Welcome to our open courses. Feel free to browse the list of courses below or search for topics using the search box.

Advanced Analytic Methods in Geospatial Intelligence

Course Description

General James Clapper, former United States Director of National Intelligence and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), once said "everything happens somewhere." He stressed that there are aspects of time and place to every intelligence problem. In this course, you will examine how time and place work with general intelligence techniques to create geospatial intelligence. You will learn and apply critical thinking skills, structured analytical techniques, and other intelligence methods in a geospatial context.

Advanced Energy Policy

Course Description

Energy policy is typically evolutionary as opposed to revolutionary. We can look to historical policies to understand how we've inherited the policies governing our energy use today. But looking backward only tells us part of the story. In the face of climate change, we need to look ahead and instead envision a more revolutionary change to our energy systems and the policies that govern them. This class takes you on that journey to energy policies past, present, and future.

Alternative Fuels from Biomass Sources

Course Description

Is climate change real? Yes, it is! And technologies to reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions are being developed. One type of technology that is imperative in the short run is biofuels; however, biofuels must meet specifications for gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel, or catastrophic damage could occur. This course will examine the chemistry of technologies of bio-based sources for power generation and transportation fuels.

Cartography and Visualization

Course Description

Maps capture the power of place. A well-designed map can stoke our imagination, helping us to understand how a place looks or feels. Maps serve two roles. First, maps facilitate visual communication where knowns are presented to map readers. Second, maps permit visual thinking where insights into patterns and trends in spatial data are explored. In GEOG 486, Cartography & Visualization, you will learn and apply cartographic theory creating appropriately designed maps. You will learn how to associate the visual variables to symbolize types of spatial data.

Challenges in Global Geospatial Analytics

Course Description

How would you like to travel to new places while collaborating on a geospatial data challenge with students from around the world? In this class, students collaborate on a global-scale geospatial analysis problem with a focus on data analytics and professional practice in Geographic Information Systems. Penn State MGIS students collaborate with graduate students from ITC - University of Twente in Enschede, Netherlands to develop solutions to analyze spatio-temporal patterns in refugee migration data.

Cloud and Server GIS

Course Description

Is your understanding of Cloud GIS a bit hazy? Does thinking about it leave you in a fog? We've designed GEOG 865, Cloud and Server GIS, to help you understand how all of the various pieces of architecture fit together. By the end of the class you'll have a clear understanding of esri's and others' offerings in the space, how to implement ArcGIS Enterprise on Amazon EC2, make online maps with Carto and Mapbox, and engage in some blue sky thinking of your own in our weekly discussions about trends and directions.

Coastal Processes, Hazards and Society

Course Description

Has your attention recently been caught by news of coastal catastrophes such as hurricanes and tsunamis? Do you wonder why so many coastal communities in the world are vulnerable to flooding and other coastal hazards? Have you considered what coastal flood protections cities like Houston and Miami will need in the future to protect their residents? This course will provide a better understanding of these phenomena.

Commercial Solar Electric Systems

Course Description

AE 868 examines the theories and design practices of solar electric systems in the context of utility and commercial-scale applications. An important goal of the course is to equip solar professionals with skills to follow the impact of hardware trends in industry on feasibility, design, and the commissioning of such systems. Students will learn how to design solar electric systems as well as the processes required for permitting, construction, and commissioning.

Computation and Visualization in the Earth Sciences

Course Description

In EARTH 801, you will develop skills in a programming language designed for visual arts and visualization while exploring Earth science topics. Specifically, you'll learn and practice digital graphics capabilities in order to render Earth science concepts that are otherwise difficult to visualize due to complicated space and time scales. Here, you will interact with large, open, freely-available data sets by collecting, plotting, and analyzing them using a variety of computational methods.

