Northern Outdoor and Environmental Studies

Five Finger Rapids

Learn and explore northern environmental issues.

Experience the northern environment and examine a range of environmental issues, including land use and interpretation, resource depletion and stewardship, wilderness fragmentation and protection, biodiversity, and threats like pollution and climate change. 

Consider the variety of perspectives on and the ethics of using and experiencing environments. Study the lands and write about them; see the North and think about it. 

Northern Outdoor and Environmental Studies 

Yukon University has made exciting changes to the way many of its courses are delivered and scheduled courses are being offered face-to-face and online.

Online courses may have weekly scheduled video-conferenced sessions, while others may run entirely in person or in a combination. See the course pages and course outlines for details. Spring courses are running online to ensure the widest accessibility.

Contact the School of Liberal Arts or a program advisor for assistance or for more information about our programs and courses or to see if NOES is the program for you.

Program description

Northern Outdoor and Environmental Studies is a multidisciplinary exploration of contemporary environmental issues and human-environment relationships, with particular emphasis on northern systems.

Drawing upon the natural and social sciences, humanities and the arts, and integrating experiential learning opportunities to bridge classroom, community and Yukon wilderness, the program critically examines a variety of environmental issues, including:

  • land use and interpretation
  • resource depletion and stewardship
  • wilderness protection and fragmentation
  • biodiversity
  • pollution and contaminants
  • climate change

The complex nature of environmental subject matter is addressed through ecological, socio-cultural, political, economic and philosophical inquiry.

The program is sufficiently broad to be of interest to students seeking vocational opportunities after completing their studies at Yukon University or preparing for transfer to a university degree program.

It also presents an exciting continuing education opportunity for individuals currently employed in or interested in fields such as education, environmental policy or management, recreation and tourism.

Admission requirements
  • English 12 (65%)

If students do not meet the admission requirement, they should explore entry options with a Program Advisor.

Graduation requirements

To graduate, NOES Diploma students must complete 60 credits, including:

  • ENGL 100 and ENGL 101 (6 credits) 
  • One Yukon First Nations Core Competency course (3 credits)
  • One Liberal Arts elective (3 credits)
  • Two science electives (6 credits)*
  • Two social-science electives or additional science electives (6 credits)
  • Two Northern Studies (NOST) core courses (6 credits)
  • Two Northern Environmental Studies (ENST/PHED) core courses (6 credits) 
  • Four Northern Studies (NOST) electives (12 credits)
  • Four open electives (12 credits)

Diploma students must ensure they

  • complete at least six courses (18 credits) at the 200 level or above in their program
  • undertake at least 50% of the work at Yukon University
  • maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 (C average)


  • NOST and ENST/PHED core courses and other NOST electives may be used as open electives provided all other requirements have been met.
  • 060-level courses and lower will not satisfy open elective requirements.


  • As of May 2019, elective science courses no longer require labs.
  • NOES Diploma students may take additional science courses (lab or lab-free courses) to meet elective requirements.

A Program Advisor can discuss program options.

Yukon First Nations Core Competency

Yukon University recognizes that a greater understanding and awareness of Yukon First Nations history, culture and journey towards self-determination will help to build positive relationships among all Yukon citizens. As a result, you will be required to achieve core competency in knowledge of Yukon First Nations.

For details, visit Yukon First Nations Core Competency

Dual credit possibilities

Any undergraduate-level Yukon University course that is part of the British Columbia Council on Admission and Transfer (BCCAT) system is eligible for dual credit. Many courses in the School of Liberal Arts are suitable for high-school students to take as dual credit courses providing any prerequisites are met.

Students have often selected ENGL 100, HIST 140, PSYC 100, PSYC 101, and SOCI 100 for dual credit, but many other first-year courses and some second-year courses are options. Beginning in Fall 2023, ENGL 101 is available.

For more information about dual credit for Yukon high-school students, see the Dual Credit program page.


For transfer information on a specific Yukon University course, click the 'Check the BC Transfer Options' link on the course’s information page. For additional information, consult a Program Advisor.

Money matters


Tuition for credit programs is calculated per course credit. See money matters for more information.

Some programs and courses have additional fees -  see Ancillary Fees.

Student financial awards

Education is an investment in your future, your family and your community. Yukon University is pleased to support that investment by offering some of the most competitive tuition rates in the country, as well as several student financial awards to help offset your educational and living costs.

Financial assistance

There are government programs, scholarships, bursaries, awards and First Nation funding available to financially support you throughout your academic career.

See money matters for more information, or talk to our financial advising staff in the Student Services Centre. Email or call 867 668 5209 to make an appointment.

Program Guides

A program planning guide lays out the courses and requirements needed to graduate from a particular program. It guides you through course selection options for each term, provides a sample program pathway and acts as a tool to track your progress.


