The Faculty of Environment offers ten unique undergraduate programs, spanning a variety of disciplines—all with a focus on making positive change in the world.

Apply directly to one of our entry programs. You'll take courses in your chosen field beginning in your first year. You can further pursue your interest by customizing your degree.


New: Climate and Environmental Change*

Bachelor of Science | Co-op available

Get ready to tackle the climate crisis. In this program, you’ll study the science behind the challenges facing our planet’s environment. Combine biology, chemistry, physics, and earth science with human geography to address challenges such as flooding, permafrost thawing, drought and forest fires, peatland degradation, rising sea levels and coastal change, and changing economic opportunities in climate sensitive sectors.


Mujtaba, a two-time Faculty of Environment graduate, is part of the first generation of climate change researchers and leaders. As a technical specialist with MEDA, he helps farmers and small businesses in developing countries become successful through sustainable practices and technology. “We also focus on making it easier for women, youth, and those in marginalized communities to become both leaders in their communities and environmental practices,” he says. “This is why I came to Waterloo, so I could help make a difference and do something good for people and the planet. Helping farmers is just one step toward a more sustainable future—one that no longer looks so bleak."

 Environment and Business

Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Co-op only

Stand out to future employers with your business acumen and understanding of environmental issues. Gain expertise in stakeholder engagement, industrial ecology, and environmental decision-making while developing core business skills in finance, project management, accounting, marketing, and law.

Environment and Business student Okeoghene brainstorms project ideas using a whiteboard

As a kid growing up around the oil industry, Okeoghene witnessed first-hand the intrinsic relationship between business and the environment. Creating a sustainable future, she quickly discovered, is as much about protecting our natural resources as it is fostering a competitive business landscape.

Environment, Resources and Sustainability

Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Co-op available | Joint Honours available

Environment, Resources and Sustainability (ERS) uses insights from the natural, physical and social sciences to help solve some of the world’s biggest environmental challenges, from water and food, to energy and biodiversity. Learn about conserving and restoring ecosystems and explore issues in environmental politics, policy and governance.

Ashoke works to make the fight against climate change feel more attainable by spreading the message that any positive action we each take – big or small – can catalyze change. “When it comes to what we can do at an individual level, I think it’s important to realize that it’s the small things that count,” he says. “I know it’s hard to imagine that turning off your lights every time you leave your room can play a significant role in saving the planet, but it’s not about the action itself, it’s about the ripple effect it creates. Eventually those ripples add up and they can create a wave of change.”

Geography and Aviation

Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Regular only

Earn a Bachelor of Environmental Studies while completing flight training to acquire your Commercial Pilot Licence. Gain a deep understanding of landforms, weather patterns, and the computer technology behind tools such as geographic information systems (GIS) and remote sensing.

Chelsea Anne recalls her mixture of excitement and nerves before taking off on her first solo flight. “I got in the air and realized, I’ve done this a million times. I can do it. It was amazing.” She now flies as a First Officer for a major airline. 

Geography and Environmental Management

Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Co-op available | Joint Honours available

Gerography and Environmental Management (GEM) explores the Earth’s human and physical environments, and gain technical skills in environmental analysis. Learn about climate change, landforms, global population growth, geographic information systems, and more at one of the Canada’s top geography programs.

Samantha reviews her notes using a laptop and notebook

Throughout high school, Sam was interested in travel, culture and global issues. When deciding on what to study in university, Geography and Environmental Management (GEM) at Waterloo stood out as a great option for exploring all of these interests. "I wanted to learn how humans interact with the physical environment, while at the same time taking advantage of opportunities to fulfill my passion for traveling the world."


Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Co-op available | Joint Honours available

Combine the power of computing with geographic and environmental analysis. You’ll learn to use tools such as remote sensing, computer mapping, geographic information systems (GIS), and GPS to analyze information and make meaningful decisions.

In Geomatics, students like Pedro learn to use state-of-the art tools and technologies - like drones - to collect and analyze novel data.⁣ With skills in remote sensing, computer science, geographic information systems (GIS), and GPS, paired with the ability to analyze and understand geographic and spatial data, Geomatics students graduate with in-demand skills needed across industries and areas of research.⁣⁣

International Development

Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Regular only

Be a catalyst for change. In International Development (INDEV), you'll tackle problems of economic inequality, social injustice, and environmental change, and apply your skills on an 8-month overseas placement.

In partnership with the World University Service of Canada, your final two terms can be spent on a field placement overseas, where you’ll put your skills and knowledge to use. Ian spent his placement in Sri Lanka, where he worked with a local tea plantation as a research and marketing officer. 

Knowledge Integration

Bachelor of Knowledge Integration | Joint Honours available | Regular only

More than a traditional arts and science program, Knowledge Integration (KI) lets you explore and integrate your many interests. Pursue a traditional specialization or create one that is uniquely yours, and develop skills in design thinking, creative problem-solving and collaboration to make a difference in the world.

Victoria using a saw to cut a piece of 2x4 in the Environment workshop

Can a shift in perspective alter, or even improve, your mental health? It’s a question Victoria and four classmates studied for eight months —across two continents, no less — as part of The Museum Course “What’s the best way to transfer information? Empathy is a big part of the design process and knowledge sharing in general.”


Bachelor of Environmental Studies | Co-op only

Tackle the environmental and social challenges facing our cities and rural areas. You’ll gain skills in effective transit planning and sustainable planning practices, and study topics such as economics, law, design, and health.

Jacklyn is a Planning student that spent a co-op term as an Assistant Planner with Habitat for Humanity. She was involved with everything from site-plan clearances, to ensuring construction met accessibility requirements, to consulting with future residents and the community.

New: Sustainability and Financial Management*

Bachelor of Sustainability and Financial Management | Co-op only

Become a finance expert with purpose by learning to integrate people, profits and the planet into the bottom line. Through this one-of-a-kind program, you’ll fuse knowledge of accounting and financial management from Waterloo’s School of Accounting and Finance with the Faculty of Environment’s expertise in sustainability. Plus, you’ll get up to 16 months of paid on-the-job experience in this co-op only program.

It’s never too early to start your first business venture. While still in high school, Dillon launched PickWaste – a non-profit organization that leads weekly litter clean-ups. “The small action of cleaning the community grew into a national movement,” he says. Today the team is 400+ volunteers strong, and has filled more than 2,000 bags of trash.

Joint programs with universities in China

Joint education programs with universities in China are available in Geography and Environmental Management, Geomatics, and Environment and Business. Students complete their first two years of study at their home university in China and then complete a further two years of studies at Waterloo, receiving a degree from each university.

Visit Environment International Education Programs / 環境學院國際教育合作 to learn more about our 2+2 program.

* Prospective students are advised that offers of admission to a new program may be made only after the university’s own quality assurance processes have been completed and the Ontario Universities Council on Quality Assurance has approved the program.