Nov 30, 2023  
2023-2024 Course Catalog 
2023-2024 Course Catalog
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ENV 115 - Environmental Science

Credits: 3
Lecture Hours: 3
Lab Hours: 0
Practicum Hours: 0
Work Experience: 0
Course Type: Core
This course combines the basic principles of environmental science with ecology. Issues examined include environmental policy, sustainability, and biodiversity. Energy conservation, water resources, agriculture, climate change, and waste management are also emphasized.
  1. Explain key concepts in environmental science
    1. Understand the scientific method.
    2. Demonstrate competence in basic scientific literacy.
    3. Describe the field of environmental science.
    4. Explain the importance and variety of natural resources.
    5. Identify current large-scale and local environmental issues.
  2. Describe environmental policy and assess its societal context.
    1. Discuss the history of the conservation movement.
    2. Recognize major legislation pertaining to US and global environmental policy.
    3. Demonstrate an understanding of environmental ethics.
  3. Investigate key concepts in sustainability.
    1. Define sustainability and the concept of sustainable development.
    2. Demonstrate how human population growth drives sustainability issues.
    3. Discuss the relationships between the envrionment and the economy.
  4. Identify basic ecological principles.
    1. Describe the principles and concepts of ecology.
    2. Outline the processes of natural selection and biological evolution.
    3. Identify causes of species extinctions and mass extinction events.
    4. Discuss topics relating to population and community ecology.
  5. Analyze issues related to biodiversity and conservation biology.
    1. Characterize the scope of biodiversity on Earth.
    2. Specify the benefits of biodiversity and the primary causes of biodiversity loss.
    3. Assess the science and practice of conservation biology.
  6. Summarize key issues related to our use of energy.
    1. Discuss nonrenewable energy.
    2. Discuss renewable energy.
    3. Generalize strategies for energy conservation.
  7. Identify environmental issues related to water resources.
    1. Examine the hydrologic cycle.
    2. Discuss human use of aquatic systems, including impacts.
    3. Identify sources and types of water pollution and related toxicology.
    4. Assess problems of water supply and quality, and propose solutions to address threse problems.
  8. Investigate environmental issues relating to modern agriculture.
    1. Discuss the challenge of feeding a growing human population.
    2. Describe various modern agricultural methods.
    3. Explain the goals and practices of sustainable agriculture.
    4. Examine practices related to soil conservation.
    5. Discuss the science behind and debate over genetically modified food.
  9. Investigate important concepts in atmospheric science.
    1. Understand basic processes relating to the Earth’s atmosphere.
    2. Describe sources and types of air pollution and related toxicology.
    3. Describe the causes and consequences of ozone depletion and acid precipitation.
  10. Analyze issues related to global climate change.
    1. Explain the Earth’s energy balance and natural cycles.
    2. Explain greenhouse gases and the greenhouse effect.
    3. Discuss the human impact on Earth’s climatic cycles.
    4. Examine the potential impacts and implications of global climate change. 
  11. Compare various methodologies related to waste management.
    1. Describe the components and management of municipal solid waste.
    2. Identify the components and management of industrial solid waste.
    3. Discuss the components and management of hazardous solid waste.

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