Lo/56k Hi/300k
HomeSubjectsResourcesE-SeminarsE-CoursesColumbia University
Browse according to your interestsClass websites, webcasts, and more
 
Short courses free to ColumbiaFor-credit coursesColumbia new media initiatives
Columbia InteractiveSite MapSearchHelp
E-Seminars: E-Seminar Detail
 



E-Seminars in This Series

E-Seminar 1
The Normal Environment: How Things Got This Way


E-Seminar 2
The Normal Environment: The Way Things Are Now


E-Seminar 3
Atmosphere: Stratospheric Problems


E-Seminar 4
Atmosphere: Problems at Ground Level


E-Seminar 5
Water: It's Not Just H2O


E-Seminar 6
Waterborne Infections


E-Seminar 7
Food: Land Use and Health Risks


 
Medical Ecology: Environmental Disturbance and Disease
A Series of Seven E-Seminars

Taught by: Dickson Despommier

Description
E-Seminar Description
In an age characterized by a rapidly changing environment in which emerging and reemerging diseases continue to confront us, how can we predict the next major threats to human health? Are we in fact aiding the spread of disease by destroying the barriers that protect us? In his seven-part series, Medical Ecology: Environmental Disturbance and Disease, Dickson Despommier, Professor of Public Health and Microbiology at Columbia, illuminates the connections between the disruption of ecosystems and eruptions of human disease.

Beginning with a survey of "normal" or balanced ecosystem functions, and continuing with detailed explorations of Earth's three great zones—air, water, and land—Despommier looks at the impacts of anthropogenic activities on natural systems and how these impact human disease. These engaging e-seminars are enhanced with interactive maps, animations, data, and readings.

Minimal prior knowledge of science—including basic concepts of disease, viruses, and bacteria—is required for this course.

Series Length:3-5 hours each
Start Date:Anytime
Credits:Not-for-Credit
Prerequisites:None
Moderator:None
Columbia Students, Faculty, Staff, and Alumni:FREE
Interested in this
series?
Go to the series now.



Outline | Instructor's Background | Recommended Reading | Technical Requirements

Outline
E-Seminar 1: The Normal Environment: How Things Got This Way
     1. Introduction
     2. Evolution of Complexity
     3. What Is an Ecosystem?
     4. Conclusion

E-Seminar 2: The Normal Environment: The Way Things Are Now
     1. Introduction
     2. Genomes and Complexity
     3. Trophic Levels
     4. Ecoregions
     5. Ecosystem Services
     6. Conclusion

E-Seminar 3: Atmosphere: Stratospheric Problems
     1. Introduction
     2. Atmospheric Components
     3. Ozone
     4. Impacts
     5. Conclusion

E-Seminar 4: Atmosphere: Problems at Ground Level
     1. Air Pollutants
     2. Sources
     3. Ecosystem Impacts
     4. Health Impacts
     5. Social Impacts
     6. Conclusion

E-Seminar 5: Water: It's Not Just H2O
     1. Understanding Water
     2. Water Sources and Usage
     3. Water Pollutants
     4. Impacts
     5. Conclusion

E-Seminar 6: Waterborne Infections
     1. Pathogens and Vectors
     2. Waterborne Pathogens
     3. The Mosquito Vector
     4. Emerging Diseases
     5. Conclusion

E-Seminar 7: Food: Land Use and Health Risks
     1. Terrestrial Ecosystems
     2. Land Use
     3. Ecosystem Impacts
     4. Health Impacts
     5. Repair
     6. Conclusion


back to top

Instructor's Background

Instructor's Background
Dickson Despommier is Professor of Public Health and Microbiology at Columbia University. He earned his B.S. degree at Fairleigh Dickinson University, his M.S. degree in medical parasitology at Columbia University, and his Ph.D. in microbiology at the University of Notre Dame. He then spent three years as a guest investigator at Rockefeller University before joining the faculty at Columbia, where he has taught and conducted biomedical research over the past thirty years.

Despommier's research interests include molecular aspects of intracellular parasitism, river ecology, and more recently, medical aspects of ecology, which he has termed Medical Ecology. Despommier is author of over seventy peer-reviewed journal articles, three textbooks, and 13 review articles in books dealing with medical aspects of parasitism. He has been awarded the highest honor the Columbia health sciences faculty bestows, the Dean's Distinguished Medal for Outstanding Teaching, and has been elected teacher of the year numerous times, both at Columbia University, and at other Universities where he has been a visiting professor. In 2003, he was the recipient of the American Medical Student Association's (AMSA) National Golden Apple Award for Teaching Excellence.


back to top

Recommended Reading
Dubos, Rene. So Human an Animal: How We Are Shaped by Surroundings and Events. Transaction Publishers, 1998.

Freedman, Bill. Environmental Ecology: The Ecological Effects of Pollution, Disturbance, and Other Stresses. 2d ed. San Diego: Academic Press, 1995.

Odum, Martha and Eugene P. Odum. Essence of Place. University of Georgia Press, 2000.

Patz, Jonathan. Ecosystem Change and Public Health: A Global Perspective. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.


back to top

Technical Requirements
You will need to use a computer with Internet access to complete this course. We recommend the following minimum configurations:

IBM-COMPATIBLE PC
Windows 95, 98, 2000, XP, or NT
64 MB of RAM (128 MB recommended)
Monitor: 800x600 resolution recommended
Connection: Internet service and 56K modem minimum
Browser: Internet Explorer 4 or above (Internet Explorer 5 strongly recommended) or Netscape 4.7 or above
Sound Card (if you can hear audio you have a sound card)
Plug-ins: RealPlayer 7 or later; Flash Player 5 or later; Acrobat Reader 5 or later
(all plug-ins are free)

MACINTOSH
MAC OS 8.6 or higher
64 MB of RAM (128 recommended)
Monitor: 800x600 resolution recommended
Connection: Internet service and 56K modem minimum
Browser: Internet Explorer 5 or above or Netscape 4.7 or above
Sound Card (if you can hear audio you have a sound card)
Plug-ins: RealPlayer 7 or later; Flash Player 5 or later; Acrobat Reader 5 or later
(all plug-ins are free)

back to top

Help   |   Privacy Policy