Undergraduate Environmental Science Courses

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ENV 201 Environmental Science (A,N,Y). Non-majors only. Environmental science is an interdisciplinary study combining ideas and information from the natural and social sciences. The eight integrated themes of lecture and discussion are biodiversity, sustainability, connections in nature, pollution and its prevention, population growth, energy consumption and efficiency, solutions to environmental problems, and the importance of individuals changing their lifestyles and working with others to bring about environmental change. 3 Cr. Every Semester.

ENV 202 Environmental Science (A,L,Y). Required for majors. Open to non-majors. Environmental Science is an interdisciplinary study combining ideas and information from the natural and social sciences. The eight integrated themes of lecture and discussion are biodiversity, sustainability, connections in nature, pollution and its prevention, population growth, energy consumption and efficiency, solutions to environmental problems, and the importance of individuals changing their lifestyles and working with others to bring about environmental change. Laboratory and field activities emphasize hands-on applications of environmental science methods, problem solving, and proper writing of laboratory reports. 4 Cr. Every Semester.

ENV 203 Biology of Organisms (A,N). Explores basic concepts in the biological sciences from a whole organism (animals and plants) and environmental science perspective. Unifying theme for the course is evolution, and T. H. Dobzhansky's dictum that "Nothing in biology is understandable except in the light of evolution." Topics include the scientific method, molecular and population genetics, fundamentals of cell biology, diversity of life, and evolution and natural selection. 3 Cr. Spring.

ENV 204 Biology of Organisms (A,L). Required for majors. Open to non-majors. Explores basic concepts in the biological sciences from a whole organism (animals and plants) and environmental science perspective. The unifying theme for the course is evolution, and T. H. Dobzhansky's dictum that "Nothing in biology is understandable except in the light of evolution." Topics covered in lectures and laboratories include scientific method, molecular and population genetics, cell biology, diversity of life, and evolution and natural selection. Spring 4 Cr. 4 Cr. Spring.

ENV 303 Ecology (A,Y). Cross-listed as BIO 303. Prerequisites: ENV 202 or ENV 204. Required for majors, open to non-majors. Ecology addresses interrelationships among organisms and the physical environment. Considers energy flow, nutrient cycling, population and community dynamics, principles of animal behavior, and natural history in lecture, laboratory and field studies. 4 Cr. Spring.

ENV 389 American Literature and Environmental Imagination (A). This interdisciplinary course explores American environmental writing from both scientific and literary perspectives and investigates the relationship between natural science, natural history and environmental literature. Examines how subjective and objective investigations of the natural world enrich one another and lead to a more complete sense of place. Course includes lectures, discussions, group presentations and field exercises emphasizing description, measurement and aesthetic response. 3 Cr.

ENV 400 Plant Diversity (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the diversity of plants from an evolutionary perspective to taxonomic and botanical characteristics. Laboratory and field work surveys plant structures and principles of plant classifications and identification from the cellular to organismal level. Projects include plant collection and preservation, plant propagation, plant reproduction, and review and presentation of botanical literature. 4 Cr. Even Fall.

ENV 404 Stream Ecology (A). Multiple Course fees: Introduction to stream ecology. Topics include geomorphology, hydrology, stream chemistry and temperature, nutrient spiraling, trophic interactions, primary production, stream invertebrate ecology, stream vertebrate ecology, biodiversity in streams, stream habitat diversity, and stream management and restoration. 4 Cr.

ENV 405 Plant Ecology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the relationships between plants as well as with their environment including; physiological ecology and describing the plant environment; population ecology and interactions between plants and other organisms; and community ecology including plant diversity and temporal dynamics. Field exercises explore local plant communities using experimental and quantitative techniques. Students analyze and discuss current readings in plant ecology. 4 Cr. Odd Fall.

ENV 406 Wildlife Ecology (A,Y). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of wildlife biology. Lecture topics include population ecology, behavior, nutrition, disease, habitat management, predator prey systems, economics, and the human dimensions of wildlife management. Laboratories and field work include radio telemetry, census methods, aging white-tailed deer, and computer modeling. 4 Cr. Even Fall.

ENV 407 Invasion Ecology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Topics include invasive species transport and spread, impacts of invasive species on communities and ecosystems, traits of invasive species, and management strategies for invasions. 3 Cr.

ENV 413 Topics in Plant Biology (A). Students with a substantial background in plant biology or ecology review recent scientific literature while addressing selected topics in plant biology, ecology or systematics. 3 Cr.

ENV 419 Limnology (A). Course fees: Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduces students to the physical, chemical and biological characteristics of lakes and streams. Lecture topics include top-down: bottom-up control of food webs, eutrophication, nutrient cycling, acid precipitation effects on lakes, paleolimnology, etc. Recommended for students interested in oceanography and marine biology. Required for students in the aquatic ecology track of the environmental science major. Laboratory and field methods covered include sampling and identification of selected aquatic organisms, chemical analysis of water, and operation of physical and chemical sampling gear. Includes field exercises on lakes and streams. 4 Cr. Fall.

