Cutting Edge > Develop Program-Wide Abilities > Undergraduate Research > 2014 Workshop > Activities > Starting a research project for a new environmental science major.

Starting a research project for a new environmental science major.

Eileen McGowan, Springfield College
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This page first made public: Aug 8, 2014

Summary

Springfield College is a small private liberal arts college located two miles from downtown Springfield Massachusetts. The college is currently in the process of starting an environmental science program of which I am one of two faculty, I have a cohort in Biology. Springfield College is on the banks of a two mile long lake called Lake Massasoit.

Lake Massasoit has seven miles of shorelines and 186 surface acres. The pond was formed by damming the Mill River, which flows out of the western most end and continues 1.25 miles until its confluence with the Connecticut River.

The college is currently in the process of starting an environmental science program of which I am one of two faculty, I have a cohort in Biology. Springfield College is on the banks of a 2 mile lake called Lake Massasoit. Lake Massasoit has 7 miles of shorelines and 186 surface acres The pond was formed by damming the Mill River, which flows out of the western most end and continues 1.25 miles until its confluence with the Connecticut River.

Lake Massasoit's location in an urban residential area makes it susceptible to a high input of pollutants.

Context

Audience

Undergraduate in Environmental Science

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

Hypothesis construction
data collection techniques
data manipulation techniques

How the activity is situated in the course

I would like to construct this project as a cumulative project that will continue from year to year. Different classes within the major could do different parts such as: Intro to Environmental Science could do data collections and analysis and the GIS class could map the data and do spatial analysis on it.

Goals

Content/concepts goals for this activity

The students will ideally learn to understand and appreciate how the scientific process works and have a better understanding of the things that are happenings to day in their own environment.

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

The students should start to think about the consequences of their actions and be able to use critical thinking skills to evaluate what is happening in the world today.

Other skills goals for this activity

Teaching Notes and Tips

Assessment

References and Resources

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