Course Offerings

Spring 2016

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

Earth Lab

GEOL 105 - Knapp, Elizabeth P. / Mitchell, Euan C.

The emphasis and location of the study area differs from year to year. Most course activity involves outside field work with a series of multi-day to multi-week field trips. The primary goal of this course is an in-depth introduction to a particular region or field of geological study for introductory level science students. Information about the course is made available prior to the end of the fall term. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different but only four credits may be used toward major requirements.

Spring 2016, GEOL 105-01: First-Year Seminar: Earth Lab: Introduction to the Geology of Hawaii (4). First-Year Seminar. Prerequisite: First-Year class standing. Instructor consent required. An introductory study of earth science and the geology of the Hawaiian Islands.  Its purpose is to provide an unparalleled opportunity to observe a wide variety of geologic processes in action.  This course entails close interaction with the faculty and intensive study amongst the students during the term. (SL) Knapp.

Earth Lab

GEOL 105 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

The emphasis and location of the study area differs from year to year. Most course activity involves outside field work with a series of multi-day to multi-week field trips. The primary goal of this course is an in-depth introduction to a particular region or field of geological study for introductory level science students. Information about the course is made available prior to the end of the fall term. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different but only four credits may be used toward major requirements.

Spring 2016, GEOL 105-02: Earth Lab: Dinosaurs (4) . Prerequisite: First-Year or sophomore standing only. A multidisciplinary investigation into the morphology, classification, and ecology of the dinosaurs and their close relatives; the environmental, climatic, and geographic conditions on earth during the time of the dinosaurs and how geologists make those paleo-environmental interpretations; and the biological principles involved in understanding the origin, evolution, and extinction of the dinosaurs. In addition, students discuss how scientific investigations proceed, how science is conveyed to a larger audience, and why dinosaurs in the media are often portrayed with so many scientific errors. (SL) Leonard-Pingel .

Field Methods in the Appalachians

GEOL 230 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

An introduction to the study of geology in the field with special attention to the methods used by geologists to make, record, and interpret field observations. The course includes study of and field trips in the central Appalachian region.

Environmental Field Methods

GEOL 231 - Jungers, Matthew C.

An introduction to the study of standard methods, equipment and tools used in environmental field investigations. Special attention is given to methods used by geologists to measure, record, and report field observations associated with groundwater, surface water, soil and air. Focus is given to the validity of data obtained using various investigative strategies as well as data handling and presentation. The course has an intensive field component using the local watershed as a model environmental system.

Regional Geology

GEOL 373 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

The emphasis and location of the study area differs from year to year. Most course activity involves outside fieldwork with a series of multi-day to multi-week field trips. Information about the course is available prior to the end of the fall term. May be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different but only four credits may be used toward major requirements.

Spring 2015 topic:

GEOL 373: Advance Field Study in Greece (4). Positioned on the boundary between the African and European tectonic plates, the Greek islands in the Aegean Sea display a remarkable breadth of geology. In this course, students will explore the diverse geology of Greece with a particular emphasis on the regional tectonics. Long-lived subduction of the downgoing African Plate has created features typical of convergent margins, including a large accretionary wedge and an active volcanic arc. Regional stretching of the overriding plate will allow students to explore features common in extensional terrains, such as the metamorphic core complexes exposed in Naxos and other islands of the Cyclades. Additional topics will include high-pressure metamorphism, deformation mechanisms, geomorphology of actively uplifted landscapes, paleomagnetic rotations, and tectonic mélanges. Approximately one week will be spent exploring the geology of Crete, followed by multi-day trips to the islands of Santorini, Naxos, and Syros, and finishing in Athens. As a complement to the geological focus, students will also include tours of the ancient sites of Knossos, Akrotiri, and the Acropolis. Rahl.

