Duke in Durham Courses

The Dynamic Oceans - BIO 157, EOS 102

The oceans and their impact on the Earth's surface, climate, and society. Topics include seafloor evolution, marine hazards, ocean currents and climate, waves and beach erosion, tides, hurricanes/cyclones, marine life and ecosystems, and marine resources. Emphasis on the historical, society and economic roots of oceanography, the formulation and testing of hypotheses, quantitative assessment of data, and technological developments that lead to understanding of current and future societal issues involving the oceans. Includes a field trip at the Duke University Marine Laboratory. Instructors: Glass


Gateway to Biology: Molecular Biology – BIO 201L

Introduces major concepts in biology through the lens of molecular biology. Molecular mechanisms that comprise the Central Dogma and variants. DNA structure and function, replication, transcription, and translation. Protein synthesis, folding, structure and function. Supporting topics related to the structure of cells, metabolism and energetics. Integration of physical and quantitative principles to molecular biology. Relevance to human diseases and the biotechnology industry. Laboratory includes an introduction to recombinant DNA technology. Prerequisite: Chemistry 101DL, or equivalent. Instructor: Buchler, Haase, McClay, Siedow, and Wray


Biological Responses to Climate Change – BIO 263

Lecture/discussion course on how organisms, populations, and biological communities are expected to respond to climate change. Topics include evidence for effects of climate change on organisms, how to experimentally test for potential effects of climate change, ecological and evolutionary mechanisms that organisms have—or do not have—that enable them to respond to climate change, community responses to climate change. Prerequisite: Biology 202L. Instructor: Donohue


Marine Science and Conservation Leadership - ENVIRON 350S

Course will explore the complex interactions among science, policy and economics in the use of marine resources and the role individuals play in promoting marine conservation and environmental sustainability. Utilizing case studies ranging from fisheries to offshore energy, students will evaluate trade-offs systematically and learn to assess how different policy options affect the incentives of resource users. Serves as the capstone for the Marine Science and Conservation Leadership Certificate. Prerequisite: none. Instructor: Staff


Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology – ENVIRON 360

An overview of the fate and effects of chemicals in the environment. Topics include chemical characterization of pollutants, chemistry of natural waters, soil sediment chemistry, atmospheric chemistry, transfers between and transformations within environmental compartments, toxicokinetics, cellular metabolism, biological levels of organization, and approaches for assessing chemical hazards. Incorporates case studies focused on human health and ecosystem protection. Prerequisite: Biology 101L; Chemistry 101DL and 210DL; Mathematics 21. Instructor: Stapleton


Energy and Environment Design – ENVIRON 452L

An integrative design course addressing both creative and practical aspects of the design of systems related to energy and the environment. Development of the creative design process, including problem formulation and needs analysis, feasibility, legal, economic and human factors, environmental impacts, energy efficiency, aesthetics, safety, and design optimization. Application of design methods through a collaborative design project involving students from the Pratt School of Engineering and Trinity College. Open only to students pursuing the undergraduate certificate in Energy and Environment. Instructor consent required. Instructor: Klein


Water Quality Health – ENVIRON 524, EOS 524

Explore basic concepts of water quality and human health with focus on the global water cycle, global water demand and availability, chemical properties of water, contaminants in water, health implications, and environmental isotope hydrology. Highlights relationships between human activities, water scarcity, water quality degradation, and ecological and health consequences. Addresses some policy implications related to conflicts over water resources and impact of energy production on water resources. Prerequisites: prior knowledge of introductory calculus and chemistry or consent of instructor. Instructor: Vengosh


Water Cooperation and Conflict – ENVIRON 543S, PUBPOL 580S, GLHLTH 533S, ICS 580S

Focuses on potential for transboundary water resources-related conflict and cooperation. Discusses water scarcity concepts, natural resource conflict theory, hydro politics, hydro hegemony, water security, water markets and institutions, game theory, and international water law. Other topics include the economics of water and health. Case studies complement the broader course outlook.  Instructor: Jeuland 


Ectotoxicology – ENVIRON 610

Overview of ecological and toxicological effects of chemicals on structure and function of ecosystems, primarily at population, community and ecosystem levels of biological organization. Topics include environmental fate and transport of contaminants, biomonitoring, biomarkers/bioindicators, evolution of resistance to pollution, and extrapolating from molecular interactions to ecosystems. Incorporates critical discussion of in-depth case studies to highlight application of ecotoxicological concepts to real-world scenarios. For graduate and advanced undergraduate students. Instructor: Raftery

