Course Listings

People standing in from of French Conservation Education Camp signJoin us in Montana this summer for one (or more) of our exciting field courses!

There is no better way to learn the material, while gaining important skills that may help you land a future job, than hands-on in the field. Get excited to spend a lot of time outdoors, in a beautiful setting, with top-notch instructors who will help you learn to DO science and natural resource management, not just read about it. You can check off major requirements or credits, while also getting a one-of-a-kind experience in this incredible ecosystem.

To learn more, just email one of the professors of the course you are interested in (last names in italics at the end of each course description) to set up a short meeting! We would be happy to talk with you and help you enroll.

Summer & Fall 2024 course listings

(*Course fee includes transportation from Ames, food and lodging, but not tuition. Check with the registrar and financial aid office about tuition costs per credit hour for summer session.)

Field hours from all Montana courses count towards NREM 104 hours requirements for A ECL & FOR majors! Usually 60-80 hours depending on the course. See below

For those with financial need: There are a limited number of scholarships available to cover part or all of the Course Fee for these classes for ISU students. Apply on ISU's OneApp platform by the end of February! Look for "ISU Montana Camp Scholarship"

2024 Course DatesCreditsCourse feeSUMMER Course Descriptions
May 25 - June 23  (4 weeks)4$1,800NREM 311. Field Ecology in Montana. Fundamental principles of ecology, including individual organisms, populations, communities and ecosystems. Fully utilizing our outdoor classroom, students will learn and explore natural phenomenon through qualitative observations and quantitative studies. This course may substitute for "A ECL/BIOL 312: Ecology" in the curriculum of A ECL, FOR, & BIOL majors! 80 hours toward NREM 104 (Jennifer Schieltz, Miranda Curzon, Kevin Roe)
June 22 - July 14 (3 weeks)4$1,500A ECL 372. Wildlife Population Methods. Sure, knowing whether animal populations are growing or shrinking is crucial to conservation, management, and well, all of ecology. But how do you accurately estimate population numbers in the real world, when animals are constantly coming and going, giving birth and dying?  In this course, students will use hands-on techniques in the field to develop their skills in estimating those critical population numbers. This may substitute for "A ECL 371: Ecological Methods" in the curriculum of A ECL and FOR majors. 80 hours toward NREM 104 (Mike Rentz)
   Field Ecology and Wildlife Population Methods CAN be taken back-to-back. Students taking both will stay out in Montana for 7 weeks and check off two important courses in one summer!
   FALL 2023 Courses
Aug 9 - 23, 20243$1100SOC 234x: Conservation Values & Ethics. Experiential course learning about conservation values, beliefs, ethics, practices, and policies through classical and contemporary readings in the field of conservation ethics. Exploration of wilderness areas, national parks, forests, and monuments, and the rural communities near these conservation areas, meeting with stakeholders in the conservation ecosystem, and engaging in service learning to gain a first-hand knowledge of the conservation landscape. Travel component to the ISU Montana campus prior to the start of the semester. (Shawn Dorius)
Aug 10 - 23, 20242$1050A ECL/ENT 435x. Entomology Field Trip - Insects of the Intermountain West. Entomology Field Trip provides an introduction to principles and methods of field entomology, including insect collection, identification, and curation, and to the diversity and life history of aquatic- and terrestrial insects. 50 hours toward NREM 104  (Greg Courtney)
Next offered summer 20253 NREM/ARTGR 483x/583x: Science + Design: interpretation of natural resources in Montana. An interdisciplinary service-learning course that brings together art and science students to learn from each other and produce a product for the public. Science students will partner with students from the College of Design to design new interpretive signs and other visual materials for the US Forest Service. The products will be installed by the Forest Service at trails and campgrounds to educate the public and communicate science. Students will travel to Montana for 1.5 weeks of field work, then continue to meet on campus during Fall term to design and produce the final products. Ideal for Interpretation Option students! Counts as an Option elective in Forestry or A ECL and as an ARTGR484/584 class for Design students. 40 hours toward NREM 104 (Schieltz, Braidwood)
Not offered 20243 A ECL 406 Wildlife Camp. A field-intensive, immersive experience for Animal Ecology majors. This course introduces students to techniques, methods, and careers in wildlife research and management. A 3-credit FALL TERM travel course, where the two-week travel portion takes places Aug 5-18, right before fall classes start on campus. The course continues with weekly meetings on campus during the first half of fall term to reflect, analyze, and present data gathered during the field portion. Counts as an Option elective. 60 hours toward NREM 104 (Roe, Wolter)

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