Science

Associate Degrees

A.S. in Environmental Studies & Sustainability

The Environmental Studies & Sustainability Associate of Science degree is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary program of study that presents a broad overview of ecological issues from a variety of perspectives in the natural, physical, and social sciences. The coursework examines the interplay between natural and social systems, and the ideological foundations of humankind's attitudes and behaviors with respect to their ever-changing environment. This program is designed to prepare students to research, analyze, and propose solutions to the myriad environmental challenges facing the world today.

This degree is designed to correlate with the lower division courses required to transfer into an Environmental Studies program at many four-year institutions as well as provide broad-based environmental education for transfer in related disciplines.

The disciplines of environmental studies and geography are complementary fields, both focused on aspects of human-environment interaction. This complementarity is reflected in the many 4-year institutions that house combined Geography and Environmental Study programs. Students interested in double-majoring in these two closely-related disciplines, and/or simultaneously earning a Certificate in Geographic Information Systems, are encouraged to examine the required coursework and plan their program of study accordingly.

Students should use PROJECT ASSIST (http://www.assist.org) to research lower division major requirements at the transfer institution of their choice and should also work with the program adviser and a counselor to determine the appropriate transfer coursework.

Students interested in pursuing an Environmental Science major should consult with science faculty and counselors to tailor the specific coursework necessary to transfer to the 4-year institution of their choice.

Catalog Date: June 1, 2019

Degree Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
GEOG 302 Environmental Studies & Sustainability 3
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3) 3
   or BIOL 352 Conservation Biology (3)
ECON 306 Environmental Economics 3
A minimum of 3 units from the following: 3
BIOL 390 Natural History Field Study (0.5 - 4)
GEOG 391 Field Studies in Geography: Mountain Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 392 Field Studies in Geography: Coastal Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 393 Field Studies in Geography: Arid Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 394 Field Studies in Geography: Volcanic Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOL 390 Field Studies in Geology (1 - 4)
GEOG 331 Exploring Maps and Geographic Technologies (3)
GEOG 335 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems Applications (3)
A minimum of 3 units from the following: 3
BIOL 300 The Foundations of Biology (3)
BIOL 307 Biology of Organisms (4)
BIOL 310 General Biology (4)
BIOL 400 Principles of Biology (5)
A minimum of 4 units from the following: 4
CHEM 305 Introduction to Chemistry (5)
CHEM 321 Environmental Chemistry (3)
CHEM 322 Environmental Chemistry Laboratory (1)
CHEM 400 General Chemistry I (5)
A minimum of 3 units from the following: 3
GEOG 300 Physical Geography: Exploring Earth's Environmental Systems (3)
GEOG 301 Physical Geography Laboratory (1)
GEOG 305 Global Climate Change (3)
GEOL 300 Physical Geology (3)
GEOL 301 Physical Geology Laboratory (1)
A minimum of 3 units from the following: 3
ECON 310 Economic Statistics (3)
PSYC 330 Introductory Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (3)
STAT 300 Introduction to Probability and Statistics (4)
MATH 350 Calculus for the Life and Social Sciences I (3)
MATH 400 Calculus I (5)
ECON 304 Principles of Microeconomics 3
GEOG 310 Human Geography: Exploring Earth's Cultural Landscapes 3
Total Units: 31

The Environmental Studies & Sustainability Associate in Science (A.S.) degree may be obtained by completion of the required program, plus general education requirements, plus sufficient electives to meet a 60-unit total. See CRC graduation requirements.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • <b><i>PSLO-1: Articulate an understanding of the natural environment and human societies’ relationship to it. This includes the ability to:</i></b>
  • 1. Communicate effectively about environmental issues and sustainability, correctly utilizing vocabulary while indicating a complex understanding of disciplines in the program.
  • 2. Articulate an awareness of the relevance of environmental studies to the student’s life and wider community at both local and global scales.
  • 3. Recognize the importance of interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to solving environmental problems.<P ...>
  • <b><i>PSLO-2: Evaluate and analyze environmental processes and human impacts on the natural environment. This includes the ability to:</i></b>
  • 1. Use logical and quantitative reasoning to solve environmental problems.
  • 2. Analyze critical environmental problems facing the world today.
  • 3. Evaluate data and draw reasonable conclusions.
  • 4. Utilize the scientific method.
  • 5. Employ information-gathering tools to investigate environmental ideas.<P ...>
  • <b><i>PSLO-3: Recognize the ethical dimensions of decisions and actions and engage in the ethical reasoning necessary to be a responsible local and global citizen. This includes the ability to:</i></b>
  • 1. Recognize the ethical implications of research and the responsibility to use knowledge wisely.
  • 2. Articulate the value of understanding environmental systems.<P ...>
  • <b><i>PSLO-4: Transfer to a 4-year program and further prepare for employment in an environmental career.</i></b>

