Hays Cummins | Western
College Program | Miami University
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Instructor: Dr. Hays Cummins, Teaching Philosophy & Other Syllabii
Office: Peabody, Rm 103
Boyd Hall, Rm 222
Office Hours: Tuesday & Thursday, 2-5
Welcome to our junior seminar on Global Climate Change. This is an ambitious
treatment of the subject and we will do our best to cover as much material
as possible on this exciting, interdisciplinary topic. We will learn about
present climate and integrate, as much as possible given all of the unknowns,
with the climate record of the past. We will entertain predictions for future
climate and global change.
For this course format to work, everyone must participate to the best of
their ability. Student activities will include the following endeavors:
I encourage all of you to monitor the weather every
day! This is very easy to do. You could begin with:
You will learn how to interpret weather phenomena
and make predictions based upon computer models, NOAA weather discussions
and other resources. Each week the class will be given a forecasting challenge
which will be presented the following week. Your forecasts will be submitted
and critiqued vis the Weather Feedback Site below. These submissions will
serve as an important component of your weather journal!
Student Forecast Challenges
Search a Huge Database of links
to climate and environment sites from around the world!
Enter some key words to search by:
Find pages with
of these words and return
- Two World Wide Web pages will
be created, one on present day weather and climate and the other on paleoclimate.
Each web page will be graded on the quality of subsite (URL) selection and
the aesthetics of the page layout. These pages will be posted on the World
Wide Web upon completion. Your work will be added to the
Global Change WWW Page .
- A Weather
Journal will be kept detailing your daily weather and atmospheric impressions.
Examples of entries might include the passage of cold fronts, wind speed
and direction, interesting cloud formations, atmospheric clarity, amount
of precipitation, a good night for stargazing, etc. I'd like to see photos
of various weather phenomena including cloud types, and lightning, if possible.
Have fun with this!
A final report on research findings on
a Paleoclimate research topic of your choice. The report will include
actual research data obtained and analyzed from sources on the World Wide
Web as well as the most recent and foundation literature sources that address
your research interests on global change. The report will take the form
of a professional journal article.
- During the course of the semester, you
will make three presentations using the very latest sources from the literature.
This will require familiarity with searching for information using the computer
and yes, even doing it the old fashion way, actually going to the periodicals
in the library. Besides your research report (see above), you will
seek out the most recent literature on "Hot Topics" in Climate/Global
change. You will find three articles, twice during the semester, that are
the most interesting to you and that will educate the rest of us on the
latest developments in the field. These articles will be xeroxed and placed
on reserve in the Peer Science Center along with your annotated bibliography .
Using class discussion as a catalyst, we will come to a consensus as to
which topics and articles we will use in each of our "Special Hot Topic
Discussions." Here's a little something to get you started!!
The Earth's Orbit
Week-by-Week Schedule of Events:
The Earth's Axis Wobbles like a Spinning Top. There are
Two Periods (a wobble within a wobble): 19,000 and 23,000 Years.
The Earth's Axial Tilt varies from24.5 to 22.1 degrees
with a Period of 41,000 Years.
Please read part V, Sections 501-507 of The Miami Student Handbook on
Academic Dishonesty since the policy articulated pertains to all work done
in this course.
Point Distribution is as follows:
Click if you'd like to learn about our instructor and student generated
labs, independent research & publications, the natural science database,
opportunities for field research, writing in the sciences, the Julia Rothermel
Peer Science Center, and tutor responsibilities.
Any mail, comments or
suggestions? You can Add to my Guestbook
, View the Guestbook
or e-mail me privately at HaysC@miamioh.edu .