Professors Wenzel (Chemistry; chair) and Costlow (Russian); Associate Professors Lewis (Economics), Johnson (Art and Visual Culture), and Sommer (Biology); Assistant Professors Rogers (Environmental Studies), Ewing (Environmental Studies), and Skinner (Environmental Studies); Lecturer Bigelow (Environmental Studies)
Environmental studies encompasses a broad range of issues that arise from the interaction of humans with the natural world. To understand these issues, students must think across and beyond existing disciplinary boundaries. The environmental studies major provides a framework for students to study how humans experience, investigate, and interact with their natural environment. The curriculum includes, first, an interdisciplinary core that encourages students to explore the social, aesthetic, ethical, scientific, and technical aspects of environmental questions, and second, a disciplinary-based concentration that allows students to approach these questions with more focused knowledge and methodological tools. More information on the environmental studies program is available on the Web site (www.bates.edu/ENVR.xml).
Cross-listed Courses. Note that unless otherwise specified, when a department/program references a course or unit in the department/program, it includes courses and units cross-listed with the department/program.
Major Requirements. Students majoring in environmental studies must fulfill core requirements of six courses, a concentration consisting of five courses, a one- or two-semester thesis, and a 200-hour internship. Students may apply a maximum of one Short Term unit toward fulfilling their major requirements. It is recommended that students complete Environmental Studies 203, 204, and 205 as early as possible. Beginning with the class of 2010, these courses will not be open to seniors.
Students should note that there may be flexibility in requirements due to changes in the curriculum.
The environmental studies committee recommends that all students interested in environmental studies take a department-designated set in biology, chemistry, or geology during their first year. Chemistry 107B-108B is a set designed specifically for students interested in environmental studies.
Students interested in environmental education are advised to take a secondary concentration in education in addition to their major in environmental studies. Students are encouraged to consider study abroad. However, the program reserves the right to restrict study abroad to one semester.
A. The following courses are required of all majors:
ENVR 203. Material and Energy Flow in Engineered and Natural Systems.
ENVR 204. Environment and Society.
ENVR 205. Nature in Human Culture.
ENVR 457, 458. Senior Seminar and Thesis.
B. Each student must take at least one course from two of the following groups of courses. These courses cannot be counted as part of a concentration.
1) 200-level courses focusing on natural sciences:
BIO 260. Environmental Toxicology.
BIO 270. Ecology and Evolution.
CHEM 212. Separation Science.
ENVR 240. Water and Watersheds.
GEO 210. Sedimentary Processes and Environments.
GEO 240. Environmental Geochemistry.
2) 200-level courses focusing on social sciences:
ECON 222. Environmental Economics.
ES/PT 218. U.S. Environmental Politics and Policy.
ENVR 225. Comparative Environmental Politics and Policy.
PLTC 258. Environmental Diplomacy.
3) 200-level courses focusing on humanities:
ENVR 200. Imagining Open Spaces.
EN/ES 201. African and Diasporic Ecological Literature.
ES/HI 211. Environmental Perspectives on U.S. History.
ENVR 213. Reading the Watershed: Nature and Place in Literature.
ES/PL 214. Ethics and Environmental Issues.
ES/RE 215. Environmental Ethics.
INDS 228. Caring for Creation: Physics, Religion, and the Environment.
C. Each student must take one 300-level seminar in the environmental studies curriculum. This course cannot count toward the student's concentration.
BIO 323. Forest Ecology.
ECON 325. Prices, Property, and the Problem of the Commons.
ENVR 310. Soils.
ENVR 325. Seminar on World Agriculture.
ENVR 345. African Wildlife Conservation.
The Concentration. Concentrations consist of five courses, with the possible addition of another course as a prerequisite, focusing on a particular aspect of environmental studies. Students interested in environmental studies should refer to the program's Web site or to a member of the environmental studies committee for more information regarding the content of these concentrations. The concentrations are:
The Environment and Human Culture.
Global Environmental Politics.
Nature in the Literary and Visual Arts.
Regional Perspectives on Environment and Society.
