Overview: When taking the capstone class, ENVS 490, students will
compile an electronic portfolio (through Blackboard) of their best academic
The portfolio highlights
accomplishments and experiences in the Environmental Studies/Science major. As
a reflection tool, it prepares students for environmental careers and advanced
study. As an assessment device, it enables data-driven improvements in
advising, curriculum design, and instruction.
General instructions: The portfolio should represent your
best work. Writing should be clear and concise, with well-constructed sentences
and good writing mechanics. Select for quality, not quantity. You are expected to turn in a "draft" portfolio mid-semester for review by your instructor. The final portfolio will be due by the end of the semester.YOU MUST
COMPLETE A SATISFACTORY PORTFOLIO BEFORE YOU RECEIVE A GRADE IN ENVS 490.
(The portfolio is graded S/U).
Collect materials demonstrating your BEST work in each of the following areas.
Ideally, use no piece of work twice. Consider documents from class projects,
homework assignments, lab reports, independent research projects, volunteer
work, internships, etc. For coursework materials, select only from courses
fulfilling ENST/ ENSC requirements (i.e., not general education or courses from
other major/minor courses and not courses taken at other institutions). Submit clean copies with no markings or grades. You
may wish to clean up what you submitted to your professor. Consult your instructor if you have questions.Key Sections: Please provide documents/artifacts (labeled with title and origin) demonstrating your
ability/achievements in the following areas:
Number of examples
Critical thinking: In relation to an environmental issue, demonstrate
your ability to critically think by engaging in skeptical inquiry, evaluating arguments,
synthesizing information, drawing well-reasoned conclusions, and/or proposing
solutions. Also provide a reflective statement (no more than 1.5 pages) that explains the origins of each piece you include in this section and why it fits here.
At least 1
Diverse viewpoints: In making decisions and proposing actions to address an
environmental issue, demonstrate two skills: (a) Considering a diversity of
viewpoints (e.g., different stakeholders, academic disciplines, regulatory
domains, policy objectives, etc.). Explicitly recognize and describe
divergent viewpoints, comparing/contrasting underlying assumption, interests,
and objectives. Draw well-reasoned conclusions about the validity/value of
these different viewpoints and how they should in the end be balanced,
reconciled, or resolved. (b) Practice ethical reasoning by considering the
impact on a variety of stakeholders and systems (e.g., whether those with
power listen to those without, whether negative effects are disproportionally
borne by minority communities, whether actors take responsibility for
unintended consequences, whether actions come at the expense of future
generations, etc.). Also provide a reflective statement (no more than 1.5 pages) that explains the origins of each piece you include in this section and why it fits well here. Be sure to identify which pieces you are placing in sections a and b.
At least 1 for (a) and at least 1
At least 1 of these from an upper
level ENVS course (350, 495, 490, 510)
Interdisciplinary thinking: Demonstrate understanding of the interconnected,
interdisciplinary nature of environmental studies. Given a specific issue,
specify the different dimensions, apply appropriate disciplinary
knowledge/methods to those dimensions, and integrate across disciplines as
needed to fully address the complexity of the issue. Also provide a reflective statement (no more than 1.5 pages) that explains the origins of each piece you include in this section and why it fits well here. Also note that this should not be your final paper in ENVS 490.
At least 1
Addressing Problems: Identify and explain major sources of environmental
problems and their solutions. Also provide a reflective statement (no more than 1.5 pages) that explains the origins of each piece you include in this section and why it fits well here.
At least 1
Scientific thinking (ENSC only): Understand and apply the scientific process. Also provide a reflective statement (no more than 1.5 pages) that explains the origins of each piece you include in this section and why it demonstrates your ability to use the scientific method and/or to think like a scientist. Be sure to mention the source of each document, if it isn't already evident.
Your BIOL 300 final paper and at
least one other paper from an upper level science course or project.