Intro Geos I

In this section you will content related to my Intro to Geosciences I course



Class structure


Earth is a dynamic planet. The internal processes that cause change within or on the Earth are the focus of this course.  Topics covered include rock formation, volcanism, folding and faulting, earthquakes, and plate tectonics. The concept of scale is a key theme of this course. Even though some of the geologic processes presented occur on a global scale, evidence for each can be found (in many cases) in outcrop or hand sample scale.


In this course, you will learn how to identify the effects of geologic processes. Some,  can not be readily observed while in progress, but have an expression that confirms their existence (again a matter of scale). You’ll be taught how to use surface expressions to infer the processes that created them. More detailed information is found in the syllabus.


Please access our university wide learning environment to download class content:






  • To help you to develop an appreciation of how science in general -- and geology in particular -- are conducted to advance knowledge of the natural world.
  • To help you develop scientific communication skills
  • To help you develop the ability to work with others on group projects. and, perhaps most importantly…….
  • To help you become ”intentional learners” by helping you understand what learning is and what you can do to improve learning outcomes.





How class is taught

This class is taught in a lecture format. However, whenever possible we will have sessions with focused, intense, student activity. Reading assignments are frequent.  Expect to have quizzes every lesson. In some instances, I may decide to show a short film about the topic that we are covering that week. This film will be associated with a series of questions that you must handout at the end of the class lecture.


 Many studies have shown that students learn best by doing things (active learning) instead of just listening (passive learning). This is the reason why numerous quizzes, exercises and homework are extensively used in my class.


This class also involves spiral learning. That means we will cover topics more than once, returning to them several times and in different contexts. The basic order of topics follows the textbook but we will discuss the key principles many times.

Grade Calculation


There will be four in class exams:


Exams: 60 %

In class Activities, Homework and Participation: 20%

Lab: 20%


Grade boundaries will be drawn as follows:

>96=A+, 94.0 – 96 =A, 90.0-93.9=A-, 86-89.9=B+, 82.0 - 85.9=B, 80 - 81.9=B-, 76 -79.9= C+, 72.0 – 75.9.=C, 70 – 71.9=C-, 60.0-69.9=D, <60=F


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