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Important Information Regarding COVID-19

In light of the University’s newly released policy regarding COVID-19 -- recommending the community minimize social contact -- we encourage students to utilize virtual options when seeking support or information from the Earth Systems Program. Please contact staff via email or phone and we will be happy to assist! Latest information about the University's response to COVID-19 can be found here: healthalerts.stanford.edu

Undergraduate Program



The Earth Systems Program is an interdisciplinary environmental science major.  Students learn about and independently investigate complex environmental problems caused by human activities in conjunction with natural changes in the Earth system.  Earth Systems majors become skilled in those areas of science, economics, and policy needed to tackle the world’s most pressing social-environmental problems and sustainability challenges.

Foundation, Breadth, and Core Courses

All students must complete courses in the following areas

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • Geological Sciences
  • Physics
  • Mathematics
  • Statistics

Please see academic tracks for specific foundation and breadth requirements for each track.

Please see program forms & guides for frequently used Earth Systems documents, including the Earth Systems-maintained Environmental courses list at Stanford. 

Learning Outcomes (Undergraduate)

The program expects majors to be able to demonstrate the following learning outcomes. These learning outcomes serve as benchmarks for evaluating students and the program's undergraduate degree. Students are expected to:

1. demonstrate knowledge of foundational skills and concepts in order to advance the interdisciplinary study of the environment.
2. demonstrate the ability to analyze, integrate and apply relevant science and policy perspectives to social-environmental problems. 
3. demonstrate the ability to communicate complex concepts and data relevant to social-environmental problems and questions to expert and non-expert audiences.