Department of Environmental Studies and Sciences

Professors: Leslie Gray (Department Chair), Lisa K. Kealhofer, Michelle A. Marvier

Associate Professors: Christopher Bacon, Virginia Matzek, Iris Stewart-Frey

Assistant Professors: Charles Gabbe, Hari Mix

Lecturer: Stephanie Hughes

The Department of Environmental Studies and Sciences (ESS) offers interdisciplinary programs of study leading to a bachelor of science in environmental science or environmental studies. A minor in environmental studies is also available. These programs provide students with the intellectual foundation they will need in addressing crucial environmental challenges of the 21st century such as human population growth, urban sprawl, deforestation, global climate change, waste disposal, air and water pollution, loss of biodiversity, and the need for renewable energy.

ESS programs are enriched by colloquia, including biweekly seminars, featuring presentations on environmental topics by journalists, politicians, business people, scientists, and other scholars. Majors in ESS are expected to apply their knowledge outside the classroom by completing an approved internship or research experience, culminating in ENVS 198 (Environmental Proseminar). During their senior year, ESS students conduct research or an interdisciplinary group project with community stakeholders in ENVS 101 (Capstone Seminar).

ESS students are encouraged to study abroad. Courses such as ENVS 144 (Natural History of Baja L&L) include one week of immersion travel during University breaks. In addition, many summer and academic year courses taken through approved study abroad programs will count toward the requirements of the environmental studies and sciences majors and minors.

Each student works with a faculty advisor, who helps integrate the classroom curriculum with the student’s plans for future study and/or work in environmental fields.

Requirements for the Majors

Major in Environmental Science

In addition to fulfilling undergraduate Core Curriculum and College of Arts and Sciences requirements for the bachelor of science degree, students majoring in environmental science must complete the following departmental requirements:

  • ENVS 21, 22, 23, 101, 122, 198

  • BIOL 160/ENVS 110

  • ENVS 116

  • CHEM 11, 12, 13

  • MATH 11 or MATH 35

  • ECON 1

  • ANTH 50/ENVS 50/POLI 50

  • ENVS 79 or PHIL 29

  • Select one of the following course series: BIOL 1A, 1B, 1C or CHEM 31, 32 or PHYS 11, 12, 13 (PHYS 31, 32, 33 can be substituted)

  • One course from ANTH 140/ENVS 136, ANTH 154, CENG 124/ENVS 124, COMM 120A, ECON 111, ENVS 120, ENVS 128, ENVS 146, ENVS 147, ENVS 149/POLI 146, ENVS 150, ENVS 155, ENVS 158/PSYC 158, ENVS 167, ETHN 156

  • Attend 10 approved Environmental Studies and Sciences environmental colloquia

Environmental science majors shall select a concentration in Applied Ecology or in Water, Energy, and Technology. Alternatively, students may work with their advisors to design an individualized plan of study.

Applied Ecology concentration

  • BIOL 1A, 1B, 1C recommended

  • Four courses, at least one of which must include a laboratory component, from ANTH 145/ENVS 137, BIOL 134, BIOL 151/ENVS 151, BIOL 153/ENVS 153, BIOL 156/ENVS 156, BIOL 158, ENVS 117, ENVS 132, ENVS 141, ENVS 144, ENVS 160

Water, Energy, and Technology concentration

  • CHEM 31, 32 or PHYS 11, 12, 13 or PHYS 31, 32, 33

  • Four courses, at least one of which must include a laboratory component, from CENG 119, CENG 139, CENG 140, CENG 143, CENG 160, CENG 161, CENG 163, ENVS 80, ENVS 117, ENVS 145, ENVS 148, ENVS 160, ENVS 165, ENVS 166, ENVS 185

Major in Environmental Studies

In addition to fulfilling undergraduate Core Curriculum and College of Arts and Sciences requirements for the bachelor of science degree, students majoring in environmental studies must complete the following departmental requirements:

