Covering 71% of the surface, yet mostly unexplored, the Earth's oceans are a source of food, hurricanes, used as a wastebasket by human kind, and a great unknown in our climate future. This introductory course covers the formation of ocean basins; the composition and origin of seawater; currents, tides, and waves; the ocean-atmosphere connection; coastal processes; the deep-sea environment; productivity and resources; marine pollution; and the influence of oceans on climate. The class will focus on how oceanic systems work with class discussions, demonstrations, and exercises providing opportunities for students to apply their knowledge and practice analytical techniques.
Satisfies depth and breadth course requirement in the Natural Science track of the Environmental Studies major or interdisciplinary minor.
Satisfies Liberal Studies distribution requirement.