Inquiries in Global Change
An interdisciplinary, inquiry-based approach to natural and social science principles, dynamic systems modeling, spatial data analysis and critical reading activities. 

Ben A. van der Pluijm and Lesley T. Sefcik
© Ben van der Pluijm, 2007

Use of this material is restricted to students and staff of the Global Change courses at the University of Michigan. Others may not reproduce any material without our permission. Note that permission for sources used in the text has not yet been granted. Email to

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Unit 1. Introduction to Concepts and Activities

Unit 1a. Introduction to Systems Dynamic Modeling with STELLA

Unit 1b. Introduction to Spatial Data Analysis with ArcGIS

Unit 1c. Introduction to Critical Reading & Discourse – The Challenges We Face

Unit 2. Planet Earth: Origin and Evolution

Unit 2a. Modeling the Impact of Disasters

Unit 2b. Distribution and Economic Impact of Natural Disasters

Unit 2c. Averting Disasters

Unit 3. Life: From Building Blocks to Biomes (w Allan)

Unit 3a. Natural Selection and Mutation - The Case of the Peppered Moth

Unit 3b. Earth’s Changing Biomes

Unit 3c. Ecological Footprint

Unit 4. Biodiversity: From Production to Conservation (w Allan/Kling)

Unit 4a. Biological Productivity and Trophic Systems

Unit 4b. Biodiversity and Protected Areas

Unit 4c. Threats to Biodiversity

Unit 5. Human Evolution: Adaptation and Environmental Justice (w Ford)

Unit 5a. Population Dynamics: Predator-Prey Interactions

Unit 5b. Global Water Resources

Unit 5c. Environmental Justice

Unit 6. Human Population: Trends, Appropriations and Health (w Ness)

Unit 6a. Population Dynamics

Unit 6b. Population Demographics: HIV/AIDS

Unit 6c. Population Growth and Global Society

Unit 7. Energy: Resources and Consumption

Unit 7a. Earth’s Energy Balance Model

Unit 7b. Global Energy Resources - Population and Consumption

Unit 7c. Making Other Energy Choices

Unit 8. Climate: Atmosphere and Ocean (w Killeen)

Unit 8a. Analysis of Vostok Ice Core Data

Unit 8b. Investigating Atmospheric Emissions

Unit 8c. Climate Change

Unit 9. Development and Urbanization: Pollution and Poverty (w Abreu)

Unit 9a. Urbanization and Pollution

Unit 9b. Population Growth and Urbanization

Unit 9c. Urbanization and Inequality

Unit 10. Global Biogeochemistry: Transformations and Cycles  (w Kling)

Unit 10a.1. Creation of a Global Hydrologic Cycle

Unit 10a.2. Alteration of the Global Carbon Cycle

Unit 10c. Tropical Rainforest Ecosystem and Biogeochemistry  

Unit 11. Sustainability: Globalization, Equality and Security (w Gladwin)

Unit 11a. Linking Population, Gender, and Biodiversity

Unit 11b. Inequality and Civil Liberties

Unit 11c. Sustainability

Appendix I. Guide to Basic STELLA Features

Appendix II. Guide to Basic ArcGIS Features


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