HIS250 - Our Place in the Universe

Outline information
Semester
Schools offering this subject
Last revision date Jun 3, 2019 12:16:32 AM
Last review date Jul 30, 2019 1:51:39 PM

Subject Title
Our Place in the Universe

Subject Description

This subject will take us from the beginning of time to today and tomorrow.   We will be able to touch, photograph, and explore fossils, rocks, stone age tools, and other archaeological finds (Native, Roman, etc.) to build an understand of the story of the cosmos, earth, life and humanity.  We will weave evidence and perspectives from many disciplines into a single modern origin story, one that explores who we are, how we got here, how we are connected to everything around us, and where we may be heading.


Credit Status
One general education elective credit in the Sciences & Social Sciences category

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

  1. Identify central ideas and concepts of Big History and define and discuss these in written and verbal form.
  2. Recall and explain the eight thresholds of increasing complexity.
  3. Review Christian’s description of the ninth (future) threshold.
  4. Demonstrate an introductory understanding of notions of emergence, energy flow, complexity and the Goldilocks conditions.
  5. Discuss at an introductory level, examples of the interaction of ideas and events in the sciences and humanities as they relate to Big History.
  6. Place in order the major events of cosmic history as outlined by Big Historians.
  7. Understand, describe and restate the major traditional origin stories.
  8. Understand and apply the scientific explanation of the formation of the universe and in particular the stars, galaxies, chemical elements, the solar system, earth, life, and human societies through and understanding of the emergence of complexity.
  9. Prepare a “little” Big History illustrating the use of a Big History methodology on a relatively small more personally relevant phenomenon.
  10. Explain issues of hierarchy, social control, colonization, racism, and sexism and understand their origin, ‘purpose’ and thoughtful responses to them.
  11. Summarize Big History’s methodology as a tool for social understanding and social change and for academic advancement.

Essential Employability Skills
Communicate clearly, concisely and correctly in the written, spoken and visual form that fulfils the purpose and meets the needs of the audience.

Respond to written, spoken, or visual messages in a manner that ensures effective communication.

Execute mathematical operations accurately.

Apply a systematic approach to solve problems.

Use a variety of thinking skills to anticipate and solve problems.

Locate, select, organize, and document information using appropriate technology and information systems.

Analyze, evaluate, and apply relevant information from a variety of sources.

Show respect for diverse opinions, values, belief systems, and contributions of others.

Interact with others in groups or teams in ways that contribute to effective working relationships and the achievement of goals.

Manage the use of time and other resources to complete projects.

Take responsibility for one's own actions, decisions, and consequences.

Academic Integrity
Seneca upholds a learning community that values academic integrity, honesty, fairness, trust, respect, responsibility and courage. These values enhance Seneca's commitment to deliver high-quality education and teaching excellence, while supporting a positive learning environment. Ensure that you are aware of Seneca's Academic Integrity Policy which can be found at: http://www.senecacollege.ca/about/policies/academic-integrity-policy.html Review section 2 of the policy for details regarding approaches to supporting integrity. Section 2.3 and Appendix B of the policy describe various sanctions that can be applied, if there is suspected academic misconduct (e.g., contract cheating, cheating, falsification, impersonation or plagiarism).

Please visit the Academic Integrity website http://open2.senecac.on.ca/sites/academic-integrity/for-students to understand and learn more about how to prepare and submit work so that it supports academic integrity, and to avoid academic misconduct.

Discrimination/Harassment
All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at student.conduct@senecacollege.ca.

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Accessibility Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.