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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Jerry F. Franklin
ESRM 491
Seattle Campus

Field Studies

Independent field study or one time organized field courses with emphasis outside the traditional classroom. Offered: AWSpS.

Class description

This course will focus on the ecology, disturbance regimes, and management of the forests of the Washington Cascade Range. The course will be based at the Wind River Experimental Forest about 10 miles north of the Columbia River. Students will visit and discuss the entire gradient of forests from low to high elevation and from the western to the eastern slopes of the Cascade Range. This will include prime old-growth Douglas-fir--western hemlock--western redcedar forests on the moist western slopes and the dry ponderosa pine and mixed conifer forests found on the eastern slopes. The class will spend two days studying plant succession and ecosystem development in the area affected by the 1980 Mount St. Helens eruption as well as examining areas affected by extensive wildfires over 100 years ago and one very recent wildfire.

We may also participate in an annual mortality check on permanent sample plots.

Student learning goals

Biota and natural history of 1) productive west-side forests, 2) dry forests of ponderosa pine, and 3) subalpine/timberline forests and meadows

Historic forest structure and composition

Consequence of modern human activities including timber harvest and fire suppression

Effects of intense, large-scale disturbances including wildfire and volcanic eruptions

Modern ecologically-based forest management approaches

Learn about and discuss major forest policy issues on federal and other forest lands in the Cascade Range

General method of instruction

Required background reading prior to field trip. Lectures in the field, site visits, and discussion and Q&A of reading, lecture materials, and observations from field visits.

Recommended preparation

We will be camping at the same site every night. We will have access to kitchen and bathroom facilities. Students must provide their own personal gear but university transport will be provided. Familiarity with contents of course website, particularly logistics. Required reading and written responses prior to start of course.

Class assignments and grading

Required reading and written responses prior to start of course. Attention and participation in the field and in evening discussion sessions.

Comprehension of required reading as demonstrated through application to written questions prior to field visits and lectures. Thoughtful, insightful participation in field visits and discussion.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Keala Rachel Hagmann
Date: 05/24/2013