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Academics

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ASTR 1105. Descriptive Astronomy: The Solar System (3-0-3) History of astronomy, structure of the solar system, formation of the sun and planetary bodies, moons, comets, asteroids, and meteors. (Course fee required.)


ASTR 1305. Descriptive Astronomy Lab (0-2-1) Prerequisite or Co-requisite: ASTR 1105 or ASTR 1106. Laboratory exercises in astronomy and instruction on the use of telescopes and observational techniques. Activities will include the investigation of the physical nature of astronomical objects and the observation and measurement of the moon, planets, and stars. (Course fee required.)


ASTR 1106. Descriptive Astronomy: Stars and Galaxies (3-0-3) ASTR 1105 recommended as a prerequisite or co-requisite. The sun, stars and stellar evolution, black holes, nebulae and interstellar dust, galaxies, quasars, and cosmology. (Course fee required.)


BIOL 1215K. Principles of Biology (3-2-4) Exploration of the scientific paradigm as applied for human understanding of the living cell, molecular genetics, population genetics, organic evolution, and ecology. Includes inquiry-based laboratory. (Course fee required.)


ENVS 1105. Environmental Studies (3-0-3) An examination of the scientific components of environmental studies, including the interactions of biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics. Primary focus will be on issues related to scientific principles and concepts, human population, global environmental problems (biodiversity and warming), air and water pollution, natural resources and resource management, and the historical, social and political issues related to the environment. (Course fee required.)


ENVS 1205K. Sustainability and the Environment (3-2-4) This course will challenge students to reexamine their perception about the role of humans in their natural environment. Emphasis will be placed on ways to improve the sustainability of resources particularly through individual life-style choices about food, transportation, water, wastes, and housing. Students will learn how natural ecosystems work and why human societies depend on so much on them. In the laboratory for the course, students will learn to measure their ecological footprint, conduct a personal energy audit, grow healthy food and explore ways to protect local wildlife and their habitats. Field trips will enable students to participate in local sustainability related projects and talk to the visionaries that make these projects a reality.


GEOL 1110. Natural Disasters: Our Hazardous Environment (3-0-3) This course examines natural environmental hazards of geologic, hydrologic, meteorologic, and extraterrestrial nature, including: volcanoes, earthquakes, tsunami, subsidence, floods, mass wasting, severe weather, and meteorite/comet impacts. Class lectures focus on the causes, processes, and effects of these types of natural hazards on the earth, life on the planet, and human society in particular. (Course fee required.)