Climate Change: Language and Science

Fall 2021
Freshman - Senior
Class Size: 50
16 Credits per quarter
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Taught by

This program incorporates Greener Foundations. Greener Foundations is Evergreen’s 2-quarter introductory student success course, which provides all first-year students with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive at Evergreen. First year students will get 14-credits from this program, and 2-credits from a Greener Foundations course. In order for first year students to complete registration, you will also need to register for the Greener Foundations section specifically designed to work with this academic program, using CRN 10116.

The impact and threat of climate change has grown into a dominant concern around the globe, and a focus of strategy, action, and research among scientists and non-scientists alike. As such, climate discussions within society represent high stakes meeting grounds of diverse voices seeking to effectively communicate scientific concepts, policy responses, individual and collective experiences, and calls to action.

This program will use climate change science and communication as a primary case study for the exploration of fundamental concepts in environmental science and linguistics. Our work in science will include online introductory chemistry and earth science classes with focus on areas such as ocean acidification and atmospheric interactions. Online workshops in quantitative reasoning will support our work in science through data analysis and interpretation and quantitative literacy skill-building. Our online work in linguistics will include an introduction to language structure and semantics, with an emphasis on developing tools for climate discourse analysis including the study of metaphor, discourse markers, and speech acts.

Activities in campus forests and beaches will help students deepen their understanding of climate change phenomena. During our in-person seminars we will discuss articles from the primary literature about ongoing climate change impacts, as well as readings for a broader audience. Students will be introduced to scientific methodologies that underpin our understanding of climate and climate change. Students will engage in project work connecting primary scientific literature to other forms of communication that relay that information to the general public, including media, politics, and advertisements.

The introductory chemistry in this program prepares students for general chemistry in foundational programs such as Integrated Natural Science.

Students will be on campus for 2 hours of seminar or an on-campus field trip. Other classes will be on Zoom, with about 7 synchronous hours, plus asynchronous work. For the Zoom work, students will need access to a computer, camera, microphone and the internet.


Fall 2021 Registration

Course Reference Numbers

So - Sr (16): 10011
Fr (14): 10014

Academic details

Preparatory for studies and careers in

Sciences, linguistics, environmental studies, policy or education

Maximum Enrollment
Class Standing

$50 required lab fee


Time Offered
Schedule Evergreen link
see Schedule Evergreen for detailed schedule

First Meeting

SEM 2 A1105 - Lecture