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CalNat American River College courses
Contact: Jennifer Neale, NealeJ@arc.losrios.edu
Sponsor: UC California Naturalist

Take any of the following courses in the Environmental Conservation Program at American River College Department of Natural Resources to obtain California Naturalist Certification. Environmental Conservation is an interdisciplinary program that advances the understanding of ecological systems and their interrelationships, including those with human society. Everyone is welcome! No prerequisites.


NATR 320    Principles of Ecology 
4 Units Course Transferable to UC/CSU
This course covers basic principles of ecology, including the physical and biological factors of different environments in relation to the distribution and abundance of plants and animals. Emphasis is on the management of ecosystems using ecological principles and the understanding of current ecological issues. Field trips are required.

Dates: August 21 - December 16, 2021
Lecture (online): Mondays 1:30 - 4:35 PM
Lab (in-person): Wednesdays 1:30 - 4:35 PM

Biol 332 Intro to Ornithology    
4 Units Course Transferable to UC/CSU, Green Course
This introductory course covers the biology and natural history of birds. Topics include evolutionary origins of birds and of flight, avian anatomy and physiology, and bird behavior, such as migration, song, feeding ecology, and mating systems. Conservation strategies are also investigated. Laboratory work explores bird structure and function, taxonomic classification, and species identification, particularly of those found in California and the western United States. Field trips are required.

Dates: August 21 - December 16, 2021
Lecture (online): Thursdays 9:00 AM - 12:05 PM
Lab (in-person): Tuesdays 9:00 AM - 12:05 PM

Biol 352 Conservation Biology     
4 Units Course Transferable to UC/CSU, Green Course
This course introduces biological and ecological principles involved in understanding and analyzing environmental problems and exploring scientifically sound conservation approaches. Major topics include forms and patterns of biodiversity, values of biodiversity, threats to biodiversity, conservation at the population and species levels, applied conservation biology, and conservation and sustainable development at the local, regional, national, and international levels. This course places emphasis on scientific processes and methodology, while also examining the economic, social, political, and ethical aspects of conservation issues. Course themes are explored through extensive use of interactive case studies, discussion, and activities surrounding relevant current events. Field trips may be required.

Dates: August 21 - December 16, 2021
Lecture (online): Wednesdays 9:00 AM - 12:05 OM


Course fees: ARC class fees are $46 per unit (without financial aid). In addition to unit fees and lab fees (eligible for hardship fee waiver), California Naturalist Certification fee ($55 per student) will be covered for most students by a scholarship fund through the Environmental Conservation program’s current Strong Workforce grant.


New students--apply

Current students--enroll

Enrollment services

Contact: Jennifer Neale, NealeJ@arc.losrios.edu 

Instructor bio: Dr. Jennifer Neale has been working in the environmental field for more than 30 years. Her formal education includes a B.A. in Environmental Studies from U.C. Santa Cruz, M.S. in Wildlife Biology from U.C. Berkeley, Ph.D. in Ecology from U.C. Davis, and Post-doc in Environmental Toxicology and Immunology. She has also studied California floristics with a focus on native vascular plants especially in the context of wildlife habitat.  Her research and teaching background has focused on vertebrate wildlife and terrestrial vascular plants; she has been working full-time as a professor at American River College since 2006.