ENV 423 Biology of Pollution (A,Y). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the chemistry and biology of pollution. Primary focus on water pollution problems and effects of pollutants on organisms at the molecular, cellular, physiological and behavioral levels, plus effects on populations, communities and ecosystems. Toxicity testing techniques and data analysis are explored. 3 Cr. Odd Spring.

ENV 427 Animal Behavior (A). Prerequisite: ENV303. Introduction to the mechanisms and evolution of animal behavior. Topics include methods for the observation and quantification of behavior, natural selection and evolution of behavior, behavioral genetics, neural and physiological mechanisms of behavior, development of behavior, communication, migration and orientation, foraging behavior, social behavior, sexual reproduction, parental investment, and mating systems. 3 Cr. Fall.

ENV 430 Ornithology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of birds. Explores their form, function, ecology, and evolution. Topics include anatomy, physiology, origins and biophysics of flight, migration and annual cycle, mating systems, and population and community ecology of birds. Includes lab and field study of anatomy and flight, identification techniques, census methods, and trapping and banding. 4 Cr. Even Spring.

ENV 435 Northern Wetlands (A). Prerequisite: ENV 446. Introduction to wetlands of the northern United States - peatlands and Great Lakes coastal marshes. Wetland development will be addressed starting with underlying geology and hydrology, then proceeding to biogeochemistry and development of plant communities and faunal habitats. Human impacts on these wetland types will be assessed, along with potential means for preventing degradation and restoring wetland functions. 3 Cr. Even Spring.

ENV 436 Water Quality Analysis (A). Course fees: Prerequisite: CHM 206. Introduction to standard methods and analytical techniques associated with environmental chemistry. Students gain experience, including set up and trouble shooting, with UV-V spectrophotometry, wet chemical techniques by autoanlyser, fluorometry, gas chromatography and atomic absorption spectrophotometry, by analyzing unknowns. Although the medium for analysis is water, methods are applicable to air samples, tissues and soils. 4 Cr. Spring.

ENV 437 Biostatistics (A). Prerequisite: MTH 111 or higher. Introduction to statistical analysis including descriptive statistics, test selection (including t-tests, regression, ANOVA and nonparametric alternatives), calculation, and interpretation, hypothesis formation and testing, Consideration is given to experimental design and appropriate evaluation of statistical application and interpretation. 3 Cr. Spring.

ENV 438 Ecological Data Analysis in R (A). Prerequisite: ENV 437. Topics include an introduction to the R language, writing simple functions, creating graphs, and analyzing ecological data using descriptive, univariate, and multivariate techniques. 3 Cr.

ENV 439 Conservation Biology (A,Y). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of conservation biology. Examines current theories and data from evolutionary biology, ecology, and genetics as they relate to the conservation of biological diversity. Topics include causes of extinction, habitat loss and fragmentation, design of nature reserves, landscape ecology, application of basic principles of population biology to species conservation, and restoration ecology. 3 Cr. Spring.

ENV 440 Herpetology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of reptiles and amphibians. Explores their form, function, ecology, and evolution. Topics include anatomy, physiology, mating systems, population and community ecology of reptiles and amphibians, and their conservation biology. Includes lab and field study of identification techniques, capture and census methods. 4 Cr. Odd Spring.

ENV 444 Plant and Ecosystem Ecology (A). Prerequisites: ENV 303 or BIO 303, and ENV 202 and ENV 204. Introduction to the major terrestrial ecosystems of the world and the stresses they face due to global environmental change such as rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, global warming, declining biodiversity, invasive species and elevated nitrogen deposition. Systems will be compared and contrasted with respect to their major characteristics, including vegetation, energy flow, and nutrient cycling and inputs. 3 Cr. Even Spring.

ENV 446 Wetland Ecology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. In-depth study of wetland science, including wetland types, functions and values, hydrology, biogeochemistry, development and succession, and plant and animal communities. Focuses on practical application of knowledge gained and concludes with wetland management and restoration, as well as wetland management problems. 4 Cr.

ENV 447 Wetland Delineation (A). Prerequisite: ENV 446. Introduction to technical criteria, field indicators, and accepted methods for identifying and delineating wetlands. Topics include the history of wetland regulation, hydrology, hydric soils, and hydrophytic vegetation. Laboratory and field activities will focus on identification of hydrologic indicators, soils, and plant communities to determine wetland boundaries, as well as the understanding and use of the Army Corps of Engineers 1987 Wetland Delineation Manual. 3 Cr.

ENV 448 Restoration Ecology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to restoration of terrestrial, wetland, and aquatic ecosystems to be addressed by focusing on regulatory constraints, site characterization/evaluation, conceiving and designing restoration projects that fit within the surrounding landscape, monitoring requirements, control of invasives, and adaptive management. Students working in groups will develop conceptual restoration projects of their own choosing. 3 Cr.

ENV 452 Environmental Laws and Regulations (A). Introduction to key federal and state environmental laws, how branches of government interact to enforce environmental laws and regulations, and the roles scientists and lawyers play in resolving environmental issues. 3 Cr. Every Semester.

