Middlebury

 

Courses

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

ENVS 0112 - Natural Science & Environment      

Natural Science and the Environment
We will explore in detail a series of current environmental issues in order to learn how principles of biology, chemistry, geology, and physics, as well as interdisciplinary scientific approaches, help us to identify and understand challenges to environmental sustainability. In lecture, we will examine global environmental issues, including climate change, water and energy resources, biodiversity and ecosystem services, human population growth, and world food production, as well as the application of science in forging effective, sustainable solutions. In the laboratory and field, we will explore local manifestations of global issues via experiential and hands-on approaches. 3 hrs. lect., 3 hrs. lab.

SCI

Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0209 - Gender Health Environment      

Gender Health and the Environment
Growing concern for the protection of the environment and human health has led policy makers and scholars to consider ways in which gender, class, and race mediate human-environment interactions. In this course we will explore how access to, control over, and distribution of resources influence environmental and health outcomes both in terms of social inequities and ecological decline. Specific issues we will cover include: ecofeminism, food security, population, gendered conservation, environmental toxics, climate change, food justice, and the green revolution. We will examine these topics at multiple scales within the United States and internationally.

SOC

Spring 2015

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ENVS 0210 - Social Class & the Environment      

Social Class and the Environment
In this course we will explore the consequence of growth, technological development, and the evolution of ecological sacrifice zones. Texts will serve as the theoretical framework for in-the-field investigations, classroom work, and real-world experience. The Struggle for Environmental Justice outlines resistance models; Shadow Cities provides lessons from the squatters movement; Ben Hewitt's The Town that Food Saved describes economy of scale solutions, and David Owen's The Conundrum challenges environmentalism. Texts will guide discussions, serve as lenses for in-the-field investigations, and the basis for writing. We will also travel to Hardwick and Putney, Vermont, to explore new economic-environmental models. (Not open to students who have taken ENVS/WRPR 1014)

NOR SOC

Spring 2013, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0211 - Conservation & Env Policy      

Topic determined by instructor - please refer to the section.

NOR SOC

Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0215 - Nature's Meanings      

Topic determined by the instructor - please refer to the section.

NOR

Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0240 - The Science of Climate Change      

The Science of Climate Change
In its 2013 report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change declared that "warming of the climate system is unequivocal” and that "human influence on the climate system is clear.” Why do human activities affect climate? What future climatic changes can we expect, and what will be their impacts? Answers to these questions lie in processes that govern the flows of energy to and from Earth and its atmosphere, in changing atmospheric composition, and in cycling of materials among Earth, atmosphere, and oceans. In this course we will explore these processes and their implications for human-induced climate change, giving students solid grounding in climate science. We will also explore the latest IPCC report and other current literature, work with climate data, and develop simple climate models for exploring future scenarios. The climate-modeling workshop of ENVS 0240 qualifies it for the lab science requirement of the ENVS major. (MATH 0121 or waiver for high-school calculus) 3 hrs. lect. and workshop

DED SCI

Spring 2012, Fall 2014

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ENVS 0277 - Body & Earth      

Body and Earth
This course has been designed for students with an interest in the dialogue between the science of body and the science of place. Its goals are to enhance movement efficiency through experiential anatomy and to heighten participants' sensitivity to natural processes and forms in the Vermont bioregion. Weekly movement sessions, essays by nature writers, and writing assignments about place encourage synthesis of personal experience with factual information. Beyond the exams and formal writing assignments, members of the class will present a final research project and maintain an exploratory journal. 3 hrs. lect. 1 hr. lab.

ART NOR PE

Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Spring 2014

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ENVS 0327 - Photography & the Environment      

Photography and the Environmental Ethos
Since the invention of photography in 1839, photographers have turned their gaze toward the world around them. Working on the land, they have considered issues of land management and natural resources in a variety of ways. In this course we will explore the question of how American photographers from the 19th century to the present have used their photographs as a way of raising awareness about a variety of environmental questions. Artists to be considered may include: Timothy O'Sullivan, William Henry Jackson, Carleton Watkins, Annie Brigman, Ansel Adams, Laura Gilpin, Richard Misrach, and Edward Burtynsky. 3 hrs. lect/disc.

ART HIS NOR

Spring 2015

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ENVS 0330 - Conserving Endangered Species      

Conserving Endangered Species
The planet is in the midst of the sixth mass extinction event. In this course we will examine the science of species endangerment and recovery and how human society, through its political and legal systems, seeks to conserve endangered species. We will explore several case studies, primarily focused on species recovery efforts in the United States. The course will culminate in a student group project. (BIOL 0140 or ENVS 0112 or ENVS 0211) 3 hrs. sem.

