Yale College Faculty Approves Changes to the EVST BA Degree Progam

May 23, 2018

Adopted May 3, 2018, Effective July 1, 2018

The Yale College Faculty approved changes to the EVST BA Program requirements.  Here is a quick summary of these requirements. 

1.     Total Requirements:  The original BA major required 15-16 courses, and the new BA major will require 13-14 courses.

2.     Prerequisites:  The BA degree no longer has any prerequisites.  We formerly required 3 prerequisites in introductory science, and one additional prerequisite in statistics or math.

3.     Core CoursesThe Core A Requirements of the major will remain the same in the humanities and social sciences.  The Core B requirements will now include 1 additional Sc course and one statistics or math course.  The additional core science requirement may be chosen from a much more diverse set of Sc options, including integrated science courses such as environmental health, ecology, climate science, and several field courses.  If students have already taken, or wish to take, introductory chemistry, biology, or physics, these may also be applied to the additional Core B Sc requirement. 

4.     Concentration CoursesNo change.  The BA program will continue to require 6 concentration courses, to develop expertise in a discipline and/or environmental issue/problem. 

5.     Senior RequirementNo change.  The BA degree senior requirement may include a 1 or 2 term essay developed within EVST 496a and 496b, and mentored by an external advisor chosen by students and approved by the EVST DUS.

6.     BS Degree Requirement: No change.

Summary of changes: The newly approved BA program formerly required 15-16 courses, including the 4 prerequisites.   It will now require 13-14 courses as follows, with no prerequisites.  

·      6 core courses: 2 in the humanities/social sciences, 3 in the natural sciences, 1 quantitative;

·      6 concentration courses;

·      1-2 term senior essay.  

Why have we made these changes? 

1.     Yale BA degree programs normally have no prerequisites and no science requirements.  These include History, Political Science, Economics, History of Science, History of Medicine, Anthropology among others. 

2.     These same majors have 12-13 requirements, compared to EVST’s former BA program with 15-16 requirements. 

3.     The EVST Student Advisory Committee has recommended a change to the BA prerequisites in the sciences for several years. 

What is the effect of these changes?

1.     Overall, 2 fewer Sc courses will be required to complete the BA major.

2.     The pool of Sc options has been increased to include integrated and applied science courses relevant to students’ interests.  Introductory chemistry, physics, and biology will also meet the new Sc requirement in the core. 

3.     The quantitative requirement (statistics or math) has simply been moved from prerequisites to the Core.

When Will These Changes Become Effective?

These changes will go into effect beginning July 1, 2018, and students already admitted to the BA program may take advantage of the reduced requirements.