How to email us (VERY important)

Make sure and head up each message with a subject line as follows:

ESRM100 "subject" "firstname" "lastname" "studentnumber"

Where "subject" is the subject of your message, "firstname" is your first name, "lastname" is your last name and "studentnumber" is your student number, particularly if you are not using a UW email address to send your message. For instance, if I sent a message to, it might read:

ESRM100 project topic Rob Harrison 8734567

ESRM100 Project Instructions

Note: All projects sent by email must contain your first and last name in the filename and the date submitted in the format LastFirstYYMMDD. For instance, if you submit a word document, the following format will be best:


would be the project name that Rob would submit on April 6, 2012, for instance.  

The project will entail some aspect of Environmental Science. 

The Odegaard Writing Center is a good resource for help on any writing assignments:

You need to email by the date on the class syllabus.

Please turn in your project writeup by email with the project as an attached file.  Late projects will be deducted 10% for the first week after the due date (Tuesday-Monday).  Another 10% will be deducted for every week late.  Send to 

Make sure that you receive and keep the response from eschelp that shows that we received your project OK. If there is any question about whether or not you turned in your project on time, our email back to you that we received it OK is your proof that you did. Otherwise, any late Projects will need to be graded as late in fairness to the students that did turn in projects on time.

Project Options

Option 1

A Research Paper

The Odegaard Writing Center is a good resource for help on any writing assignments:

Choose an environmental topic/issue that interests you and do a literature search on it. This research project should involve some environmental science topic which is important to human society. The paper should contain a minimum of at least 8 typewritten pages (around 3000 words) of your own written text, double spaced and 12 Times New Roman font.  Figures, tables, quoted text and/or photos add to the paper, but do not count toward the 8 page minimum (for any credit at all) of written material.  If the project is not at least 8 pages long, it will be returned ungraded. It is best to write more than 8 pages to make sure. (Please reduce the file size of any photos you attach so that they are appropriate for email.)  Your report will be graded on content, research effort, organization and writing (including English, grammar, spelling etc.).   

Remember to reference all of your sources and be careful not to plagiarize (see plagiarism-policy.html for a description  of plagiarism and how to avoid it).  Additionally, this paper should include a literature cited (bibliography) section at the end referencing all your information sources (see below for examples).  You should cite at least 8 different references in your paper for each participant; at least 4 of these references (per participant) must be from a source other than a website.

The content score will be negatively affected if the paper is just a series of quotations.  Quoted material is also not part of the 8 pages of your text. Though this is not plagiarism, it is poor writing.  The paper needs to portray the knowledge you have gained from your research. Your opinion is welcome in this paper, but it must be supported with more than just your opinion. Published reference materials can greatly support an opinion.

Option 2

Environmental Service Option

This option involves choosing a local environmental organization/agency and volunteering (Volunteer opportunities) for at minimum 3 hours.  You are required to work with the organization during the entire scheduled work party time (note that if the work party you attend is less than 3 hours you will need to volunteer two separate times to fulfill your project requirements). After your volunteer work, write a minimum of 2 completely full typewritten pages and greater than 700 words of your written text, double spaced, and 12 Times New Roman font about what you did, why the organization/agency needed this work, and how this work contributes to our environment. Please include a cover sheet with your name and student number.  The 2 pages of your written text is the minimum to receive a grade. These typewritten pages are to be your own words and other material (photos, tables, reference section, quoted material, etc.) do not count toward the page total. Reports less than 2 pages can't receive any credit. Photos of your activity will add credit, particularly if they clearly explain what you did and how it helped the environment with good captions. 

Research of your own that helps explain the history and environmental significance of your volunteer work is required to receive an average grade. Quotes, ideas and paraphrased material must have citations both in the body of the text and in a references section. If you reference any organizations or cite any information please include a literature cited section (bibliography) at the end referencing all your information sources (see below for examples).  Your report will be graded on completeness, content, environmental impact, organization, and writing (including English, grammar, spelling etc.) in addition to your volunteer effort. 

Completion of the service work option will also require an email notification from the organization/agency that you did in fact contribute at least one entire scheduled work time and when that work was accomplished. Have this email sent to:  The volunteer organization must indicate the number of hours you worked.  An incomplete volunteer shift will be given less than full credit. Reports that do not meet the minimum of 2 full pages of description of your project in your words cannot receive any credit. 

After the required project is done (either option 1, 2 or 3), Option 3 can be repeated for additional credit. Follow the same instructions as above and submit it as an extra credit when the required project is due by contacting A maximum of 0.2 points can be added to your final grade for choosing this additional work. 

Remember to reference all of your sources and be careful not to plagiarize (see plagiarism-policy.html for a description  of plagiarism and how to avoid it).  

To see a list of volunteer organizations, click here.

No-Shows: Important note: Do not sign up for a volunteer event and then not attend. Do let us know well in advance if you will not be able to attend after signing up. Many volunteer events will fill, and if you take up a spot from another student in a full event if you don't then attend. If you are a "no-show" 0.1 points will be deducted from your final grade.
Option 3 - W Credit

If you wish to receive a 'W' credit for the course, the paper you write will need to fulfill the criteria set forth in the 'W' Credit Requirements Page in addition to the criteria set forth for Project Option #1. We require that there be at least 10-15 pages of your written material for W credit. Figures, tables, quoted text and/or photos add to the paper, but do not count toward the 10-15 page minimum.  If the project is not at least 10 pages long, it cannot earn W credit per University policy. It is best to write significantly more than 10 pages to be sure. Make sure and put "Project 4 W credit" both in the filename of drafts and final reports, and also on the first (title) page of your reports.  