Controversies in the Earth Sciences

Course Description

Think science has all the answers? Think again. This course will use real, authentic data to explore and investigate modern controversies in Earth Sciences. Use tide gauge records to understand how countries around the world attempt to protect themselves from tsunami events. Process seismic data to predict earthquake recurrence in the New Madrid seismic zone, right here in the breadbasket of the US. Sort through the millions of years of the geologic timeline to shed some light on what actually did, and did not, kill the dinosaurs.

Cultural Intelligence

Course Description

GEOG 571 explores the relationships between culture and civil security and the process of geographically analyzing social, political, economic, and demographic information to understand human history, institutions, and behaviors. It is an elective course in the Geospatial Intelligence Certificate, the Intercollege Master of Professional Studies (iMPS-HLS), and the Master of Geographic Information Systems degree program that is offered exclusively through Penn State's World Campus.

Cyber-Geography in Geospatial Intelligence

Course Description

Curious about how the notion of place and space is affected by Social Media, or how the Web differs from location to location? Cyber-Geography in Geospatial Intelligence looks at the geographies of cyberspace, the geopolitics of cyberwar, and at techniques that might be employed in such conflicts. Wondering how this all relates to censorship on the Internet? This class explores ideas on governance and network architecture, the politics of censorship and hacking, and the politics of grassroots activism enabled by the internet.

Earth in the Future

Course Description

Our planet is becoming hot. In fact, Earth may be warming faster than ever before. This warming will challenge society throughout the 21st century. How do we cope with rising seas? How will we prepare for more intense hurricanes? How will we adapt to debilitating droughts and heat waves? Scientists are striving to improve predictions of how the environment will change and how it will impact humans.

Earth Surface Processes in the Critical Zone

Course Description

Rapid changes at Earth's surface, largely in response to human activity, have led to the realization that fundamental questions remain to be answered regarding the natural functioning of the Critical Zone, the thin veneer at Earth's surface where the atmosphere, lithosphere, hydrosphere and biosphere interact. EARTH 530 will introduce you to the basics necessary for understanding Earth surface processes in the Critical Zone through an integration of various scientific disciplines.

House with solar panels on the roof

Course Description

Do energy and sustainability issues capture your attention? Do you find yourself seeking out articles, books, and/or movies related to these topics? After learning about core energy and sustainability issues, as well as information source evaluation and rhetorical analysis, students in EM SC 240 get the opportunity to explore and critically evaluate selected media from contemporary culture that focus on topics related to energy and sustainability. These media selections will relate specifically to earth, material, and energy processes and how humans interact with them.

Energy and Sustainability in Society

Course Description

Experiential learning, yes! But...online? at a distance? independent undergraduate research? This capstone course in Energy and Sustainability Policy is a novel approach to exactly this. Each student follows the same overarching structure: a four-part written research report, weekly journals, group discussions, a LinkedIn presence, an in-person presentation and a video submission. Along the way, the student has numerous personal interactions with real world stakeholders and gives an in-person presentation to an interested local audience.

two fingers touching behind a lightbulb

Course Description

Our world runs on energy - without it, things come to a screeching halt, as the recent hurricanes have shown. Ever stop to wonder what our energy future is? What are our options for energy, and what are the associated economic and climatic implications? In "Energy and the Environment" we explore these questions, which together represent one of the great challenges of our time - providing energy for high quality of life and economic growth while avoiding dangerous climate change.

Energy Conservation

Course Description

Much of the general population believes that the energy sources we depend on are perpetual. While people believe that energy use is the culprit for environmental damage, they are not aware of the methods and principles by which energy conversion devices operate. This course will provide you with knowledge and information on the main operating principles of devices/appliances in common use and will help you in making energy efficient and economical choices.

Energy in a Changing World

Course Description

What is energy? It's the hot in heat, the glow in light, the push in wind, the pound in water, the sound of thunder and the crack of lightening. It is the pull that keeps us (and everything else!) from simply flying apart, and the promise of an oak deep in an acorn. It is all the same, and it is all different. Sunshine and waterfalls won't start your car, and wind won't run the dishwasher. But, if we match the form and timing of the energy with your needs, all of these things could be true.

