Classrooms Without Walls

Who says classes have to take place within four walls?

UConn’s Storrs campus and its environs offer abundant opportunities for learning out-of-doors – everything from archeology to illustration, ecology to environmental science, literature to landscape architecture – all within a short distance from the heart of campus.

Robert Thorson, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, addresses an honors class during a field trip to Tift Pond in the Albert E. Moss Sanctuary. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Robert Thorson, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, speaks to students during a field trip to Tift Pond, part of an interdisciplinary first-year honors course, Walden and the American Landscape. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Robert Thorson, professor of geology, reading passages of Thomas Cole and Thoreau to a group of students during a field trip to Tift Pond in the Albert E. Moss Sanctuary. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Professor Thorson reads a passage of Thoreau to students during the class. Tift Pond is in the Albert E. Moss Sanctuary, which is jointly owned by the University, the Town of Mansfield, and Joshua’s Tract. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Janet Pritchard, associate professor of art and art history, holds a discussion group beside Tift Pond, part of the interdisciplinary first-year course Walden and the American Landscape. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Janet Pritchard, associate professor of art and art history, holds a discussion group. Pritchard is one of three faculty members teaching the course, together with Thorson and history professor Robert Gross. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Megan Gauer '16 participates in silent reflection during a field trip to Tift Pond. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Megan Gauer ’16 participates in silent reflection beside Tift Pond. Students turned off their cell phones for the period of reflection. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


Kurt Schwenk, professor of ecology & evolutionary biology, instructs Meghan Masterson ’15, during a class on mammal biology involving setting up a motion sensing camera outdoors near Horsebarn Hill. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

During a class on mammal biology, Kurt Schwenk, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, discusses with Meghan Masterson ’15 what types of animals she might expect to find. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Nicholas Shamp ’15, setting up a motion sensing camera outdoors near Horsebarn Hill during a class instructed by Kurt Schwenk, professor of ecology & evolutionary biology. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Nicholas Shamp ’15 sets up a motion sensing camera during the class, to detect wildlife in the UConn Forest. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


Jenica Allen, assistant professor-in-residence, teaches an outdoor ecology class in the UConn Forest. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Jenica Allen, assistant professor-in-residence, wearing red, teaches a class on forest ecology in the UConn Forest. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Hannah Gousse ’14 takes field notes during an ecology class taught by Jenica Allen, assistant professor-in-residence. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Hannah Gousse ’14 takes field notes during the class, part of a 4000-level course co-taught by Allen and Professor Robin Chazdon. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


Mark Urban, right, assistant professor of ecology & evolutionary biology leads a limnology class at the Fenton River swamp on Oct. 3, 2013. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Mark Urban, right, assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, leads a class on the study of freshwater habitats. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Stephen McKay '14 (CLAS), right, collects samples during a limnology class led by Mark Urban at the Fenton River swamp on Oct. 3, 2013. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Stephen McKay ’14 (CLAS), right, collects samples from the Fenton River swamp during Professor Urban’s class. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)


Students listen to Robert Thorson, professor of geology, teaching a class outdoors along the Fenton River. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Students take notes for GSCI 3020, part of the core curriculum for all environmental science majors. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Robert Thorson, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, teaching a class outdoors along the Fenton River. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Robert Thorson, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, teaches an environmental science class along the Fenton River. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


Peter Leach, teaching assistant for associate professor Kenneth McBride, conducts an Introduction to Archeology class at the Storrs Cemetery. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Peter Leach, teaching assistant for associate professor of anthropology Kevin McBride, conducts an Introduction to Archeology class at the Storrs Cemetery. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Peter Leach, teaching assistant for associate professor Kevin McBride, conducts an Introduction to Archeology class at the Storrs Cemetery. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

Teaching assistant Peter Leach speaks with one of the students after class. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


From left, Tiffany Cousins ’14, Kamilla Dynia ’14, Kevin Evringham (teaching assistant), and Victoria Chilinski ’16, look over water samples taken during an outdoor geography class introducing environmental processes and patterns, especially assessing change in environmental systems using spatial analysis techniques. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

From left, Tiffany Cousins ’14, Kamilla Dynia ’14, Kevin Evringham, graduate teaching assistant for Professor John Jolly-Ballantine, and Victoria Chilinski ’16, look over water samples during an outdoor geography class near Mirror Lake. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

From left, Tim Lucas ’17, Matt Kren ’17, Tyler McCutcheon ’16, and Donovan Fifield. An outdoor geography class introducing the environmental processes and patterns, especially assessing change in environmental systems using spatial analysis techniques. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)

From left, Tim Lucas ’17, Matt Kren ’17, Tyler McCutcheon ’16, and Donovan Fifield listen to their assignment during the class, which focused on hydrology, the study of water. (Sean Flynn/UConn Photo)


Students observe different trees, shrubs, and vines during a walk around campus with teaching assistant Thao Hau, a graduate student in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, as part of Professor Mark Brand's horticulture class on Woody Landscape Plants. (Ariel Dowski '14 (CLAS)/UConn Photo)

Thao Hau, graduate teaching assistant for plant science professor Mark Brand, discusses trees, shrubs, and vines for a horticulture class, Woody Landscape Plants. (Ariel Dowski ’14 (CLAS)/UConn Photo)

Kelsey Brennan '16 (CANR) observes a tree during a walk around campus with teaching assistant Thao Hau, a graduate student in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. (Ariel Dowski '14 (CLAS)/UConn Photo)

Kelsey Brennan ’16 (CANR) observes the features of a shrub near the Dairy Bar, during a walk around campus for a class on woody landscape plants. (Ariel Dowski ’14 (CLAS)/UConn Photo)


Professor Kristin Schwab talks with her senior landscape architecture class. (Juanita Austin '15 (SFA)/UConn Photo)

Professor Kristin Schwab discusses a project to design a Sandy Hook Memorial on campus with her senior landscape architecture class. (Juanita Austin ’15 (SFA)/UConn Photo)

Patrick Purcell '14 (CANR) works on a design project for his landscape architecture class. (Juanita Austin '15 (SFA)/UConn Photo)

Patrick Purcell ’14 (CANR) works on his design for the landscape architecture project, at the Sundial Plaza near Gentry Building. (Juanita Austin ’15 (SFA)/UConn Photo)


Cora Lynn Deibler, professor of fine art, talks with Bruno Perosino '17 (SFA) about his sketches while seated on a bench at Storrs Center on Oct. 28, 2013. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Cora Lynn Deibler, left, professor of art and art history, talks with Bruno Perosino ’17 (SFA) about his sketches, at Storrs Center. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Professor Deibler speaks with students in her Foundation: Studio Practice class as they sketch at Storrs Center. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Professor Deibler speaks with fine arts students in her Foundation: Studio Practice class as they sketch at Storrs Center. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)