2022-2023 Cal Poly Humboldt Catalog
Social Science, Environment and Community Concentration, M.A.
The Social Science, Environment and Community M.A. program is not accepting applications for the 2022-2023 academic year.
This is a two-year, interdisciplinary graduate program focused on understanding and advancing sustainability and community resilience within the context of social and environmental change at multiple scales. The program is committed to conceptually rigorous, applied research on sustainability and equity in a manner that transcends a nature-society dichotomy. Students explore these topics through graduate seminars in three curriculum areas: economic and political dimensions; socio-cultural dimensions: race, class, gender and place; and environmental dimensions. Capstone topics for graduate students in this program include the following general themes: sustainable food systems, community-natural resource management interactions, environmental and social justice, environmental education, Native American/indigenous natural resource management, and sustainable urban communities. Our graduates pursue successful careers in the nonprofit sector, education, private sector, and public sector.
Program Admission Requirements
Postbaccalaureate Candidate Pathway
- Completed BA or BS degree
- GPA not less than 3.00 in the last 60 units of college coursework
- Three letters of recommendation
- Candidate statement of purpose (prompts are available on the Environment & Community Program website)
- Ten-page writing sample
- Graduate coordinator approval after faculty committee review of application file
Dual Degree Pathway (3+2 BA and MA Degree)
The E&C program has developed, in conjunction with select undergraduate majors, dual degree (3+2) pathways that enable exceptional students to simultaneously earn a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in five years. Although the pathway does not change undergraduate major nor graduate degree requirements, students in the program seamlessly progress from undergraduate to graduate status. Students are eligible to apply for the pathway upon completion of 60 units. A faculty committee evaluates student applications. Participation is based on prior academic performance and other measures of academic excellence.
Contact the E&C coordinator for majors that participate.
Requirements for the Degree (36 units)
For a description of degree requirements to be fulfilled in addition to those listed below see, “Master’s Degree Requirements ”.
Required Courses (15 Units)
Culminating Experience (9 Units)
The program culminates in a master’s thesis, project, or comprehensive examination. Students must receive approval for the comprehensive examination option.
Approved Electives (6 Units)
Complete one 3-unit research methods elective, chosen from an approved list, to be completed no later than the third semester.
Complete one additional course at the graduate or upper-division undergraduate level from a list of elective options approved by the graduate coordinator.
Graduate Seminars (15 Units)
Complete at least one seminar from each of the following three curriculum areas. Seminars are developed by the advisory committee comprised of program faculty.
Economic & Political Dimensions
Course topics including: Politics of Sustainability, Globalism, Capitalism, and Environment, Political Ecology, and Colonialism/Decolonization
Course topics including: Community and Place, Klamath River Issues, Decolonizing Methodologies
Course topics including: Ecosystems and Society, Conservation Ecology and Society
Environment & Community Program Learning Outcomes
Students completing this program will have demonstrated:
- skills to analyze the environmental consequences of economic and political structures and decisions
- tools to address issues of race, class, and gender in environment-community relationships
- an understanding of community, place, and sense of place
- knowledge of and experience in diverse approaches to social science research and action
- insight from case studies that offer a problem-solving approach to learning
- preparation for careers in teaching, government, community, and environmental organizations
- an ethic of service and civic engagement.
Janelle Adsit, English
Mark Baker, Program Coordinator, Politics
Kayla Begay, Native American Studies
Renee Byrd, English
Deepti Chatti, Environmental Studies
Leena Dallasheh, History
Matthew Derrick, Geography
Yvonne Everett, Environmental Science & Management
Kevin Fingerman, Environmental Science & Management
Nikola Hobbel, English
Arne Jacobson, Environmental Resources Engineering
Matt Johnson, Wildlife
Erin Kelly, Forestry & Wildland Resources
John Meyer, Politics
Nicholas Perdue, Geography
Sarah Ray, Environmental Studies
Kaitlin Reed, Native American Studies
Cutcha Risling Baldy, Native American Studies
Maxwell Schnurer, Communication
Marlon Sherman, Native American Studies
Tony Silvaggio, Sociology
Noah Zerbe, Politics