Science & Nature


We take in the world and understand it through the information conveyed by our senses. Let's examine what we know and think we know about the senses of smell, touch, taste, hearing and vision. We'll do this in an interdisciplinary fashion, considering art, literature, evolution, anatomy and physiology, both normal and abnormal. Starting by reviewing what we learned in school, we'll finish up by considering recent advances in our understanding of the sensory systems.
Robots may well be the future of aging independently and at home. Develop the experience and knowledge to be an informed consumer of care robots. They can help us comply with medication schedules, keep to physical exercise routines, provide emotional support, companionship, and more. Learn about the types of care robots available and the pros and cons of these devices through brief lectures, discussion and hands-on experience with robot pets and a robot companion named Vector.
What is DNA? How is DNA-based life first created? Could there be DNA-based life elsewhere in the universe? Why does life evolve? What does DNA have to do with spirituality? This course explains DNA's place in "Big History" and will help prepare you to think about how DNA has made you become who you are. The 40-page illustrated text, Big History's DNA, forms the basis of this course and will be provided.

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Over the last 100 years, the process of dying has evolved from an event commonly occurring at home to one that mostly occurs in the sterility of an institution. Learn what you can do to die according to your wishes and what rights you have relative to physician-assisted death. Explore the impact of palliative care and hospice on the end of life, and look at the spiritual aspects from the point of view of patient and family.

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Many biological treasures wash up on Florida's beaches. Learn how to identify and classify common seashells, egg cases and exoskeletons in this hands-on, classroom-based course. Expand your understanding of the diversity of life on and beneath our sands.

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Hands-on science isn't just for kids! Ever wonder what plankton actually look like? Or why beach sand varies from place to place? Step into The Florida Aquarium's Carol J. & Barney Barnett Learning Center and find out! In this recently opened, immersive and interactive learning and research center, you'll utilize various lab techniques to study comparative anatomy, animal classification, sedimentology, and more.

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Monsters have long captured the human imagination. Do they exist only in myth, urban legend or science fiction? Explore the real origins and history behind many of these beasts including Chupacabra, the Americas' "goat-sucker," Scotland's Loch Ness Monster and dragons of the world. In this lecture and discussion-based course we will explore why stories of these creatures persist to this day.

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Behind the care of every sea creature is an enormous amount of science. How do we make sure the water is "just right" for sensitive seahorses? How do we create the perfect balance of water chemistry, light, and temperature for corals to thrive? Through a combination of lecture and demonstration, refresh your memory about some basic scientific principles and see how they are used in the care and maintenance of fish and other aquatic life as you enjoy behind-the-scenes visits!
Learn about accepted, nonpolitical scientific information regarding the relationship of fossil fuel energy utilization to greenhouse gas formation and, by association, to global warming. We will examine and challenge the facts, the data and the models, enabling you to arrive at your own conclusions about global warming and climate change. You will also be able to engage confidently in social discussion on the topic. No scientific or technical background is assumed or required.
Join us for a series of lectures by Tampa Audubon experts followed by a one-hour field trip walk. Develop an understanding of how to access and enjoy some of the unique features of the great outdoors of Hillsborough County. Topics include: introduction to birding, native plants, wildlife of the park, wetlands, bluebirds and boxes, birds of prey, wildlife habitats, herons and egrets, and Hillsborough's natural areas. A $25 additional fee is paid at the first class meeting. Park entry fee $2.

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Discover what scientists are learning about our incredibly beautiful, potentially deadly, and largely unknown universe. Cybersecurity: it is a threat to lose sleep over? Evolution: you have a lot more "relatives" than you ever dreamt about. Be astonished with what makes our bodies human. Take a peek at archaeological discoveries on earth, under the sea, and from outer space. Explore some "Weird Science" to decide if UFO's and Bigfoot are myths, delusions or something ... real.
Urinary Incontinence or the involuntary loss of urine from the bladder may affect anyone but is very prevalent in the older community. Women are about five times more likely than men to experience this problem. It can be a result of aging, childbearing, diseases of the nervous system, or associated with other dysfunctions of the urinary bladder. Learn about bladder leakage, its symptoms and incidences; the diagnostic tests and treatment options available.
Over 50 million consumers in the U.S. and up to 100 million worldwide will use voice assistants in 2018. These devices will play a major role in healthcare and patient education. Explore their strengths and limitations, the companies developing smart devices, then consider how voice-activated devices are being used in clinical trials and senior settings. Interact with two market leaders, the Amazon Echo Show and the Lenovo Smart Display (with Google Assistant).
Virtual reality (VR), an immersive experience, is used for diversion therapy as well as a growing number of clinical applications like pain management. Examine the clinical utility of VR in both acute and long-term care settings, and consider its contraindications. Learn about the leading VR vendors, then explore links on your own. Experiment with several VR viewers including Oculus Go by Facebook. Engage in VR experiences yourself and for your loved ones.
HIV, Herpes, Influenza, Ebola, West Nile Fever, Dengue and infections endemic to Florida - all are viruses. What is it about their structure that leads us to label them this way? How do they interact with the body to cause disease? How does the human body combat viruses? How can we use what we have learned to get viruses to work for us? Enlarge your understanding and dispel a few myths.
Discover the more than 1000 animals at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, their habits and habitats. Experienced guides will lead you through unique areas of the zoo each week, including Safari Africa, Asian Gardens and the Lykes Florida Wildlife Center. Explore ways to preserve and protect endangered species and environments in the zoo and in the wild. You will be standing and walking for up to two hours. Zoo pass ($34.95) or membership required.

This course contains no sessions

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