Program Co-Coordinator: Tess Lesniak, 847.635.1684tlesniak@oakton.edu
Program Co-Coordinator: Marian Staats, 847.376.7103, mstaats@oakton.edu

Environmental Studies Pre-major is recommended for students who are considering completing a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies, Environmental Humanities, or Environmental Science after transferring to a four-year institution. It also offers a suitable pathway to a range of other undergraduate humanities, social science, or science programs. An undergraduate degree in Environmental Studies provides a strong foundation for graduate programs in environmental policy and science, as well as environmental law or public health. Interdisciplinary training in environmental studies develops students’ analytical thinking, problem solving, ethical reasoning, and advanced reading and writing so essential to strong communication skills. It therefore offers excellent preparation for a range of career options.

The pre-major is designed for students who have not decided upon a specific four-year college or university. Once a transfer school is selected, students are strongly encouraged to consult the Office of Advising, Transitions, and Student Success and the transfer institution’s catalog to select courses that will meet both Oakton and transfer institution requirements.

When registering for courses, students are advised to select ESC (Environmental Studies) designated course sections. For more information on course selection or program-specific advising, contact the Program Co-Coordinators. Part time students should also consult the Office of Advising, Transitions, and Student Success for part-time Pre-major recommendations. General Education courses should be selected from the list of IAI General Education Courses.

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
Semester OneHours
EGL 101 Composition I 3
MAT 131 Elementary Statistics 4
BIO 106 Introduction to Environmental Science (see Note 1) 1 4
Select one of the following: 3
Introduction to Philosophy  
World Mythologies 1  
Modern and Contemporary Philosophy  
or other ESC-designated Humanities/Fine Arts course
 
 Hours14
Semester Two
EGL 102 Composition II 3
SPE 103 Effective Speech 3
Select one of the following: 3
Introduction to Social and Cultural Anthropology 1  
Introduction to Archaeology  
Introduction to Physical Anthropology  
or other ESC-designated Social and Behavioral Sciences course
 
Select one of the following: 3
Introduction to Weather and Climate  
Physical Geography  
A Survey of Oceanography  
or other ESC-designated Physical Science course
 
Select one of the following: 3
Contemporary Culture and the Arts  
Women and Creativity 2  
or other ESC-designated Fine Arts course
 
 Hours15
Second Year
Semester One
PHL 204 Environmental Ethics (see Note 1) 3
SSC 201 Introduction to Global Studies (see Note 2) 3
Select one of the following: 3
Human Genetics  
Plants and Society 1  
Microbe and Society  
A Survey of Oceanography  
or other ESC-designated Science course
 
Select one of the following: 3
Introduction to Sociology 2  
Introduction to Psychology  
Introduction to Political Science  
International Relations 1  
Select one of the following: 3
LGBTQ+ Literature 2  
Women and Literature 2  
Introduction to Native American Literature 3  
or other ESC-designated Humanities course that also satisfies U.S. Diversity Studies requirement
 
 Hours15
Semester Two
Select one of the following Science courses without lab: 3
Human Genetics  
Plants and Society 1  
Microbe and Society  
Environmental Geology  
or other ESC-designated Science course without lab
 
Select one of the following Science courses with lab: 4
Introduction to Life Science  
Human Genetics  
Ecological Restoration (see Note 2) 4  
Introductory Chemistry  
or other ESC-designated Science course with lab
 
Select one of the following: 3
Introduction to Fiction  
Introduction to Poetry  
Introduction to Literature  
or other ESC-designated Humanities/Fine Arts course
 
Select two of the following: 6
Principles of Microeconomics  
Social Problems 3  
The Individual in Modern Society  
Introduction to Social and Cultural Anthropology 1  
World Regional Geography 1  
Cultural Geography 1  
or other ESC-designated Social and Behavioral Sciences course
 
 Hours16
 Total Hours60

Note 1: Environmental Studies Concentration requirement.
Note 2: Environmental Studies Concentration elective.
Note 3: Pre-major is a recommended sequence and selection of courses. See Associate in Arts (A.A.) page for degree requirements.