DUML Courses

Gateway to Biology: Molecular Biology – BIO 201LA

Introduces major concepts in biology through the lens of molecular biology. Molecular mechanisms that comprise the Central Dogma and variants. DNA structure and function, replication, transcription, and translation. Protein synthesis, folding, structure and function. Supporting topics related to the structure of cells, metabolism and energetics. Integration of physical and quantitative principles to molecular biology. Relevance to human diseases and the biotechnology industry. Laboratory includes an introduction to recombinant DNA technology. Prerequisite: Chemistry 101DL. Taught only in the Beaufort Marine Lab program. Instructor: Schultz


Marine Ecology – BIO 273LA / ENVIRON 273LA / EOS 374LA

Factors that influence the distribution, abundance, and diversity of marine organisms. Course structure integrates lectures, field excursions, lab exercises and an independent project. Lecture topics include physical characteristics of marine systems, adaptation to environment, species interactions, biogeography, larval recruitment, and biodiversity and conservation of communities found in rocky shores, tidal flats, beaches, marshes, mangrove, coral reefs, and subtidal areas. Not open to students who have taken Bio 773LA. Prerequisite: AP biology, introductory biology or instructor consent. Instructor: Silliman, Kingston


Comparative Physiology of Marine Animals – BIO 278LA, ENVIRON 278LA

Physiology of marine animals with emphasis on comparisons between marine vertebrates and humans. Focus on physiological processes including gas exchange, circulation, osmoregulation, metabolism, thermoregulation, endocrine, neural control and sensory systems. Lectures and laboratories illustrate the methodology, analysis techniques, and written reporting of physiological research. One course (Given at Beaufort, Fall, Spring, and Summer). Prerequisites: AP biology, introductory biology, or consent of the instructor, and Chemistry 101DL. Instructor: Wise or Staff


Research Independent Study – BIO 293A

Individual research in a field of special interest, under the supervision of a faculty member the major product of which is a substantive paper or written report containing significant analysis and interpretation of a previously approved topic. May be repeated. Continued in Biology 493A. Taught only in the Beaufort Marine Lab program. Instructor: Staff


Biology and Conservation of Sea Turtles (with travel to Puerto Rico in Spring) – BIO 375A, ENVIRON 375A

Essential biology of sea turtles (evolution, anatomy, physiology, behavior, life history, population dynamics) and their conservation needs; emphasis on their role in marine ecosystem structure and function. Basic ecological concepts integrated with related topics including the conservation and management of endangered species, the contributions of technology to the management of migratory marine species, the role of research in national and international law and policy, and the veterinary aspects of conservation. (Given at Beaufort.) Field trip to Puerto Rico required. Prerequisite: Introductory Biology. Consent of instructor required. Instructor: Godfrey or Staff


Research Independent Study – BIO 493A

Continuation of Biology 293A. Individual research and reading of the primary literature in a field of special interest, under the supervision of a faculty member, the major product of which is a substantive paper or written report containing significant analysis and interpretation of a previously approved topic. Open to juniors and seniors only with consent of supervising instructor. (Given at Beaufort only). Prerequisite: Biology 293A or Biology 379LA. May be repeated. Instructor: Staff


Urban Tropical Ecology – BIO571A, ENVIRON 571A

The mix of human ecology, tropical diversity, disturbed habitats and invasive species in Singapore. How Singapore maintains and enhances the quality of life of its citizens while radically modifying its environment. Research on politics, management or biology. Travel to Singapore required. Taught in Beaufort.  Consent of instructor required.  Instructor: Rittschof


Marine Bioacoustics – ENVIRON 280LA, ECE 384LA, EOS280 LA, BIO 279LA

Fundamentals of marine bioacoustics with a focus on current literature and conservation issues. Topics include: introduction to acoustics; acoustic analysis methods and quantitative tools; production and recording of sound; ocean noise; propagation theory; active and passive acoustics; hearing, sound production and communication in marine organisms, potential impacts of anthropogenic noise; and regulation of marine sound. Labs will focus on methodologies used for generating, recording and analyzing marine sounds. (Given at Beaufort). Prerequisites: AP Biology, introductory biology, or consent of instructor; Physics 141L or 161L (or equivalent Physics courses) or consent of instructor. Instructor: Nowacek