U.S. Environmental Politics.
The Thesis. All students must complete a one- or two-semester thesis. Theses must build in some significant way upon the courses that students take as part of their concentration. Students write proposals for thesis in the winter semester of the junior year.
The Internship. Every student must complete a 200-hour internship in an environmentally oriented organization off the Bates campus by the end of the fall semester of their senior year. Internships at academic research organizations, those requiring only physical labor, and those at summer camps are generally unacceptable.
Pass/Fail Grading Option. Pass/fail grading may not be elected for courses applied toward the major.
General Education. Students should be aware that courses listed only in environmental studies, without being cross-listed in another department, cannot be counted toward requirements in General Education. There is one exception: 203 may fulfill the quantitative requirement. Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or A-Level credit awarded by the program may not be used toward fulfillment of any General Education requirements.
CH/ES 107B. Chemical Structure and Its Importance in the Environment.Fundamentals of atomic and molecular structure are developed with particular attention to how they relate to substances of interest in the environment. Periodicity, bonding, states of matter, and intermolecular forces are covered. The laboratory (three hours per week) involves a semester-long group investigation of a topic of environmental significance. Enrollment limited to 60 per section. Normally offered every year. T. Wenzel.
CH/ES 108B. Chemical Reactivity in Environmental Systems.A continuation of Chemistry/Environmental Studies 107B. Major topics include thermodynamics, kinetics, equilibrium, acid/base chemistry, and electrochemistry. Biogeochemical cycles provide examples for course topics. The laboratory (three hours per week) analyzes the chemistry of marine environments. Prerequisite(s): Chemistry 107A or Chemistry/Environmental Studies 107B. Enrollment limited to 60. Normally offered every year. R. Austin.
ENVR 200. Imagining Open Spaces.This interdisciplinary course explores the evolving practice of urban open space. Frederick Law Olmsted's contribution to the design of American urban parks, as well as their contested legacy in the civil rights movement, form a core study, along with some introduction to urbanist theories of space. Discussion of bioregional and cultural contexts focuses on issues around reclaimed and constructed landscapes. Study of the literature of open spaces, and of the interventions of contemporary artists and composers, develops an "expanded field" of aesthetics. Students are asked to pursue a creative-critical project, involving onsite investigation, in spaces at once social and natural. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 30. Offered with varying frequency. J. Skinner.
EN/ES 201. African and Diasporic Ecological Literature.While it has always been part of global culture and politics, Africa is now recognized as a continent of import in a most necessary global conversation about ecological change. This course examines ecological influences on literature by Anglophone authors of African descent. The study of the aesthetic and cultural imprint of individual authors is informed by readings that detail broader issues affecting ecological perceptions in human groups. Students also examine interpretations of human biodiversity that have contributed to the neglect of African and African diasporic artistic and philosophic perspectives on ecological issues. Prerequisite(s): one 100-level English course. Recommended background: course(s) in African American studies and/or environmental studies. Enrollment limited to 25. Normally offered every year. K. Ruffin.
ENVR 203. Material and Energy Flow in Engineered and Natural Systems.An introduction to central concepts in environmental science, the transport and transformation of matter and the generation of use of energy, through the study of specific cases. The laboratory links mathematical modeling of environmental systems to experimental activities. This course serves as the foundation for further study of environmental science at Bates. Recommended background: one laboratory course in biology, geology, chemistry, or physics. Enrollment limited to 40. Normally offered every year. H. Ewing.
ENVR 204. Environment and Society.This course provides an introduction to the ways in which people interact with the natural environment. It concentrates on two main issues: 1) How do people think about the relationship between the environment and society? 2) What are some key empirical issues in the environment-society relationship that illustrate the various ways of thinking about the environment? Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 40. Normally offered every year. Staff.
ENVR 205. Nature in Human Culture.The course aims to introduce students to the dynamics between the natural environment and human culture. First, it seeks a theoretical framework for appreciating how cultural traditions screen human perceptions and hence grant human meaning to the natural world. Second, it studies selected interpretations of nature from the traditions of indigenous peoples, Asian cultures, and the Western experience. Third, the course considers the prospects for moving beyond inherited perspectives to fresh envisagements of the lands, the seas, and living creatures. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 30 per section. Normally offered every year. J. Skinner.
