Natural History and Science

The Outdoor Education program at the CMC Alpine Campus has a strong emphasis in natural history

overlooking canyonlands

The Outdoor Education program has a strong emphasis in natural history.  We encourage future outdoor educators to be aware of their surroundings: local flora and fauna, geology, environmental aspects, and ecological relationships.

Ecology (BIO227)
This course will study the interdependence between organisms and their environments. Topics covered will be composition and function of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, population biology, pollution, and the effects of humans on ecosystems. The course includes laboratory and field experiences.

white flowerIntroduction to Natural History (BIO120)
In this course we learn the local flora and fauna and how organisms are categorized, and we spend time in the field exploring our region.  The natural forces of change and environmental evolution will be studied in relation to current global and local ecology. Geology, weather, soil, ecological principles and life histories of representative flora and fauna are included.

Alpine Ecology (BIO275 Special Topics: Alpine)
We explore the ecology of alpine environments, including high-altitude adaptations, wildflower and animal identification, and animal behavior. The non-living factors of snow, rock and weather patterns will be discussed in relation to the plant and animal communities.  We spend three days in the field exploring the alpine environment.

canyonland brush and flowersRocky Mountain Birds (BIO275 Special Topics: Rocky Mountain Birds)
Binoculars and bird books in hand, we head out and search for some of the avian inhabitants of our valley and surrounding areas covering various habitats. Topics include field identification and biological characteristics of birds, physiology, behavior, nesting, migration, ecology and habitats.

Geology of Colorado (GEY205)
This course covers the geologic history of Colorado, with emphasis on formation of the mountain ranges, igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rock types, ore deposits and land forms. Field experience and/or classroom lectures are used to cover the material.