Environmental Literacy

Definition of Environmental Literacy for General Education:

Environmental Literacy (EL) courses provide students with the ability to understand, and articulate perspectives on, the interactions between human society and the natural world, as well as the challenges of environmental stewardship. A course from any disciplinary area may satisfy the EL requirement, provided that it focuses throughout on one or more of the following:

  1. theories, observations, or models of how humans impact the health and well-being of the natural world;
  2. theories, observations, or models of how the natural world affects human health and well-being;
  3. public policies, legal frameworks, and/or other social systems that affect the environment;
  4. moral and/or ethical dimensions regarding the environment;
  5. cultural, creative, or artistic representations of human-environment interactions.


Note: A major component of Environmental Literacy (EL), as it is defined by UConn General Education, is an exploration of human-environment interaction (see definition above). As such, please be aware that many courses that deal only with the natural world may not meet the criteria for EL approval. Please email karen.piantek@uconn.edu if you need to verify whether a course has been approved for EL.