INDS 208. Introduction to Medieval Archeology.The Middle Ages were a time of major cultural changes that laid the groundwork for Northwest Europe's emergence as a global center of political and economic power in subsequent centuries. However, many aspects of life in the period from 1000 to 1500 C.E. were unrecorded in contemporary documents and art, and archeology has become an important tool for recovering that information. This course introduces the interdisciplinary methods and the findings of archeological studies of topics including medieval urban and rural lifeways, health, commerce, religion, social hierarchy, warfare, and the effects of global climate change. Cross-listed in anthropology, classical and medieval studies, environmental studies, and history. Open to first-year students. (Premodern.) (Premodern.) Offered with varying frequency. G. Bigelow.
ES/HI 211. Environmental Perspectives on U.S. History.This course explores the relationship between the North American environment and the development and expansion of the United States. Because Americans' efforts (both intentional and not) to define and shape the environment were rooted in their own struggles for power, environmental history offers an important perspective on the nation's social history. Specific topics include Europeans', Africans', and Indians' competing efforts to shape the colonial environment; the impact and changing understanding of disease; the relationship between industrial environments and political power; and the development of environmental movements. Recommended background: History 140, 141, or 142. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every other year. J. Hall.
ENVR 213. Reading the Watershed: Nature and Place in Literature.Environmental thinkers from Gary Snyder to Wendell Berry have linked environmental responsiveness to localness and to an intimate knowledge of place and home. What role does literature, oral and written, play in producing, recording, and transmitting such knowledge? How are nature and the landscape around us remembered, imagined, shaped, mourned, and possibly protected by the stories, songs, and poems that humans create? In what ways do writers assign personal or spiritual significance to the landscape? This course uses Northern New England and the watershed of the Androscoggin as a base to investigate these questions. Readings include stories from Abenaki oral literature, poems, and stories by contemporary local writers, as well as other selected American writers who have given a strong voice to regionalism in their work. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every other year. S. Strong.
ES/PL 214. Ethics and Environmental Issues.A study of selected issues in environmental ethics, including questions about population growth, resource consumption, pollution, the responsibilities of corporations, environmental justice, animal rights, biodiversity, and moral concern for the natural world. The course explores debates currently taking place among environmental thinkers regarding our moral obligations to other persons, to future generations, to other animals, and to ecosystems and the Earth itself. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 30. Normally offered every other year. T. Tracy.
ES/RE 215. Environmental Ethics.Values are important influences on the ways human communities relate to ecological communities, and hence on the character of the interaction between persons and their natural worlds. The course examines a range of environmental issues as moral problems requiring ethical reflection. This ethical reflection takes into account both the cultural and religious contexts that have given rise to what is understood as a technological dominion over nature, and the cultural resources still remaining that may provide clues on how to live in friendship with the Earth. Recommended background: one course in philosophy or religion. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 40. Normally offered every other year. T. Tracy.
ES/RU 216. Nature in Russian Culture.How does a given culture understand and represent its relationship to the specific geography of its place in the world? This course explores the cultural landscape of Russia through a broad range of literary works, visual images, and ethnographic studies. Students examine some of the following issues: the relationship between geography and national identity; the political uses of cultural landscape; the interaction of agriculture, official religion, and traditional belief in peasant culture; and the role of class and revolutionary reimaginings of nature in the Soviet era. Conducted in English. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every other year. J. Costlow.
ENVR 217. Mapping and GIS.Geographical information systems (GIS) are computer-based systems for geographical data presentation and analysis. They allow rapid development of high-quality maps, and enable sophisticated examination of spatial patterns and interrelationships. This course begins with a consideration of maps and general principles of cartography. Then it introduces GIS software running on the Windows operating system. Students are introduced to common sources of geographic data, learn methods for collecting novel spatial data, and consider data quality. Finally, students learn to extend the capabilities of GIS software to tackle more advanced spatial analysis tasks. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 30. Offered with varying frequency. Staff.
