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Students achieve the SEE Minor with the completion of 6 courses, which also fulfill requirements for their Common Academic Program (CAP). All students are required to take the introductory seminar course, Introduction to SEE (SEE 250), followed by their choice of 2-3 core SEE courses. Each core class focuses on a different perspective, yet shares the inherent multidisciplinary nature of SEE topics. Finally, students complete 2-3 depth classes, offered by both the SEE curriculum and by electives from departments across the University. All SEE courses are team-taught by diverse faculty with a focus on project-based learning.

Read program and course descriptions in the online catalog >

SEE Course list

SEE 250 - Introduction to Sustainability, Energy and the Environment

A multidisciplinary introduction to Sustainability, Energy and the Environment (SEE) and to the SEE minor. Emphasis is on learning how to view complex issues from different disciplinary points of view, developing skills in critical thinking about current issues in sustainability, gaining an awareness of different ethical positions and how these influence the quest for solutions, introducing skills in reading current literature on sustainability, and learning how scientific and sociopolitical processes work to investigate and address sustainability issues. CAP Integrative.

SEE 301 - Global Change and Earth Systems

A multidisciplinary introduction to the science of the earth system. Focus is on the interrelatedness of geological, biological, chemical and physical processes, and on methods used to understand both the past natural history and potential future scenarios for change in the earth system. 

SEE 303 - Constructions of Place

A multidisciplinary, arts-based course that explores the complex connections between our sense of place and the physical and environmental conditions that influence landscapes and communities. 

ASI 320 - Cities and Energy

An interdisciplinary examination of the influence of energy on the urban environment since the Industrial Revolution, how this relationship has affected every aspect of city life from culture to infrastructure, and prospects for cities of the future. The history domain is emphasized. CAP Integrative and Advanced History.

ASI 322 - Cities and Suburbs

This interdisciplinary course examines the changing social, political, economic, cultural, ethical, and religious factors that shape life in cities and suburbs. It examines the factors that influence where people choose to live and the conditions that both unite and divide people across urban/suburban regions. Particular consideration is given to issues of social injustice, privilege and oppression, and moral responsibility. The social science domain is emphasized. 

ASI 345 I & II - River Leadership Curriculum

The River Leadership Curriculum provides an interdisciplinary study of rivers and watersheds drawing on work in the natural sciences, social sciences, aesthetics, and public policy. Classes are taught by students, faculty, and community partners with a strong emphasis on experiential learning and leadership development. CAP Integrative.

SEE 390 - Special Topics in Sustainability, Energy and the Environment

Examination of a specific problem or topic relating to sustainability, energy and the environment at the regional, national, or global scale including particular topics relating to global sustainability policy and sustainable development goals, human rights and climate change and access to modern energy systems. Students will analyze the topic from multiple perspectives possibly including artistic, technical, scientific, social, economic, ethical, and faith-based. Students will apply interdisciplinary knowledge to characterize systems, resources, and stakeholders relevant to the particular problem or topic and discuss solutions to establish more resilient and sustainable systems. Prerequisite: SEE 250. CAP Integrative.

SEE 401 - Sustainability Research I

Interdisciplinary exploration of the issues of sustainability. The scientific, moral, spiritual, social, political, historical, ethical and economic dimensions of sustainability will be explored. Will also provide exploration of the foundations of ethical theory and their application to environmental issues. Students will pursue a research project with the primary focus of sustainability on campus. Prerequisite: PHL 103. CAP Integrative and Advanced Philosophy.

SEE 402 - Sustainability Research II

An interdisciplinary exploration of the issues of sustainability as they affect the Dayton community. Course will also explore political philosophy and the ethical foundations of public policy. Students will choose an in-depth community-based research project. Prerequisite: PHL 103. CAP Advanced Philosophy and Practical Ethical Action.

SEE 490 - Experiential Study in Sustainability, Energy and the Environment

Experiential study of a topic in Sustainability, Energy and the Environment. Students will study a topic of their choosing in consultation with instructor or faculty advisor. Topics will be problem-driven and focused on developing sustainable solutions at the local, national, or global scale. Prerequisite: SEE 250. CAP Integrative.

