SALEM COMMUNITY COLLEGE Course Syllabus. Course Title: Environmental Science I. Course Code: BIO103. Lecture Hours: 2 Laboratory Hours: 4 Credits: 4

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1 SALEM COMMUNITY COLLEGE Course Syllabus Course Title: Environmental Science I Course Code: BIO103 Lecture Hours: 2 Laboratory Hours: 4 Credits: 4 Course Description: Environmental Science I is the first semester of a two-semester study of environmental science. The course, intended for non-science majors only, focuses on the principles of ecology, population and interactions, the food chain, energy flow and nutrient cycling. Lab experience includes field trips to study various ecosystems. Prerequisite: MAT093, if required. Co-requisite: Place in College Curriculum: A 4-credit science elective for students except science, math and nursing majors.

2 Environmental Science I / Page 2 Course Outline: Part 1: Ecosystems and How They Work 1. Sustainability, Stewardship and Sound Science 2. Ecosystems: What They Are 3. Ecosystems: How They Work 4. Ecosystems: Populations and Succession 5. Ecosystems and Evolutionary Change Part 2: The Human Population 1. Demographics 2. Issues in Population and development Part 3: Renewable Resources 1. Soil and the Soil Ecosystem 2. Water: Hydrologic Cycle and Human Use 3. The Production and Distribution of Food 4. Wild Species: Biodiversity and Protection 5. Ecosystems as Resources

3 Environmental Science I / Page 3 Course Performance Objective #1: Explain how ecosystems work and how the five basic sustainability principles keep ecosystems going. sustainability, stewardship and sound science; what ecosystems are and how they are organized into larger units; trophic categories and how they function together in food webs; mutualism and competition in ecosystems; environmental factors in ecosystems; the different biomes of the world and how they are produced; how the Neolithic and Industrial Revolutions have affected the natural environment; the Environmental Revolution; the key elements that make up living systems; the chemical reactions and energy exchange in living systems; the role of photosynthesis and respiration in ecosystems ; he flow of energy in ecosystems; the function of decomposers and detritivores; the carbon, phosphorus and nitrogen cycles and the human influence on these cycles; the difference between biotic potential and environmental resistance; density dependence and density independence; the impact of predators, parasites and grazers on ecosystems; the role of competition in population balance; the impact of introducing foreign species in an ecosystem; gradual succession in an ecosystem; the role of major ecosystems disturbances, such as fire, in maintaining high levels of biodiversity; the features of adaptive ecosystem management; ecosystem resilience; hoe differential reproduction changes the characteristics of a population; the factors that affect the gene pool of a species; what attributes affect the survival of a species; how natural selection can lead to the development of new species; how the theory of plate tectonics explains the movement of continental land masses; the difference between macroevolution and microevolution. Course Performance Objective #2: Explain the dynamics of the human population and how population affects every environmental issue the causes of the human population explosion; population growth rate and the associated social and environmental consequences; population profiles; the four phases of demographic transition;

4 Environmental Science I / Page 4 the factors that affect fertility rates; the debt crisis and the role of the World Bank in addressing this crisis; the five areas of development for social modernization; significance of the 1994 UN Conference on Population and Development and the agreed-upon strategies for addressing poverty, excessive population and environmental degradation. Course Performance Objective #3: Explain the best ways of managing and sustaining our renewable resources: soil, water, food production, forest growth and fisheries. the attributes of soil and soil taxonomy; the various types of soil profiles; the dynamic interaction of soil and organisms; soil degradation and ways to combat the practices that lead to erosion and degradation; the problems that may develop from irrigation practices; sustainable soil stewardship; the hydrologic cycle and the impact of humans on this cycle; the major uses of water, points of withdrawal and consequences of overdrawing water; how humans can reduce their demand for water; how urbanization affects water consumption; industrialized agriculture and its environmental cost; the origin and impact of the Green Revolution; subsistence agriculture; the prospects for increasing food production; the promises and problems associated with genetically modified crops; the global patterns of food trade and their consequences; the extent of hunger, malnutrition and undernutrition in the world; the causes of famine and the geographical areas affected; the necessity of food aid; the preservation of wild species; how public policy in the United States protects endangered species; biodiversity and how human cause a decline in biodiversity; the difference between consumptive and productive uses of natural resources; the affects of deforestation; the patterns of forest management for sustainable forestry; the consequences of overfishing and how the declines can be reversed; the management of federal lands for sustainability. Course Activities: Lecture, class participation, on-line explorations, case studies, in class group learning assignments, student presentations, and short papers are the major course activities. The Laboratory portion involves the practical application of the scientific method, field study techniques, and study of nearby habitats. Overhead transparencies, charts, videos, models, and microscopic observations are incorporated into the lecture and laboratory portions of the course.

5 Environmental Science I / Page 5 Course Requirements and Means of Evaluation: Please refer to the instructor s syllabus addendum (to be distributed in class) for specific information regarding the course requirements and means of evaluation. Academic Honesty Policy: Students found to have committed an act of academic dishonesty may be subject to failure of this course, academic probation, and / or suspension from the college. See the Student Handbook for additional details. Attendance: Regular and prompt attendance in all classes is expected of students. Students absent from class for any reason are responsible for making up any missed work. Faculty members establish an attendance policy for each course and it is the student s responsibility to honor and comply with that policy. ADA Statement: If you have a 504 Accommodation Plan, please discuss it with your instructor. If you have any disability but have not documented it with the Disability Support coordinator at Salem Community college, you must do so to be eligible for accommodations. To contact the Disability Support Coordinator, call , to set up an appointment. To find out more information about disability support services at Salem Community College, visit Required Text(s): For textbook information, please see the Salem Community College Bookstore Website. Optional Text(s): Materials / Supplies: Additional Costs:

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