Career Information

Natural Resource Management; Forestry; Range Management; Park Ranger; Wildlife Biology; Agriculture; Soil and Water Conservation; Land Use Planning; Waste Management; Environmental Education; Environmental Policy And Planning; Environmental Law; Environmental Consulting; Environmental Lobbying; Environmental Planning; Environmental Protection; Environmental Compliance; Environmental Engineering; Air Quality Control; Landscape Architecture; Urban and Regional Planning; Alternative Energy Development; Risk Analysis; Contaminated Lands Reclamation; Research; Consulting


A.S. in Geography

Geography is the science of place and space. Geographers study the relationships among geographic places, natural systems, society, cultural activities, and the interdependence of all these over space.

There are two main branches of geography: human geography and physical geography. Human geography is concerned with the spatial aspects of human existence – how people and their activities are distributed in space, how people use and perceive space, and how people create and sustain the places that make up Earth’s surface. Physical geographers study the physical elements and spatial processes that make up and shape the environment, including energy, air, water, weather, climate, landforms, soils, animals, plants, etc. Many human and physical geographers have skills in cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

Geographers also study the linkages between human activity and natural systems. Geographers were, in fact, among the first scientists to sound the alarm that human-induced changes to the environment were beginning to threaten the balance of life itself. Geographers today are active in the study of global warming, desertification, deforestation, loss of biodiversity, groundwater pollution, flooding, and more.

The CRC Geography program offers courses that satisfy lower division General Education requirements in both the physical and social sciences. In addition, the program offers an Associate Degree in Geography that provides students with a solid foundation in geography as well as the standard prerequisites for upper-division coursework leading to the baccalaureate degree. Students may also earn a certificate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Students planning to transfer to a four-year school with a major in Geography should consult the lower division requirements at the university they plan to attend.

Note to Transfer Students:
If you are interested in transferring to a four-year college or university to pursue a bachelor’s degree in this major, it is critical that you meet with a CRC counselor to select and plan the courses for your major. Schools vary widely in terms of the required preparation. The courses that CRC requires for an Associate’s degree in this major may be different from the requirements needed for the Bachelor’s degree.

Highlights include:
* Comprehensive course offerings including a Physical Laboratory as well as specialized training in Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
* Program’s students have won top awards at state-level competitions annually since 1999
* Field study courses to Yosemite, Pt. Reyes, Monterey/Big Sur, Tahoe, and the Eastern Sierra
* Internships available with State of California, County of Sacramento, and Federal Land Management Agencies
* Three courses fulfill the CRC and CSU multicultural requirement
* Day, evening, and online sections

Catalog Date: June 1, 2019

Degree Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
GEOG 300 Physical Geography: Exploring Earth's Environmental Systems 31
GEOG 301 Physical Geography Laboratory 1
GEOG 310 Human Geography: Exploring Earth's Cultural Landscapes 3
GEOG 331 Exploring Maps and Geographic Technologies (3) 3
PSYC 330 Introductory Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences (3) 3 - 4
   or STAT 300 Introduction to Probability and Statistics (4)
   or ECON 310 Economic Statistics (3)
A minimum of 6 units from the following: 6
ANTH 310 Cultural Anthropology (3)
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3)
   or BIOL 310 General Biology (4)
   or BIOL 307 Biology of Organisms (4)
ECON 304 Principles of Microeconomics (3)
   or ECON 302 Principles of Macroeconomics (3)
GEOG 302 Environmental Studies & Sustainability (3)
GEOG 305 Global Climate Change (3)
GEOG 306 Weather and Climate (3)
GEOG 320 World Regional Geography (3)
GEOG 322 Geography of California (3)
GEOG 335 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems Applications (3)
GEOG 391 Field Studies in Geography: Mountain Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 392 Field Studies in Geography: Coastal Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 393 Field Studies in Geography: Arid Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 394 Field Studies in Geography: Volcanic Landscapes (1 - 4)
GEOG 481 Honors Seminars: Nature & Culture (3)
GEOG 482 Honors Seminar in Geography (1)
GEOL 300 Physical Geology (3)
GEOL 301 Physical Geology Laboratory (1)
GEOL 330 Introduction to Oceanography (3)
HIST 371 History of the Americas from the 19th Century Wars of Independence to the Present (3)
   or HIST 370 History of the Americas through the 19th Century Wars of Independence (3)
   or HIST 360 History of African Civilizations (3)
   or HIST 308 History of World Civilizations, 1500 to Present (3)
   or HIST 307 History of World Civilizations to 1500 (3)
HUM 332 American Humanities (3)
   or HUM 324 Global Islam: Culture and Civilization (3)
   or HUM 320 Asian Humanities (3)
PHIL 352 Introduction to World Religions (3)
POLS 310 Introduction to International Relations (3)
SOC 300 Introductory Sociology (3)
Total Units: 19 - 20