Energy Industry Applications of GIS

Course Description

Is Energy and GIS your passion? If so, Energy Industry Applications of GIS provides students with an in-depth exploration of the complexities of siting decisions in the electricity market. The course introduces a variety of siting challenges that confront the energy industry and its customers and neighbors but focuses on the siting of electrical transmission lines. The course also provides hands-on experience with a common decision support technology, ArcGIS, and considers how the technology may be used to facilitate public participation in siting decisions.

Energy Markets, Policy, and Regulation

Course Description

EME 801 provides a broad introduction to global markets for crude oil and refined petroleum products, natural gas, and electric power. A major goal of the course is to help students understand how market design, market institutions, and regulatory structures affect firm-level decision-making in the energy industries and ultimately, how these decisions affect the functioning of energy markets and the prospects for alternative technologies.

Energy Policy

Course Description

Energy policy sits at the crossroads of science and policy. And now, energy and climate policy are inextricably linked; the policies we choose have very real consequences for our climate. This intersection of science and policy is chaotic and bustles with activity motivated by various competing (and conflicting) interests and factors. We must understand the motivations driving them and bridge the divides between our reliance on fossil fuels and our need to transition to less carbon-intensive and renewable alternatives.

Environmental Applications of GIS

Course Description

Increasingly volatile climate and weather; vulnerable drinking water supplies; shrinking wildlife habitats; widespread deforestation due to energy and food production. These are examples of environmental challenges that are of critical importance in our world, both in far away places and close to home, and are particularly well suited to inquiry using geographic information systems. In GEOG 487 you will explore topics like these and learn about data and spatial analysis techniques commonly employed in environmental applications.

Essentials of Oceanography

Course Description

The year is 2050 and your once-idyllic beachfront vacation home is now flooded up to the second story. The crab your family has enjoyed every Christmas for as long as you can remember has now become an endangered species. The oceans have changed. In Earth 540, Oceanography for Educators, we explore the mechanisms that lead to sea level rise and ocean acidification. We strive to understand how natural processes such as ocean currents, the gulf-stream, tides, plate tectonics, and the Coriolis Effect, affect our oceans and ocean basins.

Ethical Dimensions of Renewable Energy and Sustainability Systems

Course Description

This course presents an examination of ethical issues relevant to systems-based research procedures, professional conduct, social and environmental impacts, and embedded ethics in research and professional practice in RESS based jobs. In this course, you will consider case studies of ethical issues that can arise when engaging renewable energy and sustainability systems. You will also develop an ethics case study based on your area of RESS interests.

Exploring Imagery and Elevation Data in GIS Applications

Course Description

"Exploring Imagery and Elevation Data in GIS Applications" (GEOG 480) focuses on the use of remotely sensed imagery and elevation data in GIS applications. Students enrolling in GEOG 480 should have a solid conceptual foundation in geospatial information science and technology. GEOG 480 is appropriate for those who are already working in the geospatial profession and wish to use imagery and elevation data in visualization and spatial analysis.

Food and Environment

Course Description

The Future of Food is an introductory-level science course that emphasizes the challenges facing food systems in the 21st century, and issues of sustainability for agriculture and other food production activities, as well as the challenges posed by food insecurity and modern diets to human health and well-being.

Foreign Studies

Course Description

Are you traveling to another country as part of your college career or supervising someone who is? If so, come explore this foreign study course for the Bachelor's degree in Energy Sustainability and Policy. This course helps students get the most from their experience by providing opportunities for reflection and the creation of a Dossier worthy of sharing with a potential employer.

Foundations in Sustainability Systems

Course Description

Sustainability denotes one of the main future challenges of societies and the global community. Issues of sustainability range from energy and natural resources to biodiversity loss and global climate change. Properly dealing with these issues will be crucial to future societal and economic development. This course provides the theoretical background for the discussion and analysis of sustainability issues.