  • ENVS 21, 22, 23, 101, 122, 198

  • ECON 1

  • ANTH 50/ENVS 50

  • ENVS 79 or PHIL 29

  • One course from ANTH 112, BIOL 160/ENVS 110, COMM 110, ECON 41/42, OMIS 40, POLI 101, PSYC 40, SOCI 120

  • ENVS 116

  • One course from BIOL 151/ENVS 151, BIOL 153/ENVS 153, ENGR 60, ENVS 80, ENVS 145, ENVS 148, ENVS 160, ENVS 165, ENVS 166, ENVS 185

  • Attend 10 approved Environmental Studies and Sciences environmental colloquia

Environmental studies majors shall select one of the following concentrations: Green Business; Environmental Policy, Law, and Politics; Sustainable Development; or Environmental Humanities. Alternatively, students may work with their advisors to design an individualized plan of study.

Green Business concentration

  • Three courses from ECON 101, ECON 111, ECON 120, ENVS 167, MGMT 172, MKTG 189, OMIS 108E

  • One course from any other environmental studies concentration

Environmental Policy, Law, and Politics concentration

  • Three courses from CENG 124/ENVS 124, COMM 120A, ENVS 120, ENVS 128, ENVS 150, ENVS 155, ENVS 158/PSYC 158, PHSC 142, POLI 123, POLI 167

  • One course from any other environmental studies concentration

Sustainable Development concentration

  • Three courses from ANTH 140/ENVS 136, ANTH 154, ENVS 128, ENVS 132, ENVS 141, ENVS 144, ENVS 146, ENVS 147, ENVS 149/POLI 146, ENVS 150, ENVS 155, ENVS 167

  • One course from any other environmental studies concentration

Environmental Humanities concentration

  • Three courses from ANTH 145/ENVS 137, COMM 120A, ENGL 154/ENVS 154, ENVS 131, ENVS 142, ENVS 143, ENVS 158/PSYC 158, RSOC 140

  • One course from any other environmental studies concentration

Requirements for the Minor

Minor in Environmental Studies

Students must fulfill the following requirements for a minor in environmental studies:

  • ENVS 21, 22, 23

  • One course from ANTH 112, ANTH 145/ENVS 137, BIOL 160/ENVS 110, CENG 160, COMM 110, ECON 41/42, ENVS 115, ENVS 116, HIST 100, OMIS 40, POLI 101, PSYC 40, SOCI 120

  • One course from CENG 124/ENVS 124, COMM 120A, ENVS 120, ENVS 122/POLI 157, ENVS 128, ENVS 147, ETHN 156, POLI 123

  • One course from ENVS 79, TESP 152, PHIL 29, RSOC 140, TESP 26, TESP 84, TESP 173, TESP 192

  • Three additional courses from the lists above or ANTH 50/ENVS 50, ANTH 140/ENVS 136, ANTH 154, BIOL 131, BIOL 150, BIOL 151/ENVS 151, BIOL 153/ENVS 153, BIOL 156/ENVS 156, BIOL 157, CENG 119, CENG 139, CENG 140, CENG 143, CENG 160, CENG 161, CENG 163, ECON 101, ECON 111, ENGL 154/ENVS 154, ENGR 60, ENVS 20, ENVS 50, ENVS 80, ENVS 95, ENVS 116, ENVS 128, ENVS 131, ENVS 132, ENVS 136, ENVS 141, ENVS 142, ENVS 143, ENVS 144, ENVS 145, ENVS 146, ENVS 148, ENVS 149/POLI 146, ENVS 151/BIOL 151, ENVS 153/BIOL 153, ENVS 154/ENGL 154, ENVS 155, ENVS 156, ENVS 158/PSYC 158, ENVS 160, ENVS 165, ENVS 166, ENVS 167, ENVS 185, ENVS 191, ENVS 195, ENVS 196, ENVS 197, ENVS 199, MGMT 172, MKTG 189, OMIS 108E, PHSC 142

  • Attend six approved Environmental Studies and Sciences environmental colloquia or complete ENVS 140

