Courses: Current and Upcoming

Current Semester Courses

ENVS 10100-01 Environmental Seminar NS

0.5 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Paula Turkon, Admin Annex 118, Ext. 4-3280, pturkon@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 35

PREREQUISITES: None

STUDENTS: Required for all first-year Environmental Studies and Environmental Science majors if not taken in the fall.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Exposes students in the Environmental Studies/Science program to environmentally relevant research, examples of careers in the environmental field, and opportunities to meet local and regional professionals. The Spring 2013 seminar will explore agriculture and local food systems in Central New York.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminars, discussion and readings in environmental studies and science.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Attend at least 11 seminars. Pass/Fail only.

 

ENVS 10400-01 Gardening Principles and Practices NS

1 CREDIT

INSTRUCTOR: Karryn Olson-Ramanujan, Admin Annex 106, Ext. 4-5815, kolsonramanujan@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 15

PREREQUISITES: None

STUDENTS:   Intended for all students.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Block II courses. Learning outdoors in the student-run organic and permaculture gardens, this hands-on course will enable you to work with soil and plants, and to learn about the conscious design of landscapes and social networks that care for them.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Practicum with 1 meeting day per week plus one additional hour weekly to be done with a small group project.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: This course is offered on a pass/fail basis. To pass the course, you need to (1) attend and fully engage in the Friday classes and submit weekly reflections, and (2) devote one additional hour per week to a group project.

 

ENVS-11000-01 The Environmental Crisis  LA NS 2a

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Susan Nixson, Administrative Annex 106, Ext. 4-5814, snixson@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 70

PREREQUISITES: None  

STUDENTS: Intended for all students.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Course provides basic literacy to understand the current environmental crisis, covering such topics as energy, population growth, climate change, biodiversity loss, resource exploitation, food production, and toxics. Course also investigates potential solutions to minimize impact on the personal, regional, national and global scales. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Grading based on short assignments, participation, and a final exam.

 

ENVS 12100-01 Environmental Science and Technology: Lecture LA NS 2a

4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Susan Allen-Gil, CNS 253, Ext. 4-1066, sallen@ithaca.edu  

ENROLLMENT: 54

PREREQUISITES: None

STUDENTS: Intended for Environmental Science & Studies majors but open to others with a serious interest.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will focus on the scientific principles and technological advances fundamental to understanding human impact on the environment. We will investigate how technology contributes to as well as reduces our impact on the environment. Topics include: global climate change, water quality and availability, air quality, sustainable food production, biodiversity loss, and chemical and biological waste remediation. We will tie together the political, social, and economic aspects of environmental studies using a global perspective.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: A combination of discussion, lectures, projects, written assignments and oral presentations. 

 

ENVS 12100-02 through 04 Environmental Science and Technology: Laboratory

0 CREDITS                                                                   

INSTRUCTORS: Susan Allen-Gil, Paula Turkon

ENROLLMENT: 18

PREREQUISITES: None

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Field and laboratory exploration of concepts addressed in ENVS 12100 Lecture above.

COURSE FORMAT AND STYLE: Laboratory

 

ENVS 20100-01 through 08 Environmental Research: Intro

1-3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTORS:             01: Susan Allen-Gil, CNS 253, Ext. 4-1066, sallen@ithaca.edu

                        02: Jake Brenner, CNS 258, Ext. 4-3967, jbrenner@ithaca.edu

                        03: Jason Hamilton, CNS 252, Ext. 4-1439, jhamilton@ithaca.edu

                        04: Michael Smith, 320 Muller Center, Ext. 4-1290, mismith@ithaca.edu

                        05: Leann Kanda, CNS 159, Ext. 4-3986, lkanda@ithaca.edu

                        06: Anne Stork, Admin. Annex, Ext. 4-3575, astork@ithaca.edu  

                        07: Susan Swensen, CNS 254, Ext. 4-3511, sswensen@ithaca.edu

                        08: Chris Sinton, CNS 257, Ext. 4-5806, csinton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 5 each section

PREREQUISITES: Permission of instructor.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: For students who desire hands-on research in issues relating to sustainability and the environment. Research can involve participation in continuing projects or new, student-proposed projects. Students will work closely with a faculty member to guide their study.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Independent research

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Both vary, depending on professor.

 

ENVS 20203-01 Topics in Sustainability: Designing Games for Sustainability

4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Xanthe Matychak, xanthe.matychak@gmail.com

ENROLLMENT: 20      

PREREQUISITES: Previous coursework in sustainability or community development, or permission of instructor.

