Monday, November 5, 2012

Spring 2013 Course Information

Dear Environmental Studies minors,

I hope you are all having a great fall. We are approaching time to register for courses for next semester. Below are some important items that you need to know about the registration process.

1. Seniors
ES minors graduating in 2013 need to take Environmental Seminar (GE580), the senior capstone course. The course is only offered to senior ES minors. This year, we are offering the course in three sections at different times (all in Devlin 201):

GE58001, TTh 3-4:15, Prof. Martha Carlson Mazur
GE58002, TTh 10:30-11:45, Prof. Tara Pisani Gareau
GE58003, TTh, 12:00-1:15, Prof. Tara Pisani Gareau

This is a change from previous years when we had the whole class meet together. Given the large number of you now (around 50!), we decided that having three smaller, discussion-oriented seminars would be the best way to design the capstone experience. Note that the third section (TTh 12-1:15) was just added, so you won’t find it on the paper course schedules.

Also for seniors, you need to make sure you have all six required courses done by the end of next semester. If you have questions about the requirements, first check the ESP website (, and then get in touch with ESP grad assistant Kevin Brown (at this email or in Devlin 213) or me. Recall that only one course can count toward both your major and minor requirements. Also note that the Student Services computer system does not always apply this rule correctly, so you should check your degree audit carefully.

2. Courses for next semester
We have reserved some slots in Environmental Economics (EC27801) on TTh at 12 pm for ES minors. Traditionally this popular course has filled with Economics majors, so this is a great opportunity. If you want to take EC278 next semester, please indicate this in a reply email by Wednesday night, November 7. Note that EC278 has EC131 as a prerequisite. EC278 fulfills the Policy Foundation requirement for ES minors in the classes of 2015 and 2016.

Other Policy Foundation courses offered next semester include: Environmental Management (MB145, TTh 3 pm) and Environmental Law and Policy (UN256, various TTh sections).

We also have a brand-new course next semester (taught by Prof. Andy Tirrell) that will be of interest to ES minors:
Indigenous Rights and Natural Resources (IN261, Wed., 4:30-6:50 pm, Gasson 208)
What roles do indigenous peoples play in conflicts over natural resources? This course will examine conflicts between indigenous peoples, governments, and the private sector in order to better understand why such disputes occur so commonly throughout the world. Whether it's hydroelectric dams in Brazil and Laos, mines in Peru and Guatemala, or tourism in Panama, struggles between indigenous groups and forces of “development” are ubiquitous, and the frequency of these conflicts is on the rise. Through case studies, an interactive negotiation simulation, and an academic mini-conference, we will explore indigenous rights and natural resources issues through a variety of lenses.
IN261 can count toward the Specialized Policy requirement for the classes of 2013-2014 and the elective requirement for the classes of 2015-2016.

For the Science Foundation requirement (classes of 2015-2016), we are offering Environmental Systems: Water Resources (GE203 and lab GE213) with Prof. Martha Carlson Mazur which meets for the first half of next semester, and Environmental Systems: The Critical Zone (GE204 and lab GE214) which will be offered during the second half of the semester with Prof. Rudi Hon. You can register for one or both courses. The lecture for both is MWF at 12 in Devlin 307. Please note that the Student Services computer system does not allow you to register for two courses offered during the same time slot (even though in this case they will not meet at the same time during the semester). To register for both courses, register for one (and its lab) normally, and then email Ursula DellaPorta ( in Student Services and request that she register you into the other course and lab section. As a reminder, note that all Earth and Environmental Sciences (GE) courses (including GE202-208) can count toward the ES minor elective requirements for the classes of 2015-2016.

Please be in touch with Kevin or me you have questions.

Noah P. Snyder
Director, Environmental Studies Program
Associate Professor, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
Boston College
Devlin Hall 213
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467
Office hours in Devlin 320: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 3-4:30 pm

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