Please note: The course descriptions displayed here are current as of Thursday, June 17, 2021, but the official Course Catalog should be used for all official planning.

GEOS 110: Introduction to the Geosciences

An introduction to the study of the Earth, examining the interdependent global systems (atmosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, tectosphere) that set Earth apart from its planetary neighbors. Emphasis is also placed on human participation in and perturbation of these systems. One lab per week. This course may not be taken on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis.
Units: 6.

GEOS 125: Natural Hazards

Natural disasters are commonplace and are becoming increasingly costly in terms of economic impact and loss of human life. Through readings, lectures, and interactive labs we examine the root causes of natural hazards such as landslides, flooding, earthquakes, and tsunamis. We consider also the role humans have in elevating common hazards into humanitarian disasters, including the potential impact of global climate change on future events.
Units: 6.

GEOS 150: Environmental Science

Presents principles of biology, chemistry, geology, and physics that relate to such environmental issues as resource limitation, pollution, and environmental degradation. Designed to foster understanding of scientific measures of environmental quality. One laboratory per week. This course may not be taken on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 150
Prerequisite: Freshman or sophomore standing; consent of instructor required for juniors and seniors

GEOS 191: Directed Study in Geosciences

Directed study follows a syllabus set primarily by the instructor to meet the needs or interests of an individual student or small group of students. The main goal of directed study is knowledge or skill acquisition, not research or creative work.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 195: Internship in Geosciences

An opportunity for students to gain work experience in industry, government, or the non-profit sector. The academic component, supervised by a Lawrence instructor, includes readings, discussion with the instructor, and a formal presentation and written report, which can be used to satisfy the geoscience department’s senior seminar requirement. (Grades are based on this academic work.) Intended to be used for research that is later developed into an honors project. Applications for an internship must be submitted by the fifth week of the term preceding the proposed internship.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 210: History of the Earth and Life

A study of the physical, chemical, and organic evolution of the Earth since its origin 4.5 billion years ago, with emphasis on times of change and crisis. The course also examines the evolution of ideas about Earth’s history, illustrating how science and culture are inherently entangled.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 230
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110, or GEOL/GEOS 125, or GEOL/GEOS 150

GEOS 213: Geology and Health

NEED FROM DEPT (no longer lab course)
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110, ENST 150, or CHEM 116

GEOS 214: Climate and Climate Change

In this class we will cover the fundamental scientific knowledge about climate, and the long-term patterns and variation in climates over Earth’s history. Students will be able to evaluate and explain major climate drivers in the past, and how past and future human activities are altering climates at both local and global scales.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 235
Prerequisite: GEOL 110 or GEOS 110 or GEOL 150 or GEOS 150

GEOL 220: Environmental Remote Sensing and GIS Applications

Fundamentals of electromagnetic radiation and the interaction of radiation with matter are introduced as the basis of remote sensing. Interpretation and manipulation of remotely sensed images are used to demonstrate the wealth of information remote sensing provides. Applications and case studies from geology, environmental science, ecology, agronomy, and urban planning will be explored. High school physics recommended. Lecture and laboratory.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOL 110; high school physics recommended

GEOS 220: Environmental Remote Sensing and GIS Applications

Fundamentals of electromagnetic radiation and the interaction of radiation with matter are introduced as the basis of remote sensing. Interpretation and manipulation of remotely sensed images are used to demonstrate the wealth of information remote sensing provides. Applications and case studies from geology, environmental science, ecology, agronomy, and urban planning will be explored. High school physics recommended. Lecture and laboratory.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 237
Prerequisite: GEOS 110; high school physics recommended

GEOS 240: The Material World: Geochemistry of Minerals, Rocks and Waters

Low-temperature geochemical processes drive the formation, weathering, and alteration of rocks and minerals and govern the composition of waters at the Earth’s surface. In studying these principles, we will investigate questions about the Earth’s environment from both modern systems and deep geological time. Course includes a three-day field trip to northern Wisconsin in the middle of the term. One lab per week.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 240
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110 or GEOL/GEOS 125, or GEOL/GEOS 150, and CHEM 115

GEOL 245: Mineralogical Analysis

This course serves as an introduction to mineralogical analyses. Students will utilize a variety of analytical techniques including Polarized Light Microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and Scanning Electron Microscopy to study crystallography and mineral chemistry. Students will use these tools to analyze a variety of geological samples including rocks, soils, and sediments. Intended to be taken simultaneously with GEOL 240.
Units: 3.
Prerequisite: Concurrent enrollment in GEOL 240/ENST 240