Additional SEE Minor Core Requirement Courses

Note: SEE minor students can take only 1 Natural Science focused SEE core course of the 2-3 SEE core course requirements.

BIO 310 - Ecology

Interrelationship of plants, animals, and micro-organisms with the physical-chemical environment: nutrient cycles, energy flow, ecosystems, and factors affecting distribution and abundance of organisms. Prerequisite: BIO 152.

BIO 359 - Sustainability & the Biosphere

Study of the principles of sustainability. All areas of sustainability will be covered with emphasis on ecological facets of sustainability. Discussion of loss of habitat and biodiversity in the context of sustaining natural resources for future generations. Prerequisite(s): BIO 152 or SCI 230.

BIO 395 - Global Environmental Biology

Presentation of the biological and ecological principles needed for the critical discussion and evaluation of current global issues related to human impact on the environment. Ecological data on the current extinction crisis and sustainable solutions will be addressed. No credit toward a biology major or minor.Prerequisite(s): BIO 101, 151 or SCI 230. CAP Natural Sciences.

GEO 208 - Environmental Geology

Interrelationship of plants, animals, and micro-organisms with the physical-chemical environment: nutrient cycles, energy flow, ecosystems, and factors affecting distribution and abundance of organisms. CAP Natural Sciences and Inquiry.

CHM/GEO 234 - Energy Resources

The chemical and geological aspects of formation, production, and benefits/costs (including environmental impacts) of energy derived from fossil fuels (coal and hydrocarbons), biofuels (e.g., ethanol production), radioactive materials (nuclear power), and renewable sources (e.g., geothermal, hydro, wind, and solar power).

PHY 220 - Energy & Environmental Physics

Interrelationship of plants, animals, and micro-organisms with the physical-chemical environment: nutrient cycles, energy flow, ecosystems, and factors affecting distribution and abundance of organisms. Prerequisite: PHY 206. 

Additional SEE Minor Depth Courses

Note: At least one of a student's SEE minor depth courses must be a project or research-based class. Contact the SEE Minor Coordinator to check on any depth course details.

Art and Design

VAR 350 - Art and Social Practice


ECO 435 - Economics of the Environment
ECO 460 - Economic Growth & Development
ECO 485 - Urban and Regional Economics


CEE 333 - Water Resources Engineering
CEE 390 - Environmental Pollution Control
CEE 434 - Water & Wastewater Engineering
CEE 464 - Hazardous Waste Treatment
EGR 330 - Engineering Design & Appropriate Technologies
MEE 420 - Energy Efficient Buildings
MEE 464 - Sustainable Energy Systems
MEE 472 - Design for the Environment
MEE 473 - Renewable Energy Systems
MEE 478 - Energy Efficient Manufacturing
MFG 438 - Sustainable Manufacturing & Product Design


ENG 342 - Literature and the Environment

Health and Sport Sciences 

HSS 302 - Community Nutrition
HSS 384 - Food Justice (Co-listed with SOC 384)


HST 342 - Environmental History
HST 359 - History of American City Planning

Natural Sciences

BIO 370 - Conservation Biology
BIO 407 - Plant Diversity & Ecology
BIO 409 - Ecological Restoration
BIO 441 - Environmental Plant Biology
BIO 452 - Biology of Rivers and Lakes
BIO 459 - Environmental Ecology
BIO 466 - Biology of Infectious Disease
GEO 302 - Glacial Geology
GEO 309 - Surface & Groundwater Hydrology
GEO 450 - Applied Geographic Information Systems
GEO 455 - Environmental Remote Sensing


PHL 321 - Environmental Ethics
PHL 334 - Philosophy & Ecology
PHL 335 - Philosophy of Sustainability

Political Science

POL 371 - Environmental Policy

Religious Studies

REL 365 - Christian Ethics & the Environment
REL 472 - Ecology and Religion

Sociology, Anthropology and Social Work

SOC 384 - Food Justice (Co-listed with HSS 384)
SWK 392 - Social Work and Environmental Justice


Sustainability Studies Program

Fitz Hall
300 College Park
Dayton, Ohio 45469 - 2950

Hanley Sustainability Institute

We strive to extend the University of Dayton's sustainability efforts across the campus and into the community.

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