University General Course Catalog 2023-2024 
    Jul 22, 2024  
University General Course Catalog 2023-2024

Environmental Science (Pollution and Environmental Contaminants Specialization), B.S.

Environmental pollution is a local, regional, and global problem that continues to grow as increasing human population growth and resource consumption exert more pressure on the environment. The Pollution and Environmental Contaminants specialization emphasizes the transport and fate of pollutants, as well as their effects on organisms. The coursework focuses on characterization of environmental organic and inorganic pollutants including Hg, pesticides, toxic trace metals, and emerging contaminants such as antibiotics and other pharmaceuticals. In addition, coursework addresses how pollutants move between air, water, soils, and biota. Finally, students will take coursework addressing the human and animal health impacts of environmental contaminants. The specialization provides students with a solid background in chemistry and physics that will prepare students for a wide range of employment opportunities. Upon graduating, students are well positioned to pursue graduate studies or to enter employment with state and federal agencies (Nevada Division of Environmental Protection, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U. S. Natural Resources Conservation Service), private consulting firms, and non-profit organizations.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • demonstrate critical thinking skills by assessing a problem, gathering and analyzing relevant information associated with that problem, and proposing possible solutions.
  • demonstrate effective oral and written communication skills.
  • demonstrate technical competency within their respective discipline.

Contact Information

Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Science
217 Fleischmann Agriculture
(775) 784-4020 / (775) 784-4835

For questions about academic advising:
All incoming and current students should contact:
CABNR Advising Center, in FA 236
(775) 784-1634

For questions about upper-division electives and career advising:
All students can contact their faculty mentor:
Erica Bigio (A-L) -
Julie Stoughton (M-Z) -

Transfer to the University of Nevada, Reno

Use the transfer agreements and the degree planner (available by clicking  at the top right of this page) to build your plan for graduation with your advisor. Course substitutions not identified on the transfer agreement require UNR advisor approval.

If a major-to-major agreements  is not available for your transfer institution, please check the General Core Agreement  if available. If neither is available, access Transferology to assist in your planning.

Graduation Requirements

  • Total Units | 120
  • Cumulative GPA | 2.0
  • University GPA | 2.0
  • Major GPA | 2.0
  • Residency Requirement | 30 Upper-Division Units at UNR
  • Major Residency Requirement | 15 Upper-Division Units in the major at UNR
  • Upper-Division Requirement | 40 Upper-Division Units

I. Core General Education Requirements (27-36 units)

NOTE: Refer to the Core Curriculum chapter of this catalog for information regarding the “Core English and Math Completion Policy  ”.

Students in this major must meet all Core Objectives (CO1 through CO14). Courses satisfying Core Objectives are designated (e.g., CO9) in General Catalog curricula and course descriptions.

A. Composition & Communication; Critical Analysis & Use of Information (3-6 units) - CO1, CO3

B. Quantitative Reasoning (4-10 units) - CO2

C. Physical & Natural Phenomena (8 units) - CO4, CO4L

D. Cultures, Societies, & Individuals (3 units) - CO6

Refer to the Core Curriculum chapter for a list of approved CO6  courses.

E. Artistic Composition, Interpretation, & Expression (3 units) - CO7

Refer to the Core Curriculum chapter for a list of approved CO7  courses.

F. History & Culture; Constitution (6 units) - CO5, CO8

Refer to the Core Curriculum  chapter in this catalog

II. Additional Core Requirements (0 units)

Students must take courses that satisfy the following Core Objectives. Some or all of these Core Objectives may be satisfied in the Major Requirements (Section IV). Refer to the Core Curriculum  chapter in this catalog.

A. Science, Technology & Society - CO9

B. Diversity & Equity - CO10

C. Global Context - CO11

D. Ethics - CO12

E. Capstone Integration & Synthesis - CO13

F. Application - CO14

III. Additional College Requirements (0 units)

IV. Major Requirements (73-75 units)

B. Pollution and Environmental Contaminants Specialization (28-29 units)

V. Minor Requirements (0 units)

VI. Electives (9-20 units)

VII. Recommended Schedule

A. First Year

Fall Semester (15 units)

B. Second Year

C. Third Year

Spring Semester (12 units)

D. Fourth Year

Fall Semester (16-17 units)

Spring Semester (12-14 units)