The class timetable can be found through the Timetable portal. This year prac classes have been scheduled for 6-9 pm on Wednesday evenings in the new building 01CC, room 101 ALS. There is also a weekend field trip on 20-21 March, which is compulsory. A detailed schedule with lecture and practical topics, assessment due dates, etc. will be provided on iLearn.
The unit is comprised of 12 weeks of prac classes, plus the field trip to the Blue Mountains. The format of the prac classes varies and includes lectures, writing skills workshops, lab skills workshops (location to be advised), group work and student presentations. As a result, it is essential that you attend all classes and the field trip. This unit is not able to be offered externally.
In addition to the scheduled classes, you are also required to spend time doing your own independent reading and research, with most of this time going towards completing the assessments. As a guide, you should aim to spend approximately 100 hours of your own time on the unit over the semester, in addition to the scheduled classes and field trip.
The unit includes a weekend field trip to Katoomba in the Blue Mountains, which is home to the famous Three Sisters and Blue Mountains World Heritage area. Katoomba is the largest centre in the Blue Mountains, with a population of ~8000 people. Each year, the region receives over 4 million visitors with most of these stopping at Katoomba. As a result, the area is an ideal place to learn about the natural environment and environmental management. You will visit different sites to observe environmental management issues, record data and collect samples for subsequent analysis in the lab.
Note: The cost of the field trip is not covered by the unit fees. You will need to pay for transport to/from and around Katoomba either by driving or by catching the train. Students have the option of staying in Katoomba on the Friday and/or Saturday night or travelling up/back each day. There are several options for accommodation in Katoomba - the cheapest and best option is to stay at the Katoomba YHA: https://www.yha.com.au/hostels/nsw/blue-mountains/katoomba/#detail Field trip logistics will be discussed during the first week of class.
Requirements to Complete this Unit Satisfactorily
You must submit all assignments and gain a final mark of at least 50% to complete this unit satisfactorily.
You are required to attend all of the scheduled classes, including the field trip. Permission to be excused will only be granted in exceptional circumstances, such as unavoidable clashes with other units. Attendance may be taken into account when determining final grades for the unit where marks are on the border between one grade and the next.
Technologies Used and Required
You will need to bring a computer to class each week. We will use basic programs such as Word and Excel. You will also need to have access to a computer to use the university systems (e.g. iLearn, library) and complete the assessment tasks. Submissions of the assessment tasks will be arranged through iLearn using Turnitin.
Field and Lab Work, Health and Safety
To minimise the risk of WHS accidents, you must wear appropriate clothing and footwear, and bring adequate water and food for each day on the field trip. You must also wear closed shoes when working in the lab.
There is no single text for this course. Background reading can be found in the following:
- O'Riordan, T (1999) Environmental Science for Environmental Management, Taylor and Francis Ltd
- Aplin, G (2002), Australians and their Environment: An Introduction to Environmental Studies, Oxford University Press
- Arms K (1994). Environmental Science, Saunders College Publishing, Fort Worth, 2nd edition.
- Beckmann R (1994). Environmental Science, Australian Academy of Science, Canberra.
- Enger ED and Smith BF (2006). Environmental Science: a study of interrelationships, McGraw Hill Publish.
- Huxham M and Sumner D (2000). Science and Environmental Decision Making, Pearson Education.
- Jacobson M.C. (2000). Earth System Science: From Biogeochemical Cycles to Global Change. Academic Press, London. QH344.E17/2000
- Munasinghe M and Swart R (2005). Primer on Climate Change and Sustainable Development, Cambridge University Press.