Christopher X J. Jensen
Associate Professor, Pratt Institute

My ecological footprint for 2016-2017

Posted 31 Oct 2016 / 0

It’s that time of year again. Once again I send my students in my Ecology course out to estimate their ecological footprints, so to show that I am holding myself to a similar standard — and to make sure to keep myself ecologically self-aware — I always make sure to make my own footprint public. This should Read More

A Major Post, Anthropogenic Change, Biodiversity Loss, Climate Change, Ecological Footprinting, Ecology Education, Environmental Justice, Ethics, Habitat Destruction, MSCI-270, Ecology, Pollution, Sustainability, Teaching Tools

Science & Sustainability at the Green Meadow Waldorf School

Posted 22 Mar 2016 / 1

On Monday, March 21st I had the pleasure of visiting the Green Meadow Waldorf School in Chestnut Ridge, New York to discuss the role that science plays in helping people to achieve the goal of a sustainable society. In a talk entitled “Pulling Humanity Back Inside the Boundaries: How Science Serves Sustainability“, I gave students some Read More

A Major Post, Belief, Biodiversity Loss, Climate Change, Closed Loop Systems, Community Ecology, Conservation Biology, Ecology Education, Economic sustainability, Economics, Ecosystem Services, Eutrophication, Food, Habitat Destruction, Hypothesis Testing, Methods, Philosophy, Pollution, Public Outreach, Public Policy, Quantitative Analysis, Resource Consumption, Science (General), Sustainability, Sustainable Agriculture, Sustainable Energy, Sustainable Harvesting, System Stability, Teaching, Water Supply, Wild Foods

Why are architects required to take a course focused on ecology and environmental science?

Posted 01 Feb 2016 / 0

Image of what happens to architecture when civilization disappears courtesy of Michael Zawadski via Wikimedia Commons I always end up hearing the question at some point in the semester: why do architects have to take a course that provides in-depth understanding of ecology and environmental science? Implied undercurrents to this basic question include a slew of other Read More

A Minor Post, Architecture, Department of Mathematics & Science, Ecology, Ecology Education, MSCI-271, Ecology for Architects, Pratt Institute, Sustainability, Teaching

ECOmotion Studios on Huffaker’s crazy experiments to make prey and predators coexist

Posted 06 Oct 2015 / 0

Here’s the last of four ECOmotion Studios animated shorts celebrating the Ecological Society of America’s centennial. This one’s a bit thin in my humble opinion. It captures the essentials of Huffaker’s really odd experiments (I am always struck by what extents Huffaker had to go to stabilize predator and prey populations), but mostly uses the narrative Read More

A Minor Post, Ecological Society of America, Ecology Education, Film & Video, Film, Television, & Video, Predation, Science in Art & Design, System Stability

ECOmotion Studios on Simberloff & Wilson’s island biogeography experiments

Posted 06 Oct 2015 / 0

Here’s another classic ecological experiment depicted by the ECOmotion Studios crew, again for the Ecological Society of America‘s centennial. This one uses some of the same narrative approaches as the other shorts in this series, although this one is set to more of a “song” than the others. Narrating an experiment and its rationale is Read More

A Minor Post, Community Ecology, Ecological Modeling, Ecological Society of America, Ecology, Ecology Education, Film & Video, Film, Television, & Video, Science in Art & Design

EcoMotion studios celebrates Robert Paine’s Pisaster experiments

Posted 06 Oct 2015 / 0

Back at the Evolution 2014 meeting I encountered the great “Drift” animated short, which I still use in my evolution course. Well the producers of that short have formed ECOmotion Studios, and they have made a bunch more videos in honor of the Ecological Society of America‘s centennial. This one is a fun “spoken word” jam Read More

A Minor Post, Coevolution, Community Ecology, Competition, Ecological Society of America, Ecology Education, Film & Video, Film, Television, & Video, Intertidal Zones, Keystone Species, Methods, Predation, Science in Art & Design

My new favorite concept mapping activity: depicting whole-system ecological flows

Posted 17 Jul 2015 / 0

Concept mapping is increasingly becoming an important part of my overall approach to teaching. I started out using it in my own research, and quickly realized how valuable it can be as a teaching tool. Because the only real goal of making a concept map is to explore and express understanding of a topic, concept Read More

A Major Post, Community Ecology, Competition, Concept Mapping, Ecology, Ecology Education, Ecosystem Ecology, Information Design, Interactions, Learning Management Systems, Lesson Ideas, MSCI-270, Ecology, MSCI-271, Ecology for Architects, Mutualism, Predation, Teaching Tools

Recommendations for creating a more student-centered classroom

Posted 16 Jul 2014 / 0

Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America “Keys to a Successful Student-Centered Classroom: Three Recommendations“ This is a really nice guide for anyone who wants to do a large-scale course conversion to a student-centered learning approach. These recommendations are sound and valuable, although they may seem overly-obvious to anyone who has been practicing this kind Read More

A Minor Post, Assessment Methods, Ecological Society of America, Ecology Education, Higher Education, Teaching, Teaching Tools

I receive funding to initiate the WmD Project

Posted 06 Mar 2014 / 2

It seemed like a proposal with a dim chance of being funded, but on a bizarre whim of inspiration I decided to apply for a small bit of money so I could initiate a new creative venture that I am calling the WmD Project. It turns out that Pratt’s Faculty Development Fund has a bit Read More

A Major Post, Ecology, Ecology Education, Evolution, Evolution Education, Pratt Institute, Science in Art & Design, The WmD Project

US EPA’s EnviroAtlas project promises to give researchers, students new insights into the geography of ecosystem services

Posted 13 Aug 2013 / 0

At the 2012 Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America, I first learned about a really interesting initiative of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The project –now dubbed EnviroAtlas — is dedicated to creating a free, interactive online tool for exploring the geography of ecosystem services. I had the opportunity to check out a beta version Read More

A Major Post, Biodiversity Loss, Biomes, Bogs & Wetlands, Climate Change, Computer Science, Conservation Biology, Deserts, Ecology, Ecology Education, Ecosystem Services, Educational Software and Apps, Environmental Justice, Freshwater Ecosystems, Geography, Grasslands, Habitat Destruction, Information Design, Invasive Species, Pollution, Ponds & Lakes, Population Pressure, Public Policy, Resource Consumption, Rivers & Streams, Sociology, Sustainability, Teaching, Teaching Tools, Temperate Forest, Temperate Rainforest, Terrestrial, Tropical Forest, Water Supply, Web