NOTE: Colorado College is responding to Coronavirus (COVID-19) developments. Summer Block A & B classes are being delivered via distance learning. On-campus admission visits are canceled until further notice. See Coronavirus Updates & Resources here.
Ecological restoration aims to assist the recovery of damaged and degraded ecosystems, returning them to ecological health. Restoration depends heavily on the science of ecology -- however, restoration involves social, political, economic, and ethical considerations as well. This course examines ecological restoration from an interdisciplinary perspective, providing an introduction to key concepts in restoration ecology, philosophy, and social science. We will also explore the practice of ecological restoration in Colorado, visiting restoration sites such as Shooks Run Creek, the Waldo Canyon burn area, and the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge in Denver, where we will participate in restoration work as a class. A key goal of the course is to connect conceptual frameworks for restoration to issues and questions involved in ecological restoration on the ground. Finally, we will discuss a number of emerging topics and controversies in restoration, including debates over native and exotic species, climate change and ecological restoration, and the role of art in the interpretation of restored sites.