Course Descriptions

The Master of Science in Environmental Education (MSEE) complements the College’s Environmental Studies and Outdoor Education undergraduate programs while meeting environmental education needs in the State. The curriculum for the MSEE at Montreat College has been developed in connection to the National Environmental Education Standards, the North Carolina State Certification program, and Environmental Education teacher education standards and will be assessed yearly following the institutional effectiveness plan of the college.


MSEE Courses

EV 500: Fundamentals in Environmental Education (3)

This web-based course (Internet delivery) provides a foundational knowledge of environmental education and the skills to become an effective environmental educator. This course introduces the learner to theory and practice of EE. Through foundational readings, on-line discussion groups and projects students develop a better understanding of environmental education and the skills needed to develop and improve as an environmental educator.

If this course has been taken at another institution for undergraduate credit, the course will be waived; however, the student must take an additional course to equal the three credits waived by this course. If this course has been taken at another institution for graduate credit, the student will be able to transfer credit directly.

EV 505: Introduction to the Master of Science in Environmental Education (MSEE) (1)

Orients students to the nature of graduate study in environmental education at Montreat College. It focuses on cohort building, the educational outcomes of the MSEE, and the mission of the college. Students will also be introduced to related opportunities including N.C. certification in environmental education, off campus field courses, and elective options. After discussing the program philosophy, course sequence, program delivery model (online work and summer/weekend intensives), issues related to graduate study, and other opportunities, students will develop a comprehensive plan for completion of the MSEE that incorporates required courses, electives, and other opportunities.

(Spring: Year One)

EV 540: Survey of Environmental Education Curricula (2)

Students will investigate instructional resources for K-12 environmental education and then evaluate and apply them to their practice. Course will include the resources needed to complete the workshop requirement for the NC certification in environmental education. A culminating project will link resources encountered to grade level taught and individual areas of interest.

This course can be waived if the student can show evidence of a course similar to this taken prior to enrolling in the masters and/or if 7 national environmental education curriculum workshops have been completed during the last 5 years. Three credits must be added in place of this course if it is waived.

(Spring: Year One)

EV 510: Instructional Strategies in Environmental Education (3)

Emphasizes a wide array of instructional strategies and teaching methods that focus on an inductive approach to learning. Students will develop and practice strategies for making effective instructional decisions, assessing needs, selecting appropriate instructional objectives and evaluating student learning. A variety of specific methods and philosophies relative to environmental education for all ages will be introduced. Successful completion of this course will satisfy the teaching methods workshop requirement for the North Carolina environmental education certification.

(Summer Intensive: Year One)

EV 515: Earth Systems (3)

This course reviews the structure and function of a variety of environmental systems operating in the atmosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, cryosphere and biosphere. Physical, chemical, and biological processes will be considered with respect to local, regional, and global levels of scale. Course topics include energy flow, biogeochemical cycles, biomes and biogeographic regions, ecological and physical zonation, the ocean-atmosphere interface, and the notion of change in earth’s spheres and zones.

(Summer Intensive: Year One)

EV 520: Research Methods (4)

This course reviews qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches to research in environmental education. Topics include research design, methods for data collection and analysis, and strategies for completing the final document. Note: This course is not intended to be a statistics course. Those students interested in a quantitative research design for their thesis or final project should take a graduate level statistics course as an elective.

(Fall Semester: Year One)

EV 525: Designing Environmental Education Experiences (3)

This course will address concepts using diverse settings for environmental education and how to develop curriculum that meets the needs of the student, agency, state and/or school. Students will design and participate in a variety of integrated environmental education learning experiences including expeditionary science, ecotourism, and field-based immersion experiences.

(Fall Semester: Year One)

EV 530: Environmental History and Philosophy (3)

This course investigates the major philosophical, ethical, and theological strands of thought that have influenced environmental thinking. The course will use the history of the environmental movement as a framework for understanding the development of environmental attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors. Students will develop and revise their own philosophy of environmental education through interaction with the readings and discussion.

(Spring Semester: Year Two)

EV 535: Environmental Communications (3)

Introduces communication theories as they intersect with environmental education and issues and uses critical methods to analyze these issues. The course will increase awareness of the strategies and arguments used by groups, institutions, the media, and key individuals in communicating environmental information and issues. It will also examine theories of communication in terms of public participation in environmental decision-making. Finally, the course will look at strategies that environmental interpreters have used in translating environmental information into communication formats that make it easier and more compelling for the public to understand the information.

(Spring Semester: Year Two)

EV 550: Thesis Proposal or Project Design (1)

This course provides students with an opportunity to make an original contribution to the field of environmental education through a thesis or a chance for the student to develop an expert’s knowledge of a particular industry segment and to build a network of professional contacts within a specific sub-field through a project. Topics may be explored via two avenues: research thesis or project. Either of these forms is acceptable and will be comparable in the amount of work required.

(Spring Semester: Year Two)

EV 545: Action Project (1)

This course will provide knowledge, skills and opportunity to investigate and evaluate environmental issues. Students will take a leadership role in an environmental action project. Successful completion of this course will satisfy the action project requirement for the North Carolina environmental education certification.

(Summer Semester: Year Two)

EV 555: Ecosystems (3)

Students will have the opportunity to travel and visit field study sites and public education facilities in selected biomes and life zones. Ecosystem comparisons will be developed with attention given to flora and fauna. Special emphasis will be placed on environmental education programs that educate the public on biomes and life zones. Students will travel as a group for this 2 – 3 week experience.

(Summer Semester: Year Two)

EV 560: Thesis/Non-thesis (3)

Students are expected to complete a thesis/non-thesis project of substantial depth that explores a specific area of environmental education and integrates the MSEE curriculum. The project is completed in close cooperation with a faculty advisor. This course is subject to repeated registration.

(Summer Semester: Year Two)

EV 570: Non-resident Thesis or Non-thesis (1)

Only if needed.

(Fall Semester: Year Two)