1A minimum of 60 units is required for the A.S. degree which includes core courses, electives, and general education (GE) graduation requirements. Geography majors are encouraged to complete additional GE requirements from a list of suggested courses on file in the Geography Department and at the Counseling Center. Students should use PROJECT ASSIST (http://www.assist.org) to research lower division major requirements at the transfer institution of their choice and also work with a counselor to determine the most appropriate transfer coursework.

The Geography Associate in Science (A.S.) degree may be obtained by completion of the required program, plus general education requirements, plus sufficient electives to meet a 60-unit total. See CRC graduation requirements.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • <b>SLO#1: demonstrate understanding of the global natural and cultural environments and the geographic methods by which they are studied.</b>
  • <b>SLO#2: compare and contrast the general biophysical and socio-cultural differences and similarities among world regions that operate through time and over space.</b>
  • <b>SLO#3: evaluate and analyze critical geographic issues facing the world today.</b>
  • <b>SLO#4: recognize the diversity of peoples, places, and events globally as well as within specific geographic regions.</b>
  • <b>SLO#5: interpret maps and mapped data utilizing basic map elements, including scales, common coordinate systems, and map symbols.</b>
  • <b>SLO#6: use a computer effectively to research, map and analyze geographic information.</b>
  • <b>SLO#7: compare and contrast common geographic technologies such as geographic information systems (GIS) and the global positioning system (GPS).</b>
  • <b>SLO#8: communicate geographic information effectively in oral, written, and graphic form.</b>

Career Information

Natural Resource Management; Environmental Conservation; International Development; Urban and Regional Planning; Education (K-12 through University); Tourism; Cartographer; Climatologist; Park Ranger; Transportation Specialist; Real Estate Analyst; International Business; Marketing Analyst; Land Surveyor; Research Scientist; Remote Sensing Specialist; Demographer; GIS Analyst; and many more (please contact the program for additional information). Some career options may require more than two years of college study.

Science Certificate

Sustainability Certificate

This certificate advances student's understanding of the principles of sustainability and sustainable practices with respect to ecosystems, green buildings, business, agriculture, nutrition, natural resource management and conservation, waste management, energy, transportation systems, urban planning and design, and more. Theoretical and practical aspects of sustainability are explored including social, economic, and environmental dimensions.

Catalog Date: June 1, 2019

Certificate Requirements

Course Code Course Title Units
GEOG 302 Environmental Studies & Sustainability 3
A minimum of 9 units from the following: 9
ARCH 342 Introduction to Green Buildings (3)
BIOL 350 Environmental Biology (3)
BIOL 352 Conservation Biology (3)
ECON 306 Environmental Economics (3)
GEOG 300 Physical Geography: Exploring Earth's Environmental Systems (3)
GEOG 305 Global Climate Change (3)
HORT 300 Introduction to Horticulture (3)
PLTS 310 Soils, Soil Management, and Plant Nutrition (3)
   or HORT 302 Soils, Soil Management, and Plant Nutrition (3)
HORT 313 Sustainable Agriculture (3)
NUTRI 303 Plant-Based Nutrition (3)
NUTRI 331 Plant-Based Food Principles and Preparation (3)
Total Units: 12

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • PSLO#1: Communicate effectively about environmental issues and sustainability, utilizing correct vocabulary.
  • PSLO#2: Articulate an awareness of the relevance of sustainability to the student’s life and wider community at both local and global scales.
  • PSLO#3: Evaluate and analyze environmental problems facing the world today and propose sustainable solutions.
  • PSLO#4: Employ information-gathering tools to investigate theoretical and practical aspects of sustainability in the context of energy consumption, transportation systems, food production, water resources, industry, the built environment, and socio-cultural institutions and practices.

Career Information

This certificate prepares students for entry-level sustainability consultant/technician positions in a variety of industries and settings, including private firms, nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and government agencies at the local, state, and federal levels. Work opportunities for those pursuing additional coursework include positions in environmental economics, sustainable business practices, green building, natural resource management, food systems, energy, transportation, and urban planning.