Mission Statement

Department of Geological Sciences, California State University, Fullerton

The Department of Geological Sciences is an interdisciplinary educationand research community whose members are active mentors and role-models. We provide a student-centered educational and research experience that emphasizes critical thinking, communication, and scientific citizenship.

Department Vision

Vision statements are grouped into those related to curriculum and teaching; to student-faculty research; and to the Department community, service and outreach.

a) Vision: Curriculum and Teaching

The Department of Geological Sciences strives to:

1. Provide a high quality, field intensive research-based curriculum that
♦ trains students to be effective critical thinkers and communicators who are scientifically literate leaders and citizens.
2. Encourage faculty to
♦ develop innovative pedagogical approaches, teaching methods, and materials that facilitate an effective learning environment;
♦ increase field-based learning opportunities for undergraduate students (geoscience majors and GE students);
♦ promote access and involvement of undergraduate students (geoscience majors and GE students) to laboratory-based research; and
♦ develop inter-departmental curricular offerings.

b) Vision: Student-Faculty Research

The Department of Geological Sciences strives to:

3. maintain and strengthen faculty expertise in fields that includes research in
♦ active Earth processes; and
♦ interactions between the geosphere/hydrosphere/biosphere/atmosphere.
4. enhance interdisciplinary research with colleagues outside of our department.
5. maintain high-level Scholarly and Creative Activity (SCA) in each faculty member's discipline that
♦ results in peer-reviewed publication in respected journals, books, or other written media;
♦ involves undergraduate and graduate students;
♦ brings in external funds; and
♦ increases the visibility of our department in the Earth science community.
6. provide a high quality, competitive, and nationally recognized graduate program that
♦ requires critical thinking;
♦ provides relevant, original research opportunities;
♦ culminates in a publishable thesis of interest to the greater scientific community; and
♦ provides guidance for future career and/or educational goals.
7. provide undergraduate research opportunities that
♦ require critical thinking;
♦ enhance student learning; and
♦ provide guidance for future career and/or educational goals.

c) Vision: Department Community, Service and Outreach

The Department of Geological Sciences strives to:

8. provide a department environment that
♦ encourages collegiality and collaboration between faculty, staff, and students;
♦ works as a group to enhance and promote our department in the college, university, the public eye, and the Earth science community;
♦ nutures ties with alumni and friends.
9. provide service to the department, university and community that
♦ gives our each faculty member, and our department as a whole, a voice in the university community;
♦ cultivates ties with industry;
♦ cultivate ties with scientific organizations;
♦ cultivate ties between geoscience students, educators and geoscientists in the region; and
♦ seeks interdisciplinary research and teaching opportunities with other departments.
10. increase Earth science awareness in the local community by
♦ serving as a resource of knowledge regarding geoscience processes, products and hazards;
♦ contributing to the education of teachers, community leaders, organizations and the public at large; and
♦ becoming the steward, promoter, and developer of Orange County's paleontologic resources.

Additional Information

The 2006 departmental self-study document on the mission and vision statements (Acrobat (PDF) 79kB Jul14 09) provides some background information on how the department and these statements have evolved over time.