

  • UST 584 Environmental Practicum
  • PHY 570: Environmental Physics
  • EVS 506: Ecosystem Science
  • UST 601: Applied Quantitative Reasoning I
  • UST 603: Public Sector Economics
  • UST 652: Environmental Policy & Administration
  • LAW 671: Environmental Law, Policy & Regulation

Areas of Specialization:
Students may choose to specialize in the following areas:

  • Policy and Administration
  • Environmental Planning
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Environmental Nonprofit Management
  • Sustainable Economic Development

Exit Project
Every student must register for the four credit Capstone UST 689, and successfully complete an applied research report, an original project design, a policy-analysis-and evaluation paper, or a related project. Before registering for Capstone, the student and his or her advisor select a proposed exit project. The student must complete a Permission Form and obtain the required signatures prior to registering for the project. Students in the JD/MA program are not required to complete an exit project.

An internship is not required; however, students without related work experience are encouraged to seek an internship placement. Paid and unpaid internships are arranged through Student Internships and Mentoring. Interested students may receive elective credit for internship work.