EAS 220: Physical Geology Systems

Kate Pound

St. Cloud State University, St. Cloud, Minnesota
Public four-year institution, primarily undergraduate

Course URL: http://web.stcloudstate.edu/kspound/EAS_220.html
Course Size:


Course Context:

This is the introductory course for geology majors. 20-50% of the students taking the course are science majors fulfilling a science distribution requirement. The course meets for 2 hours and 15 minutes twice weekly, so that 'lab' time is blended in with 'lecture' time. The course includes two local field trips within class time.

Course Goals:

Students will be able to interpret local and regional geologic histories using rock characteristics and map data

Students will be able to apply their knowledge of rock types and geologic history to predict the tectonic affiliation of rock sequences

Students will be able to interpret unfamiliar maps, geologic datasets, and field observations to evaluate geologic hazards and resources

Students will be able to apply their knowledge of current active geologic processes to interpret the ancient geologic record.

How course activities and course structure help students achieve these goals:

The course is organized into 'modules' for each of the main plate boundary types. In each 'module' we will focus on one example, and will build throughout the course from simple to more complex geologic maps and datasets. We will follow a model of guided practice, so that by the end of the course the students will be able to independently analyze and interpret a geologic map, samples, and dataset.

Skills Goals

Students will learn to read for information

Students will improve their writing skills (focus is effective and accurate communication)

How course activities and course structure help students achieve these goals:

Students will be given weekly reading assignments that are 'peppered' throughout the textbook, and will be given a questions to answer, that will give them practice at extracting (not parroting) information. The readings are also aimed to form a segue from one class to another.

The students will work on the skills goals through repeated practice in writing short (1-2 paragraph)summaries of a process that we have been lokking at in class. Students will be given constructive feedback on their writing.