Learning Goals

DEPARTMENT GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

GOAL 1: Provide geology majors with a strong background in the geological sciences and in supporting sciences.
OBJECTIVES:

  1. Ability to identify minerals and rocks and to understand and interpret how they form.
  2. Understanding and appreciation of tectonic forces and their large and small scale effects.
  3. Ability to make field observations, to make and interpret geologic maps and cross-sections, and to construct stratigraphic sections.
  4. Understanding and appreciation of geologic time and the fossil record.
  5. Understanding of the regional geology of California and North America.
  6. Understanding of related science disciplines including physics, chemistry, biology and math.

GOAL 2: Educate students regarding the basic methods and philosophy used to conduct scientific research, particularly in the geological sciences.
OBJECTIVES:

  1. Ability to collect and analyze geologic data and draw conclusions to solve geologic problems in both the lab and the field.
  2. Be involved in research under the direction of faculty who are active researchers, thus gaining practical experience in how research is done.

GOAL 3: Help students to develop effective communication skills
OBJECTIVES:

  1. Ability to clearly express ideas in writing.
  2. Ability to clearly express ideas orally.

GOAL 4: Provide students with an opportunity to become familiar with the use of modern scientific instruments.
OBJECTIVES:

  1. Ability to use instruments for collecting field data, such as surveying instruments, Global Positioning System Transceivers, Brunton Transits, Jacob's Staffs.
  2. Ability to use laboratory instruments and equipment, such as an X-ray diffraction instrument, petrographic microscopes, the Scanning Electron Microscope, Transmission Electron Microscope, thin-sectioning equipment and other rock preparation equipment.
  3. Ability to use standard software and to process geologic data on computers.

GOAL 5: Encourage students to develop intellectual independence and to develop skills that will assist them in continuing to learn after graduating.
OBJECTIVES:

  1. Select and develop a research topic.
  2. Effectively utilize information resources, including scientific journals, geologic databases, and resources available on the Internet.