Upcoming Sustainability Courses

Spring 2017 Semester

Click on the titles below to expand the list of courses within that category.

Natural Science Courses

IUF 2100: Climate Change Science and Solutions
Instructor: Dr. Andrew Zimmerman, Department of Geological Sciences
This introductory-level course invites students to deepen their understanding of science by examining the complex issue of global climate change. Students will utilize the scientific method to integrate information and insights from a wide variety of natural science and design disciplines, and will collaborate to generate innovative solutions and effectively communicate their work.
The course is taught in hybrid format with 1-2 hours of on-line lecture and readings and 2 hours of active in-class participation each week. This course fulfills a Physical Science (P) General Education requirement and has no prerequisites. Course syllabus.

GEO 3250/6255: Climatology
Instructor: Dr. Corene Matyas, Department of Geography
In this “flipped” course, students will explore Earth’s climate system. Students will learn the science behind climate change, analyze data for past/future climates and extreme events, and create a video about climate change. This course qualifies for the Certificate in Meteorology and Climatology and is good preparation for a number of advanced meteorology courses. Course flyer.

GLY 4930/6932: Deltas and Humans
Instructor: Dr. Thomas S. Bianchi, Department of Geological Sciences
Humans have had a long relationship with the ebb and flow of tides on river deltas around the world. However, this relationship has at times been both nurturing and tumultuous for the development of early civilizations. This course will provide information on the historical relationship between humans and deltas that will encourage immediate preparation for coastal management plans in response to the impending inundation of major cities as a result of sea level rise around the world. Course flyer.

GLY 6932: Global Sea Level Change
Instructors: Dr. Andrea Dutton and Dr. Alessandro Forte, Department of Geological Sciences
In this course, students will develop a comprehensive understanding of the causes of global sea level variations across multiple spatial and temporal scales and the geological and instrumental observations that are employed to decipher and interpret these variations. This course will provide the basis for evaluating the degree to which sea level change during the current Anthropocene epoch may be considered anomalous. Course flyer.

MET 4560/6565: Atmospheric Teleconnections
Instructor: Dr. Corene Matyas, Department of Geological Sciences
In this course, students will explore global patterns in temperature and precipitation on monthly to decadal time scales. “Atmospheric Teleconnections” is recommended for students with an interest in climate variability, knowledge of basic atmospheric processes (e.g. low pressure systems, how clouds form), and a desire to visualize and explain spatial patterns of pressure, temperature, and precipitation. This course qualifies for the certificates in Applied Atmospheric Science (graduate) and Meteorology and Climatology (undergraduate). Course flyer.

Engineering and Technical Courses

DCP 4930, Section 187H: Green Building Strategies – LEED Lab
Instructor: Bahar Armaghani
This is a multidisciplinary course that utilizes the built environment’s performance, operations and maintenance to educate and prepare students to become green buildings leaders and sustainability-focused citizens. This course will equip students with the skills, knowledge and expertise needed to be effective communicators, project managers, critical thinkers, problem solvers, engaged leaders, and team players in the field of sustainability. Campus buildings will be used as laboratory for hands-on learning. Reports and findings will be shared with the campus stakeholder and building occupants, educate building occupants and operation and maintenance staff, and establish guidelines for building measurement and verification, operation, and maintenance. Successful course completion can prepare the student for LEED™ V4 Green Associate and O+M specialty exams credentials. Course syllabus.

Social Science and Humanities Courses

DCP 4930, Section 207F: Leadership in Sustainability
Instructor: Bahar Armaghani
Leading in sustainability requires the ability to understand complex global challenges shaping our world, to be able to respond to them and create value from drivers like resource scarcity. Without bold and effective leadership – at a political, institutional and individual level – we will fail to resolve our most serious social and environmental crises. This course covers the essentials of front-line leadership in sustainability, from integrating sustainability into an organization, executing organizational strategy, and committing to it for a lifetime. The course features a combination of a different lecture each week given by a leader in the field of sustainability from the public, private, and non-profit sectors. Each guest lecturer presents a new topic related to sustainability management and discusses his/her professional background and organization, sustainability program objectives, and concrete strategies for meeting those objectives. The course provides time for questions and discussion among the instructor, the lecturer, and the students, giving students valuable insights into how sustainability is managed in the real world. Course syllabus.

