Improving the Livable Environment in the Urban Region:
Maria Manta Conroy
Overview | Books | Assignments | Class Schedule
and with the assistance from
This year's Dresden exchange seminar will focus on Improving the Livable Environment in the Urban Region: An investigation of environmental issues in Columbus, Ohio and Dresden, Germany. The idea is to study problems that arise as development and the natural environment come into conflict.
We have the unusual opportunity of working electronically with a seminar at the Technical University of Dresden (TUD) during the quarter and then completing our work in the field by visiting Dresden in June and hosting our German colleagues in Columbus in late July/early August. The class will be conducted in English or, when German is necessary, with a translator.
The course is international in scope and, though we are in our 6th year, it remains somewhat experimental in nature. Consequently, we need to be as flexible as possible to take advantage of opportunities or to work around problems as they arise. This syllabus describes my best estimate of our situation. Please feel free to suggest changes or other ways of doing things.
During the quarter we will also try to prepare everyone as much as possible for the trip to Dresden, so class time will also be spent discussing readings on Germany and the German planning system, as well as familiarizing everyone with Dresden and its surroundings.
TRIP AND RETURN VISIT
Beginning the last week in July, the TUD students will come to Columbus for field work here. I hope that everyone will be able and willing to participate actively for the two weeks they will be here. If you are working, try to arrange your schedules so that you will have time to attend our events (all day every day for two weeks). I will offer CRP 816 in the second term of summer quarter so that you can get course credit for strong participation (see details below) with the German students' visit.
2. Before we go to Germany, I will ask everyone to meet with me individually. Please let me know about any special situations/conditions of which I need to be aware. For example, I need to know about chronic conditions like diabetes, fear of heights, claustrophobia, etc., in order to help arrange things so you can cope. Additionally, if you have specific tools that you need, like contact lenses or hearing aids, I need to know in case of emergencies. In general, I need to be aware of any special circumstances in order to make sure things go as smoothly and safely as possible. I will be passing out a sheet with specific questions for you to fill out later in the term.
3. Check your final exam schedule now. Then get your travel plans made as early as possible. You must be in Dresden and ready to start by 8 a.m. on Monday, June 17, 2002. I suggest you get there earlier if at all possible. We will need to know your travel plans early enough to get room reservations set up. Everyone will need a passport. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you may also need visas – be prepared to go to Germany and the Czech Republic at least.
4. Pay close attention all through the quarter for announcements, changes, information on what to take along, and a myriad of other things. Try to stay pretty flexible and prepared to roll with the punches.
2000. Green Urbanism. Island Press: Washington, DC.
Benfield, F. Kaid, Matthew D. Raimi, and Donald D. Chen.
Diamond, Henry L., with Patrick Noonan.
The readings are important to form our contextual foundation and will be key for class discussions. We will read other material as well, but they will mainly be from the shelves of our conference/reference room as well as made available on the homework drive for this class. You can copy whatever you want, but I would prefer that things not leave that room except to be photocopied and returned. That will help protect the resources for other students in this class and for future classes.
35% - Group Project
Letter grades will be based on the following scale:
A >93%; A- 90-93%; B+ 87-89%; B 84-86%; B- 80-83%; and so on.
Numerical grades will be rounded, not truncated, with values ?.5 rounding up. Assignments are graded based on a “meeting expectations” value of a B+.
Each class member will be part of a cross-national team for a group project. Depending on the size of the two classes, there may be more than two members of each class in each group. During the first ten weeks (before we travel to Germany) students will read extensively, work with their groups to write background papers, and undertake a variety of small assignments. Some of those assignments will require that the U.S. students get information from their German colleagues, and vice versa. Each group will focus on one of six topics. All of these topics will need to be more narrowly defined by the group. I am in touch with Professor Mueller to finalize the list, but at the moment it contains:
For each question, you and your German counterparts will have to narrow the focus of the question and decide what you will concentrate on for each country. During the ten-week seminar you will write a background paper on the U.S. and your German colleagues will write one on Germany.
The due date for your first draft is May 14, 2002. I will return them to you by May 21 and you will rewrite them by June 4. Each paper must be presented in both hard copy and electronic form. On June 4, you will e-mail the papers to Germany and you will e-mail a copy to me as well. The draft of the final paper from each group will be due on October 14, 2002. This paper will use the original two background papers (one from the U.S. and one from Germany) as the base, but will continue to examine various possible solutions to the problems and issues you identified and to discuss their positive and negative points. The due date for the final rewrite will depend on when I get my comments to you, but I hope it will not be later than November 11, 2002.
NOTE: Everyone will be assigned an incomplete until these papers are turned in and rewritten if requested.
Everyone in class will keep a journal for the entirety of the class (April – August). The document may include text, photos, drawings, materials you pick up on trips, and so on. I suggest that you keep the journal very honestly and completely for yourself, and then edit it, if you feel the need for more privacy, before you hand it in. At different times in the quarter I will give you lists of questions I’d like you to think about and answer in your journal – this may be especially useful for the video conferencing events. The purposes of maintaining a journal are to:
The journals will be due Sept. 30, 2002.
Ideally, everyone in class will attend all sessions, will travel to Dresden with us, and will be available in July/August to work with the Dresden students when they come here. The final aspects of the group projects cannot be completed until the Columbus field portion of the class is done – and that will happen in late July/early August.Some examples of the kinds of tasks we'll need to get done over the course of the seminar include:
Keep track of what contributions you have made (I may not realize all the things you've done or forget in the rush of other things going on), and include the list as a separate page with your journal when you turn it in.
April 2 Course Overview and Introduction
April 9 Trip prep presentation (Jeannie Bonner, Office of International Education)
April 16 Forces behind land uses
April 23 Video Conference
April 30 Sensitive lands in an urban setting
May 7 Open space in an urban setting
May 14 Video conference
May 21 Accessibility/transit to open space
May 28 Regional environmental cooperation
June 4 Trip discussion and topics review
June 11 Video Conference
June 17 - June 29 Dresden, Germany excursion*
* More details on the specific excursion schedules will be made available as the details are finalized.
See also the Comments by Morrow-Jones on teaching these courses.Note: Conference papers on teaching these courses were presented by the instructors at the international planning meeting in Shanghai (Summer, 2001) and at an invitational conference in Indiana on technology and international education (October, 2002).
Syllabus prepared 20 November 2002 for H-Urban Teaching
Syllabus copyright 2002 Maria Manta Conroy. All rights reserved.