Environmental Science (BSc)

Identify environmental challenges caused by human activities and develop techniques that help create solutions. Learn fundamental principles of how organisms interact with their biological, geochemical and physical environments. Understand how physical and chemical processes affect rock, soil, air and water, which influence the abundance and performance of living organisms. Learn to use analytical tools, including lab and field methods.


Apply Your Learning

Make the most out of your university career by taking advantage of all that Laurier has to offer you. Volunteer work, campus clubs, leadership programs, studying abroad, work experience – there are so many ways you can extend your classroom experience into the real world.

Here are just a few examples of the experiences you’ll have access to in the Environmental Science program:

  • Live in the Faculty of Science Residence Learning Community to enhance your academic and social success.
  • Attend departmental seminars to hear about current research from faculty members and invited speakers to expand your knowledge.
  • Consider completing a thesis or directed studies course in your fourth year to focus on an area that interests you.
  • Apply for the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology to complete fieldwork courses in Ontario, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, British Columbia, Africa or the Caribbean.

Check out the Environmental Science Experience Guide.


2020 graduates who secured employment or went on to postgraduate studies


Laurier ranks in the top 6 percent of universities worldwide*


students who gained hands-on learning experiences at Laurier in 2019/20

*Center for World University Rankings (CWUR)


Format: full time or part time      Duration: four years     Start: September (fall term)     OUAC code: UES
Ontario High School Admission Requirements
  • Minimum admission range: mid 70s.
  • Competitive admission range based on last year’s admitted students: mid 80s.
  • English at 60%.
  • Advanced Functions at 60%.
  • Calculus and Vectors at 60%.
  • Biology at 60%.
  • All prerequisite courses calculated in admissions average.
Canadian Admission Requirements (Outside of Ontario)

Students applying to this program from a Canadian province outside of Ontario are encouraged to review our course equivalents by province chart. This chart will show you what courses from your province are equivalent to the admission requirements listed under Ontario High School Admission Requirements.

International Admission Requirements

Students applying to this program from an international curriculum are encouraged to review our curriculum-specific requirements; you must also meet all program-specific requirements listed under the Ontario High School Admission Requirements section.

English-Proficiency Requirement

Laurier's language of instruction is English, and so we may require you to provide evidence of your English proficiency to help make sure you experience success in your academic courses.

Your three most recent years of full-time education must be in English without taking any ESL (English as a Second Language) courses. If you do not meet this requirement, you must provide evidence of your English proficiency.

We reserve the right to request an English-language test from any applicant.

If you do not meet Laurier's English proficiency requirement but are academically qualified for your program, you may be eligible for a conditional offer of admission.

Laurier English and Academic Foundation (LEAF) Program

The Laurier English and Academic Foundation (LEAF) program is an academic English program for Laurier applicants who have to prove English proficiency. If you have received an offer to Laurier with a condition to meet our English- proficiency requirement, you can meet that condition by successfully completing the LEAF program.

College Pathways

Completed the first year of a college program:

  • Minimum admission average of 75% for part-time studies in a Bachelor of Science (BSc) program.
  • Minimum admission average of 80% for full-time studies in a BSc program.

Completed a two-year diploma or two years of a three-year advanced diploma:

  • Minimum admission average of 70% for part-time studies in a BSc program.
  • Minimum admission average of 75% for full-time studies in a BSc program.

Completed a two to three-year advanced diploma:

  • Minimum admission average of 75% for full-time studies in a BSc program.
Note: Possession of the minimum admission average does not guarantee admission. Unless otherwise noted, you are considered for admission into full-time studies.
Other Admission Requirements

Visit our admission requirements section to find specific requirements for university students, indigenous applicants, mature learners, homeschooled applicants, senior citizens, refugees, and more. 

Program Details

About Environmental Science at Laurier

In our Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Environmental Science program, you will learn and understand how concepts from biology, chemistry and geography can be integrated to explain the processes that affect the physical environment and how these processes influence the biotic performance, from individual organisms to whole ecosystems.

The BSc in Environmental Science will give you the skills needed to understand how to use analytical tools, including lab and field methods, to quantify and assess the physical and chemical properties of soil, water and air for assessing and monitoring populations of organisms.

You will develop a broad range of techniques that will allow you to identify and devise solutions to environmental problems caused by human activities. You will be able to communicate these issues to diverse audiences for a number of purposes, such as helping to restore ecosystems or advocating for environmental issues.

Students in Environmental Science take one mandatory field course and have opportunities to take others through the Ontario Universities Program in Field Biology.

Faculty members hire students as research assistants to work help with studies in the lab and field.

Honours Thesis Option

Students completing an honours thesis will conduct a yearlong research project that includes data collection, analysis and write-up.

Examples of honours thesis topics include:

  • "Relating intensity of forest fires to caribou herd depletion in the Northwest Territories"
  • "Effects of climate change on frozen landscapes in the north"
  • "Effects of atmospheric processes on the movement and fate of pollutants"
  • "Identification and conservation of rare and threatened plant species"

Program Options and Courses

Options and Minors

These are a few of the many popular academic opportunities which allow you to dive deeper into your major area of study or broaden your knowledge:

  • Communication Studies Minor
  • Global Studies Minor
  • History and Philosophy of Science Minor
  • Management Option

Check out other options to enhance your degree.

First-Year Courses

  • Biological Diversity and Evolution
  • Calculus I for the Natural Sciences
  • Environment, Sustainability, and Society
  • Fundamentals of Chemistry I
  • Fundamentals of Chemistry II
  • Introduction to Physical Geography
  • Introductory Calculus for the Natural Sciences
  • The Anatomy of Earth
  • Unifying Life Processes
  • 0.5 elective credit

Sample Upper-Year Courses

  • Field Surveying
  • Sedimentation
  • Snow and the Environment

Similar Programs


Co-op is a way to integrate what you are learning in the classroom with practical experience in your field of study. Build your resume, earn money, develop your network, and graduate with work experience.

You can apply for admission to co-op in your first year and may be eligible for an admission interview early in your second year. As a student in this program, you will be eligible to complete paid work terms lasting 12 to 16 weeks.

Interested? Learn more about co-op.

Tuition and Scholarships

Getting a university education is an investment in your future.

At Laurier, we take financial health seriously by providing a wide variety of funding opportunities for you throughout your degree, such as scholarships and bursaries, and by equipping you with the skills to manage your finances effectively in the years to come.


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"Laurier has become a huge part of my life. It has taught me so much both inside and outside of lecture halls and quickly become my home away from home."

Kira P., Laurier graduate

Your Career Awaits

It’s not only about the journey; it’s about the destination. Let us help you get to where you’re going.

Here are just some examples of our graduates' destinations. What’s yours?

Sample Career Options

Note: Additional training and education may be required.

  • agricultural consultant
  • environmental scientist
  • laboratory technician
  • landscape consultant/planner
  • meteorologist
  • natural resources analyst
  • public policy analyst
  • science writer
  • surveyor/mapping scientist
  • water resource specialist

Explore more careers.

Support After Graduation

Alumni for life means that you have access to Career and Employment Support offered at Laurier for your entire career.

Waterloo Campus

The Waterloo campus is tucked into about one city block, so you’re steps away from your classes, food and your new favourite study spot.

There are many ways to tour our Waterloo campus, whether that's on a guided tour with one of our Laurier student ambassadors, on your own using virtual reality, or even on-demand through one of our pre-recorded tours. See our campus spaces and start to picture yourself at Laurier.

Interested in More Info?

Email chooselaurier@wlu.ca, call 519.884.0710 x3385 or see all contact information.