Full course description
The Earth Systems course is designed to continue student investigations in Earth Science and Life Science curricula on the connections among Earth's systems through Earth history. These systems - the atmosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, and biosphere - interact through time to produce the Earth's landscapes, ecology, and resources. These standards engage the students in constructing explanations of phenomena fundamental to the sciences of geology and physical geography, including the early history of the Earth, plate tectonics, landform evolution, the Earth's geologic record, weather and climate, and the history of life on Earth. Instruction focuses on development of scientific explanations, rather than mere descriptions of phenomena. Case studies, laboratory exercises, maps, and data analysis is integrated into units. Special attention is paid to topics of current interest (e.g., recent earthquakes, tsunamis, global warming, price of resources) and to potential careers in the geosciences. Earth Systems counts towards satisfying the fourth science requirement for graduation and admission to a Georgia four-year college or university. This course has been approved by the Board of Regents as a fourth science.