DCP 3220: Social and Cultural Aspects of Sustainability and the Built Environment
Instructor: Dr. Kathryn Frank
The social and cultural aspects of sustainability and the built environment are diverse. In this course, students will learn to relate social, cultural, environmental, and economic aspects of sustainability and resilience; explain why sustainability of the built environment requires attention to the social and cultural aspects – from knowledge, ethical, and strategic perspectives; design sustainable solutions for the built environment that incorporate or prioritize social and cultural aspects; apply sustainability literacy skills, such as effective communication and teamwork, which directly support sustainability in the built environment and increase sustainability literacy; and conduct social science research for the built environment. Example topics include: social justice/equity, cultural heritage, appropriate technology, sustainable urbanism, sense of place, sense of community, health and well-being, community development, community engagement, community based social marketing, communication, leadership, interdisciplinary teamwork, design thinking, systems thinking, and resilience. Course syllabus. Please note: the College of Design, Construction and Planning offers a number of sustainability-focused and -related courses for both majors and non-majors; additional information about these courses can be found on the DCP website: https://dcp.ufl.edu/sustainability.

FYC 6320: Community Development and Civic Engagement
Instructor: Dr. Mike Spranger
This course will examine the process and methods for community development with an emphasis on research related to civic engagement and public participation. Students will develop skills for managing change in communities. Students will review the basic concepts of asset-based community development and explore the evolution of the historical concept of public participation and its evolution in the United States. We will investigate some of the dynamic tensions that exist today, such as the role of citizen versus the role of the government in community development activities and the issue of the role of the citizen versus the role of the technical expert in complex, “wicked” issues that individuals and communities face today. Students will also learn about different approaches, techniques, and public participation processes that may lead to more active citizen participation and civic engagement at the local level. We will particularly focus on the role of the art and humanities in advancing change in communities. Course syllabus.

PUR 4442: Public Interest Communications
Instructor: Dr. Ann Christiano
Effective communication is the accelerant on the fire of social change. The greatest ideas will languish without a specific effort to engage the right people in those efforts at the right time. Public Interest Communications is a form of strategic communication through which organizations take on specific communications objectives that will have a benefit to society. This benefit transcends the particular interest of any single organization undertaking a campaign or communications effort. In this course, you will learn the five spheres through which we can drive social change, the strategic planning process for an effective social change communications campaign, and the tools, qualities and tactics that make these campaigns real. You will gain insight to the richness of the field, the power that effective communications has to address a problem and profoundly affect the lives of people, and begin to see the astonishing range of careers and opportunity that this field holds. This course will give you the opportunity to hear directly from the leading thinkers in public interest communicators. Course syllabus.

Business and Entrepreneurship Courses

ENT 6506/3503: Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship
Instructor: Dr. Kristin E. Joos
Social entrepreneurship involves using the skills and strategies of business to innovatively and sustainably solve social, environmental, and economic problems. The ventures created by social entrepreneurs can be non-profit, for-profit, or an innovative hybrid of the two. Social entrepreneurship’s rapid emergence over the past decade has coincided with the rise of information technology that has given individuals more power now than at any point in history. The social entrepreneur’s question is simple: How can we use that power to make a positive, sustainable contribution to society? Course link. More information about UF’s Social Impact & Sustainability Initiative.

Spring Break Courses

Sea Level Rise and Coastal Ecology: Science, Policy, and Practice
Instructors: Dr. Micheal Allen, School of Forest Resources & Conservation, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (IFAS); Dr. Ellen Martin, Department of Geology, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences; Thomas T. Ankersen, College of Law
In this 2017 Spring Break Field Course for graduate and professional degree students, students will develop a firm grounding in the science, law & policy, and economics associated with sea-level rise and climate change in the Nature Coast region through an interdisciplinary and experiential collaborative approach. This course will combine classroom lectures and disciplinary integration with an intensive field experience. Sessions will focus on ecological, coastal and marine issues through field-based immersion, practitioner lectures, and reflective discussions in an interdisciplinary context. Student teams will verbalize and defend their findings and recommendations in a open forum designed to highlight their learning. Course syllabus.