Energy Studies

The Energy Studies curriculum was started in the Fall of 2013 by Yale Climate & Energy Institute. With the closing of the institute in June of this year, Energy Studies will continue as a multidisciplinary academic program in Yale College.

Office Hours for the Summer: For appointments or questions, contact with the subject line: ENERGY STUDIES 


Congratulations to the twenty-six Energy Studies scholars in the Yale Class of 2016! See poster below.

The spring term enrollment period for Energy Studies will run until May 25, 2016. 

In the future, enrollment for Energy Studies will take place in the fall term, in coordination with the other Yale College multidisciplinary academic programs (MAPs), and will be limited to students who are then in sophomore year. In other words, if you were a sophomore during the 2016 Spring Term (i.e., in the Class of 2018) and would like to enroll in Energy Studies, you will need to apply by May 25, 2016.


Energy Studies is a multidisciplinary academic program (MAP) in Yale College. The curriculum is designed to provide selected undergraduates with the knowledge and skills needed for advanced studies, leadership, and success in energy-related fields. The grand challenge for these fields in the 21st century is to deploy sustainable sources of energy in ways that are less harmful to health and the environment than the combustion of fossil fuels, but are still capable of providing convenient, affordable energy for all of the world’s population. 

In addition to their participation in the program, Energy Studies Scholars must complete the requirements of a Yale College major. Yale College does not offer a major in energy studies.

Admission to the Energy Studies program is by application, normally in the sophomore year. See Instructions for Applicants, at top left. (For the 2016-17 academic year, the application process will be run in the fall, in coordination with the other multidisciplinary academic programs.) Accepted students are assigned a mentor from one of the departments associated with Energy Studies. Upon successful completion of the requirements, students receive a document at graduation, acknowledging their completion of the Energy Studies program; this becomes part of a student’s academic record at Yale and is recorded by the Registrar’s Office. Graduates of the program are invited to join the Yale Alumni in Energy organization.

Undergraduate scholars in Energy Studies are expected to complete one course in each of the three tracks defining the multidisciplinary curriculum, plus three electives from a list of eligible courses (see Courses and Capstone Projects, at top left). Of these six courses, three must be outside the department of the student’s major. For double majors, this requirement is modified as follows: three courses from each of the student’s two majors can be used to satisfy program requirements, provided that the courses meet the distributional requirements across the three areas (tracks) of Energy Studies.

The capstone of the program is a senior project, which may take the form of a traditional senior essay (with permission, the student’s senior essay in the major may fulfill this requirement); a group project culminating in a substantial report; or a summer job or internship in an energy-related field with a written report. Jobs and internships are coordinated through the Energy Studies director of undergraduate studies, the student’s Energy Studies mentor and the Yale College Center for International and Professional Experience.

Energy Studies courses are organized into three areas or tracks:

(I) Energy Science and Technology,

(II) Energy and the Environment, and 

(III) Energy and Society: Economic, Political and Social Issues.

Students normally complete electives in at least two of the three areas.