ENV 457 Marine Biology-Bahamas (A). Cross-listed as ESC 457. Prerequisite: One laboratory science course. Prepare in the spring semester for a Spring Break field experience in coral reef biology and geology on San Salvador Island in the Bahamas. Study identification, behavior, and ecology of marine organisms in five habitats associated with coral reefs. Learn how to prepare a scientific field notebook and to design, conduct, and report on a personal research project. 3 Cr. Fall.

ENV 459 Mammalogy (A). Course fees: Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of mammals. Explores their form, function, ecology, and evolution. Topics include origins, anatomy, physiology, diet and feeding strategies, population and community ecology, and social systems. Laboratory and field activities emphasize mammalian classification, habitat selection, and population biology. 4 Cr. Odd Fall.

ENV 462 Aquatic Toxicology (A). Multiple Course fees: Prerequisite: CHM 206. Introduction to performing aquatic tests on water and sediment using standard fish and aquatic invertebrate test species. This will be accomplished through lectures, hands-on labs, data analyses, and student presentations. 4 Cr. Even Spring.

ENV 464 Aquaculture (A). Prerequisite ENV303: An introduction to the principles and practices of intensive and extensive aquaculture. Topics include system design and operation; water quality maintenance; diet and nutrition; reproduction; selective breeding and genetics; disease identification and treatment; and the biology of cultured organisms. 3 Cr. Even Fall.

ENV 466 Great Lakes Issues (A). Prerequisite: ENV303. Introduction to the major environmental issues facing the Great Lakes. Topics include an overview of the physical, chemical and biological components of the Great Lakes ecosystem, toxic substances and areas of concern, invasive species, nearshore health and nonpoint source pollution, habitat and wildlife destruction and degradation, alteration of natural lake levels, and action plans to monitor, assess and protect the overall health of the Great Lakes ecosystem (GLRI, LaMPs). 3 Cr. Even Fall.

ENV 477 Field Biology (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the flora and fauna of various habitats in Western New York. Topics include structure and function of communities, species identification, qualitative and quantitative assessment of communities and ecosystems, and general conservation theory and practice. 1-4 Cr.

ENV 483 Aquatic Invertebrates (A). Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to the scientific study of aquatic invertebrates and their importance in stream and lake ecosystems. Topics include invertebrate biology and ecology, classification and identification (insects, crustaceans, mites, annelids, mollusks, etc.), use of dichotomous keys and sampling equipment, and preparation techniques. Prepares students to predict habitat or water quality conditions based on the invertebrate fauna present. 4 Cr. Odd Spring.

ENV 484 Fisheries Science and Management. Prerequisite: ENV 303. Introduction to fish ecology, fisheries science and fisheries management. Topics include ecology (niche, competition, predation, optimal foraging, biodiversity); population dynamics (mortality, growth, recruitment, fishery models); management (regulations, habitat, and population manipulations, stocking; and aquatic systems: warm- and cold water lakes, streams and rivers, ponds and reservoirs). 3 Cr. Even Spring.

ENV 486 Fish Biology (A). Course fees: Prerequisite: ENV303. Introduction to the general biology of fishes. Topics include fish diversity, evolution, anatomy, movement, osmoregulation, growth, reproduction, sensory systems. Weekly laboratories focus on practical experience with techniques used by fishery scientists: collection methods, anatomy and physiology, age and growth, quantitative measures and fish identification using taxonomic keys. 4 Cr. Fall.

ENV 492 Global Environmental Issues (A). This capstone course for senior environmental science majors will explore one or more major global environmental issues during the semester. Students will research the topic, analyze primary literature, engage in class discussion and formal speaking, and write a paper critically evaluating the issue and what should be done about it. 3 Cr. Spring.

ENV 495 Topics in Environmental Science (A). Introduces a special field of study in the environmental sciences not offered in the regular curriculum. Details reflect student demand, needs, topics of interest, and instructor availability. 1-6 Cr. By Arrangement.

ENV 497 Undergraduate Internship (A). Designed for the student who wishes to gain experience working with an environmental organization in the public or private sector (e.g., industry, government, environmental organizations). A total of three credits from ENV 497, ENV 498 (Collaborative Research) and ENV 499 (Independent Study) combined can be applied toward the Environmental Science major. 1-3 Cr. By Arrangement.

ENV 498 Collaborative Environmental Biology Research (A). In collaboration with a faculty mentor, the student designs, conducts and prepares a scientific report on a research project in the field or laboratory. A total of three credits from ENV 497, (Undergraduate Internship), ENV 498 and ENV 499 (Independent Study) combined can be applied toward the Environmental Science major. 1-3 Cr. By Arrangement.

ENV 499 Independent Study in Environmental Science (A). In collaboration with a faculty mentor, the student reviews literature and prepares a paper on a topic of interest in the environmental sciences. A total of three credits from ENV 497 (Undergraduate Internship), ENV 498 (Collaborative Research) and ENV 499 combined can be applied toward the Environmental Science major. 1-6 Cr. By Arrangement.

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