Course Descriptions

NSC 2100 Environmental Science 3 credits
Designed to give an overview of basic environmental principles. Concepts central to the biological and physical sciences will be covered to provide a background for understanding the environment. The basic environmental issues of human population growth, biodiversity, natural resources and energy use, and their role in the well being of the environment will be highlighted. Ethical, social, economic, and political interrelationships will also be discussed. This material will provide a good foundation for sound decisions regarding environmental issues.

NSC 3100 Climate Change 3 credits
Examines the current scientific knowledge of climate change and its implications for society as a whole. Specific topics will include: energy balance, components of climate, measuring climate, and modeling climate. The consequences of climate change from biological, social, and economic perspectives will be examined, as well as political, corporate, and individual responses to this issue.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 3200 Understanding Biotechnology 3 credits
Biotechnology is the latest technological revolution to transform many facets of our society. Its impacts on the environment, agriculture, nutrition, industry, and health will advance social and individual health and technology beyond anything imaginable. This course will review the science behind biotechnology including cell biology, genetics, genetic behavior, and genetic manipulation. It will also present the technologies and laboratory processes that enable biotechnology discovery and development. Finally, it will discuss specific applications of biotechnology including food, human health, industrial, and environmental applications.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 3330 Tropical Natural History 3 credits
Examines the various tropical ecosystems of the world with a primary focus on the neotropical rainforests. Examines the climate, geology, geography, ecology, biodiversity, economic potential, and environmental concerns of these ecosystems. Their values, including ecological, economic, and cultural, will be examined in order to establish a framework to understand the urgent need for their conservation for future generations and the health of the planet in general.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 3400 Environmental Study in Mexico 3 credits
A broad presentation of environmental science, integrating technical and social concepts and issues as they relate to the Mexican environment. The ecological, economic, social, and ethical aspects of current issues are scrutinized from a scientific base.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 3450 Environmental Study in Southeast Asia 3 credits
A broad presentation of environmental science, integrating technical and social concepts and issues in the Southeast Asian environment. The ecological, economic, social, and ethical aspects of current issues are scrutinized from a scientific base.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 3850 Special Topics 1-3 credits
Various topics in natural science. These may be one-time or occasional course offerings.
Prerequisite: Dependent on specific course content

NSC 4020 Oceanography 3 credits
A broad presentation of oceanographic concepts and processes, including exploration, physical, chemical, and biological aspects. Current societal issues pertaining to the world's oceans will also be presented.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 4030 Field Ornithology 3 credits
An overview of the scientific study of birds and the important contributions to the field made by amateur birders. The course will focus on the field identification of local and regional species plus an overview of worldwide groups. In addition, this course will include ecological, behavioral, and biological topics including anatomy, territoriality and nesting, migration, trophic interactions, and conservation. The recreational and economic impacts of bird watching and feeding will be addressed.

NSC 4040 Ecology 3 credits
Students study and become familiar with the geology, indigenous plants, animals, and various ecosystems representative of the region, and identify the relationships involved between the living and nonliving factors in their environment.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 4050 Biodiversity 3 credits
Examines the three components of biodiversity: species diversity, genetic diversity, and ecosystem diversity, including the implications and impacts that human activities are having on each of them. Specific concepts of evolution, speciation, adaptive radiation, biogeography, and ecology will also be addressed. The value of biological diversity will be examined from both an economic as well as an ecological perspective.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100

NSC 4060 Science and Technology 3 credits
This science course is aimed at the business major. The objective is to provide an overview of scientific knowledge for application in business and society and to operate in a technology-based environment.
Prerequisite: NSC 2100