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241 - 245 of 245 results for: all courses

THINK 33: The Water Course

How can we balance all the competing, and growing, demands for freshwater? When you turn on your tap, where does the water come from?nnnWater is essential for life. But, around the world, governments and citizens are challenged to balance the human demands on our freshwater resources, while protecting the integrity of natural ecosystems. At the core of the challenge is our limited understanding, in many parts of the world, of the watershed-scale hydrologic cycle ¿ the course that the water follows from rainfall, to river, to groundwater, to ocean, to atmosphere, and back again. The Water Course takes students along that course, exploring the role that natural systems and human systems play in impacting both the quantity and quality of our freshwater. We will consider questions surrounding decisions about water allocation, and discuss new scientific methods that provide support for science-based decision making in the management of freshwater resources. You will connect global-scale iss more »
How can we balance all the competing, and growing, demands for freshwater? When you turn on your tap, where does the water come from?nnnWater is essential for life. But, around the world, governments and citizens are challenged to balance the human demands on our freshwater resources, while protecting the integrity of natural ecosystems. At the core of the challenge is our limited understanding, in many parts of the world, of the watershed-scale hydrologic cycle ¿ the course that the water follows from rainfall, to river, to groundwater, to ocean, to atmosphere, and back again. The Water Course takes students along that course, exploring the role that natural systems and human systems play in impacting both the quantity and quality of our freshwater. We will consider questions surrounding decisions about water allocation, and discuss new scientific methods that provide support for science-based decision making in the management of freshwater resources. You will connect global-scale issues to your personal experiences with water through a quarter-long project investigating both water quantity and water quality for a city or watershed in the western U.S. You will produce a numerical model, and make approximations, to describe a complex natural system. Using online resources you will explore the pathway that water takes from rainfall to your tap.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-AQR, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 40: Sustainability Challenges and Transitions

What are the most critical sustainability challenges facing us in this century? How can natural and social sciences, humanities, and technology fields interact to contribute to their solution? How do we balance the needs and desires of current generations with the needs of future generations? The term sustainability seems to be everywhere. Businesses, cities, non-governmental organizations, individuals, and universities such as Stanford use the term to characterize decisions that make sense for the well-being of people as well as the environment. Beyond the popular use of the term is an emerging field of study that focuses on the goals of sustainable development - improving human well-being while preserving Earth's life support systems (air, water, climate, ecosystems) over the long run - and explores how science and technology can contribute to the solution of some of the most critical problems of the 21st Century. The goal of this course is to engage you in critical thinking and anal more »
What are the most critical sustainability challenges facing us in this century? How can natural and social sciences, humanities, and technology fields interact to contribute to their solution? How do we balance the needs and desires of current generations with the needs of future generations? The term sustainability seems to be everywhere. Businesses, cities, non-governmental organizations, individuals, and universities such as Stanford use the term to characterize decisions that make sense for the well-being of people as well as the environment. Beyond the popular use of the term is an emerging field of study that focuses on the goals of sustainable development - improving human well-being while preserving Earth's life support systems (air, water, climate, ecosystems) over the long run - and explores how science and technology can contribute to the solution of some of the most critical problems of the 21st Century. The goal of this course is to engage you in critical thinking and analysis about complex sustainability challenges and to encourage you to consider the need for integrative solutions that draw on different disciplines. We will examine some of the major problems of sustainable development (including issues related to food, water, and energy resources, climate change, and protection of ecosystem services), grapple with the complexities of problem solving in complex human-environment systems, and participate in the design of effective strategies and policies for meeting sustainability goals. You will learn to develop policy briefs addressing sustainability issues in the university, local communities, state and the nation as well as work on team projects with decision makers that address real-life challenges in your local area.
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 41: The Conscious Mind: The Philosophy and Biology of Consciousness, Memory, and Personal Identity

How do our common-sense conceptions of the mind and of ourselves hold up against the growing body of psychological and neurobiological knowledge of the brain? How is your mental life anchored to your physical self?nYou wake up from a dreamless sleep and suddenly everything's buzzing with color and sound. Somehow your brain sustains this rich landscape of experience, integrating it with a repertoire of memories to constitute yourself. This course probes the neurobiological bases of these familiar yet miraculous facets of the mind. You'll learn to analyze primary philosophical and scientific texts, using basic knowledge of the brain to assess and even innovate experiments that could shed light on the nature of consciousness and personal identity.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-A-II, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 45: Thinking About the Universe: What do we know? How do we know it?

What is the origin and ultimate fate of the universe? Can we know what came before the universe? Are there ultimate limits to human knowledge about the universe and are we reaching them? Cosmology (the study of the universe) raises profound questions about us, our place in the universe, and about the limits of our knowledge. It was only in the 20th century that cosmology developed from metaphysical and theological speculation to become an observational science and a recognized part of physics. In this course, students will explore questions about the Universe, its beginnings, its structure, its extent, its fate, from several perspectives - philosophical, experimental, and theoretical. We will discuss current research and the ongoing debates about the laws of nature on subatomic scales and the perplexing questions they raise regarding the universe and the limits of scientific inquiry.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: THINK, WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

THINK 61: Living with Viruses

By examining this interplay of viruses and culture, this course challenges students to think beyond conventional disciplinary distinctions through questions about the impact of biology on human behavior as well as the potential of humans to shape biology through genetic engineering. The specific goals of this course are to engage students to examine the microbial world and how they interact with it. We will examine three overreaching questions: How do viruses effect our lives? How have they shaped our culture? How will they shape our future? Topics covered will include the question of whether a virus is alive, the importance of immunity, and the role of viruses in not only human culture but what makes us distinctly human.
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-SMA | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
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