Course Descriptions

ASTRONOMY COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

ASTR 220 The Solar System (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B)

An overview of what we know about the Solar System: how it began and evolved, its components and their properties, and how these elements interact as a system. Topics include the history and physics of astronomy, celestial motions, the Earth-Moon-Sun system, the terrestrial and jovian planets, natural satellites and ring systems, asteroids and comets, the origins and fate of our Solar System, and the origins of life. Lectures are supplemented by selected readings, planetarium presentations, and telescopic observations. NOTE: Credit will not be given for this course and ASTR 251 Introduction to Astronomy.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

ASTR 230 Stars and Galaxies (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B)
An introduction to astronomy beyond the Solar System. Topics include the birth and death of stars, black holes, the structure of the Milky Way Galaxy, galactic evolution, the Big Bang, the possible fate of our universe, and the possibilities of life in the universe. Lectures are supplemented by selected readings, planetarium presentations, and telescopic observations.
Prerequisite: MATH 123 College Algebra or permission of instructor.

EARTH SCIENCE COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

EASC 131 Conversations with the Earth: An Introduction to Geology (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B)
Designed for non-science students wishing an introduction to the study of the Earth. The course includes a discussion of the theories on the formation and evolution of the Earth including the theory of plate tectonics and seafloor spreading which is revolutionizing the way we interpret the Earth’s history. Also covered are the development of landscapes, our human relationship to the Earth with respect to needed resources and geological hazards, the formation and importance of fossils, and how all this information is collected and evaluated by earth scientists. Note: Credit cannot be received for the course if preceded by GEOL 231 Physical Geology or GEOL 232 Historical Geology.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination. This course may be taken concurrently with MATH 095 General Mathematics.

EASC 241 Introduction to Meteorology (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B)
A focus on the acquisition of an understanding of the phenomenon of weather and the behavior of the Earth’s atmosphere. The underlying physical principles required as the foundation for this understanding are introduced as needed. Topics that are covered include the origin and composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, the ozone problem, global warming, cloud and precipitation formation, types of fog, causes of winds, air mass and frontal weather, air pollution and acid rain, thunderstorms, tornadoes, hurricanes, and weather forecasting.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

EASC 246 Oceanography (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B)
An introduction to the structure and origin of ocean basins; the origin and chemistry of seawater; the physical dynamics of the sea including oceanic circulation, waves, and tides; geology of coastal areas; some marine ecology; management practices for coastal and oceanic environments. Several field trips supplement lectures. This course is designed for all students interested in the oceans and their preservation.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

EASC 495 Independent Study in Earth Sciences
An opportunity to continue to study a topic in greater depth or to explore topics or problems in the earth sciences that are new to the student. Admission to this course is open only to juniors and seniors who are Earth Science minors and who have an overall QPA of 2.7. Admission must be approved by the supervising faculty member and the department chair.

ENGINEERING COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

EGNR 101 Introduction to Engineering
This course will introduce students to the basic principles of the following subjects: Engineering Communications, Ethics in Engineering, Fundamentals of Engineering Mathematics, Engineering Probability and Statistics, Chemistry Fundamentals, Computers in Engineering (CAD and MATLAB), Engineering Economics, Engineering Mechanics, Material Properities, Electricity and Circuits, and Safety. Course work is mostly done individually, some in groups of three or four. Engineering design projects will be incorporated into the course content. Prerequisite: MATH 123 College Algebra or permission of the instructor.

GEOLOGY COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

GEOL 231 Physical Geology (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)
A study of the nature and origin of the minerals and rocks composing the Earth; the geologic evolution of surface features (scenery) taking into account the underlying rock types and structures as well as the surface effects of glaciers, oceans, rivers, volcanoes, and earthquakes; introduction to geologic aspects of environmental issues; and the geology of the solar system. Numerous field trips supplement the lectures and labs. Designed for any students wanting to learn more about the formation of landscapes and the limitations of earth resources.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

GEOL 232 Historical Geology: Global Climate Change
Through Deep Time (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)

A study of the principles and techniques used in interpreting the geologic time and the evolution of the geologic time scale. Other topics include: the origin and evolution of the Earth and its continents and ocean basins, and the nature of fossils and their use in studies of biological evolution, resources, and evolution of North America. This course has numerous field trips and is designed for students in any major.
Prerequisite: GEOL 231 Physical Geology, and either MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

