Core objective #4: Physical and natural phenomena

Objective: Primary areas of focused inquiry

Brief description of learning objective: Students will be able to explain the processes by which the natural and physical world is investigated, articulate basic principles used to explain natural phenomena and apply scientific processes to real problems using observational or experimental methods.

Standards or requirements for verification

Only Core Natural Science courses may be verified for CO4, with or without a lab. These should be lower-division (100-200 level) general education courses, for three or more units each.

This objective is satisfied by taking 6 credits in the Core Natural Science course list. So as to satisfy the requirement for a laboratory or similar experience, at least 1 course must be taken from thelist of courses verified for CO4L in the University catalog. Where appropriate, majors are encouraged to develop this objective within their courses, and if possible to integrate this objective into the Core Capstone course.

This objective aims to ensure that students gain a basic understanding of the natural world/universe and how human knowledge was developed and enhanced through scientific exploration. Key to this objective is the concept of scientific processes and methods, namely how scientists address specific questions concerning the natural and physical sciences and how these are incorporated into the larger body of scientific knowledge.

Courses satisfying this Core Objective will meet the expectations for the Core Natural Science requirement and should:

  1. include the Core Objective, together with its brief description, on the course syllabus in its original form
  2. Include one or more student learning outcomes addressing this Core Objective on the course syllabus, along with other student learning outcomes appropriate to the course.
  3. identify in the course syllabus the teaching techniques and student experiences that will help students acquire the competencies described in the Core Objective
  4. assess whether students have acquired the competency described in the student learning outcomes and use methods for collecting and analyzing data that can be reported to the Core Curriculum Board

Suggested student learning outcomes and assessment methods

Faculty may incorporate one or more of the examples from this list or propose their own student learning outcomes and methods of assessing the objective.