My teaching style is one that encourages students to be the primary producers of knowledge rather than passive consumers of knowledge. As such, my courses put an emphasis on team-based work, critical thinking, and hands-on experience rather than focusing on memorization of facts. Students in my courses can expect to interact with other students for most of their grades, and be evaluated on the quality of their participation.
ENVS 302 - Sustainable Ecosystems
Introduction to the biological component of environmental science, focusing on understanding the functioning of ecosystems, the patterns of biological diversity, the processes that influence those patterns over space and time, and how human activities can disrupt those processes. Sample syllabus.
BIOS 406/506 - Conservation Biology
Ecological bases for conservation of biological diversity, resource management, ecosystem restoration, and relationship of conservation practices to human welfare. Laboratory component is teams that devise and carry out research at Nachusa Grasslands. Field trips required. Sample syllabus.
BIOS 407/507 - Restoration Ecology
This 3-credit course is a combination of lecture plus hands-on restoration projects around campus. Students from Restoration Ecology have restored areas around the East Lagoon, the Montgomery and Psychology Woods, and around the Montgomery Auditorium under-hangs. Students can optionally also take ENVS 410, a 1-credit class that allows them to be certified as a National Wildfire Coordinating Group firefighter type 2. Sample syllabus.
BIOS 623 - Grad student research orientation
This 1-credit class is for new graduate students in Biological Sciences. We walk through and actively write a Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP)-style grant together.