- Instructor: William Hirt
- Office: LS-15
- Office hours: MWF 10:00-10:50 AM, TTh 12:30-1:20 PM, and by appointment
- Email: email@example.com
- Phone: 530·938·5255
- Fax: 530·938·5506
- Meeting times: MWF 11:00-11:50 AM
- Meeting place: LS-16
- Units: 3.0
- Degree applicability: UC, CSU, and COS
Success in Earth and Space Sciences (ESS) courses like Oceanography (GEOL 1140) depends on a student's preparation and participation as well as on the format of the course.
- Preparation: ENGL 1001 (College Composition) and MATH 0850 (Elementary Algebra) or MATH 0851 and 0852 (Beginning Algebra I and II) are advisories for this course. Students who have successfully completed these advisories succeed in ESS courses like GEOL 1140 at an average rate (68%) more than twice that of students who have not (32%). If you have not successfully completed ENGL 1001 and MATH 0850 or 0851 and 0852 you are strongly encouraged to do so before you enroll in GEOL 1140.
- Participation: During the past two years, students who completed this class and submitted at least 90% of their assignments succeeded at a much higher rate (77%) than those who submitted fewer than 90% of their assignments (0%). Similarly, students who attended at least 90% of class sessions succeeded at a higher rate (85%) than did those who attended fewer than 90% of the sessions (44%).
- Format: In the long term, students who complete ESS courses that include a lab succeed at a higher rate (92%) than those who complete either non-lab face-to-face (83%) or online (72%) courses. If you are a student who learns best by hands-on experience or in a group setting you are encouraged to consider taking a lab or face-to-face class.
- Textbook (required): An Introduction to the World's Oceans, 10th ed. by Sverdrup and Armbrust (ISBN 978-0-07-337670-7)
Upon successful completion of this course a student is expected to be able to:
- Interpret the origins of common geologic features on the seafloor in terms of the plate tectonic and sedimentary processes that operate there;
- Sketch a map of oceanic circulation patterns and describe how they are influenced by differences in seawater temperatures and salinities, the movement of Earth's atmosphere, and tidal forces;
- Identify a variety of common marine organisms and explain how their characteristics are related to the ecological niches they fill;
- Correctly formulate, solve, and interpret the results of a variety of problems relevant to introductory earth science;
- Determine whether or not a proposed explanation, experimental result, or observation is consistent with a scientific hypothesis for a natural phenomenon and effectively communicate that analysis to others.
Spring 2012 Course Schedule
|18-Jan:20-Jan||Introduction; Earth and its Waters||1 and 2|
|23-Jan:27-Jan||Plate Tectonics and the Development of Ocean Basins||3|
|30-Jan:3-Feb||Seafloor Features and Sedimentation||4|
|6-Feb:10-Feb||Physical Properties of Water||5|
|13-Feb:15-Feb||Chemistry of Seawater: Salts, Dissolved Gases, and Nutrients||6|
|22-Feb:24-Feb||Structure and Dynamics of the Atmosphere||7|
|27-Feb:2-Mar||Ocean Circulation and Structure||8|
|5-Mar:9-Mar||Ocean Surface Currents||9|
|12-Mar:16-Mar||Waves: Swells to Tsunamis||10|
|19-Mar:23-Mar||Tides: "Waves" Raised by Sun and Moon||11|
|2-Apr:6-Apr||Land and Sea: Coasts, Beaches and Estuaries||12|
|9-Apr:13-Apr||Marine Environmental Issues: Erosion, Pollution, and Wetlands||13|
|16-Apr:20-Apr||Oceanic Environments for Life||14|
|23-Apr:27-Apr||Flows of Nutrients and Energy: Oceanic Productivity||15|
|30-Apr:4-May||Planktonic Communities: Drifters||16|
|7-May:11-May||Nektonic Communities: Free Swimmers||17|
|14-May:18-May||Benthic Communities: Bottom Dwellers||18|
|23-May||final exam, 10:00-11:50 AM||all|
Grades will be based on total scores for:
- daily clicker questions (90 points);
- three homework exercises (30 points);
- three "midterm" exams (75 points);
- three writing assignments (50 points);
- a comprehensive final exam (55 points).
There will be no alternate or "extra credit" assignments. For the writing assignments a student will read an article of their choice from a set of three selected for the class and write an outline, an abstract and a revised abstract of that article. The final grade will be computed from the total of 300 points and scored as follows: > 90% = A; 80-89+% = B; 70-79+% = C; 60-69+% = D; and <60% = F. The instructor reserves the right to adjust these percentages if such an adjustment is warranted by the class score distribution, but under no circumstances will a student who earns a score of <60% or fails to turn in any element of the writing assignments receive a satisfactory (A, B or C) grade.
A student should expect to spend about 6 hours per week reading, taking notes on the text, and studying for exams. Completion of the homework and writing assignments will also require about 9 hours over the course of the semester.
Attendance, Withdrawal, and Incomplete Policies
Regular participation and punctual submission of assignments are required for satisfactory completion of this course. Absences will be excused if the student: (1) notifies the instructor by email or phone, (2) schedules a time to make up the missed work before the next class session he or she attends, and (3) makes up the work as scheduled. Unexcused absences will be tallied in the online gradebook, and a student who incurs six unexcused absences will be dropped from the class. A student may withdraw before 27-Apr-2012 without receiving a grade, and is responsible for notifying the admissions and records office and completing all necessary forms. Arrangements for an incomplete must be made with the instructor, and an "I" will be granted only in the case of an unforeseen personal or family emergency.
Learning DisabilitiesIf you anticipate the need for reasonable accommodations to meet the requirements of this course you must register with the Disabled Student Services (DSPS). If you qualify for services through DSPS, bring your official notification of your accommodation needs to your instructor as soon as possible. Disabled Student Services is located in Eddy Hall and can be contacted by calling Donna Farris or Linda Rogers at 938-5297.
Make-up Policy for Missed Work
Writing assignments, computer exercises, midterm exams and daily clicker questions may be made-up if: (1) prior arrangements have been made with the instructor; and (2) they are completed by the next class period or before graded exercises are returned to the class (as appropriate). The final exam may not be made up.
Late Assignment Policy
Writing and online assignments will be penalized 1 point for each class period they are late, and will not be accepted after the graded assignments have been returned to the class.
Students are encouraged to collaborate with one another as they discuss assignments and prepare for exams. I expect that a student will work independently, however, when he or she takes exams, and writes his or her outline and abstracts. If I find evidence that any students are not living up to this code of academic integrity (for example, because they submit identical or nearly identical writing assignments) I reserve the right to drop them from the class unless it is after the fourteenth week, in which case the students will receive F grades regardless of accumulated points.