X. Degree Programs

Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences [B.Sc.(Env.)]

Ecology (ECOL:C)

Department of Integrative Biology, College of Biological Science

This program provides a solid foundation in the principles of ecology, training in both pure and applied aspects of ecology and an introduction to economic, legal and policy issues related to the management of the environment. From the 2nd year on, students increasingly augment the core in ecology and policy with extensive restricted electives choices that allow the student to tailor the program to their interests. The major provides a sound science background for careers in conservation, resource management, ecological consulting, or nature interpretation used in teaching, government, non-government or the private sector; or for further post-graduate training in fundamental ecology, environmental biology and environmental management or policy.

Program Requirements

The Co-op program in Ecology is a four and a half year program including four work terms. Students must complete a Fall, Winter and Summer work term, and must follow the academic work schedule as outlined below (also found on the Co-operative Education website: https://www.recruitguelph.ca/cecs/). Please refer to the Co-operative Education program policy with respect to adjusting this schedule.

Ecology Academic and Co-op Work Term Schedule
Year Fall Winter Summer
1 Academic Semester 1 Academic Semester 2


2 Academic Semester 3

COOP*1000 Work Term I

Academic Semester 4

3 COOP*2000 Work Term II Academic Semester 5 COOP*3000 Work Term III
4 Academic Semester 6 Academic Semester 7 COOP*4000 Work Term IV
5 Academic Semester 8 N/A N/A

To be eligible to continue in the Co-op program, students must meet a minimum 70% cumulative average requirement after second semester, as well as meet all work term requirements. Please refer to the Co-operative Education program policy with respect to work term performance grading, work term report grading and program completion requirements.

For additional program information students should consult with their Co-op Co-ordinator and Co-op Faculty Advisor, listed on the Co-operative Education web site.

Credit Summary (21.50 Total Credits)*

7.00 - Environmental Sciences core

5.00 - Ecology Required courses

5.50 - Ecology Restricted electives

2.50 - Free electives

1.50 - Co-op Work Terms

Note: A minimum of three Co-op work terms including a Summer, Fall, and Winter are necessary to complete the Co-op requirement. *COOP*4000 is optional and if completed the total number of credits will equal 22.00.

Students are reminded that 6.00 credits of their B.Sc. (Env.) degree must be at the 3000-4000 level.

Students are encouraged to seek advice on their choices from their faculty advisor. With prior approval, students may be able to use courses not on these lists towards their Ecology restrictive electives.

The recommended program sequence is outlined below.


Semester 1 - Fall
BIOL*1070 [0.50] Discovering Biodiversity
CHEM*1040 [0.50] General Chemistry I
ENVS*1030 [1.00] Introduction to Environmental Sciences
MATH*1080 [0.50] Elements of Calculus I
Semester 2 - Winter
BIOL*1090 [0.50] Introduction to Molecular and Cellular Biology
CHEM*1050 [0.50] General Chemistry II
COOP*1100 [0.00] Introduction to Co-operative Education
FARE*1040 [1.00] Intro to Environmental Economics, Law & Policy
GEOG*1300 [0.50] Introduction to the Biophysical Environment
Semester 3 - Fall
BIOL*2060 [0.50] Ecology
One of:
PHYS*1080 [0.50] Physics for Life Sciences
PHYS*1300 [0.50] Fundamentals of Physics
One of:
ECON*2100 [0.50] Economic Growth and Environmental Quality
FARE*2700 [0.50] Survey of Natural Resource Economics
1.00 electives or restricted electives
Note: Students lacking 4U physics or equivalent must take PHYS*1300. Students with 4U physics or equivalent must take PHYS*1080. PHYS*1130 may be substituted for PHYS*1080.
Note:GEOG*2210 may be substituted for ECON*2100 or FARE*2700 and would be taken in semester 4.
Winter Semester
COOP*1000 [0.50] Co-op Work Term I
Semester 4 - Summer
BIOC*2580 [0.50] Introduction to Biochemistry
2.00 electives or restricted electives
Fall Semester
COOP*2000 [0.50] Co-op Work Term II
Semester 5 - Winter
BIOL*2400 [0.50] Evolution
MBG*2040 [0.50] Foundations in Molecular Biology and Genetics
STAT*2230 [0.50] Biostatistics for Integrative Biology
1.00 electives or restricted electives
Summer Semester
COOP*3000 [0.50] Co-op Work Term III
Semester 6 - Fall
BIOL*3010 [0.50] Laboratory and Field Work in Ecology
ENVS*4001 [0.50] Project in Environmental Sciences
One of:
BOT*2100 [0.50] Life Strategies of Plants
ZOO*3600 [0.50] Comparative Animal Physiology I
One of:
BOT*3410 [0.50] Plant Anatomy
ZOO*2090 [0.50] Vertebrate Structure and Function
0.50 electives or restricted electives
Note:ZOO*2700 may be substituted for BOT*3410 or ZOO*2090 and would be taken in semester 7.
Semester 7 - Winter
BIOL*3060 [0.50] Populations, Communities & Ecosystems
BIOL*3130 [0.50] Conservation Biology
ENVS*4002 [0.50] Project in Environmental Sciences
1.00 electives or restricted electives
Note: See note in semester 6.
Summer Semester (Optional)
COOP*4000 [0.50] Co-op Work Term IV
Semester 8- Fall
2.50 electives or restricted electives
Restricted Electives

Students are required to take 5.50 restricted credits in Ecology as noted below. Of these, at least 1.00 credits must be at the 4000 level.

