American Univesity of Beirut

Master Degree Program in Environmental Sciences

​Director:    Massoud, May
​Professors:​El-Fadel, Mutasem (CEE); Zaatari, Ghazi (Pathology and Laboratory Medicine); Zurayk, Rami (LDEM)
​Associate Professors:   Makdisi, Karim (PSPA) ; Massoud, May (FHS)


The Interfaculty Graduate Environmental Sciences Program (IGESP) is a multidisciplinary field of study which leads to the Master of Sciences degree in Environmental Sciences with four possible majors: Environmental Technology, Ecosystem Management, Environmental Health, and Environmental Policy Planning.

Together, these majors ensure adequate coverage of all environmental and sustainable development issues prevailing in Lebanon and the Arab World, in their various ecological, economic and social dimensions.

The program has been designed to cater to the rising demand for environmental scientists in the Middle East region. The specificity of the region’s environment is reflected both in the program’s academic and educational perspectives.

Founded in the mid-1990s, the IGESP program, recognizing Lebanon’s unique diversity – environmental, societal and cultural – also understands that various environmental problems affect the integrity of the country’s ecosystems. Accordingly, IGESP adopts a holistic approach to resolving those problems, and offers a course of study designed to address both the most salient environmental issues as well as more specialized topics.

IGESP draws on the resources of various faculties/departments and provides opportunities for study and research in the field of the environment in its totality. While the program caters mostly to physical and natural sciences students, it is offered to students holding a bachelor’s degree in any approved relevant discipline of engineering, natural or social science, or humanities. It provides graduates with the necessary tools to assess diversified and multidisciplinary environmental issues. The program focuses on enhancing students’ research, analytical, problem-solving and critical-thinking skills by emphasizing the case study approach to learning and solving environmental problems.

Like all programmes at the American University of Beirut, IGESP is registered in the US through the New York State Education Department.


The mission of the AUB IGESP Program is to contribute to building the environmental capacity in Lebanon and the region through human resources development as well as research and community involvement. The essence of the program lies in its interdisciplinarity. The program is firmly based on a holistic view of the environment that integrates the ecological, technical, health and socioeconomic dimensions. We aim to train creative, flexible and cross-curricular graduates capable of appreciating, building on, and applying cutting-edge knowledge for the management of the environment. Our graduates are empowered with exceptional technical, managerial, critical evaluation, research and reporting skills.


The IGESP Program aspires to be the leading interdisciplinary program bridging environmental education, research and service through close partnership with academic institutions and civil society actors.

General Information    

The degree of Master of Science (MS) in Environmental Sciences is offered with four possible majors:

  • Ecosystem Management in the Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences (FAFS)
  • Environmental Health in the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS)
  • Environmental Technology in the Maroun Semaan Faculty of Engineering and Architecture (MSFEA)
  • Environmental Policy Planning in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS)

The program draws on the resources of various departments of the faculties of Agricultural and Food Sciences (FAFS), Arts and Sciences (FAS), Engineering and Architecture (MSFEA), Health Sciences (FHS) and Medicine (FM), and it provides opportunities for study and research in the general field of environment.

The program provides graduates with the necessary tools for professional practice and/ or the pursuit of higher education. It is administered by an interfaculty committee that coordinates with the graduate committees of the faculties concerned.

Criteria for Admission    

To be accepted into the program, an applicant must:

  • meet general university requirements for admission to graduate study.
  • be recommended by the appropriate faculty graduate committee and accepted by the Interfaculty Coordinating Committee of the program.
  • provide at least two academic letters of recommendation and one other professional letter if relevant.
  • submit a detailed effective statement of purpose (400-500 words) for each major indicating the purpose for pursing graduate study in the particular field at AUB and specifying the applicant’s research interests and/or practical experience in the field. Note: The statement should be oriented to the major.
  • have a background that is relevant to the major.
    Applicants to the program may be admitted under the following categories:
  • graduate - if the average in the last 60 credits or the last two years is greater than 80 (3.2)
  • graduate on probation - if the average in the last 60 credits or the last two years is less than 80 (3.2) and greater than 75 (2.7)

Adequate preparation to take any graduate course is decided by the academic advisor and the Interfaculty Graduate Environmental Sciences Program Committee (IGESPC).

Degree Requirements

Requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Environmental Sciences (any major), both thesis and non-thesis options, are tabulated below. The master’s degree with thesis option will normally require between 20 and 24 months to be completed. In both options, the student is required to complete 30 credits of which 9 credits are core courses.

Group Thesis Option CreditsNon-Thesis Option Credits
​Core A 9 9
​Total number of credits required for graduation​30

Core courses, as well as basic and broad electives, are listed below. Other relevant electives not listed below may be accepted on a case-by-case basis. These courses are structured to provide students with a diversified and multidisciplinary background in environmental sciences. Students have to register for the core course offered by their faculty of concentration. Students are also required to select two other supplementary courses from the list of core courses approved by the program. Students may not select two core courses from the same faculty. Students can take other elective courses from other faculties after securing the approval of the advisor. Specific faculty/department requirements are defined under each respective faculty/department.