From Meteorology to Mitigation: Understanding Global Warming

Course Description

Human-caused climate change represents one of the great environmental challenges of our time. As it is inextricably linked with issues of energy policy, a familiarity with the fundamentals of climate change is critical for those looking to careers in the energy field. To appreciate the societal, environmental, and economic implications of policies governing greenhouse gas emissions, one must understand the basic underlying science. METEO 469 serves to lay down the fundamental scientific principles behind climate change and global warming.

Fundamentals of Atmospheric Science

Course Description

Do you want to know more about atmospheric science? This course is designed to give both Meteorology and non-Meteorology students a comprehensive understanding of atmospheric science and the quantitative analytical tools to apply atmospheric science to their own disciplines. Students are introduced to fundamental concepts and applications of atmospheric thermodynamics, radiative transfer, atmospheric chemistry, cloud microphysics, atmospheric dynamics, and the atmospheric boundary layer.

Geographic Foundations of Geospatial Intelligence

Course Description

A good detective or researcher like Sherlock Holmes knows the fundamental questions that need to be answered to gather facts to solve a problem. So how does geospatial intelligence contribute to answering these questions? While geospatial technology is useful in revealing who, what, when, and where events take place, it is less useful in explaining why events occur.

Geographic Information Analysis

Course Description

In this data rich world, we need to understand how things are organized on the Earth's surface. Those things are represented by spatial data and necessarily depend upon what surrounds them. Spatial statistics provide insights into explaining processes that create patterns in spatial data. In geographical information analysis, spatial statistics such as point pattern analysis, spatial autocorrelation, and spatial interpolation will analyze the spatial patterns, spatial processes, and spatial association that characterize spatial data.

Geographic Perspectives on Sustainability and Human-Environment Systems

Course Description

What factors lead to a natural disaster? What causes a famine? Why do cities flood? According to a recent article in The Atlantic, Houston's flooding during the 2017 Hurricane Harvey was primarily caused by impervious pavement which prevents the absorption of water into the land. This example illustrates how nature and society are interlinked, which is the main focus of Geography 30, Penn State's introductory course to nature-society geography.

Geography of International Affairs

Course Description

The face of world politics seems to change as often as we go online or watch the news. In order to understand the realm of international affairs in its contemporary context, it is necessary to understand how we got here. One fundamental part of this is understanding how our global political system came to be and how contemporary systems are based on past iterations. The other fundamental part is to understand the theories that shaped these developments insofar as their influence on global political systems.

Geography of Water Resources

Course Description

Geography 431 is designed to further understanding of the natural processes of aquatic ecosystems, management of water resources, and threats to sustaining water quantity. Develop awareness and appreciation of the perspectives about water as a precious resource, commodity, and sometimes hazard. Learn how and why water is distributed unevenly around the Earth. Examine how resource management decisions are strongly related to water availability, quantity, and quality.

Geology of the National Parks

Course Description

Geysers and grizzlies and glaciers, oh my. The national parks may be America's best idea, saving the finest parts of the nation for everyone to enjoy forever. What better way to learn about the natural world than to tour the parks with us? We'll explore how the mountains and valleys formed and why they often come with volcanoes and earthquakes. You'll see what really killed the dinosaurs and how we can help save their modern relatives in the parks. With film clips, slide shows, and our geological interpretations of classic rock songs, isn't it time for a road trip?

Geospatial Intelligence and the Geospatial Revolution

Course Description

Geographic Intelligence (GEOINT) is more than people working with computers in a secure intelligence facility. Join us for this exciting journey to learn about GEOINT's application in business, law enforcement, and defense. Advances in satellites, GPS, unmanned aerial systems, wireless communications, handheld computing, and the ability to automate laborious map analysis processes has transformed what used to be called geographic intelligence, or GEOINT, and the nature of the insights provided to managers and leaders.

