Learning Outcomes Environmental Studies 490
In ES 490: Senior Seminar, students write a senior thesis directly relevant to their own interests.
Whatever the topic, each student will develop the ability to do the following:
- To understand the complexity of certain environmental issues. This involves recognizing the problematic nature of scientific knowledge involved (e.g., conflicting, ambiguous, or insufficient data), of the social dimensions (political, economic, sociological, and/or psychological), and of the humanistic dimensions (ethical, philosophical, aesthetic and/or religious).
- To apply key concepts in Environmental Studies in analyzing the problem and possible solutions, including concepts found in the natural sciences, social sciences, and the humanities.
- To understand and critically evaluate different policy positions in relation to that problem.
- To articulate the student’s own position concerning the issue, supporting that position with evidence, argument, and authority, while recognizing the potential limitations and problems of that position.
- To articulate the ways that the problem and the student’s position calls for an active response, such as social and environmental policies or personal engagement.
- To use in a critical and sophisticated way a wide variety of research tools, both electronic and paper.
- To produce an annotated bibliography of sources, print and electronic, on a specific environmental studies topic, briefly summarizing the source and evaluating the usefulness and limitations of each item for that specific topic.
- To write a thesis in a clear, efficient, and compelling way that is understandable to an educated general audience and sophisticated enough for an expert audience.
- To present the thesis (as a work in progress) as a professional PowerPoint presentation and lead a discussion on the issues; or to present a professional poster at the Celebration of Scholarship event.