College of Natural Sciences
13 Stockbridge Hall
Contact: Martha Baker; Jack Wileden
Dean: Steven Goodwin. Associate Deans for Undergraduate Advising: Martha Baker and Jack Wileden.
All departments in the college offer programs leading to the Bachelor of Science. The following majors do not offer a Bachelor of Arts degree: Animal Science; Building and Construction Technology; Computer Science; Environmental Science; Food Science; Natural Resources Conservation; Plant, Soil, and Insect Sciences; Pre-Veterinary; and Science.
Students in the College of Natural Sciences (CNS) study disciplines essential to all fields of scientific research and application: life, environmental, computational, and physical sciences. The curriculum emphasizes interdisciplinary research and experiential learning, encourages students to work closely with faculty to solve real-life problems, and provides extensive opportunities for hands-on learning. CNS students work under the guidance of dedicated professors who are nationally recognized in their fields, and receive training in labs and research centers that feature world-class instrumentation.
Students may chose from the following majors: Animal Science; Astronomy; Biochemistry and Molecular Biology; Biology; Building and Construction Technology; Chemistry; Computer Science; Earth Systems; Environmental Science; Food Science; Geography; Geology; Mathematics and Statistics; Microbiology; Natural Resources Conservation; Physics; Plant, Soil, and Insect Sciences; Pre-Veterinary; Psychology; and Science (interdepartmental). There is no major in Pre-Medical or Pre-Dental, but the college provides specialized advising in preparation for these professional programs while students complete an undergraduate major of their choice.
Academic Advising Services
All students in the college are encouraged to meet regularly with an academic adviser. Faculty and staff advisers are available to assist students with questions or concerns that they have as they progress through their academic careers. This includes advice on course selection; departmental, college, and university requirements; career guidance; assistance with academic problems; and referral information about other services.
CNS prepares its graduates for a diversity of careers in the sciences, medicine, industry, and public policy, and entry into graduate school. Students develop understandings of process and logical and analytical ability. Graduates of the college work in such fields as animal, medical and health sciences, industrial science and technology, administration, food safety, law or environmental protection. Graduates can also pursue such careers as golf course superintendent, park ranger, therapist, elementary or secondary school teacher, software or systems developer, or university teacher or researcher.
Career and Field
Students are encouraged to explore the world beyond the university. Campus Career Services operates the college’s Career Planning and Field Experiences Offices. Staff are available to help students make intelligent, well-informed career choices, and to provide opportunities to obtain experience through internships, cooperative education, and service learning programs.
Education Abroad/Domestic Exchange
Students are encouraged to consider spending a semester abroad or participating in a domestic exchange through the National Student Exchange Program. These experiences offer a valuable opportunity to expand a student’s academic experience. For further information regarding study abroad, contact the International Programs Office, tel. (413) 545-2710. For information on study exchanges in the U.S., contact the Domestic Exchange Programs Office, tel. (413) 545-5351.
The College of Natural Sciences and its departments have a variety of scholarships available for qualified students. For more information, contact the CNS Advising Center.
Each department has its own requirements for the degrees that it offers, which are described under the appropriate departmental section of this Guide and are also posted on the department’s website. Students are encouraged to meet with a departmental adviser to learn more about their departmental degree requirements.
Foreign Language Requirement
Students majoring in Astronomy, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Earth Systems, Geography, Geology, Mathematics and Statistics, Physics, or Science must demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language at the intermediate level, by one of the following methods:
a) Completion of a foreign language course at the fourth semester level (Intermediate II or Intermediate Intensive courses numbered 240-249). Intermediate II courses may be graded on a Pass/Fail basis.
Students who have not satisfied the Foreign Language requirement for admission to a major that requires it should select a foreign language course each term in residence until the requirement has been satisfied. The university offers sequences that satisfy this requirement in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Polish, Portuguese, and Spanish. Students who have not yet completed the Foreign Language requirement may not apply their Pass/Fail option to foreign language courses numbered below 240.