SC/SS 115 Ethnobotany fall 2007 Syllabus

Course notes

Course outline objectives

  1. Course Objectives
    1. Program learning outcomes
      1. Define and explain the concepts, principles, and theories of a field of science.
      2. Demonstrate basic cultural literacy of the Micronesian region.
      3. Demonstrate the ability to read, speak and write effectively in English about Micronesian Studies Program course content.
    2. Specific student learning outcomes for course
      1. Identify local plants by local and scientific names.
      2. Compare and contrast the distinguishing reproductive characteristics of different phyla of plants including mosses, seedless vascular plants, gymnosperms, and angiosperms.
      3. Label the key morphological features of the different phyla of plants including mosses, seedless vascular plants, gymnosperms, and angiosperms including the morphology of the reproductive structures.

      4. Communicate and describe the healing uses of local plants and the cultural contexts in which that healing occurs.
      5. Contribute, participate in, and experience eating local food made from plants and describe the production process.
      6. Communicate and describe the use of plants for transportation, for shelter, and in other material culture applications.
      7. Describe and observe the use, role, and importance of psychoactive plants within their traditional ceremonial cultural contexts.
      8. [optional] Participate in the development and maintenance of an ethnobotanical garden.
  2. Course content
    1. Cyanophyta, mosses, and seedless vascular plants
    2. Healing plants
    3. Gymnosperms
    4. Food plants
    5. Angiosperms: vegetative morphology
    6. Material culture plants
    7. Angiosperms: floral morphology
    8. Psychoactive plants
    9. [optional] Ethnobotanic garden
  3. Textbooks
    1. plantspeopleculture Plants, people, and culture: The Science of Ethnobotany. ©2005 Balick, Michael J., and Cox, Paul Alan. ISBN 0615129536. Distributed by the American Botanical Council, P.O. Box 144345, Austin, Texas, 78714-4345,, Phone: 512-926-4900
    2. A Photographic Atlas for the Botany Laboratory, 4th [or subsequent editions] Kent Van de Graff, John L. Crawley Samuel R. Rushforth. Morton Publishing Company
  4. Required course materials: No specific materials.
  5. Reference materials: No specific materials.
  6. Instructional cost: Field trips or hikes to a local botanic garden where possible. Each term the course on Pohnpei also observes a kava ceremony.
  7. Methods of instruction: This course emphasizes participation via presentations by students, hikes on which students learn to field identify plants, the preparation of local foods to share with other students, field trips to botanic gardens and ethnobotanically relevant ceremonies. Students engage in group work, hikes, field trips, presentations. Other methods include lectures and guest speakers. Evaluation will include tests, a midterm, essay questions, and evidence of work done via presentations.
  8. Evaluation: No credit by evaluation.
  9. Attendance policy: As per COM-FSM policy in current catalog.
  10. Academic honesty: As per COM-FSM policy in current catalog.

Essay information

Course examinations often include essays. The final examination is an essay. An essay must be submitted explaining the plant contributed to the ethnobotanical garden. Essays are marked using the following rubric.

5No errors of grammar or word order.
4Some errors of grammar or word order but communication not impaired.
3Errors of grammar or word order fairly frequent; occasional re-reading necessary for full comprehension.
2Errors of grammar or word order frequent; efforts of interpretation sometimes required on reader's part.
1Errors of grammar or word order very frequent; reader often has to rely on own interpretation.
0 Errors of grammar or word order so severe as to make comprehension virtually impossible.
5Appropriate terms used consistently, clear command of vocabulary, no misspelled words.
4Occasionally uses inappropriate terms or relies on circumlocution; expression of ideas not impaired; or a few misspelled words.
3Uses wrong or inappropriate words fairly frequently; expression of ideas may be limited because of inadequate vocabulary.
2Limited vocabulary and frequent errors clearly hinder expression of ideas.
1Vocabulary so limited and so frequently misused that reader must often rely on own interpretation.
0 Vocabulary limitations so extreme as to make comprehension virtually impossible.
5 Material exceptionally well organized and connected including introduction, body, and conclusion structure.
4 Material well organized; structure could occasionally be clearer but communication not impaired.
3Some lack of organization; re-reading required for clarification of ideas. Missing structures such as an introduction or conclusion.
2Little or no attempt at connectivity, though reader can deduce some organization. Missing two or more structures such as the introduction and conclusion.
1Individual ideas may be clear, but very difficult to deduce connection between them.
0 Lack of organization so severe that communication is seriously impaired.
5Consistent choices in cohesive structures. Ideas flow logically within the body and reflect the introduction. Essay remains on topic. Connector words assist the reader.
4Occasional lack of consistency in choice of cohesive structures and vocabulary but overall ease of communication not impaired.
3'Patchy', with some cohesive structures or vocabulary items noticeably inappropriate to general style. Ideas tend to be disconnected from each other. Reads more like an outline than a coherent essay.
2Cohesive structures or vocabulary items sometimes not only inappropriate but also misused; little sense of ease of communication.
1Communication often impaired by completely inappropriate or misused cohesive structures or vocabulary items.
0A 'hodgepodge' of half-learned misused cohesive structures and vocabulary items rendering communication almost impossible.
10Fully complete and thorough answer to the task set. Addresses the areas required in the essay description. Content coverage is excellent.
8Relevant and adequate answer to the task set with only a single gap or missing task item.
6For the most part answers the task set, though there may be some gaps or redundant information.
4Answer of limited relevance to the task set. Possibly major gaps in treatment of topic and/or pointless repetition.
2The answer bears almost no relation to the task set. Inadequate answer.
0No evidence of assigned task.
Printed formatHandwritten penmanship
5Fully correct format: 12 point serif font, one inch margins, block paragraphs. 5Exemplary near perfect penmanship, letters on the line, correctly formed letters, even and appropriate spacing between letters and words, legible.
4Some minor errors in format such as font size or serif. 4A few inconsistencies in spacing and letter formation, penmanship is neat.
3Frequent errors in format. 3Frequent errors in spacing or letter formation, some difficulties in reading due to legibility.
2Substantive, frequent errors in format, such as text running off the page thus rendering the essay partially incoherent. 2Substantive, frequent errors in spacing, letter formation. Difficult to read, penmanship problematic but still decipherable.
1Formatting errors so fundamental and pervasive as to render the essay unreadable and incomprehensible. 1Penmanship errors so fundamental and pervasive as to render the essay almost unreadable and incomprehensible.
0Blank sheet of paper. 0Illegible scrawl.

Ethnogarden Essay

The ethnogarden essay is a paper that accompanies your plant submission to the ethnobotanical garden at term's end. A first draft is due on the class day after the midterm examination. The paper should, to the extent possible, include the following information: