General ENVS Courses
Here in the Details on Courses section you'll find in-depth information regarding courses offered by the ENVS department. We're fortunate enough to offer some pretty cool classes, and there's sure to be something that strikes your interest! Where a course title is highlighted, there's a link to photos and/or highlights from particular years. Keep checking back for more updates on what each class is up to!
ENVS 10100: Environmental Seminar - offered in both the Fall and Spring semesters - Seminar course exposes students in the environmental studies or science program to environmentally relevant research, examples of careers in the environmental field, and opportunities to meet local and regional professionals. Pass/fail only. 0.5 credits.
ENVS 10400: Gardening Principles and Practices: How to Grow Your Own Food - offered in the Fall semester - Hands-on course examining the intersection of gardening with social, economic, and biological systems. Readings combined with experiential projects including field trips, with a focus on building foundational skills through work in the IC student garden. 1 credit.
ENVS 11000: The Environmental Crisis: Causes and Solutions - offered in the Fall semester - 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 international scales. 3 credits.
ENVS 11200: Sustainability Principles and Practices - offered in the Fall and Spring semesters - This course is designed to introduce students to the history and principles of sustainability as a new approach to addressing complex societal and environmental issues. The class will use a broad definition of sustainability, considering ecological, social, economic, political issues, and community and individual health. These components will be examined using a systems perspective that stresses their interrelatedness. 3 credits.
ENVS 12000: Environmental Sentinels- offered in the Fall semester and Winter session- 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 international scales. 3 credits.
ENVS 12100: Environmental Science and Technology - offered in the Spring semester- Focus on the scientific principles and technological advances fundamental to understanding human impact on the environment. Discussion of how human activities modify the environment and how technology contributes to, as well as reduces, this impact. Topics include applications of biotechnology to biodiversity loss, chemical and biological waste remediation, water treatment and purification, and renewable energy sources and technologies. An interdisciplinary approach ties together the political, social, economic, and ethical aspects of environmental studies and science. Strong global perspective. Intended for environmental science and studies majors but open to others with a serious interest. 4 credits.
ENVS 13000: Earth System Science I - offered in the Fall semester - This course takes a whole-systems approach to develop an integrated understanding of the physical, chemical, biological, and human interactions that determine the past, current, and future states of the earth. Treating the earth as a system of interacting spheres, but particularly focusing on the geosphere (environmental geology), this course provides a physical basis for understanding the world in which we live and on which humankind seeks to achieve sustainability. Lecture/discussion: Three hours. Laboratory: Three hours. 4 credits.
ENVS 13100: Earth Systems Science II - offered every other Spring semester - Continuing with the whole-systems approach introduced in ENVS 13000, this course will explore more applied aspects of earth system science, including soil science, geo- and hydromorphology. Lecture/discussion: Three hours. Laboratory: Three hours. Prerequisite: ENVS 13000. 4 credits.
ENVS 20100: Introductory Environmental Research - offered both Fall and Spring semesters - An introductory course for students who desire hands-on research in environmental studies projects but who have limited experience with research. Research will typically involve participation in continuing projects, though new, student-proposed projects may be possible if the instructor approves. Students will work closely with a faculty member to guide their study. May be repeated twice for a maximum of 6 credits. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing and permission of instructor. 1-3 credits
ENVS 20200: Topics in Sustainability - offered both Fall and Spring semesters - An umbrella course with a different focus each semester. The course is integrative and allows students to experience sustainability firsthand through field experiences and service projects at Ecovillage and the local community, linked to the study of core principles and strategies in different areas of community sustainability. The courses taught within this umbrella include sustainable land use, teaching sustainability, fostering sustainable communities, sustainable energy systems, urban sustainability, and the sustainability movement. May be repeated for a maximum of 12 credits. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing. 3-4 credits.
ENVS 20400: Selected Topics in Environmental Studies: Rainforests, Reefs and Ruins - offered in the Fall semester - Focus on the environment and culture in Belize as a case study to explore topics including: structure and function of tropical ecosystems and Mayan civilization, factors leading to high biodiversity in the tropics, importance of biodiversity to human civilization, and threats to these ecosystems. Intended to prepare students for ENVS 20500. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing and permission of instructor. 3 credits
ENVS 22000: Human and Environment Geography - offered in the Fall semester - This course uses natural science, social science, and humanistic approaches to study the complex relationships between human physical and cultural systems through time and space. This course has a strong focus on the perspectives and methods current in human-environment geography, and incorporates exercises in asking and answering geographical questions. Students will examine the relationships between ecosystems and food production, urban and rural relationships, the role of corporations, globalization, warfare, and religion. Prerequisite: Sophomore standing. 3 credits.
