Science and Global Change
Using science to understand and respond to the global climate crisis
Global climate change, biodiversity crises and similar phenomena already impact our lives and will increasingly do so in the future.
Science and Global Change (SGC) uses scientific practice to explore global climate change and its impacts on human society, technology and security. Exploring the interactions of the Earth's systems, students examine:
- The nature of science, critical thinking and the interaction of scientific knowledge and the public;
- The causes and implications of global climate change and biodiversity changes across the span of time; and
- The means by which we can build a more resilient society to survive and reduce the impacts of these changes.
SGC prepares students to understand the changing conditions of the future and fosters critical thinking about the world around us. Students of all majors will benefit from an understanding of how science works, how the physical and biological environment is changing, and what our options are to build a more resilient society.
Colloquium and Lecture Topics
- A look at logical fallacies
- Science vs. Pseudoscience
- Why climates change, and how we know that is (partially) our fault
- The value of the biosphere
- Who pays for science?
Other Learning Opportunities
Students in SGC will observe evidence of global climate change both in class and through multiple learning opportunities outside the classroom. Past excursions have included:
- Travel to New York City and the American Museum of Natural History;
- Exploring the Smithsonian Museums;
- Visiting the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center and the Horn Point Laboratory; and
- Volunteering at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens.
As part of the sophomore practicum, students will learn from and work closely with researchers, educators and practitioners of any STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Medicine) field. Students have:
- Held internships in various labs at the National Institutes of Health, NASA and the Smithsonian Institution;
- Helped to construct wind turbines for communities in the Andes; and
- Developed educational experiences for the Annapolis Maritime Museum.
Over the two-year program experience (four semesters), students will complete 9 credits of supporting courses that will count toward their SGC Scholars citation. In most cases, these will also fulfill General Education requirements. Note that your Scholars courses—colloquium, practicum and supporting course(s)—will generally be in addition to any courses you take to satisfy major requirements.
The following table represents a typical two-year curriculum, but individual schedules may vary. Details about courses and requirements can be found on the SGC Citation Checklist.
|CPSG 100: Colloquium I
|CPSG 101: Colloquium II
|CPSG 200: Colloquium III
|CPSG 230: Internship; or
CPSG 240: Service Learning or
CPSG 250: Research; or
CPSP 359G: Advanced Research (DSSP); or
CPSP 359S: Discovery Research (DSSP)
|Semester 1, 2, 3, or 4
|Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Justice Course (DVCC or DVUP)
|Semester 1, 2, 3, or 4
|Supporting Course (var. Gen Ed)
Supporting Course (var. Gen Ed)
Supporting Course (var. Gen Ed)
News and Notes, Etc.
Science and Global Change News
HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - The Patti Grace Smith Fellowship recently announced the selection of 29 students to participate in its award-winning program that connects the United States’ leading aerospace companies with talented Black students.The Class of 2024 Fellows hail from 17 colleges and universities spread across 13 states and Puerto Rico. Each Fellow has earned a challenging summer aerospace internship, as well as a scholarship worth thousands of dollars, a pair of personalized mentors, and more.Two College Park Scholars were named recipients of the 2024 Fellowship:
COLLEGE PARK, MD. – College Park Scholars in Fall 2024 will add two programs to its roster of two-year living-learning experiences for academically talented students, but one will look and sound familiar.Data Justice will debut, and the University of Maryland’s CIVICUS program will relaunch with a new name: Civic Engagement for Social Good.The expansion will bring the number of Scholars programs to a record of 13 and provide 150 additional first-year students with the opportunity to begin their college journeys as members of an intellectually rich and socially vibrant Scholars community.
Outstanding graduating seniors at the University of Maryland have analyzed drought patterns, researched diabetes and tutored elementary school students in math. One plans to be an eye surgeon; another, a human rights attorney.
When the Citation class of 2023 entered the University of Maryland, they were already adjusting to a rapidly changing world being constantly reshaped by the Covid-19 global pandemic. One thing that didn’t change – their commitment to excellence in the classroom. All who successfully completed the requirements of their respective Scholars program received their official Scholars citation. But there were some that went above and beyond the expectations, leaving a lasting impact on the community.
Incoming students often hear about the various experiences that Scholars take on in their practica–the capstone project or culminating hands-on learning all College Park Scholars are required to complete in their second year. Though specific practicum requirements vary by Scholars program, students are commonly able to meet program needs by engaging in an internship, doing service-learning or conducting research.
Students in College Park Scholars’s Citation Class of 2022 began their University of Maryland (UMD) careers in the fall of 2020, under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic. They spent their first year almost entirely online: Some Zoomed into their program colloquium from their double-turned-single dorm rooms; others attended virtually from their families’ homes, away from campus.