Environmental Science

The Bachelor of Science in Biology (Environmental Science Concentration) includes an interdisciplinary curriculum that focuses on the functioning of the natural world, environmental issues, and management of natural resources.  This option is recommended for those interested in environmental issues, conservation biology and wildlife biology. As students seek to understand the role of humans as stewards of God’s creation, they will gain a strong foundation in the natural sciences. Field-based courses at Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies provide hands-on experience in the environment as well as additional opportunities to integrate faith and learning.

Mid-Atlantic Christian University is a participating institution with the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies. By completing both the MACU and Au Sable programs, a student may earn an environmental certificate from the institute. MACU students will be billed separately for their Au Sable expenses, and MACU will give credit for most Au Sable Institute courses. Fellowships and scholarships are available through Au Sable.




Students who desire the “Environmental Science” concentration must complete these requirements in Michigan during a summer at Au Sable Institute, typically between the junior and senior year. The summer program for tuition and room/board is around $15,000 (see https://www.ausable.org/costs-and-financial-aid).

BIOL 357 Conservation Biology

Students will learn principles of conservation biology with applications to sustainable human society and biospheric integrity. An integrative approach to biology and society that interrelates population biology, ecological principles, biogeochemical cycles, ecosystem functions, and human society in the context of biospheric degradation. The course develops a stewardship perspective rooted in biological principles and directed at conservation of plant and animal species, biotic communities, ecosystems, and human society, including topics in human development, poverty, and economic growth. Offered by Au Sable Institute, Michigan. ASI course number is Biol/EnvSt 471.

Prerequisite: BIOL 351

BIOL 491 Research Methods I

A course designed to prepare natural science majors to conduct scientific field research at levels appropriate for senior capstone or competitive off-campus programs. Research Methods I introduces students to experimental design and statistical analysis relevant to scientific research. Students prepare a research proposal and initiate their investigation, typically focused on a biodiversity survey of a selected taxonomic group. Offered by Au Sable Institute, Michigan. ASI course number is Biol/EnvSt 391.

Prerequisite: Selection to the Summer Undergraduate Preparation in Environmental Research program.

BIOL 492 Research Methods II

This course follows Research Methods I with completion of data collection and analysis, and the reporting of results through scientific writing and oral/poster presentation. Offered by Au Sable Institute, Michigan. ASI course number is Biol/EnvSt 392.

Prerequisite: BIOL 491

CHEM 331 Environmental Chemistry

Principles analysis and impact of chemical movement and distribution – both natural and human-induced – in natural environments focusing primarily on the hydrosphere and atmosphere. Sampling and analytical methods are included for water, soil, and air. Work is conducted both on site in natural habitats and the laboratory. Offered by Au Sable Institute, Michigan. ASI course number is Chem 332.

Prerequisite: CHEM 302 with a grade of C- or higher.

One four-credit hour elective from courses offered at Au Sable Institute

A list of anticipated course offerings for the upcoming summer may be found at the Au Sable Institute website.

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