GEOL 233 Environmental Geology for Town and Regional Planning
A focus on the nature and structure of local bedrock and surficial deposits, the distribution and dynamics of surface and ground water, waste disposal and treatment, and coastal processes. Local geologic hazards such as flooding, mass movements of unconsolidated surface deposits, subsidence, ground water contamination and coastal erosion are considered. Students become familiar with resources, tools, and new approaches through geology to environmental planning and impact analysis. Local case studies and field trips supplement the lectures.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

GEOL 331 Regional Field Geology
A course with two major purposes. First, it is an introduction to the techniques of geological field investigation and involves practice in the recognition and description of rock types, rock structures, and landforms. Using data collected during field work, students prepare and interpret geologic maps and cross-sections and summarize their findings in written reports. Second, students acquire a knowledge of the regional geology of selected areas with special emphasis on New England. Students are expected to attend one out of the two or three day field trips. This course is designed for students in any major who desire practical experience in reading the landscape.
Prerequisite: GEOL 231 Physical Geology and GEOL 232 Historical Geology: Global Climate Change Through Deep Time, MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

PHYSICAL SCIENCE COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

PHSC 109 Introduction to Physical Science (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)
An introduction to the fundamental behavior of matter and energy. Topics include the nature of scientific investigation, properties of matter, motion, energy conservation, heat, wave motion, magnetism and static electricity, nuclear fission and fusion, and the relationships among the different areas of physical science. This course is intended for Elementary Coordinate Education majors and includes a weekly two-hour laboratory component. Note: Students will not receive credit for this course after having taken PHYS 201 Introductory Physics or PHYS 211 Principles of Physics I.
Prerequisites: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination and status as a Coordinate Education major.

PHYSICS COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

PHYS 111 Physics, Nature, and Society (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)
A study of conceptual physics, with an emphasis on the discovery of the hidden patterns in nature that govern everyday phenomena, from motion and forces to energy and conservation laws. The complex relationship between science, technology, and society is explored, including discussions of the relationship between humans and nature, and the use and abuse of science in society, with particular emphasis on environmental problems such as global warming. NOTE: Students will not receive credit for this course after having taken PHYS 201 Introductory Physics or PHYS 211 Principles of Physics I.
Prerequisite: MATH 095 General Mathematics or a satisfactory score on the mathematics placement examination.

PHYS 201 Introductory Physics (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)
An introduction to those concepts of physics of particular relevance to the life and earth sciences. The topics covered, all at a non-calculus level, include motion, scaling, energy and its conservation, fluids, wave motion, electrostatic force, electrical currents, nuclear radiation and its effects and uses. The course includes a weekly three-hour laboratory component.
Prerequisite: MATH 200 Precalculus.

PHYS 211 Principles of Physics I (Gen. Ed. Domain II-B, Lab)
The study of motion, Newton’s Laws, work and energy, momentum, gravitation, and the rotation of rigid bodies. Designed for students majoring in the sciences, mathematics, and pre-engineering. Includes a weekly, three-hour laboratory component.
Prerequisite: MATH 219 Calculus I (may be taken concurrently).

PHYS 212 Principles of Physics II
A continuation of Principles of Physics I, involving the study of wave motion, sound, electricity and magnetism, d.c. circuits, and electromagnetic waves. Designed for students majoring in the sciences, mathematics, and pre-engineering. Includes a weekly, three-hour laboratory component.
Prerequisite: PHYS 211 Principles of Physics I.

PHYS 272 Modern Physics
An algebra-based survey of important topics in modern physics. It begins with Einstein’s Special and General Theories of Relativity, including phenomena such as time dilation, black holes and gravitational lensing. Quantum physics is introduced via discussions of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, the wave nature of matter and the dual nature of light, and is applied to the physics of atoms and molecules. Nuclear physics and elementary particle physics are introduced at the end, with a view to building a basic understanding of radioactivity, fundamental forces, and the current search for the unification of physical laws.
Prerequisite: PHYS 201 Introductory Physics or PHYS 211 Principles of Physics I.

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