Online Environmental Science Degree

Online environmental science certificate and degree programs feature a foundation in the sciences with a focus on the ecosystems, living organisms, and the environment. Research-minded students with an interest in the sciences and studying and protecting the environment may enjoy these programs. Students can earn a certificate, associate, baccalaureate, master’s, or doctoral degree in the field.

Graduates of environmental science programs may seek employment in local, state, and federal government agencies and architectural, technical, and scientific consulting firms that research the environment. These graduates may work as environmental scientists, biological scientists, or environmental researchers.

Available Degree Levels

  • Certificate: One to two years to complete
  • Associate Degree: Two years to complete
  • Bachelor’s Degree: Four years to complete
  • Master’s Degree: One to two years to complete
  • Doctoral Degree: Three to five years to complete

Online environmental science certificate programs often feature courses such as plant diversity, environmental policy, and soils and water quality. In some cases, these certificates supplement degrees by allowing students majoring in other subject areas to gain training in environmental science.

An associate degree in environmental science engages students interested in ecosystems, sustainability issues, and living organisms. Courses in these programs may include geological science, ecological evolution, and physical geography. Students may combine these environmental science courses with general science courses, such as chemistry and physics in addition to a general education curriculum.

An online bachelor’s degree in environmental science prepares students to work for environmentally focused agencies and organizations. Students may take courses in geology, geographic information systems, biology, energy, and chemical principles. These degree programs are often interdisciplinary, blending courses from a variety of areas to develop a well-rounded curriculum.

A master’s degree in environmental science may allow students to specialize in areas such as energy, water resources, or applied ecology. Students may complete courses such as applied ecology, environmental chemistry, and international environmental policy.

Online doctoral degree programs in environmental science are designed for students who have already earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree. Students may complete courses such as biostatistics, evolutionary ecology, and chemistry of the environment. Select programs may also require students to complete candidacy exams and write and defend a dissertation.

Career Options

Graduates of environmental science programs may have gained a thorough understanding of the natural sciences, and they can use this knowledge to research and protect the environment. Students may find work with local, state, and federal agencies, or companies and organizations that research and protect the environment. Graduates’ vast knowledge of the environment will allow them to study ecosystems, identify issues, and implement solutions to protect the environment.

Possible career fields include:

  • Environmental Scientist
  • Biological Scientist
  • Forestry Scientist
  • Environmental Researcher
  • Environmental Science Teacher

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