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Loyola University Chicago

University Core

Core Knowledge Area: Scientific Literacy

Learning Outcome: Demonstrate scientific literacy.

Scientific literacy provides individuals with fundamental principles, concepts, and knowledge of the sciences, and introduces them to the methodology of scientific inquiry. It prepares them to make reasoned and ethical judgments about the impact of science on the individual, community and society.

Competencies: By way of example, Loyola graduates should be able to:

 

Scientific Literacy Courses (2 courses required)*

 

ANTH 101: Human Origins
This course explores the study of the biological history of the human species, from its emergence through the establishment of food producing societies.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of basic biological principles (heredity, physiology, evolutionary mechanisms, adaptation, ecology) in the context of their application to the human condition, as well as the role of cultural behavior in defining the distinctiveness of that condition.
ANTH 103: Biological Basis for Human Social Behavior
This course examines the possible biological bases of modern human behavior, from a strongly scientific and multi-disciplinary perspective.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the process of how science is conducted, and the interactions between science and culture, especially given the controversial history of the subject matter.
ANTH 104: The Human Ecological Footprint
This course is an introduction to global human ecology and concentrates on how we as humans affect global ecosystems and how these changes can impact our behavior, health, economics, and politics.

Outcome: Students will be able to draw connections between basic ecological processes and the global patterns of human population growth, health and disease, inequality and poverty, subsistence strategies, and land use and technology.
ANTH 105: Human Biocultural Diversity
This course examines the history of the concept of the biological race, the emergence and role of scientific racism, as well as the current scientific research objectives and methodologies.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the assessment and explanations for human interpopulational differences such as skin color, nasal shape, eye color, hair color and form, disease resistance, and blood polymorphisms.
ANTH 106: Sex, Science and Anthropological Inquiry
This course examines the issues of sex and gender within physical/biological anthropology.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of human genetics, patterns of human heredity, the mechanisms of biological evolution, the nature/nurture debate, primate taxonomy and behavior, and early human fossil evidence and interpretation.
BIOL 110: Biology through Art (Liberal Arts Biology, effective Fall 2012)
This course focuses on fundamental principles and concepts in the biological sciences from molecular biology to human anatomy, emphasizing the scientific method, basics of experimental design, and the integration of biology and art through the creation of artworks in a laboratory/studio.

Outcome: Students will be able to understand the fundamental principles, concepts, and knowledge of the sciences; participate in a direct experience of scientific inquiry using the methodologies and tools of science; and develop the capacity to utilize scientific knowledge to promote the health and well being of the individual, community, and society.
ENVS 207: Plants and Civilization
This course examines the structure, function, ecology, and diversity of plants, and allows evaluation of the importance of plants to human civilization on multiple levels.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of plant biology and the critical role of plants in the biosphere, as well as direct linkages between plants and human society.
ENVS 210 (NTSC 105): Concepts in Physical Science - Motion
This course will give students a broad view of the historical development of the concept of motion, its derived regularities and their applications to a variety of natural phenomena. The evolution of this concept will be traced from the classical Greek views of Aristotle, through Galileo and Newton to modern theories of planetary motion.

Outcome: Students will be introduced to the thinking and methodology of this field as they follow the logical progression that has led to its structure of theories and laws.
ENVS 211 (NTSC 106): Concepts in Physical Science - Matter
This course traces the historical development of what is meant by “matter” beginning with the early Greek philosophers, proceeding through the concept of the atom and concluding with the quantum theory of matter.

Outcome: Students will gain an understanding of how science builds a logical structure of theories and laws and how these constructs are then applied. Students will learn how to draw valid, logical conclusions regarding various observed phenomena, utilizing skills such as scientific notation, reasoning based on orders of magnitude, scaling, proportionality, deduction, induction, cause and effect and reduction ad absurdum.
ENVS 218: Biodiversity and Biogeography (effective Fall 2014)
This course covers the creation and maintenance of biodiversity across taxonomic, temporal and spatial scales.  It will provide an overview of the history of biogeography, increase understanding of the evolutionary processes that create biodiversity, the influence of biodiversity on ecosystem services, and the rapid biodiversity loss resulting from human actions.

Outcome: Students will gain knowledge of and appreciation for the biodiversity of life, its formation through the process of evolution, and the importance of biodiversity to ecosystem function and human welfare.
ENVS 223:  Introduction to Soils (effective Fall 2014)
This course introduces the properties, functions, and conservation of soil. Topics include belowground ecosystem services, soil biodiversity, biogeochemical cycles, and conservation, human impacts to soils, and the socioeconomic implications of soil degradation.  Lectures, laboratory/field soil testing, field trips, and presentations by experts in sustainable soil management are employed.

Outcome: Students will understand the properties, functions and methods of conservation/remediation of soils, learn how human activities affect soils and associated socioeconomic consequences, and develop analytical skills to assess soil health.
ENVS 224:  Climate and Climate Change (effective Fall 2014)
This course introduces students to basic principles and knowledge to explain climate change. Students will learn about natural and anthropogenic causes of climate change, the interactions between earth-atmosphere-ocean systems, climate feedback mechanisms, and impacts of climate change on the natural physical environment.

Outcome: Students will develop cognitive and mathematical skills to draw valid, logical conclusions regarding various observed phenomena such as observed changes in the climate system and observed impacts of climate change.
ENVS 237:  Foundations of Environmental Science: Energy and Climate (Effective Fall 2014)
This course is the second in a three-course sequence required of all ENVS majors.  It will provide the basic scientific grounding needed to intelligently discuss environmental policy and to prepare students for more advanced study in the environmental sciences.  It focuses on physical science, especially thermodynamics, energy and climate change.