Fall 2014

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ENVS 0340 - Social Movements      

Social Movements, Theory, and Practice
There are many ways to affect politics, from voting to lobbying to corrupting leaders. But building social movements--from the civil rights movment to the Tea Parties--is one of the most powerful and positive approaches. This course will examine the history and structure of movements from the left, right, and middle, try to figure out how conditions have changed in an internet age, and allow students to develop particular strategies for campaigns that interest them. (This course counts as a policy focus elective for ENVS-EP majors)

SOC

Spring 2011

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ENVS 0380 - Global Challenges      

Global Challenges of the 21st Century
In this course we will begin by studying theories of social and political change, and then we will analyze the systematic causes of poverty and environmental degradation around the world. We will then study prospective solutions, focusing on the role of selective members of global civil society, including social entrepreneurs, in achieving these solutions. Over the course of the semester, each student will prepare a comprehensive analysis on how to tackle and overcome a specific global challenge. (ENVS 0211 or PSCI 0214) 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

SOC

Winter 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014

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ENVS 0390 - Env Negotiation/Dispute Res      

Environmental Negotiation and Dispute Resolution
In this seminar, we will gain an understanding of environmental negotiation and dispute resolution as applied to public policy at both the domestic and international levels. We will consider the mutual gains approach to negotiation, facilitation, mediation, and dispute systems design. We will grapple with challenging features typical of environmental negotiations, such as the large number of stakeholders involved, scientific uncertainty, and value differences. We will undertake role-playing simulations. Throughout, we will think critically about the negotiating styles and assumptions employed by both seminar participants and those presented in course materials. (Junior or Senior standing; Sophomores by approval; ENVS 0211 or IGST 0101 or PSCI 0109). 3 hrs. sem. (International Relations and Foreign Policy)/

SOC

Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2014

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ENVS 0395 - Religion, Ethics + Environment      

Religion, Ethics, and the Environment ET
We will explore the relationship between religion and ecology through two general approaches. Firstly, we will examine what religious traditions (especially, Jewish and Christian, but also Hindu and Buddhist) have had to say about the human-nature relationship by studying such dominant themes as: doctrines of creation and stewardship, restraints on human impact, concepts of interdependence, and ideas of sacred space. Secondly, we will turn our attention to contemporary religiously-based environmental activism, examining the possibilities and problems that emerge when religious traditions are mobilized on behalf of the environment. Students may write research papers using one or both of these approaches. (RELI 0110 or RELI 0130 or RELI 0160 or RELI 0190 or RELI 0295 or ENVS 0215) 3 hrs. sem.

PHL

Spring 2015

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ENVS 0401 - Environmental Studies Sr Sem      

Environmental Studies Senior Seminar
A single environmental topic will be explored through reading, discussion, and individual research. Topics will vary from semester to semester, but will focus on issues with relevance to the local region and with interdisciplinary dimensions, such as temperate forests, lake ecosystems, or public lands policy. The class involves extensive reading, student-led discussions, and a collaborative research project. (Senior standing; ENVS 0112, ENVS 0211, ENVS 0215, and GEOG 0120) 3 hrs. sem./3 hrs. lab

Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0402 - World Rivers, Lit., Policy      

World Rivers, Transboundary Stories: Global Literature and Environmental Policy
Rivers are vital features in the lives of people, nations, and the environment. In this interdisciplinary course we will draw on literary studies and environmental policy to explore how narratives about rivers are constructed and the significance of these stories for how we manage transboundary rivers, which flow across physical, political, and cultural borders. We will draw on literature from around the world, such as The Hungry Tide, by Amitav Ghosh, and Adrift on the Nile, by Naguib Mahfouz, and on historical, legal, political and scientific sources in order to discuss concepts in transboundary river policy, such as freedom of navigation, the watershed, and integrated water resources management. We will examine how these concepts, in turn, shape literary narratives. This course is equivalent to IGST 0402.

CMP LIT

Spring 2013

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ENVS 0445 - Novels Environmental Justice      

Recent Novels of Environmental Justice
In recent years environmental justice has emerged as a major topic in the humanities. This intersection of environmentalism and social justice is motivated by a concern for the differential access to natural resources (clean water, clean air, tillable land) afforded to different groups of people within particular social systems. Students will encounter these themes thorugh the reading of many global Anglophone novels, including Waterland, by Graham Swift; The Hungry Tide, by Amitav Ghosh; Animal's People, by Indra Sinha; A Thousand Acres, by Jane Smiley; Ceremony, by Leslie Marmon Silko; and Disgrace, by J.M. Coetzee. 3 hrs. sem.

