Passionate about the environment? Gain the scientific acumen required to have an impact on environmental issues. Environmental Science is the application of a combination of scientific disciplines to issues and questions regarding environmental problems.

Gain extensive hands-on experience
Environmental Science at York includes a compulsory Research Design & Field Study course that gets you out using the equipment of the profession. This involves a long weekend at Algonquin Park at The Frost Centre working on a project. You'll learn to use water, soil and climate monitoring equipment and geographic information systems that can be put to use immediately and directly on the job with organizations like the Meteorological Service of Canada and Environment Canada.

Our professors are conducting research on such areas as the survival of plant life in the High Arctic, the Oak Ridges Moraine and the contribution of peat lands to the Greenhouse Effect. York is home to one of Canada's most sophisticated indoor flumes to predict water flows and the structure of rivers.

What's the difference between Environmental Science and Environmental Studies?

  • Environmental Science is the scientific study of the environment and the effects of humans on environmental systems. You will acquire knowledge from many academic disciplines including biology, chemistry, engineering, geology, economics, political science and physics. You will also undertake specialized courses in the study of the environment. The program emphasizes field experiences, undergraduate research, and environmental problem-solving.
  • Environmental Studies focuses on the complex issues regarding the sustainability of the global environment in the face of human development. The program integrates humanities, natural and social science, environmental policy and planning perspectives. You will gain a broad educational background needed to assist in developing sustainable development policies to create positive social change within the environmental context. Real world links to practical environmental issues are developed through internships, study abroad programs, environmental problem-solving at the local and regional levels and participation in campus environmental planning.

An optimal learning environment. Quality professors, small program size, group tutorials, help sessions, peer mentoring, laboratory experience and regular feedback helps you to get the most out of the program.

York's Undergraduate Geography Students Club is active and brings professionals in the field on-campus to meet with you.

Your skills will be in demand! You can also earn a Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing Certificate concurrent with your degree.

Compare this program with York's Environmental Studies program.

Possible Career Paths: 
  • GIS technician
  • environmental pollution assessment and control specialist
  • natural resource conservationist

You are required to provide official evidence of academic achievement in secondary education. This can be demonstrated through:

  • Final grades under the Ontario curriculum (obtained through correspondence, night school or through TVO)
  • Credentials through other curricula, such as results from Advanced Placement (AP) or Advanced-level courses in the General Certificate of Education (Gene). (Students may register to sit for the AP and GCE examinations as private candidates.)

In the absence of final grades in courses:

  • You must submit the results of standardized tests such as the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) with a minimum of 550 (Reading) and 550 (Math) or a composite American College Testing (ACT) score of 24.
  • Your application will be reviewed by an admissions sub-committee. If admitted, you will not be eligible for entrance scholarships. You will be considered for continuing student scholarships at the end of your first year of study, if you satisfy those criteria.
You may also be required to provide proof of language proficiency. You will be considered for entrance scholarships on the basis of your overall averages in the six 4U/4M (Ontario curriculum) or equivalent courses.

We are adding to our database of admission requirements by country. Please check back in October for additional admission requirements by country. General requirements are currently available by country — note that program-specific requirements may apply in addition to general requirements.