Outcome: Student will gain understanding of the physics dictating global climate dynamics and climate change, as well as the energetic of different energy sources and technological aspects of alternative energy sources.
ENVS 273 (NTSC 273): Energy and the Environment
This course will introduce the basic knowledge that has been developed as well as the underlying processes and laws that govern the nature of energy and its interactions. This will include an introduction to fundamental physics concepts including work, power, motion, forces, heat, and energy.

Outcome: Students will be introduced to the thinking and methodology used by scientists in this field to gain an understanding of how science builds a logical structure of theories and laws and how these constructs are then applied. This requires that students use both cognitive and quantitative skills. There will be opportunities to analyze data in this field allowing students to draw valid, logical conclusions regarding various observed phenomena.
ENVS 281 (NTSC 281): Human Impact on the Environment
This course examines how ecological systems work and how the structure and function of these systems is altered by human activity.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the diversity, complexity, and functioning of natural ecosystems through examination of species interactions, energy flow, and elemental cycles, and how these vary with natural environmental variation.
ENVS 283 (NTSC 180): Environmental Sustainability
This course examines the area of environmental science relative to the impact that humans as consumers have on the environment and how these interactions affect the probability of establishing sustainability for human and non-human inhabitants of planet Earth.

Outcome: Students will be able to analyze specific environmental issues related to sustainability and to reflect upon how and to what extent our individual behaviors impact the problem and the potential for individual change and civic engagement.
NTSC 103: Life and Inquiry   **
This course examines the concepts and characteristics of life as a series of biochemical and biophysical processes at the molecular, cellular, systems and organismal levels.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the unity and diversity of life, the structure of matter, energy and its transformations, cell structure and physiology, general cell biochemistry, and form and function in physiological systems.
NTSC 108: Human Heredity   **
This course is a comprehensive overview of the field of human heredity with an emphasis on genetic disorders.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the critical concepts, principles and knowledge needed to understand the origin, transmission, characteristics and treatment of genetic diseases.
NTSC 109: Human Reproduction   **
This course examines the fundamental principles and knowledge in the field of human reproduction.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the physiological processes of reproduction, the molecular and cellular foundations of these processes, major threats to reproductive health/success in humans and the various technologies and public policies that have arisen around this field.
NTSC 117: Planetary and Solar System Astronomy   **
This course examines the development of planetary astronomy from ancient times to current knowledge, including the origin of the solar system, its components, and the processes that formed them.  Space probe and advanced telescope data may be used.

Outcome:  Students will demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental knowledge and concepts in astronomy, the qualitative and quantitative reasoning used, and how this science can be applied.
PHYS 101: Liberal Arts Physics
This course uses physics as a vehicle to introduce students to the fundamental principles, concepts, and knowledge of the sciences, and introduces them to the methodology of scientific inquiry.

Outcome: Students will be able to make reasoned judgments about the impact of science on the individual, community and society.
PHYS 102: Planetary and Stellar Astronomy
This course covers the astronomy of the solar system and planetary science as well as the astronomy of stars and galaxies.  This includes study of earth and comparative study of all the planets, as well as the birth, evolution, and death of stars, the clustering of stars and galaxies, the expanding universe and cosmology.

Outcome:
Students will have an understanding of the fundamental principles, concepts and knowledge of science as well as methodology of scientific inquiry.  It will prepare them to make reasoned judgments about the impact of science on the individual, community, and society. 
PHYS 103: Planetary and Solar System Astronomy
This course examines the development of planetary and solar system astronomy from the time of the Copernican revolution through current issues in planetary science.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the scientific revolution of solar system atronomy and its characteristics.
PHYS 104: Astronomy of Stars and Galaxies
This course for non-science majors studies basic concepts about the birth, evolution, and death of stars, the clustering of stars and galaxies, the expanding universe and cosmology.

Outcome: Demonstrate understanding of mechanics, interaction of light and matter, various observational tools, and an introduction to philosophy and methods of science.
PHYS 106: Physics of Music
Language, structure, history and styles of music; motion, force, energy and waves applied to production of sound; physical properties of instruments and musical acoustics.

Outcome: Knowledge of music fundamentals; understand how instruments function; apply physics concepts and experimentation to analyze the production of music and acoustics.
PSYC 101: General Psychology

This course explores the scientific study of the brain, mental events, and behavior.

Outcome: Students will be able to demonstrate understanding of the foundation, methodology, theory, and phenomena of the fields of physiological, perceptual, cognitive, social, clinical and developmental psychology.

Starting in Fall 2012, PSYC 101 will only satisfy the Societal and Cultural Knowledge Area requirement.

UCSF 137: The Scientific Basis of Environmental Issues
The overarching strategy of this course will be to frame environmental science in terms of a series of interacting systems to allow students to analyze a variety of environmental issues and the role of human interactions in the environment, with the goal of students becoming environmentally literate citizens of the 21st Century. 

Outcome:
Students will be able to identify and describe the basic scientific principles and processes important in environmental science (such as energy, photosynthesis, elemental cycles).  Additionally, students will be able to construct causal chains showing how environmental inputs produce certain outputs, and will be able to construct testable and falsifiable hypotheses.

*In January 2011 the Department of Natural Science became the Department of Environmental Science. Courses moved into the new department have been re-numbered and are listed above as ENVS (previous course numbers are in parentheses). If you successfully completed any of these courses while they were labeled as NTSC, they will continue to satisfy the Scientific Literacy requirement.

 **Because of the transition from the Department of Natural Science (NTSC) to the Department of Environmental Science (ENVS), courses denoted with a double asterisk (**) will no longer be offered.  If you successfully completed any of these courses they will continue to satisfy the Scientific Literacy requirement.

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