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Northwestern University

FD-NS: Natural Sciences

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

The Natural Sciences use a combination of observation, experimentation, and modeling to understand features and mechanisms of the natural world at all levels, from the subatomic scale to the cosmos. Discoveries in the Natural Sciences inform invention and the development of new technologies to solve problems; conversely, new technologies advance discovery and the creation of new knowledge. Courses in the Natural Sciences convey our current understanding of the natural world and the methods by which this understanding is achieved through systematic hypothesis testing. Students learn to appreciate the evidence for our current understanding of nature; the scientific process; as well as the implications, utility, and limitations of scientific inquiry to solve problems and benefit society.

Learning objectives

Courses in the Natural Sciences are designed to achieve a combination of the following learning outcomes:

Choosing courses

Review the list of approved courses in natural sciences. You can choose courses according to your background and interests. Consult your adviser about where to start. Some approved courses have prerequisites (you can find these described in the Undergraduate Catalog), but there are also a wide range of courses appropriate for students with a standard high school science background.

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