Living in a Polluted World|
Fall 2021 not offered
|Course Cluster and Certificates: Health Studies, Service Learning|
This course treats the occurrences and origins, natural pathways, toxicologies, and histories of the major environmental contaminants. We all know about lead and its effects on humans, but how about cadmium and hexachromium, or the many unpronounceable organic contaminants, usually referred to by some acronym (e.g., DDT, POPs)? We also deal with the larger topics of CO2/climate change, the environmental nitrogen-oxide balance, and eutrophication of coastal waters (the "dead zones"). To be effective in this course, students will need basic high school/college-level proficiency in chemistry and math as we will delve into aspects of geochemistry, geology, toxicology, environmental law, and some simple modeling. The class consists of lectures, one problem set, one Hg-in-hair class study, and a class project on lead in drinking water in the Middletown area. This is also a service-learning course, providing environmental outreach to the larger Middletown community on local pollution.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Lecture||Grading Mode: |
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (CIS)(ENVS-MN)(ENVS)(IDEA-MN)
The course textbook is Pollutants, Human Health and the Environment ¿ A risk-based approach. Editors: Plant et al. Wiley Blackwell publishers, ISBN 978-0-470¿74260-0 (paperback). Professor Varekamp will also be writing additional text that will become the future textbook for this course. Those readings will be distributed as additional handouts.
|Examinations and Assignments: |
There is a midterm (35%), the problem set (10%), the project work with report (20%), and a final exam (35%).
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
Students should contact the instructor prior to registration regarding their background in general chemistry (high school, college)
The course consists of lectures with some lab activities. The class project this year is the collection of drinking water samples in CT and to analyze them for Pb pollution. We will also collect hair samples of class members and analyze them for Hg in conjunction with a dietary questionnaire.
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