Study the Natural World (SNW)

Among the landmark discoveries of humankind are the invention of the wheel and the discovery of fire. While each of these was transformative, it can be argued that both pale in comparison with the development of the scientific method. Our five senses deliver information that each of us builds into a system of beliefs known as “common sense.” This sense is “common” because all humans who suffer the same limitations of their senses reach similar conclusions about how the natural world works. Extrapolation of these expectations beyond the reach of our senses – to the very small at the atomic scale and the very fast at light speed – is false. The rigor of the scientific method has allowed and even forced humanity to break ties with common sense by recognizing that truth does not succumb to the beliefs of the majority. The reward for embracing reason over prejudice has been the discovery of those bizarre and beautiful truths of the natural world that provide the basis for all modern technology. Knowledge of these discoveries and an understanding of the research processes that led to them are essential components of higher education.

Learning Outcomes for “Study the Natural World”
1. Understand the methods scientists use to explore natural phenomena including observation, hypothesis development, measurement and data collection, experimentation, and evaluation of evidence.
2. Understand the natural world and the major principles and concepts that form the basis of knowledge in the natural sciences.
3. Assess scientific information and understand the application of scientific data, concepts, and models in the natural sciences.
4. Make informed decisions on contemporary issues involving scientific information.

Standards for “Study the Natural World”
1. Certified natural science courses shall fulfill outcome 1 (understand the methods scientists use to explore natural phenomena including observation, hypothesis development, measurement and data collection, experimentation, evaluation of evidence) and at least two of the remaining three outcomes and have a broad content in a specific area of the Natural World.

As of December 2013, the courses below have been certified as meeting the learning objectives and standards for the SNW category.

  • ANP 120 Introduction to Biological Anthropology
  • ANP 201 Human Evolution
  • AST 101 Introduction to Astronomy
  • AST 105 Introduction to the Solar System
  • ATM 102 Weather and Climate
  • ATM 201 Introduction to Climate and Climate Change
  • ATM 205 Introduction to Atmospheric Sciences
  • BIO 101 Human Biology
  • BIO 103 Introduction to Biotechnology
  • BIO 104 How Science Works
  • BIO 113 General Ecology
  • BIO 114 Dinosaur Paleontology
  • BIO 115 Evolution and Society
  • BIO 201 Fundamentals of Biology: Organisms to Ecosystems
  • CHE 115 Chemistry, Life, and Environment
  • CHE 129 General Chemistry IA
  • CHE 131 General Chemistry IB
  • CHE 132 General Chemistry II
  • EHM 118 Introduction to the Natural History of Long Island
  • ENS 101 Prospects for Planet Earth
  • ENS 119 Physics for Environmental Studies
  • ENV 115 Chemistry, Life, and Environment
  • EST 102 Weather and Climate
  • GEO 101 Environmental Geology
  • GEO 102 The Earth
  • GEO 103 The Earth Through Time
  • GEO 105 Energy Resources for the 21st Century
  • GEO 106 Planetary Geology
  • GEO 107 Natural Hazards
  • HAN 200 Human Anatomy and Physiology for Health Science I
  • MAR 101 Long Island Sound: Science and Use
  • MAR 104 Oceanography
  • MAR 304 Waves, Tides, and Beaches
  • MEC 104 Practical Science of Things (also certified as TECH)
  • MEC 105 Everyday Science
  • PHY 112 Light, Color, and Vision
  • PHY 113 Physics of Sports
  • PHY 114 Electromagnetism, Waves and Radiation for Sports Science
  • PHY 119 Physics for Environmental Studies
  • PHY 121 Physics for the Life Sciences I
  • PHY 122 Physics for the Life Sciences II
  • PHY 125 Classical Physics A
  • PHY 126 Classical Physics B
  • PHY 127 Classical Physics C
  • PHY 131 Classical Physics I
  • PHY 132 Classical Physics II
  • PHY 141 Classical Physics I: Honors
  • PHY 142 Classical Physics II: Honors
  • SBC 111 Introduction to Sustainability Studies
  • SBC 113 Physical Geography Lecture








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