Chair: Professor David M. Bice
Professors: David M. Bice, Shelby J. Boardman, Mary E. Savina
Associate Professor: Cameron Davidson
Assistant Professors: Clinton A. Cowan, Bereket Haileab, Jennifer Macalady
Requirements for a Major:
A minimum of 42 credits in geology selected from the following courses: one introductory geology course (110 or 120), 210, 220, 230, 235, 240, 241, 242, 243, 250, 255, 258, 260, 265, 270, 280, 310, 330, 340, 350, 361, 362, 365, 370, 375 or 380. Each student must complete 6 credits of Geology 400, Integrative Exercise. Each student must also take the following courses: Physics 112 or two of the three following courses: Physics 113, 114 and 115; Chemistry 123, or 128 (and Chemistry 122 if needed as a prerequisite to 123 or 128); and Mathematics 111 and one of the following: Mathematics 121, 215 or Computer Science 117. Prospective geology majors should take most of the 200-level courses. Students should take three or four 200-level courses before taking advanced (300-level) courses. Participation in a recognized summer field camp is highly recommended for all majors. The basic requirements for the major are considered to be minimal. Students planning a career in geology or the earth sciences should take several additional courses in mathematics and other sciences as well as geology. Students interested in earth science education should discuss their plans with Ms. Savina because a number of specific courses must be taken for teacher certification.
Junior and senior majors in other natural sciences may enroll in geology courses numbered 200 and above without the introductory geology prerequisite with permission of the instructor.
GEOL 110. Introduction to Geology An introduction to the study of earth systems, physical processes operating on the earth, and the history of the earth. The interaction of humans with earth systems and processes will be emphasized. Field trips, including an all-day trip, and laboratories included. Not open to students who have taken Geology 120. 6 credits cr., MS, FallC. Davidson, B Haileab, Winter C. Cowan, Spring D. Bice
GEOL 120. Introduction to Environmental Geology Cross-listed with ENTS 120. An introduction to the basic principles needed to understand humankind's use and abuse of soil, water, fuels, and other resources. Field trips and laboratories included. Not open to students who have taken Geology 110. 6 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 210. Geomorphology Cross-listed with ENTS 210. Study of the geological processes and factors which influence the origin and development of the surficial features of the earth. Laboratories and field trips included. Prerequisite: One introductory geology course (110 or 120), or consent of the instructor. 6 credits cr., MS, FallM. Savina
GEOL 220. Tectonics Study of the plate tectonics paradigm, including the historical developments, present status of the paradigm, and outstanding problems. Topics include an introduction to geophysical principles, the early evolution of the Earth, and the search for a driving mechanism of this global system. Laboratories included. Prerequisites: One introductory geology course (110 or 120). 6 credits cr., MS, WinterD. Bice
GEOL 230. Paleobiology Fossils: their anatomy and classification, evolution, and ecology. Special emphasis on the paleobiology of marine invertebrates. Field trips and laboratories included. Prerequisite: One introductory geology course (110 or 120), or consent of the instructor. 6 credits cr., MS, SpringC. Cowan
GEOL 235. Geomicrobiology The study of microbial interactions with earth materials. The class will explore how microorganisms shape earth's environment, both in the present day and over geologic time scales. Major foci of the course will include the diversity of microbial lifestyles and the influence of microbial activity on the geochemistry of natural environments, including global cycling of matter and energy. Laboratories are included. Prerequisites: One introductory geology course (110 or 120) and one introductory Biology course. 6 credits cr., MS, WinterJ. Macalady
GEOL 240. Italy Program: Field Observational Skills This course takes place mainly at the start of the seminar in order to instill some basic field skills that will be used throughout the seminar, and in particular during the independent projects. The course will emphasize detailed mapping and how to make thorough, relevant observations and measurements in the field. 6 credits cr., ND, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 241. Italy Program: Geology of Italy A series of extended field excursions to a variety of locations in the Apennines and the Italian Alps will lead to an understanding of the large-scale evolution of mountain belts and their relationship to Mediterranean plate tectonics. Students will write a couple of papers that synthesize field observations and place them in the larger context of plate tectonic evolution of this portion of the Mediterranean. 3 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 242. Italy Program: Basin Analysis A regional study of the stratigraphic section will form the basis for a synthesis of the history and interplay of tectonics and sedimentation of the region surrounding the Osservatorio before and during the creation of the mountains. This course will involve a combination of lectures, readings, field work, lab work, and a final report. 3 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 243. Italy Program: Event Stratigraphy This class will focus on sudden, unique, and often catastrophic events in earth's history and how such events are deciphered from the rock record. Rocks exposed near the Osservatorio contain evidence of two mass extinction events that are associated with catastrophic asteroid or comet impacts, in addition to several episodes of global ocean stagnation. The course will involve lectures, readings, discussions, and a final paper. 2 Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 250. Mineralogy The study of the chemical and physical properties of minerals, their geologic occurrence and associations. Topics include crystallography, crystal chemistry, x-ray analysis of minerals, phase equilibria, mineral classification, optical crystallography, and environments of mineral formation. Laboratories are included. Prerequisite: One introductory geology course (110 or 120), and Chemistry 120 and 121, or Chemistry 123 or 128. 6 credits cr., MS, WinterB. Haileab
GEOL 255. Petrology An introduction to the fundamental physical, chemical and tectonic principles that are relevant to the petrogenesis of igneous and metamorphic rocks. Labs emphasize description and interpretation of the origin of rocks based on hand specimen and thin section study. Field trips and laboratories are included. Prerequisite: Geology 250. 6 credits cr., MS, SpringC. Davidson