STUDENTS: Open to all students.                                                            

COURSE DESCRIPTION: In this class students will design board games or card games that promote positive change in an environmental studies context, using a hands-on, human-centered design process. Students will learn how to:

•   observe human behavior (and human-tool relationships)

•   articulate and frame “problem spaces” (factors that prevent the achievement of goals)

•   brainstorm and assess ideas

•   build and test prototypes using desktop manufacturing tools

•   give and receive useful feedback

•   document research and development

•   navigate diverse points of view and values

•   develop “creative confidence”

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: This course is an open studio in which our main method of learning will be project based, learning about and applying design-thinking methodology to game development. In addition to working on projects, we'll read and discuss literature on games, creativity, and design methodology.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Attendance and participation: 33%; weekly documentation of design process: 33%; final essay: 33%

 

ENVS 21200-01 Conservation Biology: Lecture/Lab LA NS 2a

4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Anne Stork, Admin Annex 119, Ext. 4-3575, astork@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: Two of the following: BIOL 12100, BIOL 12200, BIOL 12000, ENVS 12100

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Investigation of biological principles to reverse the trends in species loss that we are currently experiencing. Examination of local and global conservation efforts. Lab exercises include field trips Lecture: three hours. Laboratory: three hours.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Combined lecture and laboratory

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Students will be evaluated on written and oral assignments (short and longer assignments) for lecture and lab.

 

ENVS 22100-01 Interdisciplinary Physical Science: Lecture/Lab LA NS 2a

4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Chris Sinton, CNS 257, Ext. 4-5806, csinton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES: ENVS 12100

STUDENTS: Intended for Environmental Studies majors but open to others with a serious interest. Environmental Science students may NOT enroll in this course.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course takes concepts from Chemistry, Earth System Science, and Physics to study a number of different environmental issues, all the way from how we insulate our houses to how global climate change works.  This is a problem-based, hands-on course that will require both a quantitative and qualitative analysis of data collected by students.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Combined lecture and laboratory

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation in discussions, field trips and lab exercises; written reports and/or essays; oral presentations.

 

ENVS 30100-01 though 08 Environmental Research: Intermediate

1-4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTORS:             01: Susan Allen-Gil, CNS 253, Ext. 4-1066, sallen@ithaca.edu

                        02: Jake Brenner, CNS 258, Ext. 4-3967, jbrenner@ithaca.edu

                        03: Jason Hamilton, CNS 252, Ext. 4-1439, jhamilton@ithaca.edu

                        04: Michael Smith, 320 Muller Center, Ext. 4-1290, mismith@ithaca.edu

                        05: Leann Kanda, CNS 159, Ext. 4-3986, lkanda@ithaca.edu

                        06: Anne Stork, Admin. Annex, Ext. 4-3575, astork@ithaca.edu  

                        07: Susan Swensen, CNS 254, Ext. 4-3511, sswensen@ithaca.edu

                        08: Chris Sinton, CNS 257, Ext. 4-5806, csinton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 5 each section

PREREQUISITES: Permission of instructor.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: For students who desire hands-on research in issues relating to sustainability and the environment. Research can involve participation in continuing projects or new, student-proposed projects. Students will work closely with a faculty member to guide their study.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE:  Independent research

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Both vary, depending on professor.

 

ENVS 33100-01 Topics: Geography & Planning: Land Use and Management NS

4 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Jake Brenner, CNS 258, Ext. 4-3967, jbrenner@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 16

PREREQUISITES:  ENVS 22000 – Cultural and Physical Geography

STUDENTS: Intended primarily for students in Environmental Studies, Environmental Science

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course takes a human-environment geographer’s perspective, posing the following questions: What are the vital roles played by fresh water in specific cultures in specific places? What are the biophysical and social processes that determine water-use patterns? In addressing these questions we will engage diverse, interdisciplinary perspectives on fresh water and its utilization by society. In the geographic tradition, this course engages multiple dimensions of water use, including history, economics, policy, politics, ideology, ethics, culture, and of course, science--all in pursuit of sustainability. 

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Combined seminar and lab/field exercises

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Participation in seminar discussions, field trips and lab exercises; written reports and/or essays; oral presentations; collaborative group project.

 

ENVS 35001-01 Topics: Natural Resources & Ecology: Non-Timber Forest Products NS

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Jason Hamilton, CNS 252, 4-1439, jhamilton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 20

PREREQUISITES:  BIOL 27100; or two courses in Environmental Studies & Sciences; or permission of instructor

STUDENTS: Open to all with a serious interest

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Be prepared to go outside and get your hands dirty doing something real! In this hands-on Learning-by-Doing experience students will manage, produce and sell maple syrup, edible mushrooms, honey, edible and medicinal plants, and other non-timber forest products. You will gain valuable experience working in all aspects of our student-run businesses.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Combined lecture and laboratory

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Extensive outside time producing and selling products; short assignments and a term review paper with presentation.

 

ENVS-37000-01 Topics: Earth Science: Exploring Oceans/Exploring Energy

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Chris Sinton, CNS 257, Ext. 4-5806, csinton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 18

PREREQUISITE: It is highly recommended that students have completed either ENVS 130 Earth System Science I or ENVS 221 Interdisciplinary Physical Science

STUDENTS: This is intended for upper class ENVS majors.  The course is a non-lab elective that can go towards the concentration.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will cover two separate topics over the semester: oceanography and energy.  The oceanography section will cover some ocean basics (geology, biology, chemistry, physics of currents) then will move into addressing some of the critical marine issues, such as sustainable fisheries and effects of CO2 and warming on oceans.  The energy module will start with a review of basic energy concepts and then move into question generation.  Students will come up with critical questions that can be addressed with existing data sets (e.g., the US Energy Information Administration).

