Northeastern (46th Annual) and North-Central (45th Annual) Joint Meeting (20–22 March 2011)
Paper No. 2
Presentation Time: 8:15 AM
HOW MUCH DO STUDENTS KNOW ABOUT THEIR WATER AND THEIR ENVIRONMENT?
ISIORHO, Solomon A., Geosciences, Indiana University - Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), 2101 E. Coliseum Blvd, Fort Wayne, IN 46805-1499, email@example.com
Several attempts have been made to bring water and environmental awareness to students through several courses offered to undergraduate students. Incorporated into seven courses; three entry level courses: Physical Systems of the Environment, Physical Geology, Physical Geology Laboratory, and four upper level courses: Environmental Conservation (Science), Environmental and Urban Geology, Understanding Wetlands, and Hydrogeology, are the themes of water and the environment. In the Physical Systems of the Environment course, students are given the assignment to write a six-page report on water quality and quantity, comparing any region of the United States to any area in the African continent. Of the more than one hundred reports, more than 60% of the students claimed to have become more aware of their environment as a result of writing such a report. Several of the students examined cities in United States of America (USA) (Chesapeake, Chicago, Colorado, Louisville, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington DC) with cities in Africa (Alexandria, Cairo, Durban, Harare, Lagos, Mombasa, Nairobi, and Niamey), some compared the USA with countries such as South Africa, Nigeria, and Egypt and others focused on regions of the USA and parts of Africa.
Other courses used to inculcate environment and water awareness in students include an Environmental Conservation course. One of the research projects embarked by a student examined the environmental perspective of teenagers. This two-year study based on a ten-question questionnaire demonstrates that teenagers in this study are environmentally conscience of their world. Most of the students have either taken or are taking earth science, biology, or environmental science in high school. Also, a student is research study on the use of water conservation made him aware of the importance of water and the environment. He concludes his evaluation by stating that every day should be declared world water day and not just the official “World Water Day” on March 22.
Some students have presented their work at local and regional meetings. Examples of student’s works will be presented that show how education is important to the preservation and protection of our environment and water resources.