  1. A minimum of 0.50 credits from:

    BIOL*4150 [0.50] Wildlife Conservation and Management
    CIS*1500 [0.50] Introduction to Programming
    GEOG*2420 [0.50] The Earth From Space
    GEOG*2480 [0.50] Mapping and GIS
    GEOG*3420 [0.50] Remote Sensing of the Environment *
    GEOG*3480 [0.50] GIS and Spatial Analysis *
    GEOG*4480 [1.00] Applied Geomatics
    * Additional prerequisites are required.
  2. Students in the Ecology Major are required to take an additional 5.00 restricted elective credits from the following lists. Some courses may require other courses from the list as prerequisites.

    ANSC*3180 [0.50] Wildlife Nutrition
    BIOL*3450 [0.50] Introduction to Aquatic Environments
    BIOL*3670 [0.50] Introduction to Wildlife Rehabilitation
    BIOL*3680 [0.50] Wildlife Rehabilitation: Caring for Sick, Injured, and Orphaned Wildlife
    BOT*3050 [0.50] Plant Functional Ecology
    ENVS*2030 [0.50] Meteorology and Climatology
    ENVS*3010 [0.50] Climate Change Biology
    ENVS*3270 [0.50] Forest Biodiversity
    ENVS*3290 [0.50] Waterborne Disease Ecology
    ENVS*4350 [0.50] Forest Ecology
    GEOG*2000 [0.50] Geomorphology
    GEOG*2110 [0.50] Climate and the Biophysical Environment
    GEOG*3000 [0.50] Fluvial Processes
    GEOG*3610 [0.50] Environmental Hydrology
    NUTR*3210 [0.50] Fundamentals of Nutrition
    ZOO*4570 [0.50] Marine Ecological Processes

    BIOL*4120 [0.50] Evolutionary Ecology
    BIOL*4150 [0.50] Wildlife Conservation and Management
    BIOL*4350 [0.50] Limnology of Natural and Polluted Waters
    ENVS*2040 [0.50] Plant Health and the Environment
    ENVS*2330 [0.50] Current Issues in Ecosystem Science and Biodiversity
    ENVS*3000 [0.50] Nature Interpretation
    ENVS*3010 [0.50] Climate Change Biology
    GEOG*2480 [0.50] Mapping and GIS
    GEOG*3020 [0.50] Global Environmental Change
    GEOG*3110 [0.50] Biotic and Natural Resources
    GEOG*3210 [0.50] Management of the Biophysical Environment
    GEOG*3480 [0.50] GIS and Spatial Analysis
    GEOG*4110 [1.00] Environmental Systems Analysis
    GEOG*4230 [0.50] Environmental Impact Assessment
    GEOG*4480 [1.00] Applied Geomatics
    Policy, Law and Management

    BIOL*4500 [0.50] Natural Resource Policy Analysis
    ECON*2100 [0.50] Economic Growth and Environmental Quality
    FARE*2700 [0.50] Survey of Natural Resource Economics
    GEOG*2210 [0.50] Environment and Resources
    GEOG*4210 [0.50] Environmental Governance
    GEOG*4220 [0.50] Local Environmental Management
    PHIL*2070 [0.50] Philosophy of the Environment
    POLS*3370 [0.50] Environmental Politics and Governance
    Independent Research and Field Courses

    BIOL*4410 [0.75] Field Ecology
    BIOL*4700 [0.50] Field Biology
    BIOL*4710 [0.25] Field Biology
    BIOL*4800 [0.50] Field Biology
    BIOL*4810 [0.25] Field Biology
    ENVS*4410 [0.50] Introduction to Advanced Independent Research
    ENVS*4420 [0.50] Advanced Independent Research
    ENVS*4430 [1.00] Advanced Independent Research
    IBIO*4500 [1.00] Research in Integrative Biology I
    IBIO*4510 [1.00] Research in Integrative Biology II
    IBIO*4521 [1.00] Thesis in Integrative Biology
    IBIO*4522 [1.00] Thesis in Integrative Biology
    ZOO*4300 [0.75] Marine Biology and Oceanography
University of Guelph
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1