Conservation Ecology - Bachelor of Science in Conservation Ecology

Co-directors of the Program:

Professor, Michele Nishiguchi, Department Head, Biology
Professor, Gerald Sims, Interim Department Head, Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Ecology

Professors Bailey, Boecklen, Boeing, Caldwell, Cowley, Desmond, Hanley, Houde, Milligan, Nishiguchi, Roemer, Smith, Wright; Associate Professors Cain, James, Mabry; Assistant Professors Ferrenberg

New Mexico State University offers an interdisciplinary, undergraduate program in Conservation Ecology. The goal of this program is to train biologists for the current and future challenges that we face in the conservation and wise use of our Earth’s natural resources. An overriding principle of the program is to provide a solid foundation in basic science coupled with a practical approach towards sustainability and stewardship. The curriculum encompasses several disciplines and includes a wide variety of courses from the Biology; Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Ecology; Geography; and Range Science departments.

The educational experience will provide students with an overview of global biodiversity and an understanding of the ecological and evolutionary processes that have created and sustained it. Courses in population and community ecology coupled with population viability analysis and risk assessment will give students the necessary background to understand the theory and development of these fields as well as the tools to tackle real-world problems. Courses in basic genetics, evolution, and conservation genetics will expose students to the importance of conserving genetic variation in order to maintain adaptive potential within populations, thereby sustaining the evolutionary process. Students will also receive background on wildlife law and environmental policy, information vital for assisting governing bodies in making decisions regarding the protection and wise use of our natural resources. Skills obtained in the application of geographic information systems, molecular genetics, and professional communication can also be acquired through various electives. In sum, we seek to provide undergraduate students with an education that will allow them the opportunity to contribute to the conservation of all life on Earth.

The requirements are listed below. In addition, each required course must be passed with a grade of C- or better.

Students must complete all University degree requirements, which include: General Education requirements, Viewing a Wider World requirements, and elective credits to total at least 120 credits with 48 credits in courses numbered 300 or above. Developmental coursework will not count towards the degree requirements and/or elective credits, but may be needed in order to take the necessary English and Mathematics coursework.

Prefix Title Credits
General Education
Area I: Communications10
English Composition - Level 1 1
English Composition - Level 2
Technical and Scientific Communication (either are preferred)3
Advanced Technical and Professional Communication
Oral Communication 1
Area II: Mathematics3-4
Calculus for the Biological and Management Sciences 23-4
Calculus and Analytic Geometry II
Area III/IV: Laboratory Sciences and Social/Behavioral Sciences11
General Chemistry I4
General Chemistry II4
Choose one from the following (3 credits):
Introduction to Economics3
Principles of Macroeconomics3
Principles of Microeconomics3
Area V: Humanities 13
Area VI: Creative and Fine Arts 13
General Education Elective
FWCE 110GIntroduction to Natural Resources Management4
Viewing a Wider World3
One VWW course will be meet with the 9-credit rule 3
Major Requirements
BIOL 111GNatural History of Life3
BIOL 111GLNatural History of Life Laboratory1
BIOL 211GCellular and Organismal Biology3
BIOL 211GLCellular and Organismal Biology Laboratory1
BIOL 301Principles of Ecology3
or FWCE 301 Wildlife Ecology
BIOL 305Principles of Genetics3
or AGRO 305 Principles of Genetics
BIOL 312Plant Taxonomy3
or RGSC 316 Rangeland Plants
BIOL 313Structure and Function of Plants3
BIOL 322Zoology3
BIOL 455Biometry3
or FWCE 457 Ecological Biometry
BIOL 462Conservation Biology3
BIOL 467Evolution3
BIOL 488Principles of Conservation Genetics3
or BCHE 341 Survey of Biochemistry
FWCE 255Principles of Fish and Wildlife Management3
FWCE 330Natural History of the Vertebrates4
FWCE 402Seminar in Natural Resource Management1
FWCE 409Introduction to Population Ecology3
FWCE 447Wildlife Law and Policy3
FWCE 464Management of Aquatic and Terrestrial Ecosystems4
Physiology Requirement3-4
Plant Physiology3
Physiology of Humans
and Laboratory of Human Physiology
4
Animal Physiology3
Anatomy and Physiology of Farm Animals4
Environmental Biology of Fishes4
Diversity of Life Requirement6-8
Invertebrate Zoology4
Animal Behavior3
Economic Entomology3
Parasitology3
Avian Field Ecology4
Mammalogy4
Herpetology4
Ichthyology4
Non-Departmental Requirements (in addition to Gen.Ed/VWW)
CHEM 211Organic Chemistry4
Choose one from the following:4
General Physics I
and General Physics I Laboratory
4
General Physics for Life Sciences I
and Laboratory to General Physics for Life Science I
4
Choose one from the following:4
General Physics II
and General Physics II Laboratory
4
General Physics for Life Sciences II
and Laboratory to General Physics for Life Sciences II
4
Second Language: (not required)
Electives, to bring the total credits to 120 49-5
Select additional electives to bring total to 120 credits including 48 upper division credits. 5
Total Credits120

Second Language Requirement

For the Bachelor of Science in Conservation Ecology there is no second language requirement for the degree.