ENVS 22100: Interdisciplinary Physical Science - offered in the Spring semester - Physics provides insight into how matter and energy interact and chemistry addresses transformations and interactions of substances. This course examines physics and chemistry from an environmental perspective while retaining the critical and analytical thinking skills of those disciplines. Lecture/discussion: three hours. Laboratory: three hours. Prerequisite: ENVS 12100. 4 credits.
ENVS 30100: Intermediate Environmental Research - offered both Fall and Spring semesters - For intermediate students who desire hands-on research in issues relating to sustainability and the environment. Research can involve participation in continuing faculty research projects or in new, student-proposed projects. Students will work closely with a faculty member to guide their study. Prerequisites: ENVS 20100 and permission of instructor. 1-3 credits. May be repeated for a total of 6 credits. (F,S,Y)
ENVS 32200: Environmental Methods: Sampling, Surveying, Statistics and Analysis - offered in the Fall semester - This course provides students with field-based, real-world applications of sampling, surveying, and statistical analysis techniques, with an emphasis on environmental problem-solving skills. This class covers both qualitative and quantitative analytical techniques. Lecture/discussion: Three hours. Laboratory: Three hours. Prerequisites: ENVS 12100 or ENVS 13000; ENVS 22000; MATH 14500, MATH 14400 or MATH 21600. 4 credits.
ENVS 33100: Land use and Landscape Change - offered in the Spring semester - Intermediate course with a different focus each semester. Topics include demographics, city and regional planning, land use, and topography. May be repeated for maximum of 8 credits. Lecture/discussion, may include a three-hour laboratory. Prerequisite: ENVS 22000. 3-4 credits
ENVS 34000: Topics in Pollution - Intermediate course with a different focus each semester. Topics may include environmental toxicology, environmental health and medicine, aquatic pollution, pollution remediation, hazardous waste, or pollution policy. May be repeated for maximum of 8 credits. Prerequisites: ENVS 12100 and junior standing. Lecture/discussion, may include a three-hour laboratory. 3-4 credits
ENVS 35000: Topics in Natural Resources and Ecology: Farming the Forest - offered in the Spring semester - Intermediate course with a different focus each semester. Topics include ecological issues associated with practical conservation or management practices, such as ecosystem ecology, conservation biology, or biology of invasive species. This course may be repeated for credit when topics vary, for a maximum of 8 credits. Prerequisites: Three courses in environmental studies or biology. Lecture/discussion, may include a three-hour laboratory. 3-4 credits
ENVS 36000: Special Topics in Environmental Humanities - offered every other Fall semester - Intermediate course with a different focus each semester. Topics include literature, philosophy, art, mythology, history, landscape design, and architecture from around the world. By exploring the myriad ways human beings have viewed nature, students will gain a better grasp of why human-environment interactions are in crisis and what it means to be human in such a world. Prerequisites: Three humanities courses and sophomore standing. 3 credits.
ENVS 38200: Topics in Environmental Policy: Sustainability in the Amazon - offered in Spring semester - Field study courses provide a multiday field trip to an off-campus ecosystem. Each field study course emphasizes a unique regional topic, and students become familiar with the major geological and ecological events as well as the human impact on sustainability of the natural ecosystem(s). Students also learn to identify the predominant flora and fauna of the area. Student projects are expected to show considerable independent effort, background information, analyses, and original synthesis. May be repeated for credit for field studies in different regions for a maximum three times or 12 credits. Prerequisites: A minimum of three courses in environmental studies or biology. 1-4 credits.
ENVS 40100:Environmental Seminar II - offered in both Fall and Spring semesters - Seminars, discussion, and readings in environmental studies and science. Required of environmental studies and environmental science majors. Prerequisites: Junior standing; environmental studies or environmental science major. Pass/fail only. 0.5 credits.
ENVS 45000: Senior Research - offered in both Fall and Spring semesters - An integrative course that encourages majors to apply previously learned ideas and concepts to a specific area of environmental inquiry or a particular environmental problem under the direction of individual faculty members. All research teams will engage in a rigorous research agenda, drawing on methodologies from natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. Open to environmental studies or environmental science majors only. Prerequisites: Senior standing; permission of instructor. 3 credits.
ENVS 45100:Capstone Discussion- offered in the Spring semester - 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. Prerequisite: ENVS 45000 (may be taken concurrently); senior standing. 1 credit
ENVS 49000: Independent Study - offered in both Fall and Spring semesters - A reading program of materials of special interest to the student, undertaken under faculty direction. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor. 1-4 credits.
ENVS 49500: Internship in Environmental Studies/Science - offered in both Fall and Spring semesters - 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, and in London under the auspices of the Ithaca College London Center. Prerequisites: Permission of instructor; completion of three-quarters of an environmental studies major or minor. 1-12 credits.