Minor in Population Studies

This multidisciplinary minor provides an overview of population studies, a field that is concerned with the size, composition, and distribution of human populations – globally, nationally, and locally – and with how and why these characteristics change. Fundamentally, populations change as a function of changes in fertility, mortality, and migration, but contemporary population research stretches the field beyond these three variables to encompass a broad range of related topics, including family structure, health, the environment, and socioeconomic development. Through the coursework for this minor, students will realize the impact of population variables and processes on nearly every issue of public concern, including population aging, rising health care costs, national security, the economy, and climate change. A minor in population studies will complement majors in the College of Social Sciences and Public Policy, Environmental Studies, Environmental Sciences and Policy.


The minor in Population Studies consists of 15 semester hours of coursework comprising nine hours of required coursework and six hours of electives.

Required core (3 courses)

All students must take:

  • Economics of Population (ECP 3113)
  • Human Geography (GEO 1400)*
  • Population and Society (SYD 3020)*

Electives (2 courses)

The remaining six credit hours may be selected from the following courses:

  • Economic Geography (GEO 3502)

  • Economics of Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment (ECP 3302)
  • Cities in Society (SYD 3600)

  • World Cities: Quality of Life (URS 1006)*

  • Urban Geography (GEO 4602)
  • Family Problems and Social Change (SYO 3100)*
  • Aging and the Life Course (SYP 3730)
  • Economics of Development (ECS 4013)
  • Environmental Science (GEO 1330)*

* Course also may be counted toward student’s Liberal Studies requirement.

All courses must be completed with a grade of “C-” or better. For more information, contact Dr. Carl P. Schmertmann, Director, Center for Demography and Population Health.