Lower-Division Courses: Environmental Studies and Sciences

1A. and 2A. Critical Thinking & Writing I and II

A two-course themed sequence featuring study and practice of academic discourse, with emphasis on critical reading and writing, composing processes, and rhetorical situation. The second course will feature more advanced study and practice of academic discourse, with additional emphasis on information literacy and skills related to developing and organizing longer and more complex documents. Topics may include the rhetoric surrounding current environmental issues, and environmental criticism with a variety of media. Successful completion of CTW I (ENVS 1A) is a prerequisite for CTW II (ENVS 2A). (4 units each quarter)

11A. and 12A. Cultures & Ideas I and II

A two-course sequence focusing on a major theme in human experience and culture over a significant period of time. Courses emphasize either broad global interconnections or the construction of Western culture in its global context. Themes may include nature, imagination, and environment in myth, art, literature, music, drama, story, philosophy, and sacred text. Successful completion of C&I I (ENVS 11A) is a prerequisite for C&I II (ENVS 12A). (4 units each quarter)

20. The Water Wars of California L&L

This course will use the history of water resource use and abuse in the state of California as a backdrop for investigating the interplay of hydrology, climate, and human population growth. Students will examine factors that affect the supply, distribution, demand, and quality of fresh water in the state of California. The important roles of climatic processes, variability, and global climate change will be highlighted, and population pressures on water resources will be analyzed. Concepts will be reinforced by field projects and through comparative case studies from California and beyond. Laboratory 15 hours. (4 units)

21. Introduction to Applied Ecology L&L

This course presents an introduction to environmental issues, seen through the lens of the biological sciences. Basic scientific concepts at different scales of biological organization, from genes to ecosystems, are illustrated by their application to contemporary environmental questions. In lecture, students are expected to think critically, read widely, and participate in group discussions. In laboratory and field exercises, the emphasis is on applying the scientific method and analyzing data. Laboratory 15 hours. Saturday field trip required. (4 units)

22. Introduction to Environmental Studies

This course presents environmental studies as an interdisciplinary academic field focused on society-nature relations. In part one, we examine population, markets, institutions, ethics, hazards, political economy, and social construction as core social science perspectives. Part two uses these approaches to explain nature-society puzzles related to agriculture, food, energy, climate change, biodiversity, forests, oceans, and land use change. In each of these cases, we focus on specific objects and their context (e.g., tuna in the Pacific Ocean or redwood trees in Northern California), as we analyze human-environment interdependence, and assess the complex causes, consequences, and potential responses to change processes occurring at the local, national, and global scales. We will also consider the personal and collective dimensions of social change through environmental civic engagement. (4 units)

23. Introduction to Earth Systems L&L

This course will investigate the workings and complexities of the Earth system, including the interactions, synergies, and feedbacks that link the geologic, oceanic, hydrologic, and climate system. Building on basic physical and chemical principles, students will study how continents, soils, oceans, freshwater reservoirs, and the atmosphere formed, which processes are taking place to change them, and how they are affected by human action. Understanding of the concepts will be deepened by laboratory activities and a field trip. Laboratory 15 hours. (4 units)

50. World Geography

Provides an understanding of world geography through an appreciation of contemporary global problems in different world regions. Broad topics that will be covered include globalization, demographic trends, economic development and underdevelopment, human-environment interactions, changing cultures, and geopolitics. These topics will illustrate the distribution of political, cultural, socioeconomic, and physical processes and features around the world and will be covered at local, regional, and global scales. Also listed as ANTH 50. (4 units)

79. Environmental Thought

Using an ecocritical approach, this course examines primary and secondary sources related to the evolution of environmental thought in modern times. The work of seminal thinkers from within the conservation movement, environmental philosophy, and environmental sciences will be explored, as well as the social and economic influences in post-World War II America that created the modern environmental movement. (4 units)

80. Energy and the Environment

From oil spills to coal mine accidents, from foreign policy impacts to climate change, energy has been a top news story. This course explores the basics of traditional fossil fuel energy production and alternative energy sources including natural gas, nuclear, biomass, wind, solar, hydropower, and fuel cells. Students will explore the energy demands of the United States relative to other countries and seek to piece together the multifaceted puzzle of energy production, storage, and transmission, as well as conservation and efficiency. Students will gain an understanding of the vast array of societal and environmental impacts of our energy demands, while defining opportunities and challenges for the future. (4 units)

