Camp Davis COVID-19 Update

President Schlissel announced on Monday that all spring/summer courses at the University of Michigan will be offered on-line.  This decision will impact all Camp Davis courses, as well as other off-campus programs such as the BioStation and NELP.

As a faculty, we are deeply engaged in discussions about how to address this decision and are considering the impacts that this change will have on students both in our major and others signed up for our summer courses.

We are offering three “virtual” field courses this summer.  These courses will engage students in Earth and Environmental Science learning in the world around them. Enrollment is open now!

  • Earth 496 (Earth and Environmental Science Field Methods) – will replace Earth 440 and Earth 450
  • Earth 344 (Energy and the Environment)
  • Earth 296 (Earth and Environmental Science Around Us) – will replace Earth 202 and Earth 116

Both Earth 496 and Earth 296 will exploit placed-based learning in a distributed environment to understand compelling geological, ecosystem, and environmental problems.  Students will be distributed test kits, apps, and materials to integrate place-based learning into an understanding of geological, environmental, and ecological topics.  Week-long modules developed by UM faculty will exploit technology and distributed data collection to integrate student collected data into the understanding of regional and global earth systems challenges.

Earth 496 will be accepted as an alternative to Earth 440 and Earth 450 for those who wish to make this substitution, or it can be taken to fulfill elective requirements for those who wish to attend Camp Davis in the future. We anticipate that this course will also fulfill the PitE experiential learning requirement; we will have to explore the options for having it cover the PitE ecology requirement.  We plan to offer Earth 496 in the summer term (July 1 – Aug. 21), concurrently with virtual offerings of Earth 325 (Environmental Geochemistry, 4cr, core course) and Earth 344 (Energy and the Environment, 4cr, elective), such that majors may be able to obtain up to 9 credits towards their degree program during the summer session.

Earth 296 will be offered as an introductory level earth science course that will fulfill the Earth Introductory Geology prerequisite and the LSA Natural Science distribution requirement.  We anticipate that it will also fulfill the PitE field experience requirement and at least one other PitE requirement. We plan to offer Earth 296 in the spring term (May 5 – June 26), concurrently with virtual offerings of Earth 380 (Natural Resources, Economics and Environment, 4 cr, ULWR) and Earth 305 (Sediments, 4 cr core), such that students may be able to get a jump start on an Earth major, or fulfill distribution and writing requirements with up to 9 cr of courses in the spring term.

Students already enrolled in Camp Davis courses have been contacted directly about these changes. Students interested in enrolling in Earth 496, 344, or 296, who are not currently enrolled in a Camp Davis course for summer 2020, can express interest by e-mailing

We will work to rapidly update information on our summer offerings, and will post additional information and an FAQ on this website. Please check back for additional information in the near future.