Robert Turner

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Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences
University of Washington-Bothell Campus

Materials Contributed through SERC-hosted Projects

Activities (3)

Mapping Stormwater Runoff Infrastructure for the City of Bothell part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Activities
As the term project for a Hydrogeology course, students in small groups were tasked with mapping the flow of stormwater runoff on newly developed or altered properties in the City of Bothell. Each group did reconnaissance during rain events, tracing stormwater flow and identifying problems. Then, they made maps using a GPS, an aerial photograph, and City of Bothell stormwater infrastructure symbols. The students shared their results with the city in a presentation and a report that compiled each group's map and text observations.

Using Debates to Engage Students in Sustainability Controversies and Conundrums part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Activities
A primary feature of my Water and Sustainability course is a series of 10 debates on controversial sustainability topics. Each student in the course participates in one of the debates. There are two essays that each student must submit associated with the debate. The first one, due on the day of the debate, requires students to articulate and support their response to the question of their upcoming debate in the format of an op-ed piece to a newspaper. The second essay requires them to reflect on how preparing for the debate expanded their thinking on the general topic and specific debate question. They are also asked to provide a critique of their debate research and performance relative to the course learning objectives.The questions around which the 10 debates revolved in 2011 are listed below in the order we tackled them in the course. All the questions were chosen to highlight specific controversies in sustainability and were phrased in such a way that both sides of the debate could make strong arguments to support their positions.1.Does the Carrying Capacity Concept Apply to People?2.Is the American Lifestyle Unethical?3.Does Sustainability Require Global Equity?4.Does Sustainability Require a Radical Change in Culture?5.Should We Ditch Free Market Globalization and GDP?6.Should More of the World Rely on Virtual Water?7.Is the Diversion of Water and People from Rural Areas to Cities a Good Thing?8.Should we Turn Our Backs on "Conventional" Agriculture and Meat?9.Should We Support Water Privatization and Commodification?10.Will Human Civilization Achieve Sustainability?

Quantifying Greenhouse Gas Emissions at the County Level: A Collaborative Term Project to Enhance Understanding of Climate Modeling and Quantitative Reasoning part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Activities
The general assignment is for the students to work as a team to quantify and map the variability in greenhouse gas emissions for the counties in Washington State. To accomplish this, students work in pairs throughout the quarter, sharing their findings on Blackboard along the way. Each pair is assigned a specific parameter (for example, cattle emissions) and it is their task to: 1) determine how to calculate the carbon dioxide equivalent emissions for their parameter; 2) find the data to plug into their formula(s); 3) list the sources of their information; 4) generate maps comparing the emissions of their parameter in each WA county; and 5) assess the assumptions and sources of uncertainty in their calculations. Near the end of the quarter all students are challenged to evaluate the work of all student pairs and decide which student data sets to use in calculating total emissions for each county. Aside from having to critically evaluate the data available to them, the students also have to justify the choices they make in generating their total emissions per county and how they display the data on a map.

Course

Water and Sustainability part of Curriculum for the Bioregion:Courses
This course provides a framework for students to learn about sustainability as a cultural ideal and point of contention, and more specifically about our water future and ways we might define and achieve sustainability in water use and management. Given the focus on societal sustainability, students delve well past natural science perspectives on water and wrestle with broader matters of ethics, culture, economics, and politics. With regard to pedagogical approach, Water and Sustainability is a seminar style course where student contribution in the classroom is a primary goal and lectures are a minor component. The emphasis is on analysis, synthesis, debate, and reflection as students engage with the provocative ideas contained in a very wide range of readings.

Essay

The University of Washington Bothell Programs Relevant to Geoscience and Sustainability part of Integrate:Workshops:Programs that Bring Together Geoscience and Sustainability:Essays
Robert J. Turner, Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, University of Washington Bothell Students at UW Bothell (UWB) looking for exposure to the geosciences and sustainability will find that most of the relevant ...

Other Contributions (2)

BA Environmental Studies at the University of Washington-Bothell part of Integrate:Workshops:Programs that Bring Together Geoscience and Sustainability:Programs
Information for this profile was provided by Robert J. Turner, School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, University of Washington-Bothell Campus. Information is also available on the program website. Students ...

BS Environmental Science at the University of Washington-Bothell part of Integrate:Workshops:Programs that Bring Together Geoscience and Sustainability:Programs
Information for this profile was provided by Robert J. Turner, School of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, University of Washington-Bothell Campus. Information is also available on the program website. Students ...


Events and Communities

InTeGrate Materials Developers

InTeGrate Programs that Bring Together Geoscience and Sustainability Workshop Participants