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Global Climate Change: Evidence and Causes



Co Authors:

Maureen Knabb
Department of Biology
West Chester University of Pennsylvania
mknabb@wcupa.edu

Timothy M. Lutz
Department of Geology and Astronomy
West Chester University of Pennsylvania
tlutz@wcupa.edu

G. Winfield Fairchild
Department of Biology
West Chester University of Pennsylvania
wfairchild@wcupa.edu

Abstract:

This “clicker case” begins by assessing students’ impressions of global climate change and the role that human activities play in recent global warming trends. Students assume the role of an intern working for a U.S. senator. They need to understand the scientific evidence for human impact on climate change so that they can advise the senator on future policy decisions. The case was designed for use in a one-semester introductory biology course taken primarily by freshmen and sophomores to fulfill a general education requirement, but could be used in any introductory biology course or in an ecology or environmental science course. It consists of a PowerPoint presentation (~1.6MB) presented in class that is punctuated by multiple-choice questions students respond to using personal response systems (“clickers”). The case can be adapted for use without these technologies.

Objectives:
  • Learn about global climate change and its possible causes.
  • Understand how scientists study climate.
  • Learn about the relationship between temperature and greenhouse gases (GHG).
  • Learn how climate change data is reported.
  • Analyze and interpret graphs and data.
  • Understand how human activities impact climate change.
  • Learn how models are used to predict future changes in global temperature.
Keywords: Global climate change; greenhouse gases; greenhouse effect; rising temperatures; carbon emissions; carbon sequestration
Topical Area: N/A
Educational Level: High school, Undergraduate lower division
Formats: PDF, PowerPoint
Type/Method: Clicker, Interrupted
Language: English
Subject Headings: Biology (General)   Geology   Environmental Science   Earth Science   Ecology   Atmospheric Science   Climatology / Meteorology  
Date Posted: 01/28/10
Date Modified: N/A
Copyright: Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.

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