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Core Courses

"Foundations of Sustainability" course  SUST 201 (formerly IDS 206)

SUST 201 is an annual Fall course that draws from the expertise of a rotating team of faculty. "Foundations of Sustainability" offers an introduction to the ideas and issues that constitute the interdisciplinary field of sustainability through the examination of specific case studies and themes presented in the course through a series of lectures, readings, and discussions led by Emory faculty from the social sciences, natural sciences, and humanities. The course has significant participation from Emory faculty and staff who embrace sustainability in their research and recognize the need for culture change. Sustainability recognizes that social equity, environmental integrity, and economic prosperity are all desirable, but also that these goals may be in competition with each other.

"The Science of Climate Change" course PHYS 125

Planetary climates vary widely within the visible universe. Earth's climate is special, but it takes planetary forces to change it dramatically, and human civilization has become such a force. This class will cover the fundamental science of climate change at an introductory level: the past, present, and future. We will learn about the energy balance that determines planetary temperatures, the role of carbon dioxide, paleoclimate, fossil fuels, and exponential population growth. Inevitably, we will encounter social and moral issues surrounding climate change and discuss solutions with the largest impact. There are no pre-requisites for this physics course; all students are welcome. This new Spring course will fill the Sustainability Minor core course requirement. 

Capstone seminar SUST 391 (formerly IDS 391)

The Sustainability Minor culminates in a capstone project and seminar, which completes the student's intellectual journey. Many kinds of experiential learning can fulfill the capstone requirement. Some options will include course credit that will count toward the Minor, some extracurricular options will not. The capstone seminar is three credits. The capstone requirement for the Minor will be crafted and polished during the capstone seminar. Some examples of projects that can be approved and used for the capstone project include:

  • Honors project within a major: it is expected that a sustainability-focused chapter may be added to a project that is designed only within one discipline. Some projects will already be interdisciplinary and appropriate. Four credits of an 8-credit honors sequence can count toward the Minor.
  • Laboratory research, field research, or an on-campus project within a major or across disciplines, as long as it is related to sustainability.
  • Internships at community-based organizations, businesses, enterprises, or non-profit organizations.
  • Study abroad research projects.
  • Volunteer work at a community organization that is expanded into a paper or research project during the capstone seminar.
  • On-campus project in which a sustainability research or reflection component is added and approved for the Minor.