Overnight to week-long field excursions are a hallmark of our courses. To graduate with a major in Geology, students must participate in at least one departmentally organized or approved field experience.
Students conduct individual and class research projects and undertake independent research that culminates in a thesis. Students in our department enjoy a close-knit community, working on class research projects, doing fieldwork, and participating in geology club activities. Examples of post-graduate paths for recent geology alumni include prestigious graduate schools, environmental consulting, mineral resources, petroleum, education, and public-sector earth science. The Department of Geology encourages students to take advantage of Study Away opportunities available at Gustavus.
Courses taken abroad can be applied towards the Geology major, if approved in consultation with the department. International sites that offer Geology courses recognized by the department include programs in Great Britain, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, and Sweden. We emphasize plate tectonics as a unifying theory to explain phenomena such as earthquakes, volcanoes, mountains, continents, and ocean basins, as well as the rocks and minerals formed in those settings. Also central to the course are the roles of gravity, climate, water, and ice in sculpting the landscapes and environments in which we live.
The complete course description can be found in the Environmental Studies listings. We investigate both the physical and the biological evolution of the planet and examine the current scientific explanations for events that have occurred on this planet. Students investigate the geologic process recorded in grains of sand, as part of an individual laboratory project.
A required field trip, conducted over Spring Break, explores the development of hypotheses from field observations. Spring semester. In this course, we will explore mitigation and adaptation strategies related to the earth sciences. Through class sessions and labs students gain a deeper understanding of global climate science and consider how we best can thrive on a changing planet. Students explore topics from the origin of life to the impact of humanity on biodiversity.
Students choose individual research topics about fossils to investigate as part of a term project. We begin this course by studying rivers and glaciers, the most powerful natural geomorphic forces that have shaped our local landscape. We continue on to investigate landslides, weathering, soils, wind and waves, and perhaps the most powerful force of all: humans.
We also take a quantitative, systems-level approach to the interaction of vegetation with the landscape, presently and in the past. One overnight weekend fieldtrip is required. Fall semester. Focus will be on the geological processes that form these deposits. Economic considerations involved in the development and exploitation of these deposits, as well as the environmental concerns associated with the extraction of these deposits, will also be addressed.
Offered occasionally. We will investigate the role of crystal structure and crystal chemistry on the physical properties of minerals. Then, we will examine the distribution and formation of minerals and rocks from the core to the crust of the earth. Students will use hand samples, petrographic microscopes, and analytical tools to identify minerals and rocks. We will also discuss economic minerals and the relationship between earth materials and humans. One overnight weekend field trip is required. CHE is recommended.
Makes things clarified and easily understood throughout great examples and the scan-able smart figure videos. He served until at which time, his assistant, Edward Orton. The basics are laid out clearly, in plain terms and the descriptions tend to ramp up introducing the students to new terminology. The book indeed covers all the topics that are typically presented in an introductory Physical Geology class, and also includes a chapter on the geology of Canada, a welcome addition that can be used as way to illustrate to the students how to connect all the geologic information presented in the course. By taking enough measurements of the concentrations of P, D, and N, we can solve for c1 and c2, and from c1 we can determine the radiometric age of the sample. Further, the text includes a glossary. For example, in Section
We will investigate rock textures and chemical compositions to discern tectonic history. Tracy Quan , a scientist sailing on Expedition , had this to say about the how and why to becoming a geoscientist…. Several times a year, I get the chance to participate in a few outreach programs designed to introduce secondary school students and their teachers to the geosciences. One of the questions that frequently gets asked is what type of classes or skills would be useful for someone who might want to become a geologist.
On one hand, there is no set formula for becoming a geoscientist. Geologists come from all walks of life, with a wide range of different experiences that lead them to geology. I know geologists who previously had careers as educators, businesspeople, mechanics, engineers, artists, even ministers, and those skills helped shape them as geoscientists.
But there are some things that I might recommend. For the most part, I think that the most important trait would be an interest in the field and a willingness to put time and effort into learning and researching.
In addition to taking classes in geology, doing courses in other science and math fields would be useful. Frankly, this is one of the things I especially like about the geosciences: that it does combine concepts from other fields of science. Even though I call myself a geochemist, my research involves concepts from biology, physics, and math, in addition to geology and chemistry.
Here on the JR, I often use my breaks to ask questions of other researchers. Together, all the pieces fit to make a complete picture of a particular environment, process, or time period. Photos: One of the goals of each expedition aboard the JR is to introduce scientists to students around the world through live broadcasts.
A geologist also needs to be a strong communicator in oral, written, and even graphical formats. I think that these communications and interpersonal skills are often under-emphasized for science fields, and students are sometimes surprised at how essential they are.
The ability to communicate with the public about what geologists are learning about the past, present, and future will only become more important in the years to come. What can a person do with a geology degree? Geoscientists serve as experts to assess environmental, energy, or geological risk issues, and even start their own consulting companies. Research areas include the atmosphere, oceans, continents, urban environments, and other planets.