Apr 21, 2024  
University Catalog 2023-2024 
University Catalog 2023-2024

College of Natural and Social Sciences

College of Natural and Social Sciences

Information about the College of Natural and Social Sciences

Office of the Dean

ASC, Rosser Hall B223
Phone: (323) 343-2000
E-mail: nss@calstatela.edu
WebsiteCollege of Natural and Social Sciences


Dean:   René Vellanoweth
Associate Dean:   Alison McCurdy
Associate Dean:   Robert Nissen
Resource Manager: Tommy Luong
Director of Student Success & Advising: LaVona Thomas
Graduate Dean Website: College of Natural and Social Sciences Graduate Program


The College of Natural and Social Sciences (NSS) seeks to inspire in our students an appreciation for the biological, physical, and social aspects of our earth and a life-long commitment to improving the lives of its inhabitants.  One example of this commitment is the Urban Ecology Center, which supports the advancement of transdisciplinary research, education, and professional development with a focus on sustainable, equitable, and fair economic drivers, land use practices, and public policies.

Graduates with majors in The College of Natural and Social Sciences (NSS) are well-prepared to succeed in a wide variety of career pathways.  They may move directly into the workforce after graduation, or continue their training in graduate schools or professional schools. 

Undergraduate Programs  NSS is committed to programs of academic excellence that provide educational and research opportunities for our diverse student body. Faculty from twelve departments and programs are dedicated to instruction, scholarship, and university and community service. In general education and undergraduate and graduate programs, the faculty support students in developing creative and critical thinking skills in preparation for careers or for admission to competitive graduate or professional programs in their respective disciplines.

Graduate and Postbaccalaureate Programs  NSS offers fifteen master’s degree programs in the fields of natural and social sciences. These graduate programs prepare students for advanced study toward the Ph.D. degree and for careers as professionals in NSS disciplines, community college teaching, industry, and government. The Department of Political Science offers a Pre-legal Option in its major and a Prelaw minor for students interested in a legal career. The Biology, Chemistry, Geology, History, Math, Physics, and Natural Science programs offer students a program for a single subject credential.

Faculty  NSS includes more than over 150 outstanding and dedicated faculty who have won numerous Statewide Outstanding Professor Awards.  Our faculty use their disciplinary expertise to enhances student learning in the classroom, laboratory, and field.  Many faculty work directly with students to pursue research, scholarship, and creative activities.  The College prides itself in the close interaction between faculty and students, and in its collaborative research environment that encourages student discovery.

Facilities  The College has a wide variety of laboratories and other facilities, instrumentation, and equipment that supports the curriculum, research, and field work pursued by students and faculty.

Supported Training Programs  The College of Natural and Social Sciences supports several training programs with a shared vision towards increasing equity, diversity, and inclusion while also engaging our students in high-impact experiential learning opportunities. For a complete listing of these opportunities, please visit https://www.calstatela.edu/nss/nss-programs-and-projects.

Guiding Principles

We are agents of change, promising to serve and transform Greater Los Angeles and the global society through innovative and intentional learning environments, socially conscious and equity-minded civic engagement, and impactful (inter)disciplinary research. 

The College of Natural and Social Sciences is guided by three strategic priorities:

  1. intentional learning environments,
  2. socially conscious and equity-minded civic engagement, and
  3. impactful (inter)disciplinary research

Vision Statement

We strive to meet the challenges of an ever-changing and dynamic society. 

Departments, Programs & Accreditation

There are 10 Departments and 2 interdisciplinary programs in NSS, together offering the undergraduate, graduate, and postbaccalaureate programs. 

The following programs are nationally accredited:

Chemistry (undergraduate) - American Chemical Society (ACS)
Public Administration (graduate) - National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA)