Environmental Studies

Environmental Studies students have the opportunity to learn skills in geospatial modeling using the computer software ArcGIS.  Students in Introduction to Geospatial Analysis (ENTS 120), taught by Tsegaye Nega and Wei-Hsin Fu, complete a final project in which they generate maps using real data to answer a research question of interest to them.  Several student groups in the past have used the Arb as a study site.

Chris Nootenboom '16, Cameron Shorb '16, and Emma Velis '17 studied whether the "edge effects" of trails in the Arboretum had an impact on which habitat voles (a common small mammal) choose to live in.  They compared vole sightings from camera traps to landscape characteristics, and found that proximity to trails was not actually a significant predictor of vole location.  Slope and grass cover were the most important factors in making habitat suitable for voles.  Click on the pdf link to the right to read their poster in more detail!