POLIS 2012 - Environment and Citizenship

North Terrace Campus - Winter - 2019

Environmental citizenship is an idea whose time has come. Governments around the world are recognizing environmental rights, activists refer to our duties to the environment, corporations present themselves as good environmental citizens, children are taught to be mindful of their ecological footprint, the media tell us repeatedly to reduce, reuse and recycle, and scholars have begun to consider all this under a new field of study called environmental citizenship. This course explores the many ways in which environmental concerns are reshaping our understanding of citizenship as well as how the language of citizenship (e.g. rights and duties) is shaping environmental politics and policies. The course is structured into two parts. The first part introduces students to the concept and theories of citizenship, exploring the impact of environmental concerns on formulations of citizenship, both traditional ones (e.g. national, liberal and republican) and emerging ones (e.g. cosmopolitan, ecological and ecofeminist). This part also explores the making of green citizens, and outlines the dominant articulations of environmental citizenship that emerge from formal education, news media and popular culture. The second part explores the practical manifestations of environmental citizenship, with specific attention to three major political actors: citizens, governments, and corporations. The content includes references to case studies from a wide range of countries, both from the Global North and the Global South. The course is designed to appeal to students interested in and concerned with issues of environmental sustainability, social justice and citizenship in the 21st century.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code POLIS 2012
    Course Environment and Citizenship
    Coordinating Unit Politics and International Relations
    Term Winter
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact 12 x 3 hour seminars over 3 weeks.
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites At least 12 units of Level I undergraduate study
    Assessment Seminar Work 20%, Personal Reflection 20%, Textual Analysis 20%, Research Essay 40%
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Associate Professor Benito Cao

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this coursestudents will be able to:
    1 understand the relation between humans and the environment
    2 understand the different conceptions of environmental citizenship
    3 identify and discuss the challenges faced by environmental citizenship
    4 think critically about the many manifestations of environmental citizenship
    5 conduct independent research utilising a variety of sources
    6 critically engage with relevant social and political developments
    7 produce coherent and well substantiated arguments
    8 express ideas confidently, thoughtfully and respectfully
    9 work with others in the exploration of relevant content

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1, 2, 3, 4
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    4, 5, 6, 9
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    5, 7, 8, 9
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    2, 4, 6, 8, 9
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    4, 5, 6, 8, 9
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Textbook and continual access to MyUni.

    The textbook is: Benito Cao, Environment and Citizenship (London and New York: Routledge 2015).

    The textbook can be purchased online (e.g. see link above) as well as from Dymocks and the Co-Op.

    Recommended Resources
    Recommended resources will be available through the course website located on MyUni.
    Online Learning
    MyUni will be utilised to upload additional resources, including scholarly articles, news items and video clips.

    Important note: The seminars will NOT be recorded. This is an intensive face-to-face course that requires daily attendance and participation to each and everyone of the seminars for the two-week duration of the course.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    The course will be comprised of three-hour seminars. There will be five seminars per week during two weeks in the Winter School period. The seminars will explore the content of the course, assist students with research projects, and provide opportunities for individual and group presentations. The seminars will combine lectures with interactive activities. The lectures will introduce the key concepts, theories and themes, using a combination of multi-media sources (e.g. slides, videos, web-links, etc.). The interactive activities will include whole-class and small-group discussions, as well as short research and report activities conducted individually or in groups.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    10 x 3-hour sessions over two weeks 30 hours
    40 hours of reading over three weeks 40 hours
    40 hours of research over four weeks 40 hours
    46 hours of assignment preparation 46 hours
    156 hours
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week 1 - Concepts and Theories
    Day 1 Introduction
    Day 2 Environment and Citizenship: The Basics
    Day 3 Introducing Citizenship Theories
    Day 4 Theorising Environmental Citizenship
    Day 5 Ecological Footprint: Personal and Global
    Week 2 - Actions and Practices
    Day 6 Environmental Citizenship in Action
    Day 7 Governing Environmental Citizenship
    Day 8 Environmental Citizenship Incorporated
    Day 9 Environmental Citizenship in the Media
    Day 10 The Future of Environmental Citizenship
    Specific Course Requirements
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    The seminars will include small-group activities and semi-structured discussions designed to provide students with a fulfilling 'small group discovery experience'. Students will also be encouraged to work in small groups outside the classroom, including in the research and production of some of their assignments.

  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Weighting Learning Outcome
    Seminar Work Formative and Summative 20% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
    Personal Reflection Formative and Summative 20% 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8
    Textual Analysis Formative and Summative 20% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
    Research Essay Formative and Summative 40% 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Attendance at seminars is compulsory. Failure to attend more than two seminars without permission from the course coordinator can result in the student being precluded from passing the course.

    Assessment Detail
    Seminar Work: Seminars will include small-group activities and semi-structured discussions designed to provide students with a fulfilling 'small group discovery experience'. Seminar work will be assessed on the basis of the knowledge on the relevant topic, the quality of engagement with the readings and other course materials, and the attitude displayed towards the arguments and contributions of others.

    Personal Reflection: Students will be required to write a personal reflection based on the size of their “ecological footprint’. The word-count for this task is 800-1000 words.

    Textual Analysis: Students will be required to write a brief textual analysis of a popular culture text (e.g. a film, a television program, a book, etc.) exploring the representation of environmental citizenship in that text. This assignment can be done individually or as a group assignment. The word-count for this task is 800-1000 words.

    Research Essay: Students will be required to write an essay designed to assess their understanding of the different articulations of environmental citizenship through the research and analysis of a case study related to one of the three main manifestations of environmental citizenship: social activism, government policy, and corporate citizenship. The word-count for this task is 1800-2000 words.

    Assignments must be submitted electronically, through Turnitin. The link will be available on MyUni.
    The official procedure to apply for extensions is: http://www.adelaide.edu.au/student/exams/mod_arrange.html
    Late assignments without an approved extension will be penalised at the rate of 2% (2 marks) per day.
    There is a cut-off period of 7 days
    (including weekendsand public holidays), after which late submissions without a
    formal extension will not be accepted/marked. In the case of late submissions with a formal extension approved, the cut-off date is 7 days (including weekends and public holidays) from the revised due date, at 11:59pm.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

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  • Policies & Guidelines
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