Nov 27, 2021  
GRCC Curriculum Database (2021-2022 Academic Year) 
GRCC Curriculum Database (2021-2022 Academic Year)
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EN 286 - Environmental Literature

EN 286 is an introduction to literature that explores our human relationship with nature and the historical, social, and cultural forces that have contributed to modern environmental problems and the search for solutions. The course features a variety of writers and writing styles, highlighting the role of writer as activist as well as the blending of art and science in writing that advocates for sustainable ways of living. Particular attention is paid to indigenous and international voices.
Credit Hours: 3
Contact Hours: 3
School: School of Arts and Sciences
Department: English
Discipline: EN
Last Revision Date Effective:
Course Review & Revision Year: 2025-2026
Course Type:
Elective- Offering designed to expand learning opportunities for degree seeking students. May or may not be required for students in a specific GRCC program.
Course Format:
Lecture - 1:1

General Education Requirement: None
General Education Outcomes:
ILO Competencies (Communication Skills):
ILO Competencies (Critical Thinking Skills):
Evaluate information to identify limitations and biases. (CT5)
ILO Competencies (Social Responsibility Skills):
Discuss how communities, countries, or cultures differ in their values, politics, communication styles, beliefs, and practices. (SR5)
ILO Competencies (Personal Responsibility Skills):

Course Learning Outcomes/ILO Competencies:

  1. Understand and articulate the ways in which environmental literature shapes and reflects cultural values regarding our human relationship with nature.
  2. Analyze the sense of place in environmental literature in order to understand place-based writing from a variety of points of view.
  3. Understand the role that environmental literature plays in inspiring innovation, preserving culture, and encouraging empathy for all of humanity. 
  4. Evaluate information to identify limitations and biases. (CT5)
  5. Discuss how communities, countries, or cultures differ in their values, politics, communication styles, beliefs, and practices. (SR5)

Course Outline:
This course will utilize a variety of writing forms that environmental writers have used to chronicle our human relationship to nature.

I. Early Nature Writers
(Example authors: Thoreau, Muir, Leopold) 
Writers who write “from the margins” of society, and inspire conservation and a land ethic. 

II. Environmental Whistle-Blowers
(Example Authors: Carson, Gibbs, Tempest Williams, Steingraber)
Writers who blend art and science to bring awareness to the dangers of toxic and persistent chemicals used in industry and agriculture.

III. Voices for Sustainable Living
(Example authors: Abbey, Berry, Hill, Moore, McKibben).
Writers who attempt to model sustainable personal and societal relationships with a finite planet.

IV. Native American / Indigenous Perspectives
(Example authors: Harjo, Hogan, Momaday, Silko)
and International Voices
(Example authors: Maathai, Shiva)
Writers working toward environmental and social justice.
Writers who give voice to the disproportionate burdens experienced by indigenous groups and people living in poverty when it comes to environmental degradation and climate change.

Mandatory CLO Competency Assessment Measures:
Name of Industry Recognize Credentials: None
Instructional Strategies:
Lecture: 10-15%

Facilitated discussion: 40-60%

Oral reports / short presentation: 10-15%

Instructional film or other media: 10-15%

Mandatory Course Components:
The outline above follows a chronological or historical approach.  Approaches to teaching may include one of more of the following:

  • A Historical Approach
  • A Thematic Approach (such as Environmental and Social Justice)
  • A Genres Appproach (organizing the course by nonfiction, fiction, poetry, drama, and/or hybrid forms)
  • A Major Authors Approach. 

Academic Program Prerequisite: None
Prerequisites/Other Requirements: EN 101  (C or Higher)
English Prerequisite(s): None
Math Prerequisite(s): None
Course Corerequisite(s): None
Course-Specific Placement Test: None
Consent to Enroll in Course: No Department Consent Required
Total Lecture Hours Per Week: 3
Are there scheduling co-reqs/pre-reqs for the modules?: No
Is this course offered in Modules?:
Faculty Credential Requirements:
Master’s Degree (GRCC general requirement), 18 graduate credit hours in discipline being taught (HLC Requirement)
Faculty Credential Requirement Details: The instructor of EN 286 should possess an MA in English or an MA in Literature or Interdisciplinary Studies such as Environmental Literature, an MFA in Writing or Environmental Writing, or a Master's degree in a closely related field.
General Room Request: None
Maximum Course Enrollment: 25
Equivalent Courses: None
Dual Enrollment Allowed?: No
Number of Times Course can be taken for credit: 1
First Term Valid: Fall 2021 (8/1/2021)
1st Catalog Year: 2021-2022
People Soft Course ID Number: 105058
Non-Credit GRCC Agreement exist?:
If yes, with which Departments?:
Corporate Articulation Agreement exist?:
If yes, with which Companies?:

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