95. Sustainable Living Undergraduate Research Project (SLURP)

This course is designed to promote a culture of sustainability within the residential learning communities of the modern university. Students engage in intensive research over the course of the academic year and will compile and present their results during the spring quarter. Enrollment is limited to residents of the SLURP floor in the CyPhi Residential Learning Community. (2 units in each of two academic quarters)

Upper-Division Courses: Environmental Studies and Sciences

101. Capstone Seminar

A guided group and individual research course that each year is aimed at tackling a wide range of environmental issues for a sustainable Silicon Valley. Most students work in groups as consultants for local stakeholders on a wide range of interdisciplinary projects, ranging from a proposal to expand bus rapid transit, determining wildlife mitigation corridors, and determining regulatory recommendations on greywater disposal, to assessing green space access and social equity. Individual capstone projects under faculty mentorship are also possible. Students develop project management skills, write individual and group papers, and present their research findings at a poster session for ESS faculty and community stakeholders at the end of the quarter. Some students pursue their research after the course, even to the point of publication. Prerequisites: Senior class standing; ENVS 21, 22, and 23; and ENVS 110, 115, or 116. (5 units)

110. Environmental Statistics L&L

A course in applied statistics for environmental researchers. Students gain training in sampling, experimental design, survey design, quantitative analysis, and hypothesis testing. Theory and concepts are covered in lectures and readings. Laboratory sessions provide practical experience using statistical software. Examples used in lectures and lab assignments are derived from the fields of biology, public health, and environmental studies and sciences. Laboratory 30 hours. Also listed as BIOL 160. Prerequisite: BIOL 1C or BIOL 25 or ENVS 21. (5 units)

116. Introduction to GIS

Spatial analysis helps to address critical questions in the environmental field, such as whether environmental burdens are disproportionately affecting disadvantaged communities or where habitat conservation measures might be most effective. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) can be used to overlay different kinds of spatial data for mapping and analysis. The class will use a project-based approach to generating, querying, analyzing, and displaying GIS data utilizing industry standard software. Prerequisite: ENVS 21 or 23 recommended. (5 units)

117. Intermediate GIS

This course will use a project-based approach to understanding and applying intermediate GIS tools with an emphasis on environmental problem solving, spatial statistics, networks, and workflow efficiency through model building and Python scripting. Class material will include practice for the ESRI ArcGIS desktop associate exam. Prerequisite: ENVS 116. (5 units)

120. Introduction to Environmental Law and Regulation in the United States

Introduction to the U.S. legal system’s approach to environmental protection. Topics include the roles of legislatures and environmental agencies at the federal, state, and local levels; the independent role of the judiciary in establishing environmental law; and specific statutes such as the Clean Air Act. Students evaluate questions of federalism, uses of economic incentives, and relationships between environmental protection and economic growth. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 recommended. (5 units)

122. Environmental Politics and Policy

This course analyzes environmental governance in the last half century and focuses on the social dimensions and impacts of policy change. Part one introduces environmental politics and policymaking processes in the context of history, different justifications, and competing interests and values. Part two compares regulatory approaches and policy tools, as we examine key pieces of environmental legislation in the United States, including the Clean Air, Clean Water, National Environmental Policy, and Endangered Species Acts. This section focuses on air pollution; climate policy and waste; addressing issues of local, state, and national regulations; environmental justice; scientific uncertainty; representation; and the politics of policy change. Part three examines the rise of sustainability agendas, highlighting the roles of civil society and corporate firms. A concluding discussion explores how civic engagement and innovations could accelerate transitions towards a greener economy. Students compose policy memos, participate in debates, and collaborate with their peers in a team-based role-playing simulation game. Also listed as POLI 157. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 or ENVS 79 or POLI 1. (5 units)

