T1+7: How do systems work?

Through a study of the internationally renowned Biosphere II project we will begin to define the key terms we will use in the course, and to explore what a system is. This unit includes a brief history of the Environmental movement, and an introduction to environmental values as a system (i.e. how do different groups of people view the environment?).


By the end of this unit you will be able to:

  • 1.1.1 Outline the concept and characteristics of systems.
  • 1.1.2 Apply the systems concept at a range of scales.
  • 1.1.3 Define the terms open system, closed system and isolated system.
  • 1.1.8 Distinguish between flows (inputs and outputs) and storages (stock) in relation to systems.
  • 1.1.6 Define and explain the principles of positive feedback and negative feedback.
  • 7.1.1 State what is meant by an environmental value system.
  • 7.1.2 Outline the range of environmental philosophies
  • 7.1.4 Outline key historical influences on the development of the modern environmental movement.
  • 3.2.4 Discuss the view that the environment can have its own intrinsic value.
  • 2.4.1 Define the term biome.

Key words

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