Ecosystem Concepts (Online and In-person)

Explore the interactions that drive ecosystem function and learn to identify plants, animals, and fungi in relation to ecological habitats. By developing knowledge of ecological food webs and species interdependence you will have a better understanding of  how to manage natural areas to support biodiversity. We will discuss influential variables which determine habitat quality and shape an ecosystem, such as light, water, fire, and herbivory. An emphasis on the cyclical nature of the seasons and life history of native species will allow insights for short-term and long-term natural areas management. The online and in-person sessions complement each other; please plan to complete the class materials online before coming to the field session. This class can be taken as a component of the Woodland Stewardship Program in natural areas management.

Instructor: Greg Rajsky
Notes: Held online, indoors, and outdoors. Please dress for the weather during the outdoor session with long sleeves and long pants/sturdy footwear. This class will consist of one in-person meeting with an online module completed prior to the in-person session.
Limit 20.
Requirements: Must have access to the internet and provide an email address at registration.  Must know how to use a web browser (ex: Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer) and how to send and receive email. You will be expected to complete the online portion of the course (approximately one hour) before you arrive for the in-person session on February DATE. Students will have access to the online materials for 60 days after the first day they access the course.
Continuing education: This class fulfills a requirement for the Woodland Stewardship Program. 5 CPDH credits for educators and 5 Continuing Education Credits under the Society for Ecological Restoration's Certified Ecological Restoration Practitioner program are available.

Course number


Schedule and Location

Registration closes 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, February 8, 2018
Online component begins: Friday, February 9, 2018
In person component: Sunday, February 18, 2018, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Thornhill Education Center


Fees and Admission

Nonmembers: Fees include admission to the Arboretum. 

$29.00 members
$34.00 nonmembers

Registration Information

CALL: 630-719-2468 (or to be waitlisted)
IN PERSON: Stop by the Visitor Center during open hours.