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Summarize examples of and improvement strategies for waste disposal methods.

Week 5 (Aug 18 – Aug 24)



Due Date


Grading Percent

Discussion 1: Waste Day 3

(1st post)

Discussion 3
Laboratory: Weather and Climate Change Day 7 Laboratory 7
Final Lab Report Day 7 Final Lab Report 25

Note: The online classroom is designed to time students out after 90 minutes of inactivity. Because of this, we strongly suggest that you compose your work in a word processing program and copy and paste it into the discussion post when you are ready to submit it.

Learning Outcomes

This week students will:

  1. Summarize examples of and improvement strategies for waste disposal methods.
  2. Show the importance of weather and human interaction on global climate change through lab experimentation.
  3. Synthesize course concepts in a Final Lab Report.


The final week will require you to utilize your understanding of science and the scientific method gained throughout the course to produce a full laboratory report. This report will be the culmination of all course material and allow you to illustrate their achievement of the course learning outcomes and knowledge gained over the previous five weeks. Furthermore, course readings and one final lab will address issues of pollution and waste management and provide possible future directions for the preservation of our planet.



Required Resources

Required Text

  1. Contemporary Environmental Issues
    1. Chapter 9: Pollution and Waste Management
    2. Chapter 10: Looking Into the Future

Lab Kit

  1. Lab 2: Water Quality and Contamination
  2. Lab 5: Weather and Climate Change

Supplemental Materials

  1. Selhorst, A. (2013). Final lab report template [Word file]. College of Liberal Arts. Ashford University.
    • You will need this form in order to successfully complete the Final Lab Report.
  2. Selhorst, A. (2013). Week five lab reporting form [Word file]. College of Liberal Arts. Ashford University.
    • You will need this form in order to successfully complete this week’s laboratory, “Weather and Climate Change.”


Recommended Resources


  1. Council on Environmental Quality (
    • This website provides an overview of policies and initiatives that support the class discussion on climate and air pollution.
  2. United Nations. (2010). Millennium development goals. Retrieved from
    • This website explains the goals of global policies on the environment which supports the class discussion on environmental sustainability and waste.



To participate in the following discussion, go to this week’s Discussion link in the left navigation.

  1. Waste

    In 2012, Americans alone produced over 250 million tons of garbage. One large component of this waste consisted of oil based plastic bags, which are utilized excessively by grocers, restaurants, and stores nationwide. In order to reduce this source of waste, many countries are banning plastic bags or taxing customers for their use. Using at least two scholarly or reputable resources and your textbook, discuss at least two environmental problems caused by such extensive plastic bag use. If you were in charge, what plan might you propose to reduce or eliminate their use? Discuss the economic impacts of implementing your plan versus the financial impacts of making no change in our current use.

    Your initial post should be at least 150 words in length. Utilize at least two scholarly or reputable resources and your textbook to support your claims. Cite your sources in APA format. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ posts by Day 7.

    Carefully review the Grading Rubric that will be used to evaluate your assignment.



To complete the following assignment, go to this week’s Laboratory link in the left navigation.

Weather and Climate Change

Carefully review the Grading Rubric before beginning the assignment.

Read “Lab 5: Weather and Climate Change.” This lab will allow you to explore the water cycle through the creation of an ecosystem model. Additionally, you will observe how water moves throughout the environment and is affected by weather patterns. Then, you will utilize this information and your eScience lab kit to complete Demonstration 1and Experiment 1 on the Week Five Lab Reporting Form. Make sure to complete all of the following items before submission:

  1. Read through the introductory material.
  2. Perform Demonstration 1: Modeling the Water Cycle using your eScience lab manual and kit.
  3. Answer Post Lab Questions 1 through 3 in complete sentences on the Week Five Lab Reporting Form.
  4. Complete Experiment 1: Water Movement using your eScience lab manual and kit.
  5. Answer Post Lab Questions 1 through 5 in complete sentences on the Week Five Lab Reporting Form.

Submit the Week Five Lab Reporting Form via Waypoint. The document does not need to include a title page or other APA formatting; however, if you utilize any outside sources in your answers you must reference these sources in proper APA format as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.

Late Policy: Written assignments (essays, journals, presentations) are due on the specified days in the course. Written assignments will be subject to a late penalty of up to 10% per day up to three days late. If written assignments are submitted after 72 hours past the due date, instructors can give a penalty up to and including a grade of 0 for the assignment.

Final Lab Report

To complete the following final paper, go to this week’s Final Lab Report link in the left navigation.

Final Lab Report

You are required to write a complete laboratory report that covers all three experiments for “Lab 2: Water Quality and Contamination,” using knowledge gained throughout the course. To begin, download the Final Lab Report Template and utilize this form to ensure proper formatting and inclusion of all required material. Additionally, view the Sample Final Lab Report before beginning this assignment, which will illustrate what a Final Lab Report should look like. You must use at least four scholarly sources and your lab manual to support your points. The report must be six to ten pages in length (excluding the title and reference pages) and formatted according to APA style. For information regarding APA samples and tutorials, visit the Ashford Writing Center, located within the Learning Resources tab on the left navigation toolbar.

The Final Lab Report must contain the following eight sections in this order:

  1. Title Page – This page must include the title of your report, your name, course name, instructor, and date submitted.
  2. Abstract – This section should provide a brief summary of the methods, results, and conclusions. It should allow the reader to see what was done, how it was done, and the results. It should not exceed 200 words and should be the last part written (although it should still appear right after the title page).
  3. Introduction – This section should include background information on water quality and an overview of why the experiment was conducted. It should first contain background information of similar studies previously conducted. This is accomplished by citing existing literature from similar experiments. Secondly, it should provide an objective or a reason why the experiment is being done. Why do we want to know the answer to the question we are asking? Finally, it should end with all three hypotheses from your Week Two experiments. These hypotheses should not be adjusted to reflect the “right” answer. Simply place your previous hypotheses in the report here. You do not lose points for an inaccurate hypothesis; scientists often revise their hypotheses based on scientific evidence following the experiments.
  4. Materials and Methods – This section should provide a detailed description of the materials used in your experiment and how they were used. A step-by-step rundown of your experiment is necessary; however, it should be done in paragraph form, not in a list format. The description should be exact enough to allow for someone reading the report to replicate the experiment, however, it should be in your own words and not simply copied and pasted from the lab manual.
  5. Results – This section should include the data and observations from the experiment. All tables and graphs should be present in this section. In addition to the tables, you must describe the data in text; however, there should be no personal opinions or discussion outside of the results located within this area.
  6. Discussion – This section should interpret your data and provide conclusions. Discuss the meanings of your findings in this area. Was your hypothesis accepted or rejected, and how are you able to determine this? Did the results generate any future questions that might benefit from a new experiment? Were there any outside factors (i.e., temperature, contaminants, time of day) that affected your results? If so, how could you control for these in the future?
  7. Conclusions – This section should provide a brief summary of your work.
  8. References – List references used in APA format as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center.

Carefully review the Grading Rubric for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your assignment.

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