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New Courses Spring 2015

ENST 310: Ecological Economics - Our planet is finite but our economic theories and practices assume the planet is infinite. One alternative to infinite-planet economic theory is Ecological Economics, which can be described as economics as if the laws of thermodynamics applied to economic activity. This course is designed to give you an appropriate grounding in the fundamental assumptions, the conceptual novelties, and the distinctive tools of analysis that comprise this emergent school of economic theory, while placing this theorizing in historical (and ecological) context.


EnSt 501: Environmental Science Seminar: Ecological Economics Reading Group - This 1-credit course will meet weekly to discuss topical literature addressing the interdependence and coevolution of human economies and natural ecosystems over time and space.  Advanced undergraduates and graduates students from all schools are welcome.


EnSt 502: Environmental Science Seminar: Geology in the Field - This course is designed for upper-level undergraduate and graduate students interested in both broadening their understanding of methods used in field-based geological/environmental studies and developing critical observation skills while in the field. The course objectives are to develop a thorough understanding of the fundamentals of field-based study, become familiar with the application of common field and laboratory equipment, improve the quality and efficiency of data measurement and interpretation in the field, and to build on scientific communication and writing skills. This course will cover basic and advanced techniques used in the field during multiple field excursions, which include two mandatory one-day weekend field trips.  Topics will include: identification of common rock-forming minerals, rocks, fossils, sedimentary features and the common environments in which they form; developing a sampling protocol; sample analysis and interpretation; reading and interpreting topographic and geologic maps; drafting a geologic map and cross section. Grades will be based on laboratory exercises, a field notebook with field notes taken throughout the course, class participation, and a final mapping project with a written report.