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Natural Science (FSNB, FSNC, FSNP)

The field of natural science is concerned with the physical universe from subatomic to cosmic levels of organization, including inanimate as well as living systems, their structure, diversity, interaction, and evolution. Based upon the generation and testing of hypotheses, scientific inquiry is restricted to the study of repeatable, measurable, and verifiable phenomena. Within this field, knowledge may be gained either by controlled experiment or diligent observation, depending upon the phenomena being studied. Similarly, some of the field's methodologies rely upon quantitative analysis, while others are primarily qualitative.

The natural science requirement is designed to enhance students' appreciation of the beauty of science as well as their understanding of the challenges of doing science. Students gain experience in the formulation and testing of hypotheses and are introduced to more than one scientific methodology. The natural science requirement consists of one laboratory course selected from one of the three areas of science represented at the University of Richmond, namely, chemistry, physics, and the biological sciences.

Natural Science Learning Objectives

  1. Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of content material within the course discipline.
  2. Students will be able to recognize testable hypotheses, will demonstrate the ability to formulate good scientific hypotheses, and will understand how to design appropriate tests of hypotheses in a field-specific context.
  3. Students will analyze and interpret data using discipline-specific tools.
  4. Students will be able to interpret their knowledge in meaningful and appropriate ways as they draw conclusions about the significance of scientific data.