Dr. Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Office: Centreville 1216
Office Hours: Tue 8:30-11 am or by appointment
Dr. John W. Merck, Jr.
Office: Centreville 1218
Office Hours: Thurs 3-5 pm (GEO 1119) or by appointment
IM Name: inversemolk
Office Hours: Centreville 1217, Tue 3-4 pm
It is your responsibility as a student to completely read through and understand this syllabus. If you have questions about it, please contact Dr. Holtz or Dr. Merck. You will be held responsible for following all requirements of this syllabus.
COURSE ORGANIZATION: One meeting per week, five weekend field trips (1 required).
REQUIRED READINGS: This semester there are three required texts:
Copyright: © 2008 Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. and John W. Merck, Jr. as to this syllabus and all lectures. Students are prohibited from copying and selling course materials, from selling lecture notes, and from being paid to take lecture notes without the express written permission of the faculty teaching this course.
COURSE OBJECTIVES AND PHILOSOPHY: This semester explores the interactions of natural history and Humanity, including the influence of the natural world in shaping ancient and modern cultures; the impact of human technologies (ancient and modern) on the living and non-living world; and the influence of our understanding (and often misunderstanding) of Science upon contemporary society. Throughout this course, consider how our readings, lectures, and activities address the following question:
CLASSROOM POLICIES: You should bring the following to every single colloquium meeting:
This semester we will have a number of small-group in-class projects. We expect everyone to help move tables and chairs when necessary for a particular project, and to help restore the tables and chairs to the "neutral" position when we are done. Many hands make light work!
Finally, please do not leave any debris behind: pick up all food/beverage containers, papers, newspapers, etc. near your seat and on your desk when you leave.
ATTENDANCE: Given the nature of the course and program, participation in colloquium meetings is MANDATORY. It is up to you to make certain that your presence has been recorded for every class.
POLICY ON GRADES: There are eight components to the grade, each of which is worth a certain percentage of the total. These are Field Trip Report (15%), Small Projects (20%), Quizzes (20%), Mini-Poster Project (5%), Media Report (10%), Practicum Proposal (10%), Practicum Learning Contract (15%), and ELT 3-Semester Review (10%). Here are the details:
In order to get credit for attending a field trip, you must complete a short WEB-BASED report concerning aspects of the natural sciences you learned about on this event. You will be handed out the questions on the day of the trip (which will also be available as templates). The assignments will be due on the second colloquium meeting after the trip (except for the final trip, for which the report will be due the last day of class). Although you may consult in small groups on the trip itself, each student is responsible for their own individual report. Please be aware that the University regulations on plagiarism apply to web-based assignments just as much as to hardcopy assignments.
GRADE SCALE (Small Projects): +, 100; check+, 90; check, 80; check-, 70; -, 60; 0, 0 points
EXTRA CREDIT: ELT offers several different means of earning extra credit this semester. You earn 5 points maximum extra credit per item, up to a total of two items (i.e., 10 points total). You may do two items in one category, or one in each.
Reports for field trips should follow the format assigned for that trip, including the specific questions required. Reaction papers are reports that would address both a summary of the material encountered as well as your thoughts and comments on this material and how it relates to related matter you may have encountered (in colloquium, other classes, etc.) Reaction papers require you to show insight into the matters concerned, not a simple retelling of what was there nor your "feelings" about it.
Full extra credit will only be earned if all format issues are properly completed (sufficient length, proper html coding, no spelling or factual errors, etc.). See the grading rubric for details. All Academic extra credit assignments must be online by the end of classes (i.e., before finals).
COMMUNICATION: Because many of our communications will be by e-mail, all students are required to maintain e-mail accounts and arrange for access to the Internet. Although not a course requirement per se, students should get into the habit of checking their e-mail daily. Failure to do so may cause you to miss crucial course information. Here is a list of available computer labs on campus.
