EM SC 240N
Energy and Sustainability in Contemporary Culture

Lesson 10: Group Discussion of The Sixth Extinction

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PLEASE NOTE that this course has not been updated for the Fall 2019 semester. The content may change prior to the beginning of the semester.

Overview

During the final two weeks of Module 3, you will have a robust discussion with your fellow students. By now, you have read the book and had some time to reflect on how the information presented impacted your thinking (or not), in particular the assumptions you had going into the book. Now, you will critically analyze the beliefs of other students in the course and, in turn, will have your belief(s) critiqued. I want you to keep two things in mind while having these discussion. These are absolutely essential, so please don't lose sight of them:

  1. The bulk, if not the entirety, of your analysis should be as evidence-based, defensible, logical, and as objective as possible. If you make an assertion, you need to provide at least a logical explanation, but, ideally, you will have verifiable facts to back it up. E.g., "Biodiversity is a serious problem" or "Humans are impacting biodiversity" are both weak arguments. You would need to provide data to back these statements up, and of course keep in mind the quality of the information source. You can provide opinions, but you must clearly state that they are opinions, and realize that they do not carry as much weight as verifiable data.
  2. This is not a debate! This is an enlightened, informed conversation taking place between respectful individuals. If the dialog becomes disrespectful or combative, it may result in a loss of points (at best) for the assignment.

Remember that the context of this course is that we are investigating these artifacts in light of the ability of humans to live within the ecological limits of the planet! Do your best to stay within the framework of that theme.

In addition to this, you will write a self-reflection paper in which you summarize the evolution of your thinking with regards to the material in the book.

You will also provide an analysis of the rhetorical content of the book, and discuss this with fellow students.

Lesson Objectives

By the end of this lesson, you should be able to:

  • critically analyze assertions made regarding the subject matter of the book;
  • analyze the rhetorical content of the book; and
  • analyze the evolution of your own thinking with regards to key energy and sustainability issues related to the book.

Required Reading/Viewing

  • none

What is due this week and next week?

Requirement Item Location Submission Location
Lesson 10 Critical Analysis Discussion Board (Weeks 1 and 2) See Journal Entry content on Canvas. Canvas - Modules tab > Lesson 10
Lesson 10 Rhetorical Analysis Discussion Board (Weeks 1 and 2) See Journal Entry content on Canvas. Canvas - Modules tab > Lesson 10
Lesson 10 Self-Reflection paper (Week 2) See Journal Entry content on Canvas. Canvas - Modules tab > Lesson 10

Questions?

If you have any general course questions or questions about this lesson's content, please post them to our HAVE A QUESTION? discussion forum located under the Modules tab in Canvas. I will check that discussion forum regularly to respond as appropriate. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses and comments if you are able to help out a classmate. If you have a question but would like to remain anonymous to the other students, e-mail me through Canvas.

If you have something related to the material that you'd like to share, feel free to post to the Coffee Shop forum, also under the Modules tab in Canvas.