Online Course: Science of Freshwater Streams

February 6, 9:00 AM - 10:15 AM EST $24
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Online Course: Science of Freshwater Streams

A stream runs through a forest in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
Photo: Rebecca Lauver
  • When: Tuesdays, February 6 through March 5, 2024, from 9 to 10:15 a.m.
  • Where: Online via Zoom. Optional in-person session on March 12 from 9 to 11:30 a.m. at Stroud Water Research Center, 970 Spencer Road, Avondale, PA 19311.
  • Audience: Intended for adult students 50 and better. 
  • Cost: $24. Registration is required.
  • Questions: Email

Registration has closed.

This class is offered in partnership with the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at the University of Delaware. No academic credit is offered. You do not need to be an OLLI member to register.

This series of lectures presented by the research team of Stroud Water Research Center will share how streams function and support the life within them. Learn about the dynamic environments in your backyard, from the banks to the bottom. How do the seasons change the habitat? Who lives there? How do we know? Why should we care? 

The Stroud Center is a global leader in freshwater science. An optional visit to its campus will be arranged at the conclusion of the class. There will be no readings assigned for this class, but supplemental sources of information will be shared for those interested in learning more. 

The classes will be offered via Zoom. Connection information will be made available prior to the first class. Recordings can be made and distributed to registered students if they miss a class.

Course Schedule 

Introduction to Freshwater Science 

February 6 – Jen Merrill, Ph.D. Freshwater systems are dynamic, some are ephemeral, and many are threatened by pollution and development. Let’s explore the environmental context for the science of freshwater systems. 

Chemistry of Freshwater Streams 

February 13 – Diana Oviedo Vargas, Ph.D. What does the chemistry of the water tell us about its source, supply, and changes over time? 

Who Lives Here? 

February 20 – Jinjun Kan, Ph.D. From microbes to fish, freshwater inhabitants are unique in their life histories and adaptations. 

Mayflies: Canaries in Coal Mines

February 27 – John Jackson, Ph.D. What makes these aquatic insects (macroinvertebrates) indicator species when things go wrong? What do they tell us about the health of our fresh water? 

Watersheds: Fish Grow on Trees

March 5 – Melinda Daniels, Ph.D. Why are streams influenced by their surroundings and what does that mean for our land use?

Optional Tour of Stroud Water Research Center

March 12, from 9 to 11:30 a.m.