Course Listings


students in the field in MontanaJoin 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 practical 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 sign your enrollment form.

Summer 2020 course listings

(*Course fee includes all 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 your NREM 104 hours requirement! Usually 60-80 hours depending on the course. See below

Course Dates Credits Course fee Description
Canceled due to COVID-19 4 $1,350 NREM 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 may substitute for "A ECL/BIOL 312: Ecology" in the curriculum of A ECL and FOR majors! 80 hours toward NREM 104 (Schieltz, Russell)
Canceled 2 $850 A 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)
Canceled 4 $1,150 (New course number!) A ECL 372x. 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 (Rentz)
      * Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 situation, ISU has canceled all in-person summer 2020 courses. We are very disappointed in this ... but Field Ecology and Wildlife Population Methods are offered every year, so we encourage students to just wait and take these courses next summer, 2021, instead (if you do not need them as pre-requisties for another course before then). The FALL 2020 courses below are also now canceled, due to ISU's change in start date for the Fall 2020 term. We do plan to offer these course next year, so please sign up next fall 2021 instead!

FALL 2020 Courses

Canceled due to COVID-19 3 $950 A ECL 406x 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, while promoting greater engagement between students in the major. A 3-credit FALL TERM travel course, where the two-week travel portion takes places Aug 8-22, 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 (Schieltz, Rentz, Roe, Wolter)
Canceled 3 $950 NREM 496B sec. 1. Field Silviculture. Field silviculture is a field intensive course designed to give you hands-on experience with the art and science of controlling the establishment, composition, structure, and growth of forests to meet objectives. There will be a focus on western forest ecosystems, but the tools and techniques you will learn and practice are broadly applicable.  You will also observe how silviculture can be used to achieve a variety of objectives across diverse ownerships, including both public and private lands in the Rocky Mountains. Counts as a restricted elective. 50 hours toward NREM 104 (Curzon)
Canceled 3 $900 NREM/ARTGR 483x/583x: Science + Design: interpretation of natural resources in Montana. A new 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 travel to NREM's French Conservation Camp in Montana. There they will meet with scientists, US Forest Service rangers, and other stakeholders to learn about natural resource issues in the region. Then they will design and produce new interpretive signs and other visual materials to be installed by the Forest Service at trail heads 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 to design and produce the visual 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)

students hiking in the mountainsstudents enjoying the view at a mountain overlook