100 Level

Current offerings of Earth & Environment courses can be found on the course listing of the BU Bulletin.

100-level courses in Earth & Environment can be taken for divisional studies credit (NS = natural science divisional studies credit, SS = social science division studies credit).

All courses are 4 credits unless otherwise noted.

GE 100 Environmental Change & Sustainability (SS)

Introduces natural and social science concepts that underlie global environmental change and sustainability. Topics include climate change, biodiversity, energy, water, pollution, deforestation, agriculture, population growth. Sustainable development illustrated with ecological footprint based on student’s lifestyle. CAS social science divisional credit. Required for all majors in Earth & Environment.

GE 101 Natural Environments: The Atmosphere (NS, lab)

An introduction to weather and climate. Topics include the controls of weather and climate, day-to-day variations in weather, severe storms, climates of the world, urban climate and air pollution, past climates and climatic change, and the impact of climatic variations on society.

ES 105 Crises of the Planet (NS, lab)

After covering the origin of the universe, earth and life, the course examines two topics: natural hazards, including earthquakes and volcanoes; and human impacts on Earth, including climate change, ozone depletion, pollution, and increasing demands on mineral and energy resources.

ES 107 Introduction to Climate and Earth System Science (NS, lab)

Introduction to the Earth as an integrated system composed of interacting biosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, lithosphere, and atmosphere subsystems. Major themes include earth system stability, instability and capacity for change on all time scales, including human-induced climate change. Required for all majors in Earth & Environment.

ES 140 Earthquakes, Volcanoes, and Other Natural Disasters  (NS, lab)

Explores the large natural events that affect us; examines their geologic causes, as well as their natural and human consequences. Topics include earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, impacts of extraterrestrial objects, and other near-surface disasters, with an emphasis on destructive solid-earth phenomena.

ES 142 Introduction to Beach and Shoreline Processes (NS)

Coastal processes, including tidal currents, wave action, longshore transport, and estuarine circulation; barrier island and spit formation; study of beaches, dunes, and marshes; effects of tectonics, glaciers, and rivers on beaches and coastal morphology. Cape Cod field trip.

ES 144 Oceanography (NS)

Examines the physical, chemical, and biological processes by which the oceans serve as an agent to accelerate or moderate the pace of global change. Dynamic nature of the oceans on both a short- and a long-term scale is emphasized.

GE 150 Sustainable Energy: Technology, Resources, Society, and Environment (SS)

Examines the social, environmental, and technological aspects of renewable and nonrenewable energy systems. Discusses energy issues in context of globalization, climate change, and sustainable development. Explores lifestyle and policy decisions related to energy issues.

ES 191 Freshman Climate Science Seminar 1

Climate change seminar for students at the freshman level. Prereq: admission to HHMI Climate Change Program. 1 credit.

ES 192 Freshman Climate Change Seminar 2

Climate change seminar for students at the freshman level. Prereq: ES 191 and admission to HHMI Climate Change Program.