Earning an average, above average, and excellent grade: Some students in the past have expressed that if they follow the instructions, they expect a perfect grade. Please don't think this, as you are likely to be disappointed if you make a modest effort and expect an "A" grade. It is extremely difficult for a student to earn a nearly perfect grade. Remember that a 94% final percentage grade (including any "curve" which is applied) is a 4.0, the highest grade possible for the class. It will be very hard to justify a grade of 94% or higher unless the GoPost is truly outstanding, unique (not repeating material) and you can demonstrate that to me.

This is the University of Washington, and outstanding writing, ideas and assimilated material are the norm, and graded accordingly. Your opinion in your original submission is great, but unless you have substantial environmental science concepts and support for that in your work, it doesn't merit a high grade.

You need to bring in information from a variety of sources to support your discussion for an excellent post, and the internet is NOT an excellent source of information. Material cited from Wikipedia will not be accepted. Repeat, the internet is NOT an excellent source of information and you will not receive a good grade if you rely solely on the internet.

Another thing that will not get you a high grade is copying material and ideas from other sources without properly citing it. This is a serious issue. We will be looking for uniformity of style in the writing, and if we see large changes that indicate that material and ideas have been copied from elsewhere, we will research the posting extensively for plagiarism. Your own writing is essential for you to get a high grade. Plagiarized material will result in the post not being accepted and possible UW disciplinary actions, so this is definitely not the route to a high grade.

Citations: It will be nearly impossible to receive a high grade without bringing references into your work. If all of your cited material comes from the web, you will not be likely to receive a high grade either. We do not accept Wikipedia as a source of factual information for this class or accept citations from Wikipedia for your work. Do not use Wikipedia. You must go to the library, newspapers, books, etc. and find reference material to support your written work there. References must be included underneath all figures, tables, graphs, and images. If you copy written material word-for-word from a book, website, etc., you must put quotation marks around the text and clearly CITE the author/source of the material.  You may do this in one of two ways:

You must also include a full reference to ALL the sources you use by using in-text citations as well as listing them in proper bibliographic format (in alphabetic order) on a separate reference page.  You may choose to use the APA or MLA styles of citation, but please be consistent in using one or the other throughout your paper and bibliography.

The following websites are great resources for helping you correctly format your in-text and bibliography citations.  There are also examples below of some popular kinds of citations in MLA and APA format.

 Online citation creator:

Examples of MLA Citation:

In-text citation:     (Author last name, page#)
                             (Smith, 272)
                            (Smith, Jones and McCoy, 272) - up to three authors
                            (Smith et al., 272) - for four or more authors

Here is an example of a research paper with citations in the form we would prefer:

Book citation:
 Stalson, Helen. Intellectual Property Rights and U.S. Competitiveness in Trade. Washington, D.C.: National Planning Association, 1987. 52-67. Print.

Web page citation:
"Global Warming - Climate: Uncertainties." EPA Yosemite Information Page. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 2002. Web. 13 January 2003. < .html>.

Newspaper article citation:
Hartocollis, Anemona. "New York State Regulators Toughen Standards for Teachers." New York Times 18 Sep. 1999, New Enland: A12. Print.

Popular magazine article citation:
Pooley, Eric. "How Conservative is McCain." Time 14 Feb. 2000: 40-42. Print.

Journal citation:
 Susskind, Lawrence E., and Louise Dunlap. "The Importance of Nonobjective Judgments in Environmental Impact Assessments." Environmental Impact Assessment Review. 2.4 (1981): 335-366. Print.

Oral (person's words) citation:
Harrison, Rob. Personal Communication. 25 Jul. 2005. Conversation on how to cite references for ESRM100.

Examples of APA Citation:

In-text citation: (Author last name, year published)
                        (Smith, 2002)
                         (Smith, Jones & McCoy, 2002) - up to five authors. For three or more authors, use this format the first time you use an in-text citation in your paper, and for subsequent in-text citations of the SAME SOURCE use (Smith, et al., 2002)
                         (Smith, et al., 2002) - six or more authors

Book citation:
 Stalson, H. (1987). Intellectual property rights and U.S. competitiveness in trade. Washington, D.C.: National Planning Association.

Web page citation:
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) . (2002). Global warming - climate: uncertainties. Retrieved from

Newspaper article citation:
Hartocollis, A. (1999, September 18). New York regulators toughen standards for teachers. New York Times, A12.

Popular magazine article citation:
 Pooley, E. (2000, February 14). How conservative is McCain. Time, 40-42.

Journal citation:
Susskind, L.E., & Dunlap, L. (1999). The Importance of nonobjective judgments in environmental impact assessments. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 2(4), 355-366.

Oral (person's words) citation:
Harrison, R. (Professor). (2005, July 5). Conversation on how to cite references for ESRM 100 [Personal Communication].