Course code:



A - Advanced

Class size limit:


Meets the following requirements:

  • HS - Human Studies

Lab fee:


Typically offered:

Once every three years

In his seminal essay The Land Ethic Aldo Leopold explores the incongruity between humans’ legal structures and the natural world. This incongruity is particularly acute in the area of wildlife conservation. This course will look at U.S. federal and state legal frameworks to protect, manage, and enhance biodiversity and the non-human world. A central focus of this course is the far-reaching goals, mechanisms, and future of the Endangered Species Act. Significant time is also dedicated to legal issues concerning marine conservation, marine mammals, Native Americans’ wildlife concerns, migratory birds, animal rights, and agencies entrusted to manage wildlife. Special attention is given to debates currently underway to amend or restrict the Endangered Species Act and other pending wildlife legislation. Students are asked to engage in a term-long project that attempts to apply the principles of the course to a pressing wildlife issue. Evaluation is based on class participation, analytical problem sets, and contribution to the group project.


HS4026 Environmental Law and Policy, wildlife fieldwork experience, or advanced organismal biology courses. Permission of the instructor.

Always visit the Registrar's Office for the official course catalog and schedules.