ACADEMIC INTEGRITY: The University of Maryland has a nationally recognized Code of Academic Integrity, administered by the Student Honor Council. This Code sets standards for academic integrity at Maryland for all undergraduate and graduate students. As a student you are responsible for upholding these standards for this course. It is very important for you to be aware of the consequences of cheating, fabrication, facilitation, and plagiarism. For more information on the Code of Academic Integrity or the Student Honor Council, please visit http://www.studenthonorcouncil.umd.edu/whatis.html.
The University of Maryland is one of a small number of universities with a student-administered Honors Code and an Honors Pledge, available on the web at http://www.jpo.umd.edu/aca/honorpledge.html. The code prohibits students from cheating on exams, plagiarizing papers, submitting the same paper for credit in two courses without authorization, buying papers, submitting fraudulent documents, and forging signatures. The University Senate encourages instructors to ask students to write the following signed statement on each examination or assignment: "I pledge on my honor that I have not given or received any unauthorized assistance on this examination (or assignment)."
ACADEMIC ACCOMODATIONS: If you have a documented disability, you should contact Disability Support Services 0126 Shoemaker Hall. Each semester students with documented disabilities should apply to DSS for accommodation request forms which you can provide to your professors as proof of your eligibility for accommodations. The rules for eligibility and the types of accommodations a student may request can be reviewed on the DSS web site at http://www.counseling.umd.edu/DSS/receiving_serv.html.
COURSE EVALUATIONS: CourseEvalUM will be open for students to complete their evaluations for Fall 2008 courses between Tuesday, December 2, and Sunday, December 14. Students can go directly to the website to complete their evaluations, beginning December 2. You will be alerted about these dates and provided more information closer to that time, and students will be alerted via their official University e-mail account.
Students who complete evaluations for all of their courses in the previous semester (excluding summer), can access the posted results via Testudo's CourseEvalUM Reporting link for any course on campus that has at least a 70% response rate. You can find more information, including periodic updates, at the IRPA course evaluation website.
The expectation is that all students will complete these. This is YOUR chance to anonymously evaluate this class: please use this opportunity!
|9/7/08 (Sun.)||ELT BBQ--After Freshmen Metro Scavenger Hunt|
Introduction & Class Logistics; Introduction to the
Why Everyone (Not Just Scientists) Should Know About Science
Humanity's Impact on the Natural World: Nothing New Under the Sun...|
Reading: Diamond Prologue & Chaps. 1-4
How Farmers Conquered the Earth: The Rise & Spread of Agriculture
Reading: Diamond Chaps. 5-8
|9/28/08 (Sun.)||Field Trip I: Brownie Beach (Bayfront Park) and Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary|
You Can Take the Hominid Out of the Savanna, But...; Human Evolutionary Biology
Meets the Demands of Civilization|
Reading: Diamond Chaps. 9-11
Natural Resources: "Farming" vs. "Mining" and the Cycles of Nature
Reading: Diamond Chaps: 12-14
|10/11/08 (Sat.)||Field Trip II: Maryland Science Center|
Reading: Flannery Part 1
The Biodiversity Crisis
Reading: Flannery Part 2
ALL Foods are GMOs: Produce and Plagues|
Reading: Flannery Part 3
Reading: Flannery Part 4
|11/8/08 (Sat.)||Field Trip III: Local and Western Maryland Geology|
Climate Change: The REAL High Cost of Fuel!|
Reading: Flannery Part 4
The End of the World as We Know It!
Reading: Park Chaps. 1-3
|11/23/08 (Sun.)||Field Trip IV: Marian Koshland Museum of the National Academy of Sciences|
Reporting on Science: Real Science and the News Media|
Reading: Park Chaps. 4-6
Confidence in Science: The Scientific Method Revisited|
Reading: Park Chaps. 7-9
|12/6/08 (Sat.)||Field Trip V: Explorations Past & Future: Library of Congress " Exploring the Early Americas" and National Air & Space Museum "Space: A Journey to Our Future"|
Grandeur in This View of Life
Reading: Park Chap. 10