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Course Goals

Science 12E is the second semester of a two-semester course sequence in earth and space science. It—along with Science 11E, the first semester—introduces you to all the disciplines of earth and space science, specifically geology, oceanography, meteorology, and astronomy. Earth and space science represents the study of our changing and dynamic world. From the very beginning of the course, you’ll come to realize that the world we live on has continually changed and is still changing!

The purpose of this course is to create in you a greater awareness of the planet on which you live and the vast universe in which it exists. Of course, this seems like a lot to study, and it is. But the course isn’t intended to make you an expert scientist. Instead it will give you a foundation of knowledge so that you can pursue these subjects in other courses or on your own.

As you progress through the course, you might think of it as a long hallway with many doors on either side. Each door has the name of a topic we will study written upon it. We’ll open each door and poke our heads in to look around. Later you may want to return to those rooms that intrigued you the most and explore them thoroughly.

Knowledge of earth and space science may benefit you in many ways. Many of the topics we’ll discuss concern natural phenomena you may well experience in your lifetime. Some of the concepts we’ll cover concern many of the problems you as a citizen and inhabitant of this planet may be confronted with in years to come. Examples are the pollution of our air and water resources and the growing need to manage our shrinking energy and mineral resources. It will be earth scientists who find solutions to these problems, but it will take an informed population to put these solutions into effect.