Geospatial System Analysis and Design

Course Description

Geospatial System Analysis and Design surveys the process of GIS design through critical reading/writing and collaborative discussion. Key topics in the course outline the broad range of current GIS systems, how they are designed and evaluated, and how emerging technologies may impact their design and implementation in the near future. In particular, students will develop a term-long project where they propose a realistic problem scenario that requires the skills and understanding required to effectively complete a geospatial system specification, design, and implementation.

Geospatial Technology Project Management

Course Description

In GEOG 871, we'll take a critical look at geospatial project management. Project management is a broad discipline that encompasses technical methods such as system design and analysis and also interpersonal factors that affect professional relationships. Project management is also a discipline that has matured outside of, but can be incorporated into, geospatial technology. By the end of this course, you'll have devised a project plan from a scenario built upon a real-life project involving the city of Metropolis geodatabase.

GIS Analysis and Design

Course Description

Geography 468 provides the geospatial information system professional an overview of systems analysis and design with emphasis on the concepts behind the process, including: business use case modeling, business object modeling, requirements definition, analysis and preliminary design, and, finally, detailed design. The concepts of the geospatial software and database development process are introduced and the current modeling techniques are addressed within the geospatial systems development paradigm.

GIS Application Development

Course Description

In GEOG 489, you will learn advanced applications of Python for developing and customizing GIS software, designing user interfaces, solving complex geoprocessing tasks, and leveraging open source. The course consists of readings, walkthroughs, projects, quizzes, and discussions about advanced GIS programming concepts and techniques, and a final term project. It complements the material covered in GEOG 485: GIS Programming and Customization. Software covered in the course includes: Esri ArcGIS Pro/arcpy, Jupyter Notebook, Esri ArcGIS API for Python, QGIS, GDAL/OGR.

GIS for Transportation: Principles, Data, and Applications

Course Description

Do you know how important GIS is to the transportation industry? The spatial applications to this field are so extensive that they represent an entire sub-discipline within the GIS community. In this course, we'll learn about the primary modes of transportation and explore some of the spatial applications developed to meet the unique needs of each. We'll also take a close look at some key organizations in the industry and learn firsthand from more than a dozen transportation professionals about the role GIS plays for them.

GIS Programming and Automation

Course Description

Bill Gates is credited with saying he would "hire a lazy person to do a difficult job" with the justification that "a lazy person will find an easy way to do it." GEOG 485 doesn't teach the lazy way to get the job done, but it does teach the scripting way _ which is arguably even better. You've probably heard the "give a fish"/"teach to fish" saying?

Global Energy Enterprise

Course Description

Have you seen a Clean Coal baseball cap? In the challenge to meet soaring energy demand with limited resources, volatile issues like those related to the environment, national security and public health are often addressed outside of normal market transactions and are called externalities, or nonmarket factors. Stakeholders can act in resourceful ways to create a nonmarket environment that best serves their interest. A firm may challenge a law that makes it expensive or difficult to do business or compete with others, for example.

Course Description

Global Finance for the Earth, Energy, and Materials Industry covers the physical and financial aspects of energy commodities with the focus on crude and natural gas. The physical "path" of each commodity from the point of production to the point of use will be explained, as well as the "value chain" that exists for each. Commodity market pricing, both cash and financial, will be presented, encompassing industry "postings" for cash, commodity exchanges, and "over-the-counter" markets.

GPS and GNSS

Course Description

Today GPS is critical to positioning, navigation, and timing. The smooth functioning of financial transactions, air traffic, ATMs, cell phones and modern life in general around the world depend on GPS. This very criticality requires continuous modernization. The oldest satellites in the current constellation were launched in the 1990s. If you imagine using a computer of that vintage today, it is not surprising that the system is being substantially updated. Global Positioning System (GPS) is now a part of a growing international context-the Global Navigation Satellite System, GNSS.

Human Dimensions of Global Warming

Course Description

GEOG 438W is a writing-intensive course that concentrates on the human-environment interactions involved in contemporary and future global warming. The course comprises two broad topical areas: global warming impacts, which takes place in the first half of the course, and global warming mitigation and policy, which encompasses the second half of the course. Each week highlights a theme, such as the impacts of climate change on human health or greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, that weaves through the course lecture, reading assignment, class discussion, and writing activity.

