Introduction to Natural History of the Pacific Northwest

Spring 2018
Credits per quarter
Variable Credit Options Available

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Taught by

marine science, zoology, ecophysiology

Understanding natural history is an important part of being an ecologist in the 21st century. This program provides opportunities for gaining needed skills and knowledge through seminars, lectures and extensive fieldwork. Spring in the Pacific Northwest is a great time to get outside and observe the natural world. Students will focus on learning about the plants, fungi, and animals inhabiting ecosystems within ~250 kilometers of Olympia. The diversity of organisms in our area is very great, ranging from marine algae and tide pool animals to montane forest birds, lichens and plants. On-campus field days will include exercises to learn about forest and estuarine biodiversity. One-day field trips to observe marine mammals and birds, a multi-day backpacking trip on the Olympic Peninsula, and an overnight trip to the eastern side of the Cascades will further the diversity of our field experiences. Students will detail their work in field notebooks and expand upon their observations in natural history journals. Students will receive instruction in the fundamental skills of camping, hiking and outdoor activities needed to carryout field studies in remote areas with uneven terrain. Program participants will learn classic techniques of specimen collection and modern digital archiving methods. In seminar, we will explore modern and classic readings in natural history. Anticipated Credit Equivalencies include Natural History, Natural History Methods, Natural History Fieldwork, Natural History Seminar.

This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in: natural sciences, outdoor education, and environmental studies.

Online learning:
  • Enhanced Online Learning - This offering requires access to web-based tools, but use of these tools does not displace any face-to-face instruction.

$245 for overnight field trip expenses to cover transportation, camping and entrance fees.

Scheduled for: Day

Located in: Olympia

Final schedule and room assignment:

2017-08-29New spring opportunity added.