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Course Listing

GEOLOGY COURSES 2016-2017

Geological topics, such as environmental hazards, plate tectonics, and mineral resources and society, offered in different years. No prior knowledge of geology is assumed. (Only one Geology 100 course unit may be applied toward divisional credit in the natural sciences. 100 and 140 may be substituted for 130 as a prerequisite for other geology courses and may not be taken for credit after 130.) (May meet the laboratory/field requirement for natural sciences.) 1 unit – Department.

Geology Department 2016-2017 Course Schedule

Catalog Entries

 

GY 140 - Physical Geology

The fundamentals of physical geology: igneous, metamorphic, and sedimentary rocks; basic mineralogy; structural geology; mapping; and examination of local stratigraphic units. (Meets the laboratory/field requirement for the natural sciences.) Prerequisite: No credit after Geology 130. (Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World lab or field requirement.) 1 unit - Anderson, Fricke, Leonard, Myrow, Noblett, Department.

GY 205 - Historical Geology

Historical development of the Earth and life history emphasizing the major tectonic and stratigraphic patterns and the feedback between the physical Earth and biological evolution. Prerequisite: Geology 130 or 140. (Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.) 1 unit - Myrow.

GY 207 - Independent Study in Geology

Independent research projects based on laboratory, field or library investigations. May be taught in extended format or regular course. Prerequisite: Geology 140, consent of instructor and registration at least 1 block prior. .5 to 1 unit - Department.

GY 211 - Earth as a Chemical System

Study of the earth as a chemical system where a limited number of elements react over a range of geologic conditions to form igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks characterized by unique mineral assemblages. Topics covered include processes driving rock-forming reactions, where they take place, and why certain minerals are associated with each rock type. Also included is a study of the chemistry, crystallography and identification of silicate and other common minerals based on their physical, optical and diffractive properties. Field and lab projects enable students to build upon their knowledge of Rocky Mountain geology. Prerequisite: Geology 130 or 140; Chemistry 107. (Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.) 1 unit - Fricke.

GY 212 - Investigating Earth as a Physical System

Studies of rock deformation, landscape formation and earth structure are used as a framework for developing skills in hypothesis formation, project design, data analysis and scientific writing. These skills serve as a foundation for work in higher-level Geology courses and on independent research projects Prerequisite: Geology 130 or 140; Physics 141 or 241 No credit if taken after Geology 210. (Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.) 1 unit - Leonard.

GY 240 - Plate Tectonics

History of Plate Tectonics and its formulation, paleomagnetic record of ocean crust, geodynamics and tectonic theory, active tectonics, current frontiers. Prerequisite: Geology 130 or 140 and one 200-level GY course.  1 unit - Anderson.

GY 250 - Studies in Geology:

Geological topics, such as Advanced Environmental Geology, Hydrology, Mineral Resources Problems and Policies, and Colorado Alpine Environments, offered in different years. (May meet the laboratory/field requirement for natural sciences.) Prerequisite: Geology 130 or 140. (Also listed as Environmental Science 260.) 1 unit – Visiting Professor and Fricke.

                   Block 4 - Title TBD - Visiting Professor 

                   Block 8 - Two Views of One World: Geology & Art in the San Luis Valley - Fricke

GY 305 - Stratigraphy & Sedimentation

Transport and deposition of sediment, modern and ancient depositional systems, basin analysis, and correlation of sedimentary rocks. Field work emphasizes analysis of sedimentary structures and facies models for paleoenvironmental interpretation. Prerequisite: Geology 210 or Geology 211. 1 unit - Myrow.

GY 307 - Independent Study in Geology

Independent research projects based on laboratory, field or library investigations. May be taught in extended format or regular course. Prerequisite: One prior course in the discipline of study, consent of instructor and registration at least one block prior. 1 unit - Department.

GY 308 - Introductory Geophysics

Applications of physics to the study of Earth structure from crust to core. Seismology, magnetics, gravity, and geodesy. Explores history of Earth's formation, current geologic and tectonic problems, and uniqueness of interpretation issues. Prerequisite: Mathematics 125 or Mathematics 126, Physics 141 or Physics 241, and Geology 210 or Geology 212 or consent of instructor. 1 unit - Anderson.

GY 310 - Igneous Petrology

Classification, modes of occurrence and origin of igneous rocks. Prerequisite: Geology 210 or Geology 211 and Chemistry 107. 1 unit - Noblett.

GY 315 - Structural Geology

A study of the geometry and origin of rock structures from microscopic to continental scale. Mechanical behavior of rocks, stress and strain, plate tectonic context of rock deformation. Prerequisite: Geology 210 or Geology 212 and Physics 141 or Physics 241. 1 unit - Visiting Professor.

GY 320 - Surface Processes and Geomorphology

Mechanical and chemical processes involved in the development of landforms. Discussion of weathering and soils, mass movement, fluvial, and glacial/periglacial processes and landforms, tectonic geomorphology, and landscape evolution. Course involves significant components of laboratory and field work. Prerequisite: Geology 210 or Geology 212 and Physics 141 or Physics 241. (Meets the Critical Perspectives: Scientific Investigation of the Natural World requirement.) 1 unit - Leonard.

GY 335 - Geochemistry of the Rock Cycle

Atomic-scale to lithospheric-scale investigation of geologic processes that occur as a result of chemical reactions, and the evidence of these reactions in the rock record. Includes study of chemical behavior of common and rare elements in the earth, and of isotopes of these elements. Theoretical concepts are reinforced by collection and analysis of geochemical data by students, critical reading of journal articles, and by scientific writing summary papers and research proposals. Prerequisite: Geology 210 or Geology 211 and Chemistry 107. 1 unit - Fricke.

GY 405 - Research Topics in Geology:

Student participation in original research. The particular topic, chosen in conjunction with a faculty member, to be included in the course title whenever offered. (May be taken either as a block course or as an extended format course with 1/2 unit of credit per semester.) Prerequisite: consent of instructor. .5 unit - Anderson, Fricke, Leonard, Myrow, Noblett.

GY 445 - Regional Studies in Geology

An in-depth study of a geological region that requires students to apply fundamental knowledge and skills acquired through the course of their college education. Involves in-depth study of primary rock relationships in a field setting, critical reading of published geological literature, and interpretation and synthesis in oral/written formats. Prerequisite: Senior Geology major and consent of instructor. 1 unit – Fricke, Myrow.