ES/PT 218. U.S. Environmental Politics and Policy.This course examines the development and current state of environmental policy in the United States at the federal, state, and local levels, while at the same time placing the making of this policy in the broader context of American politics, economics, and society. The course begins with a short history of environmentalism and the current state of American environmental politics and policy. Students then take a case study approach to a specific environmental issue relevant to the local area. This case study provides an opportunity for students to meet and interact with stakeholders involved with this issue. Prerequisite(s): Environmental Studies 204 or any politics course. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 40. Normally offered every other year. P. Rogers.
INDS 219. Environmental Archeology.Over the past two hundred years archeologists, scientists, and humanists in many disciplines have worked together to understand the interactions of past human populations with the physical world, including plants, animals, landscapes, and climates. This course outlines the methods and theories used by archeologists, geologists, biologists, physicists, chemists, and historians in reconstructing past economies and ecologies in diverse areas of the globe. The course also discusses how archeology contributes to our understanding of contemporary environmental issues such as rapid climate change, shrinking biodiversity, and sustainable use of resources. Cross-listed in anthropology, environmental studies, and history. Recommended background: Anthropology 103. Open to first-year students. (Premodern.) (Premodern.) Normally offered every year. G. Bigelow.
INDS 220. Afroambiente: Writing A Black Environment.This course studies the response of black writers and intellectuals of the Spanish-speaking world to issues related to the natural environment. In three countries, Ecuador, Puerto Rico, and Equatorial Guinea, modernity has brought serious challenges to notions of economic progress, human rights, national sovereignty, as well as individual and communal identity. Course materials include written texts from local newspapers, magazines, as well as other sources of information, such as Internet sites that discuss issues related to the environment and the arts. Recommended background: Spanish 207 or 208. Cross-listed in African American studies, environmental studies, and Spanish. Conducted in Spanish. Not open to students who have received credit for Interdisciplinary Studies 218 or s21. Open to first-year students. Offered with varying frequency. B. Fra-Molinero.
ENVR 225. Comparative Environmental Politics and Policy.Variations in political forms, economic status, cultural contexts, and the natural environment are significant factors in shaping environmental politics and policy around the world. This course investigates these differences using the framework of political ecology, and explores the potential of comparative analysis between cases. The regions of Western Europe, post-communist Eurasia, East Asia, Latin America, and Africa are examined. Prerequisite(s): Environmental Studies 202 or 204. Open to first-year students. Offered with varying frequency. Staff.
INDS 228. Caring for Creation: Physics, Religion, and the Environment.This course considers scientific and religious accounts of the origin of the universe, examines the relations between these accounts, and explores the way they shape our deepest attitudes toward the natural world. Topics of discussion include the biblical creation stories, contemporary scientific cosmology, the interplay between these scientific and religious ideas, and the roles they both can play in forming a response to environmental problems. Cross-listed in environmental studies, physics, and religion. Enrollment limited to 40. Offered with varying frequency. J. Smedley, T. Tracy.
ENVR 240. Water and Watersheds.Where does water go and what does it do? Humans across the globe extract, enjoy, use, waste, and conserve water and hence affect its distribution, movement, and quality. In this course, students follow water from atmosphere to land to aquatic systems, emphasizing the controls on the movement and chemistry of water. They investigate not only the need of organisms for water but also the ways in which organisms, including humans, influence the distribution and chemistry of water. Some class meetings involve field and lab work. Prerequisite(s): one of the following: Environmental Studies 203; Geology 103; or Biology 101. Recommended background: Chemistry 107A and 108A, or 107B and 108B. Enrollment limited to 30. Offered with varying frequency. H. Ewing.