Winter 2016

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

General Geology

GEOL 101 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

The study of our physical environment and the processes shaping it. The materials and structure of the Earth's crust, the origin of the landforms, the concept of geologic time, and the nature of the Earth's interior are considered. No credit for students who have completed GEOL 100. Laboratory course.

Global Climate Change

GEOL 141 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

A study of Earth's complex climate system and the impact of human activities on future climates. Through readings, discussions, data analyses and modeling exercises, the past and future changes in temperature, ocean circulation, rainfall, storminess, biogeochemistry, glacial ice extent and sea level are explored.

Water Resources

GEOL 150 - Jungers, Matthew C.

An examination of the quality and quantity of water resources as a limiting factor for life on earth. Issues include resource depletion, pollution, historical use and over-use, remediation, habitat maintenance, and water supply mechanisms. Resource constraints are analyzed from a scientific perspective in order to understand water resource problems and envision solutions.

Selected Topics

GEOL 197 - Mitchell, Euan C.

Selected topical coverage of various timely or general interest subject areas in geology. The topic selected varies from year to year and is announced in advance of the registration period. Topics have included impact and extinction of the dinosaurs; volcanoes and tectonics; geologic consideration in land-use planning; and the geology of national parks. May be repeated for a maximum of four credits if the topic is different.

Winter 2016, GEOL 197-01: Special Topics: Earthquakes and Volcanoes (3). An introduction to volcanoes and earthquakes, and the role of these geologic phenomena in shaping the evolution of Earth and its climate, landscapes, and life. This course addresses the fundamental role of plate tectonics in controlling the occurrence, distribution, and nature of volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, as well as the natural hazards associated with these phenomena. The course focuses on case studies of historical and ancient events, and includes a discussion of risk assessment and hazard mitigation in the context of future events. (SC) Mitchell .

Hydrology

GEOL 240 - Jungers, Matthew C.

Systems and processes of water movement on and below the Earth's surface. Encompasses the theoretical and applied aspects of soil moisture, runoff, flooding, groundwater movement, and water-well use. Numerical evaluation of flow properties from field and lab data describing water movement in soils, aquifers, and streams. Laboratory course.

Structural Geology and Tectonics

GEOL 250 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

Description and methods of analysis of large- and small-scale structural features of the Earth's crust. Topics also include the analysis of geometry, strain and stress as they relate to deformation in the earth. Rock mechanics, application of structural geology in environmental engineering and resource exploration, geometric and computational techniques used in structural analysis, interpretation of geologic maps, and the structural development of mountain systems are also covered. Laboratory course.

Earth Materials II: Geochemistry

GEOL 311 - Mitchell, Euan C.

A laboratory course emphasizing the principles and tools of the chemical composition of Earth materials to interpret petrogenesis. The course focuses on processes occurring below and at the Earth's surface. Topics include: crystal chemistry, magmatic and metamorphic processes, trace element and isotope geochemistry, oxidation and reduction, and water-rock interactions. The laboratory includes both a local field and laboratory component and focuses on using analytical techniques to evaluate chemical composition including electron microscopy, ion chromatography, X-ray diffraction, and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry.

Petroleum Geology and Geophysics

GEOL 335 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

A survey of the theory and practice of petroleum geology and geophysics. Topics covered include the nature and origin of petroleum, a study of where oil and gas accumulate from the perspective of basin analysis, and the basic principles of reflection seismology and petrophysics. The key petroleum system elements of source, charge, seal, reservoir and trap are studied within the context of how a geologist or geophysicist goes about exploring for and developing petroleum accumulations. Emphasis is placed on the Geology use of industry software and data to analyze geologic features, deposits, and basins that are relevant to petroleum exploration and production. Laboratory course.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Harbor, David J.

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 402 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Harbor, David J.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Jungers, Matthew C.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Mitchell, Euan C.

Honors Thesis.

Fall 2015

See complete information about these courses in the course offerings database. For more information about a specific course, including course type, schedule and location, click on its title.