CMP LIT

Spring 2014

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ENVS 0500 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
A one- or two-semester research project on a topic that relates to the relationship between humans and the environment. The project, carried out under the supervision of a faculty member with related expertise, must involve a significant amount of independent research and analysis. Students may enroll in ENVS 0500 no more than twice for a given project. (Approval only)

Fall 2010, Winter 2011, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015

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ENVS 0700 - ES Senior Honors Work      

Senior Honors Work
The final semester of a multi-semester research project on a topic pertinent to the relationship between humans and the environment. Students may enroll in ENVS 0700 only once. (Previous work would have been conducted as one or two semesters of an ENVS 0500 Independent Study project.) The project, carried out under the supervision of a faculty member, will result in a substantial piece of writing, and will be presented to other ENVS faculty and students in a public forum. (Senior standing; ENVS 0112, ENVS 0211, ENVS 0215, GEOG 0120, and ENVS 0500; Approval only)

Fall 2010, Winter 2011, Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Fall 2013, Winter 2014, Spring 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015

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ENVS 1015 - Elevated Fictions: Lit of Mtns      

Elevated Fictions: Literatures and Cultures of the Mountains
What is it about an elevated landscape that so captures the human imagination? In different parts of the world, mountains have been the abodes of the gods, sites of reverent reflection, and projections of human desire for advancement and conquest. Through comparative examination of academic, literary, and visual texts from around the world, we will explore why mountain landscapes have drawn humans to reflect their spirit into and onto this particular topographical feature of nature. Authors will include Immanuel Kant, P.B. Shelley, William Wordsworth, Milarepa, Premendra Mitra, Edwidge Dandicat, Robert MacFarlane, and John Elder. (This course satisfies the ENAM elective credit).

LIT WTR

Winter 2011

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ENVS 1020 - Vermont Waters      

Vermont Waters: Maritime History and Aquatic Culture of the Champlain Valley
Vermont has a rich maritime history and a diversity of aquatic cultural traditions. Lake Champlain was once a watery superhighway between New York and Montreal. The state fossil is a Beluga whale skeleton from the Pleistocene. The first American woman to be licensed as a master mariner was Philomena Daniels of Vergennes. The “Flatiron skiffs” of Lake Dunmore attest to the region’s lively recreational history. In this course we will read works of environmental, cultural, and material history, as well as works of fiction by environmental novelists, that focus on the waters of Vermont. We will also collaborate with local community partners in studying material artifacts, oral history, and photographs that document Vermont’s aquatic culture. We will also contribute to its material culture by building a canoe and a skiff with local craftsmen. The reward for the students is a deeper understanding of the history and complexity of their environment and the chance to work with neighbors.

HIS NOR WTR

Winter 2011

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ENVS 1021 - Aldo Leopold: Theory/Practice      

Aldo Leopold: Theory and Practice
Aldo Leopold is perhaps the foundational thinker and practitioner of modern environmentalism. In this course we will study his life, his thought, and his actions in depth. As a humanist, a policy actor, and a scientist, Leopold's life exemplifies the interconnection and overlapping that are central to a progressive approach to human-environment interactions. In terms of ideas, Leopold was well-versed in sustainability (in forestry and game management), in preservationism (as the first to call for the creation of wilderness areas), and in ecocentrism (his essay “The Land Ethic”). We will take three outdoor field trips. (ENVS 0112 or ENVS 0211 or ENVS 0215)

SOC WTR

Winter 2012

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ENVS 1022 - Youth Climate Movement      

Next Steps for the Youth Climate Movement
Efforts in the fight against climate change and the fight for climate justice have become bogged down. There is simply too big of a gap between our scientific knowledge of what is happening around the world and what the general public understands. As a result, the urgency to act is lost. In this course we will examine the current state of the climate and climate justice movement, with a specific focus on solutions and opportunities to engage youth. We will examine various models of change from the social, environmental, and business sectors, including theories like Seed-Scale, Positive Deviants, and Appreciative Inquiry. Students will work in small teams to explore and identify strategies for young people across divides of race, class, and ethnicity to make a difference, as well as to increase inter-generational understanding of human impacts on Earth’s climate. Through articles, case studies, and video we will explore and blend the best of several disciplines to get to ideas and solutions. Readings will include: Switch – How to Change when Change is Hard and Just and Lasting Change. This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors with foci in the natural sciences.

