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Introductory Ecology

This project adapts available open content from the Ecological Society of America and other open textbooks to create a new resource for introductory ecology. With a focus on the link between basic ecological concepts and environmental issues, the new textbook incorporates readings, activities, and videos.

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The Ecosphere and Environmental Issues
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This textbook is designed for introductory environmental studies and science students. The goal is to teach essential ecological concepts by linking them to key environmental issues. The hope is that students can easily understand how firm grounding in these concepts can help them appreciate and hopefully address the biggest environmental threats of our time. After an initial section on the nature of science and an overview of ecology, the textbook is divided into four sections, each addressing a key environmental concern: global climate change, eutrophication, biodiversity loss, and food supply and security. After a brief introduction to the environmental concern, the book addresses ecological concepts relevant for understanding the issue. Each section wraps up with a return to the environmental concern and insight into how the ecological concepts learned can be applied to the environmental issue.

Table of Contents
I. Getting started
1. Nature of science
2. What do ecologists study?
II. Global climate change
3. Evolution
4. Biogeography and Biomes
III. Eutrophication
5. Energy in ecosystems
6. Biogeochemical cycles
IV. Declining biodiversity
7. The Importance of Biodiversity
8. Threats to Biodiversity
9. Preserving biodiversity
V. Food and water for a growing population
10. Population growth
Community Ecology
11. Soils

Applied Science
Career and Technical Education
Environmental Science
Environmental Studies
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Matthew R
Sarah Sojka
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