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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - EVR6931
Tracking Number - 5090

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2015-04-01
Campus: St Petersburg
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: USF-STPT approved 3/17/15. to USF Sys 3/18/15. to SCNS 3/26/15. Nmbr 6930 approved as 6931. Effective 4/1/15

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2014-10-13
  2. Department: Geography and Environmental Science and Policy
  3. College: AP
  4. Budget Account Number: 511224 10000
  5. Contact Person: Dona J. Stewart
  6. Phone: 34066
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: EVR
  9. Number: 6931
  10. Full Title: Environmental Soils, Water and Land Use
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: D - Discussion (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: N
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?: N
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 2
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Environ. Soils Water Land Use
  19. Course Online?: B - Face-to-face and online (separate sections)
  20. Percentage Online: 25
  21. Grading Option: -
  22. Prerequisites: NONE
  23. Corequisites: NONE
  24. Course Description: This course gives an overview of the relationships between soils, water, and land-use. Students will also be exposed to contemporary science-based and technological solutions used for environmental applications.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Needed for program/concentration/certificate change
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? This is an elective course that will support our revised MA/MS degrees. The revisions to the MA are being made to meet identified student interest and more accurately reflect current and emerging themes within the discipline. This course has been previously taught as a special topics course, we are now formalizing it as part of our degree programs.
  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? Yes, 1 time
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Ph.D., 18 credits in specialization, GIS skills
  29. Objectives: Course Objectives:

    1. To study the relationships between land use and the behavior of water in the soil and the landscape.

    2. To develop an appreciation for the differences among soils and the inter-disciplinary nature of the soil, water and landuse relationships in a landscape.

    3. To develop or improve skills in using soil survey reports, slope maps, and other information having potential for application in planning the use and management of land and water.

    4. To understand the underlying principles to quantify transport processes for water and solutes in water saturated and unsaturated soils.

  30. Learning Outcomes: 1. Students will demonstrate understanding of the relationship(s) between land use and the behavior of water in the soil and the landscape.

    2. Students will develop an understanding of the differences among soils and the inter-disciplinary nature of the soil, water and landuse relationships in a landscape.

    3. Students will develop skill-sets to use soil survey reports, slope maps, and other pertinent information for planning and management of land and water resources.

    4. Students will demonstrate understanding of the underlying principles to quantify transport processes for water and solutes in water saturated and unsaturated soils

  31. Major Topics: soil concepts, soil morphologies, soil physical and chemical processes

    hydrology and water movement


    LU/LC classification schemes

  32. Textbooks: The Nature and Properties of Soils, 2008 (14th ed). N.C. Brady and R.R. Weil. Prentice Hall Publishers. Upper Saddle River, NC

    Water Follies: Groundwater Pumping and the Fate of America's Fresh Waters, 2004. R.J. Glennon. Island Press, Washington. ISBN 1559634006 (Paperback).

  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases: 1. Pollution Science, 1996. Edited by I.L. Pepper, C.P. Gerba, and M.L. Brusseau. Academic Press, Boston, MA.

    2. Mirage: Florida and the Vanishing Water of the Eastern US., 2007. Cynthia Barnet. The University of Michigan Press 2007. ISBN-13: 978-0-472-11563-1 (Cloth: Alkaline Paper). Soils and Environmental Quality, 2005. (3rd ed.). Pierzynski, Sims, and Vance. CRC Publishers.

    3. Environmental Soil Physics, 1998. Daniel Hillel. Academic Press, Inc. San Diego, California

    4. Wetland Soils – Genesis, Hydrology, Landscapes and Classification, 2001. Edited by J.L. Richardson, and M.J. Vepraskas. CRC press.

    5. Applied Hydrogeology, 2001. Fetter. Prentice Hall.

    Additional Reference Books

    1. Soil and Civilization, by E. Hyams. Harper Colophon Books, New York, NY.

    2. Soil and Water Science: Key to Understanding Our Global Environment,1994. Edited by R.S. Baker, G.W. Gee, and C. Rosenzweig. SSSA Special Publication No. 41. Soil Science Society of America, Inc., Madison, WI.