124. Water Law and Policy

Introduction to the legal and regulatory concepts related to water. Examines rights, policies, and laws, including issues related to water supply and access (water transfers/water markets, riparian and appropriative doctrines), flood control, water pollution and quality (the Clean Water Act, EPA standards, instream flows for fish), and on-site stormwater management/flood control. A focus on California water law and policy is complemented with some national and international case studies. Also listed as CENG 124. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 recommended. (5 units)

128. Urban and Environmental Planning

This course uses the lens of sustainability to examine major issues in land use, transportation, housing, economic development, public health, environmental planning and restoration, environmental justice, and public participation. In an age of climate change and rising economic inequality, students in this course will critically evaluate the role of urban planning in solving or sometimes exacerbating these kinds of incredible challenges. In doing so, this course will also offer students the opportunity to engage with real-world planning issues in the Bay Area and beyond. Prerequisites: ENVS 22 and 23 or permission of instructor. (5 units)

131. Environmental Education

Environmental education plays a fundamental role in our attempts to make human systems more sustainable. An introduction to the study and practice of environmental education. Surveys philosophies, theories, and methods of environmental education with a special emphasis on techniques for engaging K–12 students in outdoor settings to maximize learning of environmental concepts and to improve the students’ understanding of their personal connections to nature. Introduces creative ways that we as current or future teachers, parents, or mentors can use active study of and interactions with the outdoor environment to engage young people in the study of environmental systems and basic biological, chemical, and physical sciences. A portion of the course will be taught in field-based settings. Students will participate in service-learning projects that will give them practical experience planning and leading environmental education lessons. Especially valuable for future teachers. Prerequisite: ENVS 21, 22, 23, or BIOL 1C. (5 units)

132. Agroecology L&L

The goal of agroecology is to reduce the negative impact of farming while meeting the food needs of the world. Examines in a holistic framework the ecological principles and processes that govern agroecosystem productivity and stability. A wide variety of agricultural management practices and designs are assessed and discussed in terms of their capacity to sustain long-term production. Students will also learn research methods that explore the resilience and sustainability of agroecosystems. One required weekend field trip. Laboratory 30 hours. Prerequisite: BIOL 1C, or both ENVS 21 and 23. (5 units)

136. Food, Culture, and the Environment

Exploration of the history and impact that food choices have made on human societies. Several foods that have become staples in the world today, like sugar, pepper, and various grains, have significantly affected the environment, patterns of land use, economy (both local and global), cuisine, and the meaning of meals and food sharing. Class topics illustrate how food choices shape cultural groups and interaction, as well as how they shape environmental change. Also listed as ANTH 140. (5 units)

137. Historical Ecology

Historical ecology investigates the historical relationships between cultures and their environments. Students will use various types of data, including historical documents, maps, and land use information, to learn how to reconstruct the historical ecology of the Santa Clara Valley. Also listed as ANTH 145. (5 units)

141. Environmental Biology in the Tropics

This summer course examines tropical biology and ecology and their relationship to issues of sustainable development. The course includes 1.5 weeks of instruction at SCU and 3.5 weeks of field study in Costa Rica. Particular emphasis on tropical ecology, community ecology, reforestation and restoration ecology, sustainable agriculture and fair trade, and ecotourism. Taught in conjunction with ANTH 197. Enrollment by application via International Programs. Prerequisite: ANTH 1 or BIOL 1C or ENVS 21. (5 units)

143. Literatures of Environmental Apocalypse

In this course we look at the concept of “environmental apocalypse” through an exploration of various works of fiction, nonfiction and film. First, we will explore the idea of the “end” or “death” of “nature,” then we turn to the more literal sort of apocalypse (caused by global nuclear war and/or global warming). (5 units)

144. Natural History of Baja L&L

Examines the natural history of Baja California Sur, with emphasis on the taxonomy of marine and terrestrial organisms, the ecology of desert and coastal ecosystems, and the biogeography of the peninsula. Meets twice a week in winter quarter and culminates in a 10-day spring break trip to the Sierra de la Laguna region and the Isla Espiritu Santo complex. Students will become familiar with desert, riparian, beach, mangrove, and rocky intertidal habitats, develop field observation and species identification skills, and explore local conservation challenges. Laboratory 30 hours. Prerequisites: BIOL 1C or ENVS 21 or permission of instructor. Enrollment by application only. Travel fees required. Also listed as BIOL 144. (5 units)

