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Climate Science and Policy: Assignment

Final School Solutions Project

Final School Solutions Project

Climate Science and Policy 2016

Important Due Dates:

  • Topic and group selection in class: 10/20
  • Final project proposal due in class (including name, mission, video idea): 10/24
  • Website architecture and draft content: 11/3
  • Final project (websites and videos) due: 11/10 at beginning of class

Intro

Learning about local and global environmental problems can often be depressing. What can a single person accomplish on his or her own? Many of us have asked ourselves this, and some of us have stood up, refused to be complacent, and decided to meet those challenges with creative and innovative solutions. You may know someone like this in your life, or you may even be one of these people. Here’s your chance to, as a group, design a solution-oriented campaign to solve a climate-related environmental problem that you really care about.

Leaning Goals

  • Apply your understanding of climate change impacts to developing a real-world, feasible solution to addressing global climate change issues at the local level, i.e. the Bentley campus.
  • Your project will include the creation of a comprehensive campaign that promotes your idea and encourages others in your community to take action. In the process, you will understand how to address the needs of a variety of stakeholders.

Description

This Solutions Project will give you a chance to identify a climate-related impact that you care about, research possible solutions to addressing this issue at Bentley, and encourage other people to take action. You will be graded based on the creation of a Name/Slogan/Mission (10%), Logo (10%), short video (30%), Webpage (40%), and how effectively you worked as a team member both in and outside of class (10%). This final project is worth 15% of your grade.

Some things to consider are thinking about what essential questions you can start with to guide your search for a solution, who are the experts and/or stakeholders you can interview, if there are similar campaigns out there already, and what data you can collect around the issue.

In groups of 2-3, you will select a topic of interest related to climate change and the Bentley campus. This could be one of the following, or an entirely different idea:

Impacts:

  • Impacts on local biodiversity
  • Impacts on human health

Adaptation:

  • Water conservation and efficiency
  • Drought landscaping
  • Preparing for extreme weather events

Mitigation:

  • Energy efficient buildings and classrooms
  • Sustainably-sourced food
  • Reducing trash/food waste
  • Reducing paper use and printing
  • Reducing plastic use
  • Sustainable commuting to school
  • E-waste education and management

  

Name, Slogan or Motto, and Mission
Your group needs to come up with a catchy name for your group and a slogan or motto that provides a teaser on the goals of your project. This should be catchy and informative. After hearing it, people should be curious to learn more about your group and your ideas. Acronyms are catchy and can be very creative. For example:

  • Cyclists Inciting Change thru Live Exchange, aka CICLE
  • "Earthjustice: Because the Earth Needs a Good Lawyer”

The mission your group comes up with should convey the goal of your project in one to three sentences. Examples include:

  • Natural Resource Defense Council
    • The Natural Resources Defense Council's purpose is to safeguard the Earth: its people, its plants and animals and the natural systems on which all life depends.
  • Earthworks
    • Earthworks is dedicated to protecting communities and the environment from the impacts of irresponsible mineral and energy development while seeking sustainable solutions.

_______________________________________________________________

Logo

Your group needs to come up with a logo that similarly conveys the goals of your project and provide an appealing image that people can associate with. You should create an original logo. For some examples, see this Google image of some existing environmental NGO logos. 

________________________________________________________________

Video

Your short video can be a public service announcement, a campaign call-to-action video, or a documentary-style short film. Whichever form it takes, it should be between 2 to 5 minutes. Your goal is to get the word out, create a buzz, and get people interested enough to join your movement.

Requirements:

  1. Catches peoples attention
  2. Informative, accurate, and educational, related to the problem and solution
  3. Clearly conveys your message
  4. Well scripted, edited, “polished”

__________________________________________________________________ 

Webpage

In place of a research paper, your group will create your own website for your campaign. Your webpage serves as the centerpiece of your project. This is where everything is published, linked, and packaged. It serves as a way to get the word out about your issue, get people involved, and generate discussions. It will also be the place where I go to evaluate your work. Google sites, Strikingly, Tumbler, etc. are all possible options because they are free and require no code.

While the webpage is in lieu of a paper, you will be evaluated in a similar way. In other words, the webpage is like your research paper, just in web form and interactive. It will still need a table of contents, bibliography (with correct MLA citations), and key content that is edited and polished. You may find it easier to type all the sections in a word doc before copying/pasting it into the webpage. You will need to turn in a word doc showing the site architecture and your draft content for approval on November 3rd.

Required pages on your website:

  • Title Page
  • Table of Contents
  • Mission and campaign objective(s)
  • History of the Problem
    • How did it develop?
    • How was it discovered?
    • What have other parties done to help solve this issue?
    • What are the relevant laws or treaties?
  • What's causing the problem?
  • Consequences of the problem:
    • Short-term
    • Future (for instance, 100 years into the future)
  • Proposed solution(s) to the problem
    • What are the barriers to implementation? What are the rewards?
    • How would your campaign get over these barriers?
    • How would your campaign make an impact?
    • Action Steps
  • The position of those who oppose you
    • Rebuttal to opposing position
  • Tables, Charts, Graphs, Pictures, Diagrams, and Maps. Make sure any data you are citing is accurate and from a reputable source!
  • Works Cited and Interviews Page (cite in MLA style).

Other Requirements:

  • Make sure your slogan, video and logo are clearly posted. Make sure the text is readable but not enormous!
  • Include interviews and quantitative data from outside sources if appropriate, as well as your own research
  • Include at least two graphs, one map, two images/photos, and 10 sources
  • Make sure you identify your stakeholders (i.e. who is affected and how). What are their needs and interests? Conduct interviews of stakeholders to support campaign.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________

Resources

Evaluation and Grading
In addition to being evaluated according to the rubric below, you will also be doing a self-evaluation and a peer evaluation of your own group members. Thus each member may have a different grade depending on your level of participation.

Criteria

A

B

C

Not Passing

Participation

10%

>90% of class time is used effectively. Peer and self-evaluations indicate positive contributions.

80-89% of class time is used effectively. Peer and self-evaluations indicate average contributions.

70-79% of class time is used effectively. Peer and self-evaluations indicate minimal contributions.

Insufficient Effort

Name/Slogan /Mission

10%

Group creates a cool name, catchy slogan, and a clear creative mission that explains the project's goals.

Group creates a name, slogan, and a clear mission that explains the project's goals.

Group creates a name, and a slogan or mission.

Insufficient Effort

Logo

10%

Logo is creative, original, appealing to the eye, and related to the project's mission.

Logo is original, appealing to the eye, and related to the project's mission.

Logo is created and related to the project's mission.

Insufficient Effort

Video

30%

Video meets all 4 criteria listed on page 3.

Video meets 2-3 criteria listed on page 3.

Video meets 1 criterion listed on page 3.

Insufficient Effort

Webpage

40%

Webpage includes all requirements on page 3-4, along with a creative design, clear and easily navigable layout, and has no dead links.

Webpage includes 80% of the requirements listed page 3-4, with a clear and easily navigable layout, and may have 1 dead link.

Webpage includes 65% of the requirements listed on page 3-4, with a clear and easily navigable layout, and may have 2 dead links.

Insufficient Effort

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Final words of advice

  • Have fun with it! This is your chance to really dig into a topic that will make you an expert, and maybe even follow you for the rest of your life.
  • Know your audience! Assume they are new to your topic but are fairly educated, and tailor your website and video accordingly. For instance, how would you explain a topic like climate change to a grandparent?
  • Assign roles to each group member so that each person has specific responsibilities.
  • Don’t be afraid to think big and outside the box!