​Group A Core Courses in Environmental Science Credits
One course selected from the following ECOM core courses ​ ​
​ENSC 630/LDEM 630
​Natural Resources Management

LDEM 301Urban Greening​3
LDEM 302Green Infrastructure for Resilient Landscapes and Cities​3
One course selected from the following ENVH core courses
​ENSC 640/ENHL 310
​Toxicology and Environmental Health Hazards
ENSC 641/ENVH 312Occupational Health​3
ENSC 642/ENHL 314Environmental Management Systems​3
One course selected from the following ENVT core courses ​ ​
​CIVE 550
​Water Treatment and Laboratory
CIVE 551Wastewater Treatment and Laboratory​3
CIVE 552Waste Management and Treatment​3
CIVE 553Environmental Biotechnology​3
CIVE 555Air Quality Management​3
​CIVE 654Environmental Bioremediation​3
ENSC 600/CIVE 655Air Pollution and Control​3
ENVP core course ​ ​
​ENSC 650/PSPA 316 International Environmental Policy​3
​Group B Examples of Major ElectivesCredits
1. Ecosystem Management ​ ​
​ENSC 631/LDEM 631
​Agricultural Pollution and Control
ENSC 633/LDEM 633​Ecological Landscape Design and Planning
ENSC 634/LDEM 634​Sustainable Landscape Planning and Management
ENSC 635/LDEM 635/PSPA 3446A​Political Ecology of Water
ENSC 622/CIVE 653
​Environmental Chemistry and Microbiology
ENSC 641/ENHL 312
​Occupational Health
ENSC 642/ENHL 314
​Environmental Management Systems
ENSC 652/CIVE 656
​Environmental Impact Assessment
ENSC 654
​Physical and Biological Resources in Terrestrial Ecosystems
ENSC 655/AGSC 301
​Statistical Methods in Agriculture
ECON 333
​Energy Economics and Policy
ENSC 662/ECON 338
​Economics of Natural Resources and the Environment
LDEM 300
​Directed Study in Ecosystem Management
LDEM 301
​Urban Greening
LDEM 302
​Green Infrastructure for Resilient Landscapes and Cities
BIOL 362
​Advanced Ecology
BIOL 363
​Population and Community Ecology
AGSC 376
​Resource and Environmental Economics
AGSC 384
​Political Economy of Middle East Development
CIVE 648
​Climate Change and Water Resources
CIVE 552
​Waste Management and Treatment
ENSC 630/LDEM 630/CIVE 633
​Natural Resources Management
CIVE 654
​Environmental Bioremediation
ENSC 600/CIVE 655
​Air Pollution and Control
CIVE 659
​Environmental and Water Conflict Management
URPL 664
​Urban Land Use Planning
URPL 665
​Development and Planning Policies​3
2. Environmental Health
CIVE 601
​GIS and Geospatial Data Modeling
EPHD 300Principles of Epidemiology​3
PBHL 300Foundations of Public Health​3
PBHL 310Research Design​3
EPHD 310Basic Biostatistics​3
ENSC 600/CIVE 655Air Pollution and Contro I​3
ENSC 640/ENHL 310Toxicology and Environmental Health Hazards​3
ENSC 641/ENHL 312Occupational Health​3
ENSC 642/ENHL 314Environmental Management Systems​3
​ENHL 301
​Environmental Health and Sustainable Development
ENHL 307Food Safety​3
ENHL 308Tutorial​1-3
ENHL 320Special Topics in Environmental Risk Analysis​3
ENSC 652/CIVE 656Environmental Impact Assessment​3
ENSC 658/PSPA 343Environmental Conflict Resolution​3
ENSC 661/BIOL 363Population and Community Ecology​3
ENSC 662/ECON 338Economics of Natural Resources and the Environment​3
CIVE 659Environmental and Water Conflict Management​3
3. Environmental Technology ​ ​
​CIVE 550
CIVE 551​3
CIVE 552​3
CIVE 553​3
CIVE 555​3
CIVE 601​3
CIVE 602​3
CIVE 650​3
CIVE 651​3
CIVE 652​3
CIVE 653​3
CIVE 654​3
ENSC 600/CIVE 655​3
CIVE 656​3
ENSC 651/CIVE 657​3
CIVE 751​3
CIVE 658
CIVE 659​3
ENSC 602/CIVE 755​3
ENSC 642/ENHL 314​3
ENSC 662/ECON 338​3
CIVE 685​3
4. Environmental Policy Planning ​ ​
​PPIA 301
​Public Policy and Practice
PPIA 304Development​3
PPIA 305Economics for Public Affairs​3
PPIA 306Political Economy​3
PPIA 307Politics of Policy-Making​3
​PPIA 308
​Research Methods
​PPIA 309
​Topics in Public Policy
​PPIA 310
​Topics in Public Policy
​PPIA 311
​Topics in International Affairs
​PSPA 300
​Methodology and Research Design
PSPA 312
​Public International Law
​PSPA 314
​The UN and International Politics
​PSPA 324
​Government and Politics of Lebanon
​PSPA 343/ENSC 658
​Environmental Conflict Resolution
​PSPA 345
​Special Topics in Environmental Policy and Politics
​PSPA 346
​Special Topics in Natural Resource Policy and Politics
​PSPA 351
​New Public Management
​PSPA 352
​Foundations of Public Policy
​PSPA 360
​Public Policy Research and Analysis
​ENSC 659/PSPA 362
​Public Policy and Administration
​PSPA 373
​The Ethics of Public Administration
​AGSC 376
​Resource and Environmental Economics
​AGSC 384
​Rural Social Change, Development the Environment
​ECON 333
​Energy Economics and Policy
​ECON 338
​Economics of Natural Resources and the Environment
​URPL 664
​Urban Land Use Planning
​URPL 665
​Development and Planning Policies
​CIVE 601​GIS and Geospatial Data Modeling​3

Graduation Requirements

See General University Academic Information in this catalogue.

Core Course Descriptions

  • Download PDF

Contact Us

For various questions, please try contacting us via social media first!
read more

Privacy Statement

We take data privacy seriously and adhere to all applicable data privacy laws and regulations.
read more

Copyright and Disclaimer

Written permission is needed to copy or disseminate all or part of the materials on the AUB website.
read more

Title IX, Non-Discrimination, and Anti-Discriminatory Harassment

AUB is committed to providing a safe, respectful, and inclusive environment to all members of its community.
read more