ES/JA 290. Nature in East Asian Literature.How have poets and other writers in Japan and China portrayed, valued, and responded to the myriad phenomena that Western tradition calls "nature"? What ideas have they used to construct the relationship between human beings and the environment? Do their views offer the modern world a possible antidote to its environmental ills? This course looks closely at several works from Japanese and Chinese traditions whose authors pay particular attention to the relationship between the self and the physical world the self observes. Specific writers may include Hitomaro, Saigyô, Kamo no Chomei, Bashô, Li Po, and Wang Wei. Conducted in English. Open to first-year students. Offered with varying frequency. S. Strong.
ENVR 300. Posthuman Science Fictions.Science fiction endures as the privileged genre for exploring the big questions—ethical, philosophical, scientific—of the "posthuman" era. What does it mean to be human when biotechnology muddles inheritance and blurs the boundaries between species? Does obsession with virtuality presage the "end of nature"? What do the troubling identities of I, Robot have to do with animal rights? Can we learn from utopian exercises in "terraforming" and apocalypse? In this reading- and writing-intensive course, a range of science fiction works, in literature and film, are paired with philosophical texts, from Plato to Haraway, and discussed in the light of environmental issues. Prerequisite(s): one of the following: English 121, Philosophy 150, or Environmental Studies 205. Recommended background: Environmental Studies 205. Enrollment limited to 30. Offered with varying frequency. J. Skinner.
ENVR 310. Soils.Depending on one's point of view, soils are geological units, ecosystems, the foundation of plant life, a place for microbes to live, building material, or just dirt. This course takes a scientific perspective and explores the genesis of soils, their distribution and characteristics, and their interaction with plants. Field studies emphasize description of soils, inferences about soil formation, and placement within a landscape context. Labs investigate the chemistry of soils and their role in forestry and agriculture. Prerequisite(s): one chemistry set (Chemistry 107A-108A or 107B-108B) plus one course in either biology or geology. Recommended background: one 200-level geology course. Normally offered every other year. H. Ewing.
ES/JA 320. Haiku and Nature in Japan.The concise, seventeen-syllable verse form known today as haiku rose to prominence in the popular culture of seventeenth-century Japan. With its emphasis on the experience of the present moment and its use of clear natural imagery, haiku is seen by many as defining the way generations of Japanese have perceived and related to the natural world. This seminar examines the poetics of haiku and linked verse (renku) and looks at the expression of their aesthetics in recent Japanese literature and culture from architecture to the novel to Zen. Prerequisite(s): at least one course in Japanese or one course in environmental studies. Conducted in English. Normally offered every other year. S. Strong.
ENVR 325. Seminar on World Agriculture.This seminar introduces students to the history of agriculture, the manner in which contemporary agriculture is practiced around the globe, and the ever-changing nature of agriculture and its relationships to the broader social and natural worlds. Two important themes are emphasized in this seminar. The first is the continuing, though often overlooked, importance of agriculture in the modern world. The second is that agriculture is a multidimensional activity with social, cultural, political, economic, and environmental elements. There is a field component where students engage in on-farm research using farming system theories and participatory research techniques. Prerequisite(s): two of the following: Environmental Studies 203, 204, and 205. Enrollment limited to 15. Normally offered every other year. P. Rogers.
ENVR 345. Seminar in African Wildlife Conservation.This seminar explores three periods of sub-Saharan African history—precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial—in order to assess the changing fortunes of wildlife, habitat, and communities during these eras. Unlike popular views of Africa as an Eden untouched by human activity, the seminar emphasizes the long history and continuing importance of interrelationships between human communities and wildlife in sub-Saharan Africa. While the empirical focus is most definitely on Africa, broader theoretical and policy issues that are applicable to wildlife conservation elsewhere in the world also play a prominent role in the course. Prerequisite(s): two of the following: Environmental Studies 203, 204, and 205. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 15. Normally offered every other year. P. Rogers.
ENVR 360. Independent Study.Students, in consultation with a faculty advisor, individually design and plan a course of study or research not offered in the curriculum. Course work includes a reflective component, evaluation, and completion of an agreed-upon product. Sponsorship by a faculty member in the program/department, a course prospectus, and permission of the chair are required. Students may register for no more than one independent study per semester. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every semester. Staff.
