Mar 20, 2023
ENSC 235 - Disasters on Earth and in Hollywood
Units: 3 ; Breadth Area: GE-B1; Sustainability
Investigates the portrayal of Earth Science and natural disasters in popular cinema. Focuses on fundamental geologic principles and processes, the scientific method, and the importance of differentiating science from pseudo-science in modern culture, and implications for a sustainable future.
Possible Instructional Methods: Entirely On-ground, or Hybrid.
Grading: A-F or CR/NC (student choice).
Breadth Area(s) Satisfied: GE-B1 - Lower Division Physical Science, Overlay - Sustainability
Cross-listed: GEOL 235
Course Typically Offered: Variable Intermittently
Student Learning Outcomes - Upon successful completion of this course students will be able to:
- Distinguish the energetic processes that drive natural disasters, i.e., geologically-driven and solar-driven processes;
- Describe plate tectonics in the context of the fundamental, underlying theory that explains and predicts all geologically-driven (e.g., earthquakes and volcanoes) and gravitationally-driven events;
- Describe the magnitude of geologic time and explain its importance in natural phenomena, such as formation of landforms, erosion, and biological evolution;
- Explain the nature of scientific inquiry and the components of the scientific method;
- Analyze popularized pseudo-scientific claims in Earth Sciences to identify their flaws and to contrast between pseudo-science and science.
B1. Physical Science Learning Outcomes
Sustainability Overlay Learning Outcomes
- Demonstrate knowledge of scientific theories, concepts, and data about the physical sciences;
- demonstrate an understanding of scientific practices, including the scientific method; and
- describe the potential limits of scientific endeavors, including the accepted standards and ethics associated with scientific inquiry.
- identify the environmental, social, and economic dimensions of sustainability, either in general or in relation to a specific problem;
- analyze interactions between human activities and natural systems;
- describe key threats to environmental sustainability; and
- explain how individual and societal choices affect prospects for sustainability at the local, regional, and/or global levels.
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