Human Use of the Environment

Course Description

Geography 430 is an active, creative learning community focused around understanding the changing relationships between people and their environments, the causes and consequences of environmental degradation, strategies for building a more sustainable world, and the methods and approaches that scholars have used to understand human-environment interactions.

Independent Study in Geospatial Intelligence

Course Description

Independent Study is an opportunity for students to work with individual direction from a faculty member on a topic of mutual interest in geospatial intelligence. Students must have strong professional experience or have taken courses in the subject matter leading up to the chosen topic. Independent Study is reserved for advanced specialties or for intermediate study in areas in which the department does not normally offer course work. Faculty members are under no obligation to accept Independent Study students, but do so as their teaching load permits.

Independent Study in Geospatial Intelligence

Course Description

Independent Study is an opportunity for students to work with individual direction from a faculty member on a topic of mutual interest in geospatial intelligence. Students must have strong professional experience or have taken courses in the subject matter leading up to the chosen topic. Independent Study is reserved for advanced specialties or for intermediate study in areas in which the department does not normally offer course work. Faculty members are under no obligation to accept Independent Study students, but do so as their teaching load permits.

Internship

Course Description

Are you participating in an internship or supervising someone who is? If so, take a minute to explore this course that accompanies an internship for the Bachelor's degree in Energy Sustainability and Policy. This course provides students opportunities to creatively reflect on their experiences as well as opportunities to prepare for a job search. Job search preparation is done via a SWOT analysis, resume writing, and a mock interview.

Introduction to Energy and Earth Sciences Economics

Course Description

Introduction to Energy and Earth Sciences is an introduction to microeconomic fundamentals with a focus on the applications of economics to energy and environmental markets. We will introduce the economic method of analysis to the environmental and resource questions facing society. We will learn about the market forces, supply and demand and how they are formed from two concepts of law of Diminishing Returns and Diminishing Marginal Utility. We extend our knowledge by exploring factors such as market dynamics and market equilibrium, government intervention and market power.

Location Intelligence for Business

Course Description

Do you enjoy the competitive challenge of starting up a new business or expanding into new areas? Are you involved in economic and community development? Are you considering the best place to work and live? Do you like to gain an advantage? Location Intelligence for Business extends the application of geospatial intelligence analytical methods to the business world for competitive advantage.

The Nature of Geographic Information

Course Description

The Nature of Geographic Information is an orientation to the properties of geographic data and the practice of distance learning. The purpose of this course is to promote understanding of the Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIS&T) enterprise. GIS&T is the intersection of professions, institutions, and technologies that produce geographic data and render information from it. It is a rapidly growing and evolving field. Learning is a way of life for all GIS&T professionals.

Mapping our Changing World

Course Description

Whether you realize it or not, when you carry a smart phone, use a navigation system in your car, or look up the nearest coffee shop on your computer, you are using geographic information. Geographic data and technologies are embedded in almost all aspects of our lives. GEOG 160, Mapping Our Changing World, explores what geographic information and data are, what makes them unique, how they are created, and how we use them.

Maps and the Geospatial Revolution

Course Description

The past decade has seen an explosion of new mechanisms for understanding and using location information in widely-accessible technologies. This Geospatial Revolution has resulted in the development of consumer GPS tools, interactive web maps, and location-aware mobile devices. This course brings together core concepts in cartography, geographic information systems, and spatial thinking with real-world examples to provide the fundamentals necessary to engage with Geographic Information Science.

Mashups

Course Description

Locating restaurants in an unfamiliar place, reporting potholes to the local DOT, obtaining real-time traffic conditions... All of these are examples of geospatial web apps that are revolutionizing how people obtain and share information about the world. In GEOG 863, you will learn how to build apps like these. You'll start with a quick look at the fundamentals of web programming (HTML and CSS) before diving in to using JavaScript and a mapping application programming interface (API) developed by Esri.