ENVR 365. Special Topics.Offered occasionally on subjects of special interest. Staff.
EN/ES 395Q. Nature and Culture in European Art Film.European art film tends to be more realistic than Hollywood film, yet at the same time it is more conscious of its artifice. What does nature look like when framed in these art-conscious, self-reflexive terms? This course considers challenging masterworks of European cinema from the 1950s until today, with special attention to the place of nature in cinematic narrative and representation. Students watch two films each week and read several theoretical essays. Directors may include Ingmar Bergman, Andrei Tarkovsky, Jean-Luc Godard, Roberto Rossellini, and Claire Denis. Enrollment limited to 15. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. S. Dillon.
ENVR 457. Senior Thesis.This course involves research for and writing of the senior thesis, under the direction of a faculty advisor, and participation in a weekly seminar with other environmental studies seniors under the supervision of an environmental studies faculty member. The seminar supplements students' one-on-one work with their advisor and provides a space for students to learn about each other's work. Guidelines for the thesis are published on the program Web site and are available from the program chair. Students register for Environmental Studies 457 in the fall semester and for Environmental Studies 458 in the winter semester. Normally offered every year. Staff.
ENVR 457, 458. Senior Thesis.This course involves research for and writing of the senior thesis, under the direction of a faculty advisor, and participation in a weekly seminar with other environmental studies seniors under the supervision of an environmental studies faculty member. The seminar supplements students' one-on-one work with their advisor and provides a space for students to learn about each other's work. Guidelines for the thesis are published on the program Web site and are available from the program chair. Students register for Environmental Studies 457 in the fall semester and for Environmental Studies 458 in the winter semester. Normally offered every year. Staff.
Short Term Courses
ENVR 458. Senior Thesis.This course involves research for and writing of the senior thesis, under the direction of a faculty advisor, and participation in a weekly seminar with other environmental studies seniors under the supervision of an environmental studies faculty member. The seminar supplements students' one-on-one work with their advisor and provides a space for students to learn about each other's work. Guidelines for the thesis are published on the program Web site and are available from the program chair. Students register for Environmental Studies 457 in the fall semester and for Environmental Studies 458 in the winter semester. Normally offered every year. Staff.
ES/RU s20. Environment and Culture in Russia.This unit introduces a broad range of environmental issues in contemporary Russia and invites students to consider those issues in cultural and historical context. Students spend three and one-half weeks at different locations in European Russia and the Urals, visiting sites ranging from newly privatized farms and peasant markets to industrial centers and conservation areas. A period of intensive preparation at Bates is followed by visits and conversations in Russia that acquaint students with ecologists, activists, governmental officials, and ordinary Russian citizens. Recommended background: one course in Russian studies or environmental studies. Enrollment limited to 12. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. J. Costlow.
INDS s24. Shetland Islands: Archeological Field Course.The main element of this unit is the excavation of a late medieval/early modern farmstead at Brow, Shetland (Scotland). Early settlement in Shetland was on the margin of successful medieval colonization of the North Atlantic. The Brow site is a revealing "laboratory" in which to explore the interaction of climate change and human settlement in a fragile coastal zone. A series of field trips in mainland Scotland place the Brow excavation in the wider context of settlement, environment, archeology, and the history of Scotland and the North Atlantic. Recommended background: courses in medieval history or archeology. Cross-listed in classical and medieval studies, environmental studies, and history. Not open to seniors. Not open to students who have received credit for Interdisciplinary Studies s28. Enrollment limited to 10. Instructor permission is required. (Premodern.) (Premodern.) Normally offered every year. M. Jones.
EC/ES s27. Sustaining the Masses.Students in this unit investigate the contradictions and complementarities between economic development and global economic integration on the one hand and environmental protection on the other. Students spend up to four weeks in China visiting farming communities, large- and small-scale industrial enterprises, reforestation sites, nature reserves, and pollution control facilities. They also meet with villagers, workers, and government officials. Linkages between local and international economics, politics, history, culture, and the environment are explored using China as a case study. Recommended background: one or more of the following: Economics 101, 222, 227, 229; Environmental Studies 202. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 10. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. M. Maurer-Fazio, J. Hughes.