SOC WTR

Winter 2012

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ENVS 1023 - Sustainable Writing      

Sustainability: Writing and Rhetoric
In this writing-intensive course we will examine the ways in which sustainability and environmentalism have been shaped and defined through a variety of literary, scientific, political, and popular texts. Class discussions will trace the roots of sustainability in environmental writing, analyze the diverse debates surrounding sustainability, and consider local, national, and international texts about sustainability. Students will engage with invited guest speakers, conduct field research on environmental texts in local communities and institutions, and create their own narratives and scenarios for sustainable futures based on their findings and speculations. This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors.

CW WTR

Winter 2014

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ENVS 1024 - Conserv. Land Mgmnt Practice      

Conservation and Land Management in Practice
In this course we will investigate conservation and resource management issues with a focus on Trinchera Ranch, a 265-square mile ranch in the greater Sangre De Cristo Conservation Area in southern Colorado. Studying the application of conservation tools and practices at spatial scales from site to landscape, we will explore forest, game, and wildlife management; agricultural production; water use/conservation; fire; and energy. We will visit public and private lands to glean the local, regional and national context and hear numerous perspectives. We will develop spatial (GIS-based) analyses for conservation and management efforts on the ranch and in the region. This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors.(Approval required; informational meeting on November 4 at 7:00 p.m. in MBH 331)

WTR

Winter 2014

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ENVS 1025 - Kingdom Wind-Public Policy      

Kingdom Community Wind - Perspectives On Renewable Energy Development
In this course we will study the Kingdom Community Wind Project in Lowell, Vermont. We will consider the perspectives of the project developers, project opponents, Public Service Board, legislature, and news media, and will examine the role of federal policy. Using public materials from the permitting process and contemporaneous news coverage, we will analyze the case’s issues and arguments and the diverse positions taken by Vermont’s environmentalists. We will ask: How should renewable energy projects be sited in Vermont? Is the existing approval process fair to neighboring towns and landowners? Are the claims of project proponents and opponents accurate? This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors with a focus in the natural sciences.

WTR

Winter 2014, Winter 2015

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ENVS 1026 - Impact Investing      

Impact Investing for a Sustainable Planet
In this course, we will explore the field of impact investing, with specific emphasis on innovative financing instruments ranging from venture capital to harvest finance. Using EcoEnterprises Fund as the platform for learning, we will focus on the evolution of the sector that encourages new business models (e.g., “first movers”, “lost leaders” and growth companies) which sustainably manage natural resources, mitigate climate change, and protect ecosystems while making a profit. We will look at tools to measure environmental and social metrics and financial results. Lastly, we will discuss fund management strategies, including building a portfolio, effective due diligence, and structuring deals. This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors with a focus in the natural sciences.

WTR

Winter 2014, Winter 2015

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ENVS 1027 - Farming and Food Policy      

Farming and Food Policy
The interest in farming and food policy in the United States over the last several decades has grown dramatically. Examples range from movements such as Slow Food and localvores, the growth of organic food and Free Trade, and increased concerns with food equity. In this course we will examine why these issues have risen on the public agenda, and delve into the foundations of farming and food policy at the state, national, and international levels. The class will feature guests involved in food systems, and the culminating student project will focus on how various policies affect a particular food (such as apples or milk) or an aspect of the food system (such as food inspection requirements). This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors with a focus in the natural sciences.

SOC WTR

Winter 2015

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ENVS 1028 - Social & Environmental Justice      

Social Justice and Environmental Justice
In this course we will study contemporary environmental justice in the context of social justice movements that have preceded them, paying particular attention to how these earlier movements have influenced the challenges and tactics of environmental justice today. Drawing on the work of Mohandas Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., Dorothy Day, and others, we will explore the roles race, class, gender, and religion have played in confronting poverty, racism, and violence. We will then go on to examine contemporary environmental justice movements, exploring how these movements are rooted in as well as distinct from social justice movements of earlier periods. This course counts as a cognate for ENVS majors with a focus in the natural sciences.

NOR PHL WTR

Winter 2015

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ENVS 1029 - Food, Culture, & Communication      

Food, Culture, and Communication
In this course we will examine the dialogue between the science of body and the science of place. Our goals will be to enhance understanding of the human body through experiential anatomy and also heighten sensitivity to food both as culture and as a medium for communication. Weekly movement sessions, readings, and writing assignments will encourage a synthesis of personal experience with factual information. Beyond one exam and formal writing assignments, students will present a research/culinary project and maintain an exploratory journal. This course counts as DANC/ENVS 0277 for the Creative Arts Focus in Environmental Studies, or as a cognate for ES majors doing a science focus.

ART PE WTR

Winter 2015

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