Freshwater habitats rank as some of the most imperiled ecosystems on Earth. They have been heavily used for transportation, irrigation, energy production, waste disposal and recreation. Due to their fragile nature and disproportionate importance on the landscape, it is important to understand how freshwater ecosystems function and how we can restore freshwater habitats. This program will focus on freshwater ecology concepts and methods in streams and rivers, with some extensions to lakes and wetlands. Topics covered will include: hydrology, water chemistry, ecosystem processes, aquatic organisms, trophic dynamics, stable isotope ecology, ecological interactions, organic matter and nutrient dynamics, current threats to freshwater ecosystems and riparian restoration. The course will focus on current research in ecosystem ecology, community ecology, ecological genetics, and terrestrial-aquatic interactions. If possible given Covid-19 restrictions, students will learn relevant field and laboratory methods in freshwater ecology via in-person instruction on campus. If in-person work is challenging, students will be provided with materials to do some field and laboratory work from home.
This program is designed for students who have a strong background in college-level biology and chemistry and an interest in applying ecological principles to freshwater ecosystems. Students can contact the faculty (email@example.com) to take this as a 4-credit “Freshwater Ecology” module within the broader program Freshwater Ecology & Aquatic Entomology.
To be successful in this program, students should have a laptop (mac or PC) with reliable internet connection. The majority of the work in the program will be asynchronous (meaning you can complete it at your own pace on your own schedule). There will be one hour of synchronous work (scheduled video conferencing) each week to build community and provide opportunities for students to ask faculty questions and work together on problem-solving. If possible given Covid-19 restrictions, we will meet in the field on campus for three hours on one day each week. If students find themselves unable to participate in the synchronous or on-campus meetings due to technology, living situations, care-giving obligations, economic disruption, health risk, or illness, they can work with faculty to pursue alternate options to earn related credit.
Students need to have a foundation in both college-level biology and chemistry to understand Freshwater Ecology. Students need to have successfully completed at least 2 quarters of General Biology and 2 quarters of General Chemistry to earn upper division credit in this program.
Contact the faculty to be enrolled in the 4-credit Freshwater Ecology section of the program Freshwater Ecology & Aquatic Entomology
Ecology, environmental science, restoration, biology, chemistry
If on-campus work is not possible, a $75 student fee will be used to send students field and laboratory gear for use in home lab and field exercises.
Upper division science credit will be awarded for the completion of upper division work across components of the program. Students need to have a foundation in both college-level biology and chemistry to understand Freshwater Ecology. Students need to have successfully completed at least 2 quarters of General Biology and 2 quarters of General Chemistry to earn upper division credit in this program.