Coastal Watershed Science and Policy – ENV 321A, BIO 319A

Examination of coastal watersheds, their biological function, and how anthropogenic modifications impact wetlands, estuaries and near shore coastal ecosystems. Human ecosystem modifications addressed in terms of alterations caused by forestry, agriculture, highways, rural housing, suburban development, urban development and industry. Discussion of human and environmental health as well as ecosystem services provided by coastal systems (biogeochemical cycling and “blue’ carbon). Emphasis placed on gaining an understanding of human impacts on the biology of coastal waters through alteration of the physics, chemistry and geology of coastal waters. Taught at Duke Marine Lab. Instructor: Hunt


Biological Oceanography - ENVIRON 369LA, BIO 369LA, EOS 273LA

Discusses patterns of abundance, diversity and activity of organisms in major ocean ecosystems. Identifies major physical, chemical and ecological processes that affect these patterns, and analyzes impact of biology on ecosystems. Uses a ‘flipped’ classroom for enhanced development of quantitative skills to measure these patterns, emphasizing hands-on data collection and analyses, multiple field trips aboard DUML research vessels, and participatory activities to demonstrate core concepts in biological oceanography. (Given at Beaufort.) Prerequisite: AP biology, introductory biology, or permission of instructor. Instructor: Johnson


Physical Oceanography - ENVIRON 370A, EOS 370A

Fundamental physical principles of ocean circulation. Physical properties of seawater; forces acting on the ocean such as heat, pressure gradients, wind stress, rotation, and friction; and conservation equations for heat, mass and momentum. Applications include geostrophic balances, thermal wind, coastally trapped waves, El Nino/ENSO, and tidal circulation. (Given at Beaufort.) Prerequisites: one year of calculus and one semester of physics, or permission of instructor. Instructor: Hench


Research Independent Study - ENVIRON 393A

Individual research in a field of special interest, under the supervision of a faculty member, the central goal of which is a substantive paper or written report containing significant analysis and interpretation of a previously approved topic. Open to qualified students with consent of instructor and director of undergraduate studies. Instructor: Staff


Research Independent Study - ENVIRON 393A

Individual research in a field of special interest, under the supervision of a faculty member, the central goal of which is a substantive paper or written report containing significant analysis and interpretation of a previously approved topic. Open to qualified students with consent of instructor and director of undergraduate studies. Instructor: Staff


Marine Climate Change - ENVIRON 445A

Exploration of climate change science focusing on marine ecosystems and inhabitants - specifically ocean acidification, warming and sea level rise. Factors causing climate change, and how those vary spatially, focusing on sensitive polar ecosystems and marine mammal populations. Critical examination of climate change modeling using EdGCM (research-grade Global Climate Model), focusing on how scientists use models, observations/theory to predict climate, and assumptions/uncertainty implicit in modeling. Discussion of potential human impacts including consequences of sea level rise and potential increases in disease due to climate change. Instructor: Hunt


Community-Based Marine Science Conservation in the Gulf of California (Baja) - ENVIRON 528SA

Experiential education course on community-based conservation. Students learn first-hand about the challenges (accomplishments, failures, and promises) involved in its design and practice in developing countries of high biological diversity. Learn about the unique natural and political history, and social characteristics of the places where conservation takes place. Students link local context to broader perspectives through key readings and class discussions. Travel to biodiversity hotspots in the Gulf of California required. Consent of instructor required. Instructor: Basurto


Marine Fisheries Policy - ENVIRON 533A

Principles, structure, and process of public policy-making for marine fisheries. Topics include local, regional, national, and international approaches to the management of marine fisheries. A social systems approach is used to analyze the biological, ecological, social, and economic aspects of the policy and management process. Instructor: Staff


International Conservation and Development - ENVIRON 551DA

Interrelated issues of conservation and development. Topics include the evolution of the two concepts and of theories regarding the relationship between them, the role of science, values, ethics, politics and other issues in informing beliefs about them, and strategies for resolving conflicts between them. While attention will be given to all scales of interaction (i.e. local, regional, national, international), the focus will be on international issues and the `north-south' dimensions of the conservation and development dilemma. Examples from marine and coastal environments will be highlighted. Consent of instructor required. (Given at Beaufort.) Instructor: Campbell