Courses in Environmental Studies (Division 366)

The quest for harmony between humans and the natural world requires understanding of nature, society, and our individual selves. The program in Environmental Studies encourages students to supplement their training in particular academic disciplines by exploring aspects of natural science, social science, and the humanities. The Program is not a concentration program, although a student may emphasize environmental studies in the LS&A Individual Concentration Program (ICP).

Environmental Studies 123, 124, and 320 offer broad overviews of the field and serve as introductions to more advanced work. Environmental Studies 420 and 421 offer opportunities for independent study. In these courses the student is responsible for defining a plan of study, enlisting others with similar interests if appropriate, and locating a faculty member willing to supervise the work. Environmental Studies 450 is a Capstone Seminar providing the opportunity for seniors, particularly those pursuing ICPs, to work together to compare diverse perspectives on human values and the environment.

Courses on environmental issues are offered by many different departments and programs in LS&A as well as in other colleges of the university. Students interested in the environment should explore each issue of the Time Schedule thoroughly, because many appropriate courses are offered at irregular intervals under unpredictable headings. Of particular interest are some of the University Courses.

123/Geol. 123/AOSS 123. Life and the Global Environment. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in 361. (2). (NS). (BS).

How human beings interact with the natural environment, including the physical and chemical environment and living creatures. Topics include: the cowboy mentality and the need for environmental ethics, the causes and consequences of climate change, air pollution and energy, the ozone emergency and its lessons, the environmental impact of neoclassical economics, and environmental responsibility. Instruction is by lectures, films, assigned reading, and computer exercises. Grades are based on homework and frequent short quizzes. The text is Environmental Science: A Global Concern (3rd or 4th edition) by W.P. Cunningham and B.W. Saigo, William C. Brown Publishers, 1995. Cost:2 WL:1 (Walker)

320. Introduction to Environmental Studies. (4). (Excl).

A survey of the environmental state of the world in 1977, including the health of physical systems such as climate and water, of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, and of humans and their habitations. A review of the ways in which earth supports the lives of human beings and an examination of the origins of natural resources and the politics and economics of resource use, how resource consumption has changed with time, and how it varies among contemporary cultures. These themes will be linked by considerations of sustainability and their relationship to the size of the human population, the quality of life, and the integrity of natural systems. Some lectures will be given by visiting experts. Discussions will cover lectures and readings, field trips, in-class writing, and group projects. Grades will be based on short papers, problem sets, field-trip reports and longer research papers. There will be two texts and a course pack. Cost:2 WL:4 (Badgley)

361/Geol. 277. Humans and the Natural World. Those with credit for 123 may only elect 361 for 1 credit. (3). (NS). (BS).

How humans affect and are affected by the natural environment, including other living creatures, the chemistry of air and water, and the physical environment. Problems of pollution, climate change, depletion of natural resources, and loss of biological diversity. There are two hours of lecture each week in conjunction with Environmental Studies 123, Life and the Global Environment. The third hour is a seminar and discussion concentrating on the impact of economic thinking on human interaction with the natural world and using as text Economic Theory for Environmentalists by John Gowdy and Sabine OHara, St. Lucie Press, Delray Beach, Florida, 1995. There will be frequent written assignments as well as assigned reading and computer exercises. Instruction is by lectures, films, assigned readings, class discussions, and computer exercises. Grades are based on homework, participation in class, and frequent short quizzes. Cost:1 WL:1 (Walker)

412. Alternative Patterns of Resource Utilization: The Amish in Twentieth Century America. Environ. Studies. 320 or permission of instructor. (3). (Excl).

The Amish are succeeding and increasing in numbers while appearing to defy modern technology and contemporary wisdom. A detailed study of this cohesive, rural subculture can give perspective to contemporary American agricultural methods, consumption patterns, conflict resolution, and resource utilization. The role of community, value systems, social structures, scale, and technology will be explored, as will the relationships to the natural environment and the dominant culture. Questions will be raised concerning cultural diversity as it pertains to human survival and problems of maintaining cultural cohesiveness and transferring specific behaviors across cultural boundaries. Biweekly classes will consist primarily of lecture and discussion with several guest speakers, films, and perhaps a field trip. Students will be evaluated on the basis of class participation, small papers, a research paper to be shared with the class, and probably a final exam. Cost:1 WL:1 (Huntington)

415/RC Nat. Sci. 415. Science and Politics. One college-level science course. (4). (Excl). (BS).

See RC Nat. Sci. 415. (Wright)


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