  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: Class Grading

    Lead Presentations (section presentation) 30

    Weekly participation in discussion Presentation 10

    Final Project Presentation 10

    Final Term Paper 20

    Midterm 1 15

    Issue Paper 15

    Total 100%

    Grading Scale

    >= 96% A+

    90 - 95% A

    85 – 89% B+

    80 – 84% B

    75 – 79% C+

    70 – 74% C

    65 – 69% D+

    60 – 64% D

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: Grades in this course will consist of points given for the oral presentations, participations and final term papers listed below. This course will also have 1 take home midterm.

    Oral Presentations

    To foster the development of strong communication skills and to present the facilitation of knowledge of the material covered in this course, students are required to make formal oral presentations to the class during the semester. The first set of presentations consists of the material covered in weeks 1- 15 of the course which I will refer to as Lead Presentation (or section presentation). The final project presentation will summarize the material covered in this course, and how it ties in with your own research (i.e. your thesis or term project). Students are required to use PowerPoint presentations for these talks.

    Lead Presentations: Section Presentations

    The first of set of presentations will occur every week and cover the materials in each section listed on the schedule below. A presenter list will be posted on Canvas that will cover your topic and week you will be presenting. For each of these presentations, you will read and report on the book chapters and articles from the primary research literature listed in the syllabus. Each presentation should be 15-20 minutes in length. You must have a clear understanding of the material to be able to present in a concise manner.

    Each presentation (while leading) will be worth 50 points each and will consist of 30% of your final grade.

    A complete presentation list for the lead presentation (student name and topic as well as date of presentation) will be posted via blackboard. If you miss a lead presentation – there will NOT be any opportunity to make up!! You will loose the points.

    Presentation Project: The Final Presentation

    The second formal presentation will be in the form of a " progress report and presentation," of your term project during which you will present to your classmates a synopsis of your own research interest/activities. In these presentations, you are asked to describe the background of your research area, keeping in mind that not all of your classmates will be familiar with each other's specific projects. You will then describe how the material covered in this course pertains to your own research, interpreting your results as you go. You are also encouraged to discuss problems that you have encountered during your research, as well as your ideas for how to proceed in the future.

    The final presentation (duration 15 minutes max) will be worth 50 points and will consist of 10% of your final grade.

    As with all aspects of this course, you are encouraged to discuss your ideas with me as you prepare for your presentations. I welcome any requests for comments and feedback on your individual presentations - please contact me a week in advance (prior to your scheduled presentation date) so that I can give you my feedback.

    Participation in Discussion

    Your participation and moving the discussion forward will consist of 10% of your final grade. Discussion has two components BB and in-class. It is important to move the class forward to participate in discussion actively and learn. With the exception of the lead presenter, all other students are required to submit discussion on the topic via discussion board on the BB – see the guidelines for discussion participation posted on the BB. Feel free to bring notes card to the class if you want.

    Final Term Paper

    This will be a research paper. Detailed information for this term paper (format, topics and deadlines) will be posted on the BB. For the graduate students, I encourage you to find a topic for the term paper that will enhance help with your thesis (when possible and applicable). 20% of your grade will come from the Final Term Paper

    Issue Paper

    Graduate students are required to complete an issue paper. 15% of your grade will come from this issue paper. You have to select one of the 4 topics outlined under overall course objectives to write your issue paper. More detailed information will be posted on the BB about the issue paper.

  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Make up Policy

    There is no make up exam permitted. If you miss lead presentation – there will be no opportunity to make up the lead presentation (this is needed to maintain the flow of the materials in class).

  38. Program This Course Supports: gradaute program in Environmental Studies and Policy
  39. Course Concurrence Information: None

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