Student Originated Studies: Pacific Northwest Plant Identification

Summer 2020 Full Session
Junior - Senior
Class Size: 15
4 8 Credits per quarter
Variable credit options, see below
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This 100% online, full summer session SOS (student-originated study) is designed for advanced botany students who would like to gain skills in plant identification using dichotomous keys Through lectures and active-learning group workshops students will learn about the classification and diversity of plant families with an emphasis on flowering plants native to the Pacific Northwest. Virtual plant identification labs will serve as a foundation for students to work through dichotomous keys to identify an unknown plant and for students to develop fluency in plant identification terminology. By the end of the quarter students will have the skills to identity 20 plant families by sight. 

Students will have the option to enroll in up to 4 additional credits (so 8 total) to deepen their explorations of plants, field ecology and/or plant conservation). Students may choose to work independently or develop small group projects (remotely) to learn field skills in vegetation monitoring and florisitics (an in-depth study of a plant community in a given habitat or area) or to study specific topics including plant conservation, restoration and management, or a study of a specific habitat or plant species of interest. This portion of the program will also include asynchronous seminar discussions based in the primary literature, and weekly meetings as a group with faculty to problem solve and support group members' project work. The exact content of the shared portion will be determined during the first class meeting. 

To successfully participate in this program, students will need a computer and reliable high-speed internet. Examples of remote technology that will be used include Zoom, Canvas, YouTube and iNaturalist. Students can expect a blend of 8-16 hours a week of asynchronous and 4 hours a week of synchronous work using Zoom and Canvas. 



Students must have taken a 8 credits of general biology or college level botany/plant biology course. 

Summer 2020 Registration

Signature Required

Students must have taken a 8 credits of general biology or college level botany/plant biology course. Contact the faculty for permission to register. 

Course Reference Numbers

Jr - Sr First Session (4): 40151
Jr - Sr Full Session (8): 40152

Academic details

Preparatory for studies and careers in

plant ecology,environmental studies, habitat management, ecological restoration, and conservation biology

Variable Credit Options

Students can choose to enroll in 4 credits and up to 8 credits. 

Maximum Enrollment
Class Standing
Upper Division Science Credit

Up to 8 credits of upper-division science may be earned by students who successfully meet all the program learning objectives.


Time Offered
Schedule Evergreen link
see Schedule Evergreen for detailed schedule

First Meeting