Teaching

 

 

When the Department of Rural and Regional Studies was created in 1999, it had only one course in the catalog. New faculty spent the first year creating a curriculum, including ten new courses and a new minor. They later had several courses approved for designation as Liberal Arts Core, Transfer Curriculum, and SMSU graduation requirements.

In the department's first six years, total and average enrollments have grown significantly and steadily as the curriculum has evolved. Course enrollments have grown from an average 14 to 30 over the past four years. The department also offers "Introduction to Geography" as a Challenge course. Demand through the Challenge Program has reached 190 enrollments in 2002-2003. The department now provides a Liberal Arts Core course that fills each time it is taught.

In addition, the department offers several service courses to the campus community. Two of its courses, Environmental History and Introduction to Geography, are required for students completing Social Science teaching licensure. The Geographic Information Systems (GIS) courses have become a job requirement for many Environmental Science majors and some marketing majors, although they are not part of the required curriculum for those degrees.

Faculty in the Department of Rural and Regional Studies have taught the following courses:

· RURL 101 Introduction to Geography
· RURL 102 Introducing Southwest Minnesota
· RURL 103 Introduction to Rural and Regional Studies
· RURL 121 Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
· RURL 321 GIS Methods and Applications
· RURL 351 Cultural Landscapes
· RURL 494 Directed Studies in Rural and Regional Studies
· RURL 499 Internship in Rural and Regional Studies
· HIST 222 Modern America: History of the United States from 1865 to the Present
· HIST 271 Environmental History
· HIST 273 Intellectual and Cultural History of Modern Europe
· HIST 274 Intellectual and Cultural History of Contemporary Europe
· IDST 287 Honors Seminar: The Nature of Nature

 

Classes Offereed Fall 2006:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

 

Classes Offered Spring 2006:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

 

Classes Offered Fall 2005:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

 

Classes Offered Spring 2005:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Modern America: History of the United States from 1865 to the Present
(HIST 222)-
Professor Geoff Cunfer

A survey of American civilization with emphasis on the social, economic, and political history of the Unites States from 1865 to the present.

Environmental History-(HIST 271)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course explores processes of environmental change, examining them in their proper ecological, geographical, and historical contexts. The course also addresses the multi-faceted relationship between human beings and their surroundings as well as changing definitions of environment and nature.

Cultural Landscapes-(RURL 351)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course focuses on human beings' views of their surroundings. The course explores how humans perceive, imagine, define, and talk about the natural features and artificial creations that comprise landscapes. It also examines the meanings of specific places and settings as reflected in specific ideals, values, rituals, and artifacts.

 

Classes Offered Fall 2004:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Introduction to GIS-(RURL 121)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

The course introduces students to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as applied in the business world, in municipal government, and in environmental management. The course covers general GIS topics, provides a hands-on introduction to GIS software, and illustrates practical uses of computer mapping and spatial analysis technology. Instruction will combine lectures and demonstrations with in-class and out-of-class computer lab assignments.

 

Classes Offered Spring 2004:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

 

Classes Offered Fall 2003:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

Introduction to Rural & Regional Studies-(RURL 103)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course discusses the concepts of locality and region. It does this in relation to geographical, social, demographic, and cultural factors. Southwestern Minnesota is a primary focus in the latter part of the course.

Environmental History-(HIST 271)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course explores processes of environmental change, examining them in their proper ecological, geographical, and historical contexts. The course also addresses the multifaceted relationship between human beings and their surroundings as well as changing definitions of environment and nature.

 

Classes Offered Spring 2003:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.

GIS Methods and Applications-(RURL 321)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course introduces students to Geographical Information Systems (GIS) as applied in the business world, municipal government, and environmental management. The course covers general GIS topics, provides a hands-on introduction to GIS software, and illustrates practical uses of computer mapping and spatial analysis technology.

 

Classes Offered Fall 2002:

Introduction to Geography-(RURL 101)-Professor Anthony Amato

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of geography. It covers geographic methods-including cartography and Geographic Information Systems (GIS)-physical geography, and human geography.
Introducing Southwest Minnesota-(RURL 102)-Professor Joseph Amato

This course is offered for 3 credits on a credit or no credit basis. Its goal is to introduce members of the Southwest Community to the region. Its form is interdisciplinary, involving a wide array of University professors and staff, in addition to community experts and guest speakers. The course utilizes literature created by the University's Center for Rural and Regional Studies and the Society for the Study of Local and Regional History. Two or three field trips are offered in conjunction with the course. This course is particularly attractive to members of the community and region.

Syllabus
Class Resources

Introduction to Rural & Regional Studies-(RURL 103)-Professor Joseph Amato

This course discusses the concepts of locality and region. It does this in relation to geographical, social, demographic, and cultural factors. Southwestern Minnesota is a primary focus in the latter part of the course.

Introduction to Geographic Information-(RURL 121)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

The course introduces students to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) as applied in the business world, in municipal government, and in environmental management. The course covers general GIS topics, provides a hands-on introduction to GIS software, and illustrates practical uses of computer mapping and spatial analysis technology. Instruction will combine lectures and demonstrations with in-class and out-of-class computer lab assignments.

Environmental History-(HIST 271)-Professor Geoff Cunfer

This course explores processes of environmental change, examining them in their proper ecological, geographical, and historical contexts. The course also addresses the multifaceted relationship between human beings and their surroundings as well as changing definitions of environment and nature.

 

Past Student Projects:

 



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Southwest Minnesota State University
1501 State Street Marshall, MN 56258
Phone: (507) 537-6226
Fax: (507) 537-6147

Last updated: March 21, 2006