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Northwestern University

Area I: Natural Sciences

NOTE: Students who start taking classes at Northwestern after Spring 2023 should refer to the FD-NS: Natural Sciences page. The information below pertains to students who started at Northwestern Spring 2023 or earlier.

This area introduces you to methods of inquiry and fundamental concepts in the natural sciences. Courses consider the theoretical and empirical bases of generally applicable statements about the natural world.

Why study the natural sciences?

Because the natural world so directly affects our lives, it is important to learn about the problems that concern natural scientists and the methods they use to confront them. The properties and structures of atoms and molecules, the principles of cognition, the structure and resources of the earth—all are examples of scientific concerns that underlie issues of fundamental importance to modern society. Understanding the foundations of modern science will enable you to make intelligent judgments about current issues and prepare you to understand those that cannot yet be anticipated.

Choosing courses

Review the list of approved courses in natural sciences. The list is extensive and broad, so you can choose courses according to your background and interests. Consult your adviser about where to start.

Consult the Undergraduate Catalog for prerequisites for science courses.

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