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Environmental Studies: D2: A Circumpolar World

ENVS 295 OL1 (CRN: 60964)

3 Credit Hours

About ENVS 295 OL1

Based on the curriculum of the Arctic Council?s university without walls, this exploration of the circumpolar world examines the ecological, cultural, and political processes of the Far North,laying a foundation for further exploration of this relatively unexplored and potentially valuable region. Located largely above 60 degrees north latitude, the Arctic and Sub-Arctic are remote places with important resources. With the completion of the International Polar Year in 2008 and increased attention to northern shipping routes and Arctic oil, with the ever-burgeoning focus on climate change centered at the poles, this vast and fragile region constitutes an untapped reserve of critical importance to a sustainable world. Using a circumpolar, comparative, and interdisciplinary approach, we will investigate the physical and natural processes of the Arctic and Sub-Arctic, as well as the indigenous and local peoples and cultures in the region. The Circumpolar World introduces students to the landscape, peoples and issues of the circumpolar region. Beginning with an examination of the geography, biological and physical systems of the Subarctic and Arctic, it then turns to the aboriginal and contemporary peoples of the region. The history of the Circumpolar World is treated in a broad fashion, to provide a grounding in the events and developments that have created the region?s contemporary qualities. The second part of the course surveys some of the particular issues facing the region, including climate change, economic, political and social development. This course ultimately is intended to stimulate interest in the circumpolar world and provide an understanding of region building. In addition to weekly lectures and readings online, students read from many contemporary analyses of the Arctic and exploring virtual communities about the North. Each student in our seminar-style class will select two circumpolar communities from different continents to explore and two research in detail throughout the semester, culminating in a final research presentation. Our Comparative Circumpolar Communities project is a way to build local knowledge and relate those to the larger circumpolar region. This research is strongly supported by materials at the library, the map room, and the media library.

Instructor

Kathleen Osgood ()

Notes

Dates: May 18 - August 14 Please refer to the attached syllabus for details regarding this 13 week long online course. Pre-Req: one 100-level ENVS course, Junior standing.

Syllabus

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Location

Online Course (View Campus Map)

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