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GEO105 - The Geography of Sustainability
Catalog Description: Introduces the connections between human activities and the physical environment. Examines environmental processes, human impact on the global environment, diverse perspectives on the contested concept of sustainability, and solutions to environmental problems. Emphasizes social science models, theories and perspectives as frameworks for thinking critically and creatively about a range of sustainability issues.
Lecture: 3 hrs.
Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs):
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
1. Explore the interconnectedness of complex human-environment systems, including relationships at multiple spatial and temporal scales.
2. Delineate the ways in which humans in various geographic contexts (including the non-Western world) think about, affect, and are affected by the natural environment.
3. Recognize and describe the scientific basis of environmental issues such as climate change, deforestation, and desertification.
4. Identify a minimum of five social science models in human geography and discuss their implications for a range of sustainability issues.*
5. Identify a minimum of five social science research methods used by scholars in the field of sustainability studies.*
6. Examine the sustainability of current social and environmental practices and describe alternatives.
7. Analyze critically and develop informed positions on major societal and environmental challenges.
8. Consider the political and economic context in which these challenges are framed as global problems.
9. Develop creative solutions to environmental challenges, and address potential obstacles to their implementation.
10. Integrate geographic knowledge and research skills into a 4-6 page paper on an approved topic which analyzes an environmental challenge in the non-Western world.*
* This course objective has been identified as a student learning outcome that must be formally assessed as part of the Comprehensive Assessment Plan of the college. All faculty teaching this course must collect the required data and submit the required analysis and documentation at the conclusion of the semester to the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment.
I. Geographic Perspectives and Environmental Terminologies
II. Human-Environment Systems
III. Resource Limits, Commons, and Population
IV. Global Impacts on Land and Organisms
V. Global Climate Change
VI. Energy Resources
VII. Natural Hazards
VIII. Food and Agriculture
IX. Land Use
X. Urban Environments
XI. Environmental Ethics, Justice and Citizenship
XII. Environmental Laws and Organizations in the U.S. and Globally
XIII. Natural Capitalism and Green Jobs
XIV. The Geography of Sustainability: Western and Non-Western Perspectives
XV. Social Science Insights into Environmentally Sustainable Practices and Sustainable Development
Effective Term: Fall 2014