Materials in Today's World

Course Description

What materials have you touched today? In today's society, virtually every segment of our personal and professional lives is influenced by the limitations, availability, and economic considerations of the materials used. Through readings and science documentaries, this course will show you how and why certain materials are selected for different applications and how the processing, structure, properties, and performance of materials are intrinsically linked.

Oil: International Evolution

Course Description

Have you purchased gasoline and wondered at the price changes? Or worn your polyester jacket and wondered how it kept you warm, or been thankful your phone didn't break when you dropped it? These are just some benefits the petroleum industry brings to our world. Other aspects to the global world market involve natural disasters, wars, rumors of wars, national security, and consumer demand. Learn about oil production and how nations respond as EGEE 120 gives you a foundation of how industry interacts with you, governments, transportation, politics, and the world.

Open Web Mapping

Course Description

Everyone can make a web map now, but what are the best tools to do so? Maybe you have already created web maps with ArcGIS or Google Maps but never taken time to have a closer look at open source software alternatives such as QGIS, GeoServer and Leaflet? Or, are you new to web mapping and looking for the best way to create a web application for spatial data from your job or hobby? If so, GEOG 585, Open Web Mapping, is the right course for you. Learn about FOSS vs.

Orientation to Energy and Sustainability Policy

Course Description

EMSC 302 provides an orientation of the Energy and Sustainability Policy (ESP) degree program, preparing students for further study in the five program learning outcome areas: energy industry knowledge, global perspective, analytical skills, communication skills, and sustainability ethics. It also provides an introduction to the basic skills necessary to be successful in higher-ed online learning, including communication and library skills.

Phase Relations in Reservoir engineering

Course Description

In this course, you will learn about phase relations as applied to oil and/or gas reservoir processes, enhanced oil recovery, gas pipeline transportation, natural gas processing and liquefaction, and other problems in petroleum production. The primary objective of the course is to apply the thermodynamics of phase equilibrium to the framework for phase behavior modeling of petroleum fluids. The focus of the course will be on equilibrium thermodynamics and its relevance to phase behavior predictions and phase equilibrium data description.

Planets, Stars, Galaxies, and the Universe

Course Description

Walking up and down the hallways of Davey Lab at Penn State, you can find astronomers searching for and characterizing exoplanets, monitoring supernovae and other exploding stars, and measuring the details of the accelerating expansion of the Universe to determine the nature of dark energy. In Astro 801, we learn that with only the ability to measure the light from these distant, unreachable objects, we can still determine how the Solar System, stars, galaxies, and the Universe formed and evolved since the Big Bang.

Planning GIS for Emergency Management

Course Description

GEOG 588 introduces the potential of GIS to support emergency (crisis or disaster) management activities, R&D advances that are helping to achieve this potential, and some challenges for the future. This course requires students to exercise analytical and writing skills to develop successful project reports and proposals. Assignments focus on improving students' ability to write and critique proposals to agencies that provide funding to support state and local implementation and application of GIS for Emergency Management and/or to support industry development of new technologies.

Plate Tectonics and People: Foundations of Solid Earth Science

Course Description

In this course we will explore topics from disciplines within the solid Earth sciences. In each lesson, we'll also touch on some ways the topic links to other scientific disciplines. Each unit is designed to present both the cutting-edge science as well as the background a secondary-school student (or her teacher) would need to place the research in context. Gaining an appreciation of how scientists choose the subjects they study is as fundamental to Earth science as the discovery of the facts themselves.

Reactive Transport in the Subsurface

Course Description

This course teaches principles of flow, transport, and reaction processes in the natural subsurface.

Remote Sensing Image Analysis and Applications

Course Description

From satellites gathering imagery from hundreds of miles above the Earth's surface to aerial systems mounted with lasers capable of generating 3D maps with centimeter accuracy, we're gathering more data about our Earth from above than ever before. This course will help you make sense of these complex and exciting datasets. Whether your interest is in natural disasters, environmental assessment, or national security, we'll give you the tools, methods, and techniques to extract actionable and meaningful information from these data.

