*FRSEMR 23I. GeoSciFi Movies: Real vs. Fiction


  • Professor: Miaki Ishii
  • Term: Fall
  • Days: T, Th
  • Time: 4:30-5:45
  • School: Faculty of Arts and Sciences
  • Course ID: 160219
  • Subject Area: Freshman Seminars

Natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, and volcanic eruptions have major impact on society and cause great tragedies. The participants in this seminar will examine one Earth-science related science fiction movie each week and discusses features that are real and fictitious based upon our current understanding of the science of disastrous events. Simple math and science concepts are used to test how likely some effects are (e.g., is magnitude 11 earthquake possible and why?), and to understand the underlying science behind these features (e.g., what are the factors that control the size of an earthquake?). If applicable, we discuss how these scientific ideas are exaggerated to dramatize the effects.

Course Notes: Students will be required to watch the assigned movie prior to class.

Recommended Prep: Students must be comfortable with high-school level math and science.