Integrated Sciences I

Paulo J. Hidalgo, Geosciences, Georgia State University


This is an inquiry-based content course designed to familiarize students with the fundamental concepts of biology and geology.

Course Type: Intro Level:Earth System Science
Course Size:

Course Format:
Lecture only

Institution Type:
University with graduate programs, primarily masters programs

Course Context:

Students must be enrolled as Early Childhood Education majors. students take this course as a pre-service elementary teachers.

Course Content:

Topics include life, biosphere, diversity, heredity, cells, ecosystems, Earth systems, lithosphere, hydrosphere, solar system, star charts, and weather. This course includes numerous hands-on activities carried out in and out of the classroom.

Course Goals:

By the end of the course students will be have develop appreciation for science and be able to describe how science in general -- and geology and biology in particular -- are conducted to advance knowledge of the natural world. In addition, students would have increased the ability to work with others on group projects. And, perhaps most importantly.......

Students would be "intentional learners" by helping you understand what learning is and what you can do to improve learning outcomes.

Course Features:

This course has 2 presentations that help students apply the concepts that they have learned as we progress in the course. One presentation is about Biomes. Each students will be assigned a biome. The features of this biome will be presented in front of the class. The second presentation is related to human impact in the natural realm. This last presentation would include a great deal of knowledge that was gathered through out the course.

Course Philosophy:

Many studies have shown that students learn best by doing things (active learning) instead of just listening (passive learning). Additionally, it is well known that most students learn best when they learn in groups (cooperative/collaborative learning). These are the reasons why I have chosen to let the students research about their natural world by self-learning and group based activities.


Plenty of in class exercises, in class and take home exams as well as presentations are my preferred methods of assessment. I specially, place a lot of interest in the presentations category, where I have developed detailed rubrics.


References and Notes:

Hewitt, P.G., Lyons, S., Suchocki, J., and Yeh, J. (2007). Conceptual integrated science.