GEOL 258. Geology of Soils Cross-listed with ENTS 258. The study of soil formation, physical and chemical properties of soils especially as related to geomorphology and land use. Laboratories and field trips will emphasize how to describe and interpret soils. Prerequisite: One introductory geology course (110 or 120). 6 credits cr., MS, SpringJ. Macalady
GEOL 260. Sedimentology and Stratigraphy This class is based on field examination of local outcrops of Lower Paleozoic sedimentary rocks. We will spend time determining the processes (and environments) involved in the creation, movement, and deposition of these ancient sediments. Also of interest are the transformation of these sediments into rock and the analysis and correlation of strata. Weekly laboratories and several day-trips (scheduled for weekends) are required. The distance to some outcrops necessitates a late return to campus; participants should note the extended laboratory times for this class. Please consider that both Paleobiology and Geomorphology prepare students for work in Sedimentology, but neither is a prerequisite. 6 credits cr., MS, FallC. Cowan
GEOL 265. Structural Geology The study of the processes and products of crustal deformation. Topics include the mechanics of deformation at a range of scalesfrom crystals to continents, earthquakes, mountain-building, and impacts. Laboratories and one weekend field trip are included. Prerequisites: One introductory geology course (110 or 120); Physics 112 or Physics 113 or 114 and Physics 115 is recommended. 6 credits cr., MS, WinterC. Davidson
GEOL 270. Remote Sensing and GIS Cross-listed with ENTS 270. This course will cover the use of the electromagnetic spectrum (especially visible, infrared and radar wavelengths) to sense features of the earth and planets. We will survey available image types and learn to process and interpret remotely-sensed images. We will also learn theory and practice of geographic information systems. Laboratories included. Prerequisite: Geology 110 or 120; junior or senior standing in science major or permission of instructor. 6 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 310. Advanced Petrology This course will focus on the geochemical and tectonic aspects of a current petrologic problem. We will use the primary literature to examine the tools available to the modern petrologist and their application to one of the major problems of the field. Laboratory will give hands on practice with the collection and evaluation of petrographic and geochemical data, including X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy. Prerequisite: Geology 255. 6 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 340. Hydrology Cross-listed with ENTS 340. A seminar on major principles of ground and surface water hydrology and their application to contemporary hydrologic problems. The course will draw considerably on student-directed investigation of critical areas of study in hydrology. Prerequisites: Geology 210 or junior/senior standing in one of the physical sciences. 6 credits cr., ND, WinterM. Savina
GEOL 350. Advanced Sedimentology This course will build on our understanding of sediments both ancient and modern. Readings will be taken principally from the scientific literature. Field trips and laboratories included. Prerequisite: Geology 260 or permission of the instructor. 6 credits cr., MS, Not offered in 2002-2003.
GEOL 361. Carbonate Sedimentology Lectures and readings from the scientific literature will prepare students for field work on San Salvador Island, Bahamas. We will learn how carbonate sediments are produced and deposited, with focus on modern tropical marine environments. Student proposals for field investigations will constitute a significant portion of the course work. On field trips to local outcrops, we will compare models inferred for Lower Paleozoic carbonates of the Upper Mississippi Valley to those of modern reefs and shallow water settings. Laboratory included. One weekend field trip required. Prerequisites: Geology 110, and either (concurrent enrollment permitted) 210 or 230 or 260, and permission of the instructor. 3 credits cr., MS, FallC. Cowan
GEOL 362. Field Investigations in Modern Carbonate Environments This course starts with two weeks of field investigation over winter break at the College of the Bahamas Gerace Research Center on San Salvador Island, Bahamas. Field instruction will cover such topics as: common marine flora and fauna that generate carbonate sediment; the ecological structure of marine communities, including examination of fringing and patch reefs; strand processes; karst and eolianite; and a visit to a tidal estuary. Most of the field time will be devoted to student research projects on modern and Pleistocene carbonates. During winter term, students will complete their investigations through lab work and analysis, and formally present their results. Laboratory included. Prerequisite: Geology 361. 6 credits cr., MS, WinterC. Cowan
GEOL 370. Geochemistry of Natural Waters Cross-listed with ENTS 371. The main goal of this course is to introduce and tie together the several diverse disciplines that must be brought to bear on hydrogeochemical problems today. This course will explore: principles of geochemistry, applications of chemical thermodynamics to geologic problems, minerals solubility's, stability diagrams, chemical aspects of sedimentary rocks, geochemical tracers, radiogenic isotopes and principles of stable isotope fractionation. Laboratories included. Prerequisite: Chemistry 120 and 121 or 123, or instructor's consent. 6 credits cr., ND, SpringB. Haileab
GEOL 375. Ocean and Atmosphere Dynamics Cross-listed with ENTS 375. An exploration of the origin and evolution of Earth's surficial fluid layers with special emphasis on the recent dynamics of the oceans and atmospheres and their role in the global climate system. We will utilize abundant data on the spatial and temporal variations in the chemistry and physical state of the oceans and atmospheres to characterize the dynamics of these fluids. An important goal of the class will be to understand the connections between the oceans and atmosphere. Laboratories included. Prerequisites: Geology 110 or 120 and consent of the instructor. Introductory classes in Physics and Chemistry are recommended. 6 credits cr., MS, FallD. Bice
GEOL 400. Integrative Exercise Each senior geology major must take a total of six credits of Geology 400. One of the credits will be awarded in the spring term for the preparation and delivery of a formal talk and attendance at the talks of other seniors. The other five credits must be taken in the fall and/or winter terms. Credits can be divided between those two terms or all five credits may be taken in the same term. Geology 400 is a continuing course, and the grade will not be awarded until the end of spring term. 6 credits cr., S/NC, ND, Fall,Winter,SpringStaff