ENVR s28. Contemporary Maine Environmental Issues.This field research unit gives students an opportunity to explore important local environmental issues and to begin the development of social science field research skills. Student research focuses on identifying relevant stakeholders and describing relations between stakeholders in terms of a specific environmental issue. Examples of relevant issues include, but are not limited to, urban planning and sprawl, wildlife management, impacts of recreational use, water quality, and brownfields redevelopment. During the first week the unit introduces students to topics and research methods. Student groups then undertake research under the supervision of the instructor. Research results and methodological lessons learned occupy the last week. Prerequisite(s): Environmental Studies 202 or 204. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 15. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. P. Rogers.
ES/GE s32. Environmental Change in the Australian Outback.This field-based unit explores the geology and environmental change that has occurred in central Australia over the last 125,000 years. Students spend four weeks exploring the millennial-scale global climate events that are recorded in the sediments of the large interior playa lakes, dune fields, and fluvial systems. Evidence for environmental change coincident with colonization by the first human immigrants beginning 60,000 years ago and the expansion of the European pastoralists into the Australian Outback beginning 200 years ago is explored in the context of this unique geologic setting. Prerequisite(s): Geology 103 or 104. Enrollment limited to 8. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. B. Johnson.
EC/ES s33. Valuation of Human-Altered Ecosystems.How is the value of an ecosystem altered by human development? Answering this question requires an understanding of both economics and ecosystem structure and function. In this interdisciplinary unit, students explore the structure and function of ecosystems before and after human modification and the relationship of these characteristics to their economic value. Students focus on river systems in Maine from source to sea. This unit involves many day trips and two longer trips off campus. Prerequisite(s): Environmental Studies 203 or Economics 222. Enrollment limited to 12. Instructor permission is required. Offered with varying frequency. H. Ewing, L. Lewis.
ENVR s36. Ecopoetics.The unit seeks to provoke innovative responses to the environmental crisis. If poetics entails all-of-making, including literary, visual, musical and design arts, as well as reflections on making, what are the available creative and critical responses? Through the journal ecopoetics and beyond, students are exposed to a range of "eco" methodologies: soundscape, walking, and field guide practices, including methods for writing other species, biome investigations, edge studies, and ethnographic translation techniques. The course involves an extensive fieldwork component and critical reflection, as well as collaborative publication, installation, and/or performance works. Submission of a sample of critical or creative work, or a prospectus of such work, is required for admission to the course. Recommended background: Environmental Studies 205. Enrollment limited to 18. Instructor permission is required. Normally offered every year. J. Skinner.
ES/GE s37. Introduction to Hydrogeology.Hydrogeology is the study of the interactions between water and earth materials and processes. This unit uses hydrogeology as a disciplinary framework for learning about groundwater processes, contamination, supply, use, and management. Students are engaged in class research projects along the Maine coast and within the Androscoggin River basin. Field and laboratory methods are learned in the context of these projects for determining groundwater flow and aquifer properties, collecting samples, and analyzing water quality. The final research project is both written and presented to the College community. Prerequisite(s): any 100-level Geology course or Environmental Studies 203. Enrollment limited to 16. Offered with varying frequency. B. Johnson.
ENVR s46. Internship in Environmental Studies.Projects may include hands-on conservation work, environmental education, environmental research, political advocacy, environmental law, or other areas related to environmental questions. Specific arrangement and prior approval of the Committee on Environmental Studies is required. Instructor permission is required. Normally offered every year. Staff.
ENVR s50. Independent Study.Students, in consultation with a faculty advisor, individually design and plan a course of study or research not offered in the curriculum. Course work includes a reflective component, evaluation, and completion of an agreed-upon product. Sponsorship by a faculty member in the program/department, a course prospectus, and permission of the chair are required. Students may register for no more than one independent study during a Short Term. Open to first-year students. Normally offered every year. Staff.