GEOS 250: Hot Rocks

Introduction to the chemical processes that form igneous and metamorphic rocks, with emphasis on how mineralogical, chemical, and isotopic clues can be used to gather information about Earth’s early history and its inaccessible interior. One lab per week.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110 and CHEM 116; GEOL/GEOS 240 and GEOL/GEOS 245

GEOL 260: Introduction to Paleobiology

An organismal and systems approach to the study of the marine and terrestrial fossil record. The course will focus on diversification and extinction of biotas in the context of the environmental history of Earth. Lecture and laboratory.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOL 110 or BIOL 110

GEOL 265: Biogeochemistry

This course explores fundamental cycles between earth's major reservoirs of nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, carbon and water. Through lecture and group presentations, students will gain a solid understanding of the fundamentals of biogeochemical cycles and the mechanism underlying the biological transformations of those elements. Lecture and laboratory.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: BIOL 130 or GEOL 110

GEOS 265: Biogeochemistry

This course explores fundamental cycles between earth's major reservoirs of nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, carbon and water. Through lecture and group presentations, students will gain a solid understanding of the fundamentals of biogeochemical cycles and the mechanism underlying the biological transformations of those elements. Lecture and laboratory
Units: 6.
Also listed as Biology 265, Environmental Studies 265
Prerequisite: BIOL 130 or GEOL/GEOS 110

GEOS 314: Soil Science

Taking a deeper look at the world beneath our feet, this class focuses on soil formation and development over time and the interactions between soils and other components of the Earth system. We explore the linkages between above-ground and below-ground biotic communities and how they biotic and physical worlds interact with geology to provide the fruitful resource of soil. Exams and laboratory providing hands-on experience with soils.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOS 110, or ENST 150, or instructor approval

GEOL 340: Advanced Geochemistry

A more detailed investigation of geochemical principles and processes through the investigation of important geochemical issues. Readings come heavily from the primary literature.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Geosciences 340, Environmental Studies 330
Prerequisite: GEOL 240 and CHEM 115, or consent of instructor; CHEM 116 recommended

GEOS 340: Advanced Geochemistry

A more detailed investigation of geochemical principles and processes through the investigation of important geochemical issues. Readings come heavily from the primary literature.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Geology 340, Environmental Studies 330
Prerequisite: GEOL 240 and CHEM 115, or consent of instructor; CHEM 116 recommended

GEOS 360: Earth Surface Processes

This course studies the movement of water, solute, and sediment through the landscape and the resulting properties and distribution of surficial earth materials and landforms. Topics include weathering; soil development; runoff; mass movement; river, glacial, and coastal processes; and deposition in sedimentary environments. One lab per week.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 335
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110 and 240 or consent of instructor; PHYS 141 or 151 recommended.

GEOS 370: Tectonophysics

Introduction to the study of the mechanics of Earth’s crust and mantle, including mountain-building processes, seismicity and faulting, mantle convection, interpretation of deformed rocks. Four-day field trip late in term. One lab per week.
Units: 6.
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 240 or consent of instructor

GEOS 390: Tutorial in Geoscience

Advanced work, arranged and carried out in consultation with an instructor.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 391: Directed Study in Geosciences

Directed study follows a syllabus set primarily by the instructor to meet the needs or interests of an individual student or small group of students. The main goal of directed study is knowledge or skill acquisition, not research or creative work.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 395: Internship in Geosciences

An opportunity for students to gain work experience in industry, government, or the non-profit sector. The academic component, supervised by a Lawrence instructor, includes readings, discussion with the instructor, and a formal presentation and written report, which can be used to satisfy the geoscience department’s senior seminar requirement. (Grades are based on this academic work.) Intended to be used for research that is later developed into an honors project. Applications for an internship must be submitted by the fifth week of the term preceding the proposed internship.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 399: Independent Study in Geoscience

Advanced research, arranged in consultation with the department. Students considering an honors project should register for this course, for one or more terms.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOL 430: Watershed Hydrology

An introduction to the basic components of the hydrologic cycle, focusing on surface water and groundwater systems. Measurement and analysis of hydrologic data are emphasized. Application to contemporary issues such as flooding, watershed development, and groundwater contamination will be discussed.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 430, Geosciences 430
Prerequisite: GEOL 110; PHYS 141 or 151 recommended

GEOS 430: Watershed Hydrology

An introduction to the basic components of the hydrologic cycle, focusing on surface water and groundwater systems. Measurement and analysis of hydrologic data are emphasized. Application to contemporary issues such as flooding, watershed development, and groundwater contamination will be discussed.
Units: 6.
Also listed as Environmental Studies 430, Geology 430
Prerequisite: GEOL 110; PHYS 141 or 151 recommended

GEOL 520: Seminar in Selected Topics in Geology

An opportunity for students to read and analyze primary literature on significant topics in geology.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Open to students with a declared major in the natural sciences

GEOS 520: Seminar in Selected Topics in Geoscience

An opportunity for students to read and analyze primary literature on significant topics in geology.

