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GEOP1020 – Introducing Environmental Humanities

2020 – Session 1, Fully online/virtual

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, any references to assessment tasks and on-campus delivery may no longer be up-to-date on this page.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and lecturer
Emily O'Gorman
Contact via email
6 First Walk, 420
email for appointment
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

The environmental humanities bring together ways of knowing and interacting with the world from diverse perspectives in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences, as well as from Indigenous and other 'non-western' worldviews. This unit introduces the environmental humanities and aims to nourish students' understanding of the connectivities and possibilities that these dialogues produce for people and the more-than-human world, particularly relating these to geographic perspectives. It gets students outside their comfort zones in thinking about relationships with the planet, other species and other peoples, and provides a vocabulary of key words and concepts to frame the opportunity to think about these relationships and connections. This unit includes provocative readings to spark tutorial discussions and a range of opportunities to rethink the 'environmental' through multiple viewpoints.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Demonstrate an understanding of the value of the environmental humanities for addressing contemporary environmental challenges.
  • ULO2: Apply key concepts from the environmental humanities to a range of social and environmental issues and to your own experiences.
  • ULO4: Clearly express and discuss ideas about connection, belonging and relationships between themselves and the non-human world.
  • ULO3: Identify and discuss different ways of relating to and conceptualising the environment.
  • ULO5: Recognise ethical issues in human-environment relations and articulate a position on environmental justice.

Assessment Tasks

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Assessment details are no longer provided here as a result of changes due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Assessment Information


All assignments are to be submitted via Turnitin, the university online submission and marking system - found as a link in iLearn. Turnitin includes Grademark, a paperless grading system where your assignments are marked by staff online. Submissions are also checked for plagiarism by Turnitin. Turnitin automatically compares your work to the work of your classmates, previous students and material available on the internet. Hard copies of assignments are no longer accepted and will not be marked.

For more information on Turnitin and Grademark: http://mq.edu.au/iLearn/student_info/assignments.htm DEADLINES, EXTENSIONS AND PENALTIES

Deadlines set for assignment submissions will not be altered except in exceptional circumstances. In all cases, extensions must be supported with appropriate documentation (medical certificate, counsellor's certificate, statutory declaration). All extensions must be applied for and granted through the special consideration process. See the Special Consideration Policy https://students.mq.edu.au/study/my-study-program/special-consideration

Extensions will not be granted in cases of poor time management. Only the Unit Convenor can authorise extensions.

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply – two (2) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date – and (b) no assignment will be accepted seven (7) days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline. No late submissions will be accepted for timed assessments – e.g. quizzes, online tests.

Students who fail to complete and submit ALL assessments for the Unit may not receive enough marks to pass the unit. Penalties will also be incurred for plagiarism, that is, the use of another persons’ work and presentation as your own (see University Policies and http://www.mq.edu.au/ policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html).


Each assignment will be marked, commented upon and returned to you via Turnitin and Grademark. Grading is conducted in line with the universities grading policy (http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/grading/policy.html)

Delivery and Resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19.

Please check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status

Important information for on-line participation in GEOP1020

GEOP1020 will run for 13 weeks and you must have reliable access to the internet to be able to complete the unit in online mode. The lectures for GEOP1020 in S1 2019 will take place on Tuesday mornings 9am - 11am Weeks 1-13.  Students enrolled online are expected to log in to iLearn on a weekly basis to listen to the lectures and to participate in the weekly online tutorials by reading over the material presented and responding to questions and posts.  Please treat the weekly online tutorials the same as you would any compulsory class - except that you have a bit more flexibility with 7 days (from Tuesday to Tuesday) to complete your weekly tasks.  We do not like to sound 'big-brotherish', however, iLearn does track your online activity.  Logging in at the end of the semester and doing all your posts in one session will not work!

Tutorial Facilitation

Students enrolled online will be participating weekly in their own version of the tutorial program. Online tutorials in weeks 4-12 will be led by selected students, however all students are responsible for helping to facilitate the discussion each week by making regular posts. Your weekly participation in the online tutorial is important to your success in this unit. Listening to and reading about different perspectives, and actively discussing important and provocative issues and ideas, is a key component of this unit. It is something we value highly and we think you will get a lot out of it too. Students who consistently miss tutorials are at risk of failing the unit.  

Required Class Readings

The required readings for GEOP1020 are available electronically through Leganto, which can be accessed through iLearn.  Please let Emily know if you have trouble accessing the required readings. 

Please note that reading is an integral and compulsory part of this unit. The readings will complement and support the lecture program, and will be referred to extensively in tutorials and assignments.

Unit Schedule

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

The unit schedule/topics and any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19. Please consult iLearn for latest details, and check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status

GEOP1020 lecture and tutorial schedule



Lecture Schedule (subject to change)




25 Feb


What are the Environmental Humanities? (DH)





3 March


What is kinship with nature? (EO)





10 March


What is the question of the animal? (EO)





17 March


How do we get to know diverse others? (DH)


Tutorial presentations begin



24 March


What is playing favourites with species? (EO)


Tutorial presentations



31 March


What is environmental philosophy? (EO)


Tutorial presentations



7 April

What is use and respect? (EO)

Tutorial presentations


Mid-session break: 11 April to 26 April



28 April


What is life and death? (EO)



Tutorial presentations



5 May


What is environmental history? (EO)


Tutorial presentations

Essay (40%): 5pm 8 May 2020


12 May

What are geographies of containment and proliferation? (EO)


Tutorial presentations




19 May


What is a multispecies city? (DH)


Tutorial presentations



26 May


What are new ways of thinking and acting ecologically? (EO)


Tutorial presentations



2 June

What is world making? (EO)



Reflective Journal (40%): 5pm 5 June 2020

Examination period:  8 June to 28 June



Dr. Emily O’Gorman – EO                    Associate Professor Donna Houston – DH

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit the Student Policy Gateway (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/student-policy-gateway). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

If you would like to see all the policies relevant to Learning and Teaching visit Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central).

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/getting-started/student-conduct​


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Changes from Previous Offering

Some lecture content and assessment has changed from previous offerings in accordance with the University's curriculum renewal process.

Changes since First Published

Date Description
21/02/2020 Week 13 tutorial cancelled to allow students extra time for final assessment prep
10/02/2020 A few dates corrected in the lecture schedule