Environmental Studies Courses, Spring 2006

ANSO 1090 Topics in Geography: Geographic Transitions (3 credits)
Instructor: Mikels Skele
MWF 10-10:50

This is a teacher certification course. It will be an exploration of most areas of geography: land-human relationships, regions, spacial interaction, population, resources and socioeconomic development. Students will look at geography in a changing world, doing so from the perspective of future teachers in elementary and secondary classrooms.

BIOL 1310.01/ISTL 2600 01 Natural Systems and Sustainable Ecologies (3 credits)
Instructor: Staff
TR 3-4:20

This course examines ecosystems, how they function, and how they shape and are shaped by human societies. Includes both a comparative and global perspective on environmental issues and ecology.

FILM 3160.03 Topics in Film Studies: Environment and Film (3 credits)  
Instructor: Stephen Gibson
T 5:30-9:30 Spring I
Click here for extended description

We will analyze presentations of the natural world, the environment, and environmental issues in American film. Applying the methodology of Ecocriticism, we will examine how American film has responded to and portrayed environmentalism and nature. By combining Ecocriticism with Film Studies, we will discuss how the interaction between audience and film both educates audiences and illustrates the state of environmentalism in American culture. Our aim will be to find a common ground between the films’ portrayal of environmentalism and nature with discourses that occur publicly. We will seek to identify any system of images, conventions, languages, and discourses that provide insight into the messages Americans are receiving. Furthermore, by demonstrating how Hollywood portrays environmentalism, nature, or environmental problems, we will strive to find a perspective on how America is dealing with “environmental problems,” its discourses, assumptions, and stereotypes.

The course will begin with American perspectives on nature, environmental thought and environmentalism. From there, we will examine cinematic displays of Green Romanticism, Green Radicalism, organized environmentalism, the relationship between humans and nature, pollution, industrialization, environmental limits, and anti-environmental views that contradict the pro-nature or pro-environment perspectives. In doing so, we will examine how specific cinematic genres have illustrated these themes, while also addressing other issues such as: What is the role of nature or environmentalism in film in terms of plot or setting? How are the environmental problems defined or presented in the selected movies? Do the films offer any solutions? How are the movies’ presentations, productions, or present interpretations shaped by history and current events? What message or moral—if any—do the films provide? Finally, just “how green is Hollywood” in its production process and its choice of subject matter?

JOUR 3750 Environmental Journalism and Communications (3 credits)
Instructor: Don Corrigan
MWF 10:00-10:50
Click here for Sample Syllabus

Description: In this course students learn how journalists, advocacy group spokespersons, and public relations officials communicate on environmental issues. The course provides future environmental reporters with a sensitivity to the language of hazard and risk, as well as technical and quantitative knowledge about environmental issues. For future public information professionals involved with environmental issues, the course will provide insight on how the media reports on the environment. This is a writing course, and students can be expected to research and write on an array of local and national environmental concerns. Prerequisites: JOUR 1030, sophomore standing, SCIN 1520, or permission of instructor. Even if you have none of the first three prerequisites but are interested in this course, please contact the instructor at corrigan@timesnewspapers.com or corrigdh@webster.edu.

POLT 2500 Interdisciplinary Approaches to Politics: Sex, Drugs, and Garbage (3 credits)
Instructor: Allan MacNeill
TR 1:30-2:50
Click here for Spring 2004 Syllabus

Description: Are government regulations, prohibitions and mandates the best policies for dealing with prostitution, illegal drugs and garbage? Should policy-makers consider the cost effectiveness of their actions, or should moral concerns outweigh economic considerations? What role, if any, should market forces play in addressing these issues? What is the relationship between individual freedom and social welfare? This course will explore diverse viewpoints on these questions from within the field of political economy. Different theoretical approaches will be applied to three case studies: the economics of the sex industry, the legalization of drugs, and public recycling programs. The course format will include lecture, videos, discussion and debates. Students will be evaluated based on short written assignments, class participation and a final exam. An American Studies Course. [VAL]

SCIN 1520 01 Environment (3 credits)
SCIN 1521 01 Environment: Lab (1 credit)

Instructor: Jeff DePew
TR 1:00-3:50
Click here for Spring 2005 Syllabus

Description: Concerns problems of the world ecosystem. Includes the nature of ecosystems, pesticides, water pollution, air pollution, solid waste, nonrenewable natural resources, energy, nuclear power, radioactivity, agriculture, human food supply, and environmental health. Laboratory required. SCIN 1520 and SCIN 1521 must be taken concurrently. Intended for non-majors. An American Studies course.