This field course is designed to acquaint you with a variety of Vermont landscapes and provide you with an integrative framework for “reading” the land. Although we will be focusing on Chittenden County, you will be able to take what you learn here and use it in other landscapes that are important to you. This framework involves an understanding of the pieces, patterns, and processes that shape the natural world. We will spend time on each site reviewing the geology, soils, plants and animals, human land use history, and signs of processes like wind, fire, or deer browse. We will think of these as the layers of a cake. People come into this class with a variety of different backgrounds and levels of knowledge about these topics, and that is fine. When we put it all together we will have a good understanding of why each site looks the way it does. While this process will involve learning to find and examine evidence, we also invite you to enter each of these places with an open heart, enjoying the beauty and connection to nature that have drawn us together.
Fall, Spring, Summer
Natural Science (NS)
ENVS 001 or NR 001 ; sophomore standing