General Geology with Field Emphasis

GEOL 100 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

The study of our physical environment and the processes shaping it. The materials and structure of the Earth's crust, the origin of the landforms, the concept of geologic time, and the nature of the Earth's interior are considered, with special emphasis on field study in the region near Lexington. Laboratory course.

General Geology with Field Emphasis

GEOL 100 - Mitchell, Euan C.

The study of our physical environment and the processes shaping it. The materials and structure of the Earth's crust, the origin of the landforms, the concept of geologic time, and the nature of the Earth's interior are considered, with special emphasis on field study in the region near Lexington. Laboratory course.

General Geology with Field Emphasis

GEOL 100A - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

The study of our physical environment and the processes shaping it. The materials and structure of the Earth's crust, the origin of the landforms, the concept of geologic time, and the nature of the Earth's interior are considered, with special emphasis on field study in the region near Lexington. Laboratory course.

General Geology with Field Emphasis

GEOL 100A - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

The study of our physical environment and the processes shaping it. The materials and structure of the Earth's crust, the origin of the landforms, the concept of geologic time, and the nature of the Earth's interior are considered, with special emphasis on field study in the region near Lexington. Laboratory course.

Oceanography

GEOL 155 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

Introduction to physical oceanography and marine geology; tides, waves, currents, and the interaction of oceans and atmosphere; submarine landscapes; and sedimentary, volcanic, and tectonic activity in the ocean basins.

Geomorphology

GEOL 247 - Jungers, Matthew C.

Investigation of landforms from maps, aerial photographs, digital data, and the analysis of the surficial processes by which they are formed. Laboratory activities include identification and interpretation of topography, field measurements of landscape form and process, and a required weekend field trip. Laboratory course.

Introductory Geophysics

GEOL 275 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

A review of the geophysical methods used to study the interior of the Earth, the magnetic field, isostasy, and earthquake seismology. Attention is given to the methods used in geophysics to collect and analyze data. A gravimeter, a magnetometer, seismic refraction and electrical resistivity equipment are used to collect field data. The data, corrections, and interpretations are incorporated into a technical report for each of the four surveys. Laboratory course.

Sedimentation and Stratigraphy

GEOL 330 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

Properties, origins, and dynamics of sediments and sedimentary rocks. Correlation, organization, and historical interpretation of the sedimentary rock record. Field and laboratory analyses of sedimentary rocks. Laboratory course.

Tectonics and Thermochronology

GEOL 360 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

An introduction to mountain belts and thermochronologic techniques used to quantify tectonic processes. Topics include: orogenic wedges, metamorphic core complexes, rifting, strike-slip systems, orogenic plateaus, the relationship between tectonics and climate, and the use of bedrock and detrital thermochronology to measure rates of faulting, erosion, and exhumation. Concepts are discussed in the context of natural examples, including the Appalachians, the European Alps, the Himalaya, the Andes, and the Basin and Range Province of the southwestern United States.

Seminar

GEOL 395 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Fall 2015:

GEOL 395-01: Geophysics Lab (1). Corequisite: GEOL 275

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Mitchell, Euan C.

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 401 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Directed Individual Study

GEOL 403 - Harbor, David J.

Advanced work and reading in topics selected by the instructor and meeting the special needs of advanced students. This course may be repeated for degree credit if the topics are different.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Harbor, David J.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Leonard-Pingel, Jill S.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Senior Research Thesis

GEOL 472 - Jungers, Matthew C.

Candidates for the Bachelor of Science degree in geology are urged to undertake research on a field or laboratory problem which can lead to the presentation of a senior thesis. Work on this project should be started in the spring term of the junior year. Interested students should consult members of the faculty who will help define the problem and provide guidance during research.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Connors, Christopher D. (Chris)

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Rahl, Jeffrey M.

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Greer, Mary L. (Lisa)

Honors Thesis.

Honors Thesis

GEOL 493 - Mitchell, Euan C.

Honors Thesis.