Field Study Classes

Summer Field Study classes at UC Berkeley get you out of the classroom and provide a unique opportunity to experience what you are learning. You can literally get your hands dirty excavating in the field and study ecosystems while sitting in the middle of them.

The following field study classes have been offered in recent summers:


ESPM 105A, Sierra Nevada Ecology (4 credits, 3 weeks). Prerequisites: 8 units of biological science or consent of instructor. Includes Saturday sessions. Ecology of forests, mountain meadows, montane chaparral, and riparian zones of the Northern Sierra Nevada. Major emphasis on ecology as a basis for resource management and the maintenance of biological diversity.

ESPM 105B, Forest Measurements (1 credit, 1 week). Prerequisite 105A. This class teaches students how to use common forestry tools, maps, and various sampling methods to collect information about the forest environment. Thirty percent of the time is spent in the classroom learning about the techniques and working up field data. The remaining time is spent in the field applying these techniques in real-world settings. Skills taught will include tree and plot measurement procedures, map reading, and simple field orienteering principles.

ESPM 105C, Silviculture and Utilization (3 credits, 2 weeks). Prerequisites: ESPM 105A, B. Introduction to silvicultural theory, forest operations, and utilization and manufacture of forest products. Evaluation of silviculture for managing forest stands for multiple objectives including regeneration, stand density control, forest growth, genetic improvement, and prescribed burning. Introduction to harvest and access systems, wood structure and quality, and manufacture of forest product. Field trips and lectures to local areas illustrating different approaches to forest problems.

ESPM 105D, Forest Management and Assessment (3 credits, 2 weeks). Prerequisite ESPM 105A, B, C. Develop skills in evaluating forests and developing management strategies to meet ownership objectives. Develop an integrated forest management plan for 160-acre parcel. During first week, inventory and assess ecological condition of the assigned parcel. During second week, develop comprehensive integrated forest resource plan, integrating water, wood, wildlife, range, fisheries, and recreation. Oral reports in both an office and field setting required and written management plan.



K-8 Teaching and Inquiry-Based Lesson Design in the Science and Mathematics Classroom
(UGIS 82 - 2 units) This class surveys basic approaches to K-8 science and math teaching through modeling inquiry-based teaching and discussion. Topics include inquiry-based pedagogy, assessment techniques, lesson plan design and revision, and child development. Students are placed in science and math learning environments with upper elementary and middle school children to practice teaching.

2024 Field Classes