Northern Studies

Title Campus Scheduled
ANTH 140 - Introduction to the Fields of Anthropology Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ANTH 144 - Heritage and Culture Field School
ANTH 221 - Subarctic Archaeology
ANTH 225 - Field Methods in Subarctic Ethnography and Archaeology
ATHA 101 - Introduction to Native Languages I Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ATHA 102 - Introduction to Native Languages 2
BIOL 220 - Ecology Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
BIOL 230 - Conservation Biology
BIOL 290 - Beringia: Its Pleistocene Environment and Paleoecology
CRIM 219 - Aboriginal Peoples and Canadian Criminal Justice
ENGL 220 - The North in Canadian Literature
ENGL 230 - Indigenous Narratives
ENST 200 - Environmental Perspectives Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ENST 201 - Environmental Ethics
ENVS 100 - Introduction to Environmental Science 1 Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ENVS 101 - Introduction to Environmental Science 2
ENVS 225 - Environmental Change and Fish and Wildlife Health Online/Video
ENVS 226 - Environmental Change and Community Health
ENVS 227 - Yukon Source Water Protection and Watershed Stewardship
FNGA 100 - Introduction to Indigenous Governance Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 101 - Governance & Land Claims Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 200 - Organizational and Community Wellness Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 207 - Public Policy in Northern and Indigenous Context Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 208 - Human Resource Management
FNGA 209 - Intergovernmental Relations Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 240 - Indigenous People and Research
FNGA 301 - Theory and Practice of Negotiation Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNGA 302 - Power and Influence Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
FNST 140 - Preservation of Traditional Knowledge
GEOG 290 - Climate Change and the Circumpolar World
GEOL 112 - Introduction to the Mineral Exploration and Mining Industries
HIST 140 - History of Yukon First Nations and Self-Government Online/Video
LANG 140 - Language and Culture Preservation Online/Video
NOST 100 - Introduction to the Study of the North
NOST 101 - The Circumpolar World Online/Video
NOST 324 - Contemporary Issues in the Circumpolar World I Online/Video
NOST 325 - Contemporary Issues in the Circumpolar World II
NOST 326 - Lands and Environments of the Circumpolar North I Online/Video
NOST 327 - Lands and Environments of the Circumpolar World II
NOST 328 - Peoples and Cultures of the Circumpolar North I Online/Video
NOST 329 - Peoples and Cultures of the Circumpolar North II
PHED 222 - Northern Outdoor Pursuits and Leadership 1 Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
PHED 225 - Northern Outdoor Pursuits and Leadership 2
PHIL 230 - Bridging Knowledges Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
POLI 222 - Northern Resources and Environmental Law
POLI 230 - Indigenous Political Thought Online/Video
POLI 330 - Indigenous Politics in Canada Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
RRMT 121 - Northern Field Biology
RRMT 236 - Land and Protected Area Management
RRMT 238 - Environmental Protection and Impact Assessment
RRMT 241 - Introduction to Land Management Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
WGST 202 - Women in Indigenous Societies

Open Electives

Title Campus Scheduled
ANTH 101 - Biological Anthropology
ANTH 102 - Survey of World Prehistory
ANTH 103 - Introduction to Archaeology Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ANTH 210 - Globalization and the Culture of Capitalism
ANTH 226 - Analytical Methods in Archaeology and Ethnography
ANTH 300 - Anthropology of Gender
ANTH 312 - The Anthropology of the State - Past, Present, Future
ASTR 100 - Introduction to Astronomy
COMM 100 - Business Communications Whitehorse (Ayamdigut), Online/Video
COMM 204 - Introduction to Scientific and Technical Communication
CRIM 101 - Introduction to Criminology
CRWR 201 - Introduction to Creative Writing 1
CRWR 202 - Introduction to Creative Writing 2 Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ECON 100 - Introduction to Microeconomics Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
ECON 101 - Introduction to Macroeconomics
ENGL 205 - Literary Representations of the Natural World
ENGL 206 - Introduction to the Short Story Online/Video
GEOG 250 - Introduction to Mapping and Geographical Information System (GIS)
HIST 120 - European History 1
HIST 121 - European History 2
HIST 135 - Canadian History to 1867
HIST 136 - Canadian History - Confederation to the Present
MATH 105 - Introductory Statistics
PHIL 120 - Introduction to Ethics Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
POLI 101 - The Government of Canada Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
POLI 201 - Introduction to Political Thought
POLI 241 - Introduction to International Relations
PSYC 100 - Introduction to Psychology 1 Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
PSYC 101 - Introduction to Psychology 2
PSYC 202 - Cognitive Psychology Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
PSYC 203 - Social Psychology
PSYC 204 - Abnormal Psychology Online/Video
PSYC 205 - Child Development
PSYC 206 - Human Growth and Lifespan Development
RELI 100 - World Religions I
RELI 101 - World Religions II
SOCI 100 - Introduction to Sociology Whitehorse (Ayamdigut), Online/Video
SOCI 103 - Canadian Society
SOCI 104 - Social Problems
SOCI 203 - Sociology of the Family
SOCI 209 - Society, Technology and Values Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
SOCI 227 - Research Methods in the Social Sciences
SW 200 - Introduction to Social Work Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
THEA 200 - Introduction to Acting 1 Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)
WGST 100 - Introduction to Women's Studies 1 Online/Video
WGST 101 - Introduction to Women's Studies 2
WGST 200 - Women and Social Change
WGST 230 - Women and History - Rethinking Canada
WGST 240 - The Study of Men and Masculinities 1
WGST 241 - The Study of Men and Masculinities II

Third year

Title Campus Scheduled
INTD 350 - Special Topics Whitehorse (Ayamdigut)