Spatial Database Management

Course Description

A spatial database is the backbone of a successful organization or website that depends upon maintaining and using data pertinent to locations on Earth. In GEOG 868, Spatial Database Management, capabilities specific to Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are combined to teach students to create, maintain, and query spatial databases in both desktop and enterprise environments.

Sustainability and Non-Market Enterprise

Course Description

The primary goal of this course is to provide a toolset for characterizing and strategizing how nonmarket forces can shape current and future renewable energy markets. The course approaches the exploration and explanation of key concepts in renewable energy and sustainability nonmarket strategies through evidence-based examples. Main topics for the course include: a sociological approach to markets, renewable energy markets, nonmarket conditions, complex systems analysis, and renewable energy technology and business environments.

Sustainability Driven Innovation

Course Description

Are you prepared to find strategic opportunities for sustainability-driven innovation within your business or organization? This engaging course will prepare you to do just that. BA 850 will give you the tools and practical experience needed to discern consumer and organizational needs related to sustainability, to create unique offerings to meet sustainability needs, and to develop innovative processes necessary to test and refine sustainable solutions.

Technologies for Sustainability Systems

Course Description

EME 807 overviews a wide range of contemporary technologies in the context of sustainability and examines metrics for their assessment. The course explores the main principles that guide modern science and technology towards sustainable solutions. It covers such topics as resource management technologies, waste and wastewater treatment, renewable energy technologies, high performance buildings and transportation systems, application of informatics and feedback to sustainable systems, and more.

The African Continent

Course Description

Earthquakes are natural phenomena that can cause immense human suffering because of intense ground shaking and are consequently of great societal importance. Earthquakes are also important because the seismic waves that generate the ground shaking provide scientists with important information about Plate Tectonics and geology, in particular information about the structure and composition of our planet and how the insides of the planet are deforming.

Unmanned Aerial Systems

Course Description

Unmanned Aerial Systems, or drones, are developing aggressively, and many government and non-government agencies are considering acquiring such systems. This course will focus on the geo-spatial utilization of a UAS. It will cultivate students' knowledge of the capabilities and limitations of the UAS and data post-processing systems. It introduces fundamental concepts surrounding operating a UAS such as strategies for selecting the right UAS, assessing its performance, managing resulting products (i.e.

Utility Solar Electric and Concentration

Course Description

EME 812 explores the main physical principles of core solar energy conversion systems, including direct power conversion photovoltaics, concentrating photovoltaics (CPV), and thermal conversion to electricity via concentrating solar power strategies (CSP). It also covers the fundamentals of enabling technologies such as light concentration, solar tracking, power conversion cycles, power conditioning and distribution.

Utility Solar Thermal and Industrial Solar Processes

Course Description

Solar thermal energy is a vast renewable energy resource that has been harvested by human civilizations for centuries. Now as energy conversion technologies quickly develop, we look at solar thermal energy as a significant contributor to the future world's energy profile. Solar heat, when properly collected and stored, can provide cost-effective benefits to a wide array of industrial and residential applications.

Water: Science and Society

Course Description

We refer to Earth as the "Blue Planet" because of its abundance of liquid water; indeed, NASA's search for life on other planets starts with the search for water. While its importance for sustaining life is perhaps common knowledge, the extent to which we depend on water in every aspect of our everyday lives and activities is less obvious. Looking into the coming decades, the global need to decrease water stress and increase water quality is inescapable.

Course Spotlight

From Meteorology to Mitigation: Understanding Global Warming (METEO 469) - learn about the fundamentals of climate change and its impact on societal, environmental, and economic policies. Visit the course.

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. Richard Alley

Dr. Richard Alley has been with us since the beginning, with one of our first OPEN courses - Geology of the National Parks. See what he has to say about the OPEN.ED effort over ten years later.