145. Environmental Technology

A survey course covering a variety of environmentally conscious technologies. Addresses “bleeding edge” as well as more traditional technologies that enhance both human welfare and environmental quality in both the developed and developing countries. Students will concentrate on environmentally conscious technologies used in the general areas of air quality, biotic systems, climate, energy, land, population, transportation, waste, and water. Prerequisite: ENVS 23 or by permission of instructor. (5 units)

146. Agriculture, Environment, and Development: Latin America

Offers a cross-disciplinary examination of the prospects for “sustainable development” in rural areas of Latin America. Students will use diverse points of view to look at interactions between poverty, development, and environmental degradation. While there is no single, universally accepted definition of sustainable development, a central goal of this course is that each student will come away with the ability to understand the key elements that distinguish different discourses on this subject. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 recommended. (5 units)

147. International Environment and Development

Examines the intersection of environment and development in the developing world. Students will explore meanings and measures of development as well as international institutions that influence development and environmental policy. Conceptual frameworks for addressing human-environmental relationships, including globalization, famine and hunger, sustainable development, population-poverty interactions, and gender will be explored. Specific topics to be covered include deforestation, water use, conservation and development, oil extraction, and urbanization. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 or by permission of instructor. (5 units)

148. Solar Revolution

Solar energy is more than just photovoltaic (PV) arrays on a roof. Learn about different types of PV technologies as well as passive solar design, and concentrated solar thermal (making power at the level of a conventional power plant!). Find out the key technological, environmental, and economic issues, and what it would take to employ solar energy to greatly decrease our reliability on fossil fuels. Students will use the United States as well as numerous examples in developed and developing countries as case studies. Prerequisite: ENVS 21, 22, 23, or 80. (5 units)

149. African Environment and Development

Students will gain an in-depth understanding of Africa’s diversity and dynamism, considering how people and environments have interacted through space and time. We will examine Africa’s social, cultural, economic, political, and environmental systems to understand Africa’s trajectory of development. Also listed as POLI 146. (5 units)

150. Political Ecology

Explores political ecology as a field of study and as a critical tool to analyze environmental issues. Focuses on going beyond simplified explanations about environmental problems, tracing environmental change to broader political, economic, and cultural issues. Topics explored will include land degradation, conservation through parks and reserves, land use conflicts, science and power, social movements, urban pollution, and public health. Course readings include case studies from across the globe to examine how political ecology research engages issues and how it offers critical insights needed to address environmental problems. Challenges students to critically examine their own interpretations and understandings of today’s most important environmental issues. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 or by permission of instructor. (5 units)

151. Restoration Ecology L&L

The science and practice of restoring degraded ecosystems, with an emphasis on plant ecology. Through fieldwork on restoration experiments, conversations with managers, and examination of literature case studies, students will grapple with basic questions: How do we decide what to restore? How do we restore it? And how do we know if we’re finished? Emphasis on reading and writing scientific papers, understanding data analysis, writing a restoration plan, and judging the success of restoration projects in meeting goals of biodiversity and ecosystem function. Laboratory and field work 30 hours, including a weekend field trip. Also listed as BIOL 151. Prerequisite: BIOL 23, or both ENVS 21 and 23. (5 units)

152. Faith, Ethics, and Biodiversity

Critical investigation of the global collapse of biological diversity. Religious implications of the environmental crisis, and a survey of the relio-ethical analysis and response by major faith traditions in light of the greening of religion. Examines the role that ethics can play in articulating conversation initiatives. Also listed as TESP 152. (5 units)

153. Conservation Science

Conservation is a scientific enterprise and a social movement that seeks to protect nature, including Earth’s animals, plants, and ecosystems. Conservation science applies principles from ecology, population genetics, economics, political science, and other natural and social sciences to manage and protect the natural world. Conservation is all too often seen as being at odds with human well-being and economic development. This course explores the scientific foundations of conservation while highlighting strategies to better connect conservation with the needs of a growing human population. We will examine whether conservation can protect nature, not from people, but for people. Also listed as BIOL 153. Prerequisite: BIOL 1C, or both ENVS 21 and 23. (5 units)

