Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences, BS

For the Degree of Bachelor of Science: Major in Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences

College: Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences

Department: Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences


Designed for students interested in careers leading the conservation, protection, and management of natural and environmental resources or in pursuing advanced education in one of its many disciplinary areas, the NRES baccalaureate provides a science-based, application-oriented education. The NRES major is unique in its integration of a comprehensive physical, life, and social sciences background with coursework providing the management, decision-making, and analytical knowledge and skills required to solve the world’s most pressing problems.

Students in the NRES major begin their studies by taking a set of core courses that provides the background for more focused substantive study at the upper level. The NRES core introduces students to the range of physical, life, and social science content most relevant to their future professions and equips them with tools essential for the discovery, analysis, and application of knowledge important for successful environmental management. NRES students then build upon the core by completing one of four upper-level concentrations. Courses in the concentrations involve focused attention to the theories, data, and analytical tools of a particular set of natural resource and environmental science areas, helping students develop the necessary understanding of the complexities underlying resources management. All students in the major are required to complete a combination of field courses and at least one project-oriented capstone course.

All the concentrations prepare students for graduate study as well as for multiple career paths throughout the public and private sectors. Because of its unique orientation toward integrative application of disciplinary knowledge, the NRES major prepares students for a wide range of careers involving the conservation, protection, and management of natural resources. Many occur within business or government agencies that provide services related to environmental and natural resource management. Other careers are found within social, professional, and advocacy institutions that focus on human impacts and environmental sustainability. The major also prepares students for teaching, research, or other professional activities.

Graduates from the NRES major go on to pursue careers in the direction of environmental education centers; ecological management and restoration; enforcement of laws and regulations; environmental advocacy; environmental consulting; forest and environmental economics; land use analysis and management; law; local, state, and federal government; management of parks, forests and rangelands; plant physiology; policy development and implementation; resource planning and policy analysis; social and environmental impact analysis; soil conservation, science, and testing; technical sales; watershed management; and wildlife conservation and management.

Prescribed Courses including Campus General Education

Composition I and Speech
Select one of the following:6-7
Writing and Research
and Public Speaking (or equivalent) (see College Composition I requirement)
Oral & Written Comm I
and Oral & Written Comm II
Advanced Composition
Select from campus approved list3-4
Cultural Studies
Select one course from Western culture, one from non-Western culture, and one from U.S. minority culture from campus approved lists.9
Foreign Language
Coursework at or above the third level is required for graduation.
Quantitative Reasoning I
Select one of the following:4-5
Calculus I
Calculus for Business I
Quantitative Reasoning II
Select one of the following:3-4
Applied Statistical Methods
Intro to Applied Statistics
Economic Statistics I
Intro to Statistics
Intro to Social Statistics
Natural Sciences and Technology
CHEM 102
CHEM 103
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry Lab I
CHEM 104
CHEM 105
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry Lab II
IB 103Introduction to Plant Biology4
Select one of the following:4-5
Organismal & Evolutionary Biol
and Organismal & Evol Biol Lab
Animal Biology
Select one of the following:3-5
Earth's Physical Systems
Physical Geology
College Physics: Mech & Heat
University Physics: Mechanics
Introductory Microbiology
Humanities and the Arts
Select from campus approved list.6
Social and Behavioral Sciences
ACE 100Agr Cons and Resource Econ3-4
or ECON 102 Microeconomic Principles
Select one additional course from campus approved list.3-4
Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences Required (Core)
NRES 102Introduction to NRES3
NRES 201Introductory Soils4
NRES 219Principles of Ecosystem Mgmt3
NRES 287Environment and Society3
NRES 325Natural Resource Policy Mgmt3
NRES 348Fish and Wildlife Ecology3
NRES 421Quantitative Methods in NRES3
NRES 454GIS in Natural Resource Mgmt4
NRES 456Integrative Ecosystem Management3
NRES 285Field Experience1,2
One additional Field Experience course1-2
Field Experience (repeatable)
Professional Internship
Resident Internship
Undergrad Research or Thesis
ACES Required
ACES 101Contemporary Issues in ACES2
Required Concentration
Concentration prescribed courses. See specific requirements for each concentration listed below.19-29
Total Hours126