Natural Resources, Associate of Science

Southwestern's Natural Resources program provides students with an introduction to the technical and scientific knowledge related to natural resource policy and management. Students can prepare for careers in natural resource planning, management, conservation and education roles with government agencies, non-governmental organizations and in educational settings.

The program guide lists the required courses for the AS degree. The program guide also lists recommended electives appropriate for the field. 

Southwestern has a formal articulation agreement with Oregon State University (OSU) aligning this AS Natural Resources degree with OSU's Natural Resources Bachelor of Science degree, Watershed Management option. Students that complete the AS degree with Natural Resources emphasis at Southwestern will satisfy most lower division courses required for the bachelor's in Natural Resources, Watershed Management option.

Following completion of the AS Natural Resources degree, students may transfer to OSU with 90 or more credit hours (up to 124 can be transferred). Southwestern courses in the AS Natural Resources are listed in the articulation agreement. AS Natural Resources graduates transferring to OSU have junior standing with only (a) upper division Synthesis and WIC requirements of the Baccalaureate Core to be completed, and (b) upper division courses associated with the Natural Resources degree program. 

Graduation Requirements

Students must complete a minimum of 92 credit hours with a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 or better. All courses must be completed with a grade of 'C' or better. Twenty-four (24) credits must be completed at Southwestern before the degree is awarded.

Courses that are developmental in nature (designed to prepare students for college transfer courses) are not applicable to this degree.

Complete the graduation application process one term prior to the term of completion (e.g., spring term graduates must apply during winter term).

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • Integrate technical “field” skills with analytical skills to identify important natural resources problems and begin to identify effective solutions for these problems.
  • Acquire knowledge regarding a range of natural resources current issues, social and political components of resource management.
  • Work with experts in a variety of natural resource fields.
  • Apply watershed management principles and practices to actual natural resources issues and problems to develop plans and solutions.

Math and writing placement are unique to each student and are determined during the admissions and intake advising process.  Additional math or writing courses may be required prior to taking the math or writing program requirements in this degree. 

Program Guide

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
F111 Introduction to Forestry 1 3
BI201 Introductory Biology 6 4
WR121Z Composition I 4
MTH112Z Precalculus II: Trigonometry 7 4
ANTH231 Native North Americans: PNW 5 3
BI202 Introductory Biology 6 4
PHL102 Ethics 3
WR227Z Technical Writing 4
BI203 Introductory Biology 6 4
PE231 Wellness for Life 3
or F180
Internship: Natural Resources 4
or Internship: Forestry
STAT243Z Elementary Statistics I 4
Second Year
Physical Geology I
or Physical Geology II
or Introduction to Soil Science
GEOG265 Intro to Geographical Info Systems 4
CHEM221 General Chemistry I 5
English Literature 3 3
COMM111Z Public Speaking 4
ECON201 Microeconomics 4
Field Measurements
or Elementary Forest Surveying
F250 Forest Biology 4
GEOG209 Physical Geography Weather/Climate 4
F241 Dendrology 5
F251 Recreation Resource Management 4
or Watershed Processes
HST203 History of the United States 3
 Total Credits92-93

NR201 may be substituted for F111.


This requires a corequisite G145 or G025 Field Trip course. Ask your advisor for details.


English Literature options: ENG104, ENG105, or ENG106.


Call 541-888-7405 to schedule with Internship Coordinator one month prior to term.


ANTH232 may be substituted for ANTH231.


BI101, BI102, BI103 may be substituted for BI201, BI202, BI203.


MTH112 (MTH112Z) or higher, excluding MTH243 (STAT243Z), MTH211MTH212, and MTH213.