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Lecture/Discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Problem sets and data plots; short reports/essays; presentations

 

ENVS 38200-01 Topics in Environmental Policy  SS

3 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Rebecca Brenner, Rothschild Place/Admin Annex 106, Ext. 4-5813, rbrenner@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 16

PREREQUISITE: Two ENVS courses and junior standing

STUDENTS: Intended primarily for majors and minors in Environmental Studies and Environmental Science but open to all students.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Intermediate course with a different focus each semester. Topics may include local and regional policy, select national issues, or the role of indigenous peoples in national and international agreements. This semester we will focus on the ecology and cultures of the Amazon Basin through the lens of sustainability. Through reading and discussing primary literature, historic accounts, and popular books, we will learn about the environmental and economic importance of the Amazon River Basin and the various cultures that have developed and adapted to this ecosystem.  We will investigate the threats to the Amazon Basin from agricultural development, mineral exploration, oil and gas operations, and tourism.  We will then explore the role of indigenous groups in national and international environmental policy and community based plans to achieve sustainability. Can be used to fulfill Policy Perspective for ENVS majors.  This course is a prerequisite for ENVS 38000: Special Topics in Field Studies above.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar/discussion

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Exams, papers and participation.

 

ENVS 40100-01 Environmental Seminar II  NS LA

0.5 CREDITS

INSTRUCTOR: Paula Turkon, Admin Annex 118, Ext. 4-3280, pturkon@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 35

PREREQUISITES: ENVS 10100

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Exposes students in the Environmental Studies/Science program to environmentally relevant research, examples of careers in the environmental field, and opportunities to meet local and regional professionals. The Spring 2013 seminar will explore agriculture and local food systems in Central New York.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminars, discussion and readings in environmental studies and science.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Prepare questions for speakers based on readings, attend at least 11 seminars, introduce 1 speaker and/or attend one dinner with speaker. Pass/Fail only.

 

ENVS 45000-01 Senior Research

3 CREDITS                               

INSTRUCTOR: Jake Brenner, CNS 258, Ext. 4-3967, jbrenner@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 7

PREREQUISITE: Permission of instructor

STUDENTS: Primarily Environmental Studies and Environmental Science majors

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Senior Research in Spring 2014 will focus on "environmental mapping."  Students will learn how to gather, manipulate, and present spatial data on one or more environmental issues, in the process producing environmental maps.  Students should have a working knowledge of computing and preferably some previous experience in digital image processing, computer-assisted design/drawing, or geographic information systems.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Research proposal, lab work, final report
 

ENVS 45100-01 Capstone Discussion Group: Environmental Science/Studies

1 CREDIT

INSTRUCTOR: Susan Allen-Gil, CNS 253, Ext. 4-1066, sallen@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 30

PREREQUISITE: Senior standing, ENVS 45000 (may be taken concurrently)

STUDENTS: Environmental Studies and Science majors

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Discussion group for seniors in environmental studies and environmental science. Course focuses on summative reflection on educational and personal growth. Career preparation is also highlighted in the form of resume and cover letter assistance, networking, interviewing, and job searching.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Seminar

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Written assignments, in-class presentations. Grading is based on regular attendance, class participation, and quality of written papers and presentations.

 

ENVS 49000-01 Independent Study: Environmental Science/Studies LA

1-4 CREDITS                             

INSTRUCTOR: Jason Hamilton, CNS 252, 4-1439, jhamilton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 5

PREREQUISITES: Permission of Dean   

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The program of study may be a reading program of materials of special interest to the student or one involving developing and executing a research project on a specific topic. Reading or research is undertaken under faculty direction.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Independent study

 

ENVS 49500-01 through 06 Internship: Environmental Science/Studies LA

1-12 CREDITS                                              

INSTRUCTORS:             01: Susan Allen-Gil, CNS 253, Ext. 4-1066, sallen@ithaca.edu

                        02: Jake Brenner, CNS 258, Ext. 4-3967, jbrenner@ithaca.edu

                        03: Susan Swensen, CNS 254, Ext. 4-3511, sswensen@ithaca.edu

                        04: Paula Turkon, Admin Annex 118, Ext. 4-3280, pturkon@ithaca.edu

                        05: Jason Hamilton, CNS 252, Ext. 4-1439, jhamilton@ithaca.edu

06: Chris Sinton, CNS 257, Ext. 4-5806, csinton@ithaca.edu

ENROLLMENT: 5

PREREQUISITES: Permission of Dean

COURSE DESCRIPTION: Permits students to explore environmental studies through a variety of work experiences. Students are expected to submit, as part of their course obligations, a thorough written evaluative report based on their experiences. Internships may be taken at national, state, and local levels.

COURSE FORMAT/STYLE: Internship

COURSE REQUIREMENTS & GRADING: Varies by instructor.

 

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