22/SPR JC Course Syllabi 01/10/22-04/30/22



by Jessica Tashman -
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Physical Geography (Lecture)

GEO 131 – PCI1

Spring 2022


Number of Credits: 3

Lecture Meeting Times: 1/31 – 4/30,
Wednesdays 6-9 PM (classroom TBD)
Video lectures will be played at times designated by your facility.

Instructor: Professor Tashman

Contact Me: We will be communicating through JPay each week, in addition to having opportunities to communicate in the classroom.



Lecture (GEO 131) Description

The course works with maps and grid systems. Map exercises are used all semester to enhance the textbook. Other topics include meteorology, atmospheric sciences, earth materials and a range of tectonic and landscape subjects. 

Students will develop a scientific skill-set to understand the four strands of scientific investigation:  content, process, communication, and the nature of science. Students will use the critical thinking to evaluate scientific information, data, and current issues in physical geography. The foundation for physical geography will be constructed using the four strands of scientific investigation. The fundamental concepts in physical geography, like mapping, landform analysis, plate tectonics, and climate change are presented in context with current issues. The students will compare the content and process through communications with their peers and the instructor ultimately understanding the nature of science. The four strands will improve the student’s scientific literacy which will support the enduring understanding of the building blocks of physical geography. This course is designed for people interested in introductory science and geographical issues using their computational skills.

Upon completing this course students will retain a skill-set derived from critical thinking and physical geography methodology as it relates to spatiotemporal context. This skill-set can be used in classes following physical geography, and in problem solving needs through-out their lives. Although this course is an introductory class, introductory does not translate into easy. This course does not require background knowledge in physical geography. It will require effort to build the scientific foundation and the philosophical underpinnings of critical thinking and scientific thought. Students will have to spend time studying the material to succeed and there is a simple rule or algorithm for determining weekly studying habits. For this course, you should expect to study (credit hours) X (grade expectations). In other words, if you want to get a 3.0 out of this class, then you would study (3.0 credit hours) X (3.0 grade expectation) = 9 hours a week. You are responsible for the resulting grade that you shall receive.

Lecture Goals

Upon completing this course, the student should be able to:

·         Understand how the nature of science is a result of the content, process, and communication; and, how this process is self-correcting.

·         Identify the big ideas in scientific discourse as they relate to physical geography.

·         Integrate information of natural geological processes that govern the natural world.

·         Understand the integrated nature of geological, physical, chemical, and biological systems

·         Understand the connection between landforms, climate patterns, and the distribution of living organisms.

·         Understand how the mechanisms of evolutionary change, geographic change, and climate change have on natural populations.

Understand factors affecting global climate change and human impact on the environment as it relates to geography and living systems.