About ENSC 1490 A

Explores how and when climate has changed over time and its impact on people and ecosystems; how humans have altered Earth's climate historically; how climate will change in the future; and implications for people and planet. Learn to communicate about climate change and take action. Credit not awarded for both ENSC 1490 and ENSC 2490.


Open to Degree and PACE students; Colocated with ENSC 2490 A

Section Description

If you want to understand the science behind climate – what controls it today, how it has changed in the past, and how it may change in the future - this class is for you. In one semester, you will learn the science of climate, climate change, and climate prediction. You will understand how Earth’s rocks, oceans, atmosphere, and vegetation influence climate and how climate changes naturally. You will appreciate the impact of human-induced climate change, the result of burning of fossil fuels and wholesale land clearance. Using climate models, you will look into a warming world and predict the climate of Earth centuries and millennia into the future. You will learn about strategies to mitigate the worst impacts from climate change, adapt to those impacts already expected, and how to engage others about climate action.

Section Expectation

This is a class about learning and finding out just how much fun and how interesting climate science can be. We have several simple and straightforward expectations of you as a student in this class: 1. We expect you to respect your classmates and faculty at all times when they voice opinions that may differ from yours. This is a class that could raise emotions. Please respect your peers' feelings. If you cannot conduct yourself respectfully, you will be asked to leave the classroom. 2. We expect you to participate in the class by asking questions and participating in class activities. We expect you to participate out of class by reading all assignments and taking all quizzes and tests. 3. We expect complete academic honesty. We expect that you will neither give nor receive information on the quizzes and that assignments you hand in are your own work. You will sign an honor statement. Violations of this trust and our community will be handled in strictest way possible. 4. We expect you to read this class syllabus carefully and inform yourself about the class, the assignments, and their due dates. It is your responsibility to know what assignments are due and when.


We will use a mixture of assessments to evaluate your learning of the material in this class, including short quizzes after every class and a few longer tests throughout the semester. Students enrolled in Climate Change I or II (ENSC 149 or 249) attend two lectures every week and complete assigned weekly readings. Those enrolled in Climate Change II participate in an additional in-person discussion every week and will be required to read, watch, or listen to extra learning materials.

Important Dates

Note: These dates may change before registration begins.

Note: These dates may not be accurate for select courses during the Summer Session.

Last Day to Add
Last Day to Drop
Last Day to Withdraw with 50% Refund
Last Day to Withdraw with 25% Refund
Last Day to Withdraw


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