Natural Science and Mathematics

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Mission Statement

The Natural Science & Mathematics Division provides one of the components in the liberal education of Western’s students and makes available a variety of courses and programs for those who need more advanced training in the natural sciences and mathematics. This parallels Western’s mission which is to provide its students with a general education and meet the specific needs of those pursuing teaching, professional and technical careers.

About the Division

The Division of Natural Science and Mathematics is composed of four departments — biology, chemistry, earth & physical sciences and mathematics — which prepare students for a variety of careers in biology, chemistry, earth science, mathematics, physical science. We have a variety of pre-professional health science and pre-engineeering programs and maintain a strong commitment to majors who want to teach in Oregon’s elementary and secondary schools. The Division also offers minors in the four departments plus Physics.

Division Goals

  • To ensure excellence by continuing to implement assessment procedures for major and minor programs;
  • Maintain quality instruction in the science portion of Western’s Liberal Arts Core Curriculum;
  • Ensure a quality science education for those students who will be teachers;
  • Incorporate curricular flexibility to prepare students for the scientific challenges of the 21st century

Commitment to Shared Practice
The Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics at Western Oregon University (NSM) values diversity, access, equity, respect, honesty, and freedom of inquiry and expression, and strives to integrate these values across all its work. NSM is dedicated to the pursuit of excellence in natural science and mathematics and its applications, and to the facilitation and support of environments that foster this goal. As a division, NSM is committed to providing a climate that encourages the open expression and exchange of
ideas, that is free from all forms of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, and that is inclusive to all members and to those who participate in its activities. In pursuit of that commitment, NSM is dedicated to the philosophy of equity for all participants regardless of race; color; national or ethnic origin; immigration status; religion; age; marital status; parental status; sex; sexual orientation; gender identity or expression; socioeconomic background; educational background; disability; political belief; military service/veteran
status; professional rank; employment type; employment status; or any other reason not related to professional merit. This philosophy extends to all interactions between faculty, staff, students, administrators, and professional contacts, including but not limited to class sessions, laboratory and field settings, office hours, advising, meetings, and other academically-related conversations and events.

The following Code applies to all members and anyone else acting on behalf of or promoting the work of NSM. Members are expected to uphold the principles set out in the Code at all times in any venue or professional capacity.

The Code:
As members of NSM we will:

  • promote the study, application, and understanding of the natural sciences and
    mathematics;
  • act with integrity, and strive to be unbiased and truthful in all aspects of our
    work;
  • act to support NSM’s commitment to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion;
  • treat all others with dignity and never discriminate against another person on
    the basis of race; color; national or ethnic origin; immigration status; religion;
    age; marital status; parental status; sex; sexual orientation; gender identity or expression; socioeconomic background; educational background; disability;
    political belief; military service/veteran status; professional rank; employment
    type; employment status; or any other reason not related to professional merit;
  • never bully, abuse, victimize, or engage in harassment of any kind, including
    sexual harassment, whether via spoken or written words, emails, offensive
    images or graffiti, social media posts, or any other means, both explicit and
    subtle;
  • engage in honest discourse; avoid dismissing concerns or “gaslighting”;
  • avoid injuring others, their property, reputation, or employment by false or
    malicious action;
  • accept, and offer honest constructive criticism; acknowledge and correct
    errors; and credit properly the contributions of others;
  • engage in continuing personal education and improvement in the areas of
    diversity, justice, equity, accessibility, and inclusion;
  • assist other NSM members (faculty, staff, and students) in their professional
    development and support them in following this code of conduct;
  • avoid real or perceived conflicts of interest whenever possible, and disclose
    them to affected parties when they do exist.