Topic for Winter 2021: History of the Geosciences
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Biogeochemistry or permission of the instructor

GEOS 550: Seminar in Field Geoscience

During spring break, winter break, or prior to Term I, students conduct field investigations at an area of geological complexity, such as the Grand Canyon, the Rocky Mountains, the Lake Superior Region, Hawaii, or Puerto Rico. May be repeated for credit when topic is different.

Topic for:Fall 2020: Geol of the Lake Superior Region
A one-week field course (1-8 Sept) followed by a Fall term seminar on the rich geologic history of the Lake Superior region, spanning nearly three billion years, from Archean time through the present.
Units: 3.
Prerequisite: GEOL/GEOS 110, or GEOL/GEOS 125, or GEOL/GEOS 150, and consent of instructor

GEOS 580: Junior Seminar in Geoscience

The goal of the Junior Seminar is to engage geosciences majors in the scientific process. The course begins with consideration of the history of the geosciences as a discipline. We discuss modes of thinking that are shared with other scientific disciplines as well as those unique to the geosciences, and we read seminal papers that shaped the development of the field. With the guidance of a faculty member, each student identifies a topic to investigate in depth. Students lead discussions, prepare literature reviews and give final presentations on their topics. The topic a student explores in the junior seminar may be (but is not required to be) the same as the one studied intensively in the Senior Capstone course (GEOS 620). For some students, the junior seminar topic may also be linked to a research project to be continued over the summer and/or through the student's senior year as an independent study or honors project.
Units: 3.
Prerequisite: Declared geology or geosciences major or minor and junior standing, or consent of instructor.

GEOS 590: Tutorial in Geoscience

Advanced work, arranged and carried out in consultation with an instructor.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 591: Directed Study in Geosciences

Directed study follows a syllabus set primarily by the instructor to meet the needs or interests of an individual student or small group of students. The main goal of directed study is knowledge or skill acquisition, not research or creative work.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 595: Internship in Geosciences

An opportunity for students to gain work experience in industry, government, or the non-profit sector. The academic component, supervised by a Lawrence instructor, includes readings, discussion with the instructor, and a formal presentation and written report, which can be used to satisfy the geoscience department’s senior seminar requirement. (Grades are based on this academic work.) Intended to be used for research that is later developed into an honors project. Applications for an internship must be submitted by the fifth week of the term preceding the proposed internship.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 599: Independent Study in Geoscience

Units: 1 TO 98.

GEOL 620: Senior Capstone in Geology

The goal of this course is to assist geology majors in becoming scientific practitioners. The course places emphasis on framing testable hypotheses, collecting and analyzing meaningful datasets, and developing models of geologic phenomena. Each student applies these skills to a particular project or problem in the earth sciences.
Units: 3.
Prerequisite: GEOL 580, declared geology major or minor and senior standing, or consent of instructor.

GEOS 620: Senior Capstone in Geoscience

The goal of this course is to assist geology majors in becoming scientific practitioners. The course places emphasis on framing testable hypotheses, collecting and analyzing meaningful datasets, and developing models of geologic phenomena. Each student applies these skills to a particular project or problem in the earth sciences.
Units: 3.
Prerequisite: GEOS 580, declared geology major or minor and senior standing, or consent of instructor.

GEOS 690: Tutorial in Geoscience

Advanced work, arranged and carried out in consultation with an instructor.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 691: Directed Study in Geosciences

Directed study follows a syllabus set primarily by the instructor to meet the needs or interests of an individual student or small group of students. The main goal of directed study is knowledge or skill acquisition, not research or creative work.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 695: Internship in Geoscience

An opportunity for students to gain work experience in industry, government, or the non-profit sector. The academic component, supervised by a Lawrence instructor, includes readings, discussion with the instructor, and a formal presentation and written report, which can be used to satisfy the geoscience department’s senior seminar requirement. (Grades are based on this academic work.) Intended to be used for research that is later developed into an honors project. Applications for an internship must be submitted by the fifth week of the term preceding the proposed internship.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.

GEOS 699: Independent Study in Geoscience

Advanced research, arranged in consultation with the department. Students considering an honors project should register for this course, for one or more terms.
Units: 1 TO 98.
Prerequisite: Counter Registration Required.