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Anthropocene means “the human age,” and it is a concept that has become widely popular in scientific communities to describe the extreme impacts humans are now having on the climate, the environment, and virtually all living things on Earth.  The term was first introduced by Nobel Prize Laureate Paul Crutzen and Eugene Stormer to argue that humans have become the dominant force on Earth – that we represent a new geologic epoch in the history of our planet.  Anthropocene scholars think about and research the global-scale impacts and long-term dynamics of human relationships with the environment.  But these new scientific paradigms also ask us for something deeper – they challenge us to reconsider the role of humanity on planet Earth and encourage us towards political, economic, and social agendas focused on planetary change. 

The Anthropocene Learning Community will explore different expressions of these kinds of scientific and philosophical discourses through films, group discussions, and faculty-led attendance at events organized by Purdue’s Center for Environment.  All Honors College students are eligible and will enroll in two companion courses, HONR 39901: The Holocene (fall) and HONR 39901: The Anthropocene (spring), with the Learning Community providing deeper, extracurricular exploration of these topics.  Alumni of these courses are also welcome to join and will add considerably to our shared discussions!  

Grants are available to help defray the cost of on-campus housing expenses for honors students with unmet financial need. Please direct questions about the grants in support of Anthropocene to Catharine Patrone (, Senior Director of Academic and Student Affairs.



Current Honors College students

Residential Component

  • Students from this learning community must reside in Third Street Suites
  • Information on this residence hall can be found here
  • Students who are required to reside in a different residence hall (e.g. due to the Honors College or athletics participation) or who do not sign a housing contract may not participate in this learning community
  • Your roommate in most cases will be a member of the learning community
  • Completing a housing contract is a separate process from applying for a learning community


Fall and Spring semesters

Associated Classes


HONR 39901 - The Holocene


HONR 39901 - The Anthropocene


Events and Activities Included:

  • Attend events sponsored by Purdue’s Center for Environment (C4E)
  • Film series on climate change
  • Meals and outings with professor and students

Information above is subject to change. If you are placed in the LC, the associated courses will be on your schedule prior to you registering for the rest of your courses.

Learning Communities ERHT 1275 1st Street, West Lafayette, IN 47906 - (765) 494-5785 or (765) 494-8571,

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