Upon successful completion of Environmental Geochemistry (GEOL 425/525):
1. Global geochemical cycles – Students can describe geochemical cycles of water and carbon in terms of their principle reservoirs, residence times in those reservoirs and fluxes between major reservoirs. They can differentiate between long-timescale processes (such as silicate weathering) and short-timescale processes (such as anthropogenic increase in atmospheric CO2).
2. Equilibrium thermodynamics – Students comprehend and can describe in their own words the laws of thermodynamics. They understand how the equilibrium constant of a reaction can be derived from expressions for chemical potential and Gibbs free energy.
3. Laboratory skills – Students have basic laboratory skills necessary to carry out a supervised geochemical study (e.g. can perform Gram titration of waters in field, can collect water samples using clean methods).
4. Water and soil chemistry – Students have basic knowledge of water and soil chemistry, controls on pH, cation and anion concentrations.
5. Acid-base chemistry – Students have a basic knowledge of acids and bases, their properties and behavior. Students understand the relative strengths of acids and bases and related equilibria.
6. Knowledge of different techniques – Given an environmental geochemical problem, students are aware of geochemical techniques (isotopes, trace elements, etc.) which might be used to address that problem.
7. Current topics – Students are aware of current topics of research in environmental geochemistry and can read and critically discuss a research article.
References and Notes:
Principles of Environmental Geochemistry by Nelson Eby
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