Course description

This course is only offered in the Summer Session.

Students will examine how global climatic changes are altering the marine environment, including the littoral zone around Shoals, the Gulf of Maine, and the world⿿s oceans more broadly. In addition to identifying physical evidence of climate change on and around the island, students will envision future shorelines using a variety of publicly available spatial data sets and smartphone applications. Local and regional marine and climate scientists will lead guest lectures and fieldwork. Topics covered in this one-week field course include: Examining evidence that the Earth⿿s climate is changing; the greenhouse effect and natural forces on global climate; sea-level rise; alterations to ocean chemistry and temperature; marine ecological impacts; human coastal impacts; and possible policy solutions.

Outcome 1: Students will be able to: Explain how humans are causing the Earth⿿s climate and oceans to change

Outcome 2: Employ the scientific process and climate modeling skills

Outcome 3: Describe how coastlines have changed in the past and will change in the future

Outcome 4: Identify major changes to the ocean⿿s physical and chemical properties

Outcome 5: Analyze possible policy responses to the Gulf of Maine⿿s changing coastlines and marine environment


At least one college-level course in introductory biology, environmental or marine science, or environmental policy (or similar).


No upcoming classes were found.

Previously offered classes

The next offering of this course is undetermined at this time.