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Geology Majors' Handbook

Geology Department goes green with the annual alumni newsletter; featuring highlights from students, faculty, staff, and alumni.  Read all the department's highlights on this link: Precambrian Basement 2016-17 or prior years PCB publications.


Check back soon for Fall Seminars in the Geology Department


Contact us:

General email: or

Precambrian Basement submissions:

Geology Department Chair Jeff Noblett:

Welcome back to CC Geology!

CC Alumna to Geo-CVD 2017!

Two Seismological Society of America (SSA) members met with Congressional staff this week as part of the 10th Annual Geosciences Congressional Visits Day (Geo-CVD). The yearly event brings geoscientists from across the nation to Washington, D.C. to champion federal investment in geoscience programs.  

Through the generosity of its members, SSA sent Nate Lindsey, University of California, Berkeley, and Fransiska Dannemann (CC '12) Southern Methodist University, to carry their message to congressional staff in California and New Mexico, respectively.

The two-day event included a workshop on the complexities of the legislative process, federal funding and the current legislative climate. Participants heard from current staff and former fellows on what it's like to work in Congress and practiced perfecting their "pitch" to Members of Congress. New this year, Geo-CVD organizers added a session on how to use social media to influence the work of Congress. A full day of organized visits to Congress, allowed the geoscientists to meet with Congressional offices and promote their projects and experience.

Every year SSA sends graduate students to Washington, D.C. to make their impact on Capitol Hill. If you would like to learn more about how you, too, can influence legislation or make your voice heard, please watch the recording from SSA's webinar "Become a Superhero for Science!"

For questions about Geo-CVD, please contact Elizabeth Duffy at (story submitted by SSA

Fransiska Dannemann

Fransiska Dannemann '12 in front of the Capitol

Regional Studies class at White Sands National Monument in New Mexico

                              GY445 Regional Studies 2016- 2017

The Geology Department at Colorado College offers introductory and advanced courses in earth sciences that may lead to a B.A. in geology.

Have you ever thought about becoming a science teacher? 

Department Philosophy

The courses in the major are designed to provide a foundation for a professional career in the earth sciences, provide the background for graduate school, which has increasingly become a necessary prerequisite to a professional career, provide an opportunity for students majoring in other fields to combine their expertise with geology, and educate students about the physical environment and our place in it, as part of a liberal arts education.

An excerpt from the nomination statement of Marcia K. McNutt (’74 graduate, Physics), presented to U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, 10/8/09, during the process of her selection as Director of the U.S. Geological Survey.

“My favorite college course was Introduction to Geology, taught by Professor John Lewis. Colorado College uses the Block Plan, in which students take only one course at a time for a month. Introduction to Geology is two blocks long. So my first two months at college were spent with Doc Lewis and about 19 other students scrambling around the Front Range with our backpacks and sleeping bags trying to piece together the geologic history of the Southern Rockies from first principles. We never cracked a book the entire time. I was drawn to the grandeur of the Earth sciences and awed by the time and space scales upon which Earth processes played out. No lab coat. No test tube. Science outside!”

The Block Plan

The Colorado College Block Plan allows us to offer a unique program in geology. Because students take just one course at a time, with class size limited to 25 students, the program is intensive and individualized.

The flexibility of the Block Plan also allows faculty and students to pursue independent study and research projects, during the academic year as well as during summer and winter breaks. Much of this work takes place away from the campus. Many of our students do field-oriented research as part of a required senior seminar project or as part of a distinction thesis.

Students with strong interests in both geology and environmental issues may major in Geology and take elective courses in other environmental sciences and environmental issues. Alternatively, such students may major in Environmental Science complemented with coursework in Geology.