154. Literature & Environment

What assumptions in Western thought undergird ideas about the relationship between humans and the natural world? While literature and the environment have a long shared history, only in the last two decades has serious consideration and critique been given to the nature of this connection and what it means for both of these expansive and problematic terms. This course will explore ideas and facts about our environment from three different perspectives (nonfiction environmental writing, theory, and contemporary fiction) to help us understand how these powerful assumptions developed and how we might change our priorities to create a sustainable future. This course fulfills one of the requirements for the Literature and Cultural Studies track in the major and minor in English or can serve as an elective; it fulfills the pathway in sustainability; and it also fulfills one of the requirements for ENVS majors and minors in the Environmental Studies concentrations in Environmental Thought. (5 units)

155. Environmental and Food Justice

This course unites two vibrant fields for academic study and arenas for social, political, and ecological action. Environmental justice as a principle affirms the right of all people to healthy livable communities. Environmental injustice occurs when environmental benefits and burdens are unevenly distributed along the lines of identity, including race, class, and/or nationality. Food justice research addresses inequalities in food access and studies the patterns, causes, and solutions associated with increasing hunger and obesity among eaters and the accumulation of environmental costs in agricultural landscapes. After reviewing several seminal studies in environmental and food justice, this class delves into case studies in California and Central America. Learners will conduct a major research project, participate in team-based collaborations, and engage local communities as part of this course. Prerequisite: ENVS 22 or 79. (5 units)

156. General Ecology L&L

Quantitative study of the interrelationships of organisms with their biotic and abiotic environments. Emphasis on population dynamics, interspecific relationships, community structure, and ecosystem processes. Laboratory and field work 30 hours, including one weekend field trip. Also listed as BIOL 156. Prerequisites: BIOL 1C. (5 units)

157. Conservation Biology L & L

Explores the applications of ecological and genetic principles to the conservation of biological diversity. Emphasis on quantitative tools, including trend analysis, population viability analysis, and population genetics. Laboratory and fieldwork involve exercises with local plants and animals, as well as computer exercises using data for endangered species. Laboratory and field work 30 hours. Prerequisite: BIOL 1C. Also listed as BIOL 150. (5 units)

158. Conservation Psychology

Many environmental problems (e.g., global warming, pollution, biodiversity loss, and resource depletion) are caused by human behavior, and changing this behavior is necessary in order to solve them. Topics include psychological reasons (emotions, thoughts, values, motivations, social context) why people behave in environmentally sustainable or unsustainable ways, and how psychology can be used to develop policies and other interventions to help promote sustainable behavior. Also listed as PSYC 158. Prerequisites: PSYC 1, 2, 40, and 43, or permission of the instructor. (5 units)

160. Water Resources L&L

This course covers fundamental concepts in hydrology and water resources management such as precipitation, runoff, and infiltration, flow in streams and aquifers, floods and droughts, water budgets, water delivery systems and stream restoration, water cycling, use, treatment, pollution, and conservation. Interactions between water and human societies, ecosystems, agriculture, natural resources, and climate are explored through domestic and international case studies. Course concepts are reinforced through indoor and outdoor class and laboratory exercises and field trips. Laboratory 30 hours. Prerequisite: ENVS 21 or 23, or by permission of instructor. (5 units)

161. Water Security

UN millennium development goals include access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation for all people, yet in many places those have remained an elusive goal. Water security invokes the idea of risk, but also of action, and resonates with governments, managers, academics, donors, activists, and organizations. In this course we will analyze frameworks and approaches to water security. Through critical evaluation of the recent literature and principles from the fields of environmental science and studies, students will gain perspectives on barriers and solutions to safeguarding access to adequate quantities of acceptable quality water for sustaining livelihoods, ecosystems, and human well-being. This class satisfies the requirements for an upper division elective in the environmental sciences, a natural science elective for environmental studies majors, and an advanced writing course for the University Core. (5 units)

