Winter 2014 and Spring 2014 quarters
- EJ Zita physics, mathematics, astrophysics
- Fields of Study
- agriculture, environmental studies, physics and sustainability studies
- Preparatory for studies or careers in
- energy, physics, environment, climate, sustainability, teaching, farming, engineering and natural science.
How is energy harvested and transformed, used or abused? This two-quarter study of energy in natural and human systems is a good fit for students interested in environmental science, physics and sustainability—both mathematical and applied. We start with skill building and background study and finish with major research projects related to energy, climate and sustainability.
We will study issues of energy generation and use in society and in the natural world. One goal is for students to gain a deeper understanding of issues involved in achieving a sustainable energy society. A primary goal is to illustrate the power and beauty of physics and mathematics. We will explore topics such as climate change and global warming; energy science, technology and policy; farming and land use, environmental studies and sustainability.
We will study alternative energy sources such as solar, wind, geothermal and biofuels, as well as conventional sources of energy such as hydro, nuclear, gas and coal. Fundamentals of energy generation will focus on the underlying physics. In seminar, we further explore social, political and/or economic aspects of energy production and use, such as environmental and food production concerns and policies, effects of the Sun on the Earth, energy needs of developing countries, etc. We will have a strong emphasis on sustainability studies.
While calculus is not a prerequisite, students who already know calculus may deepen their math skills by applying them to program material or research projects, in teamwork.
Student research projects are a major part of this program. Students develop a research question that interests them, then design and carry out their research investigations in small teams. Research projects involve quantitative analysis as well as hands-on investigations. For example, research might include fieldwork, energy analysis of an existing system (natural or constructed) and/or design of a new small-scale energy system, possibly with community applications. Past projects have included solar systems, energy generation from waste products, water purification for boats or farm composters, efficiency improvements of campus buildings, analysis of wind and water systems and more. Student researchers from this program have often won grants from the college to work on practical campus projects.
- Advertised Schedule
- In class : Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 1:00-5:30 Required teamwork outside class: weekends and Wednesdays (min. 4 hours, at times of your choosing)
- Campus Location
- Online Learning
- Hybrid Online Learning < 25% Delivered Online (W), Hybrid Online Learning 25 - 49% Delivered Online (S)
- Greener Store
- Required Fees
- $90 in winter and $100 in spring for registration fees and overnight field trips.
- Upper Division Science Credit
- Upper division credit is available for students completing all work on time with upper division quality. See notes at http://220.127.116.11/z/zita/teachingFAQ.htm#BS
- May be offered again in
- Offered During