165. Climate Science and Solutions

Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the physical processes involved in climate change, as well as its socioeconomic consequences. The course also explores the strengths and weaknesses of policies and other tools used to mitigate or adapt to climate change. Prerequisite: ENVS 23 or by permission of instructor. (5 units)

166. Climate Change: Past to Future L&L

Human-caused changes to the climate system are now widely accepted and expected to have great effects on physical, biological, and human systems from sea level rise to human disease, ocean acidification and mass extinction. We will explore climate change in three broad units: (1) foundational aspects of the climate system such as Earth’s energy balance, greenhouse effect, carbon cycle, and circulation of the oceans and atmosphere; (2) evolution of the climate system throughout Earth’s history; and (3) impacts, vulnerabilities, and solutions for modern climate change. Students will model Earth’s energy balance, examine Earth’s carbon and water cycles in the field and lab, experimentally determine sea level rise with water isotopes, and use climate models to predict future changes. Lectures and discussions of current scientific literature and government documents will be motivated by student interest. Laboratory 30 hours. Prerequisite: ENVS 23 (5 units)

167. Innovation for Climate Justice

Confronting climate disruption threatens to roll back progress in economic and sustainable development, especially for less developed regions. This course introduces climate justice as an ethical framework for understanding the unequal distribution of climate-related harms on the poor. The geography of climate change impacts are explored and students will evaluate innovation and entrepreneurship as climate adaptation strategies, with a particular focus on sustainable solutions. (5 units)

185. Garbology

This class follows the path of our waste products as they are landfilled, burned, treated, recycled, reused, dumped on minority communities, or shipped abroad. Building on basic chemical and biological principles, we explore the ultimate fate of organic and inorganic waste. We look to the past and to other societies to better understand how we got to this throw-away society and what we can learn from past practices and other cultures. We explore sustainable solutions including new efforts to reduce our waste such as “extended producer responsibility,” design-for-disassembly, green chemistry, and zero waste. Students will also learn how to utilize the “life cycle analysis” approach as a basis for those daily decisions such as paper versus plastic. Prerequisite: ENVS 23. (5 units)

195. Sustainable Living Undergraduate Research Project (SLURP)

This research-based course is designed to promote a culture of sustainability within the residential communities of Santa Clara University. Students will engage in intensive research over the course of winter and spring quarters and will compile and present their results during the spring quarter. (2 units in each of two academic quarters)

196. Special Topics in Environmental Studies

Course content and topics vary depending on the professor. (Variable units)

197. Special Topics in Environmental Science

Course content and topics vary depending on the professor. (Variable units)

198. Environmental Proseminar

A seminar course for graduating seniors intended to permit reflection on an internship or research experience and foster the further development of professional skills. Prior to enrolling, students must complete 100 hours of work in one of the following two options: (1) an approved off-campus environmental internship (see your academic adviser for approval before initiating the internship), or (2) approved environmental research with SCU faculty (ENVS 199A or 199B) or as part of a study abroad program. Students pursuing option 1 enroll for 5 units; those pursuing option 2 enroll for 2 units. Students are graded P/NP only. Prerequisites: Completion of 100 hours of approved internship or research and senior class standing. (2 or 5 units)

199. Directed Reading or Research

Students who want to enroll in 199A or 199B should meet with the faculty supervisor no later than the fifth week of the term preceding the start of the project. Prerequisite: A written description of the proposed project must be presented to the department chair for approval. (1–5 units)

199A. Directed Reading in Environmental Science or Environmental Studies

Detailed investigation based on directed readings on advanced environmental topics, under the close supervision of a faculty member. Prerequisite: Permission of department chair and instructor before registration. (1–5 units)

199B. Directed Environmental Research

Supervised laboratory, field, or other research under the guidance of a faculty member. The goal should be a written report suitable for publication or a conference presentation. Prerequisite: Permission of department chair and instructor before registration. (1–5 units)

results matching ""

    No results matching ""