Earth Science

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Thomas Fleming
CHAIRPERSON
Morrill 214
(203) 392-5837 – Fax (203) 392-6885
flemingt1@SouthernCT.edu
Department Secretary: (203) 392-5835

Cynthia Coron, Professor
Thomas Fleming, Professor
James Fullmer, Associate Professor
Michael Knell, Assistant Professor

MAJOR IN EARTH SCIENCE

For students whose career interests are well-defined, the Earth Sciences Department offers major programs leading to the Bachelor of Science degree with concentrations in environmental earth science and geology. Programs leading to the Bachelor of Arts degree and the Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education are also available for students who have more general interests in earth science.

It is desirable that courses in chemistry, physics, and mathematics be completed in the freshman and sophomore years because they are prerequisites to several introductory earth science courses.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Earth Science

Geology Concentration

For students planning professional careers in geology or in environmental geology.

Environmental Earth Science Concentration

For students planning professional careers dealing with environmental concerns involving earth systems.

Bachelor of Arts Degree in Earth Science

Students who are interested in science and who wish to pursue a career in a field in which a scientific or technical background is necessary, but who do not want to follow one of the more specialized programs leading to the Bachelor of Science degree, may enroll in this program.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Secondary Education

For students planning professional careers in teaching grades 7-12. Students who successfully receive the B.S. degree and pass Praxis II will be recommended for Initial Teaching Certification.

The specific professional requirements for Initial Teaching Certification in Connecticut are listed in the secondary education section of the School of Education.

ESC 102 - General Earth Science

The sciences pertaining to the earth and its place in the universe. Major aspects of geology, oceanography, meteorology, and astronomy are considered. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours. Not open to the following majors: biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics majors.

Special Information: Lab Fee Required.

Prerequisite(s): Not open to majors: BIO, CHE, ESC, PHY.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2014

ESC 103 - General Geology

A survey of the fundamental principles of physical and historical geology. Topics include the formation of rocks and minerals, the structure of the earth's interior, the processes that shape the surface landscape, and the evolution of earth over time.

Special Information: Not open to BIO, CHE, ESC, PHY majors. Recommended for non-science majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 104 - Geohazards: The Impact on the Environment

Survey of earth sciences through an examination of natural hazards including causes and effects of earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanoes, floods, landslides, hurricanes, tornados, droughts, wildfires, climate change, and impacts of estraterrestrial objects. Discussion focuses on personal and societal adjustments to these harzards.

Special Information: Not open to majors: BIO, CHE, ESC, PHY. Recommended for non-science majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 105 - General Meteorology

An introduction to meteorology for non-science majors. Includes instrument use, data interpretation, making weather forecasts, and climates and their change. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory 2 hours. Not open to biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 106 - General Oceanography

Physical, chemical, geological, and biological aspects of the ocean basins and waters. The historical development and interdisciplinary nature of oceanography are stressed. Recommended for non-science majors. Not open to biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics majors. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Special Information: Not open to majors: BIO, CHE, ESC, PHY. Recommended for non-science majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 107 - General Astronomy

An introduction to the universe for non-science majors. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory 2 hours. Not open to students who have credit for or are currently registered for ESC 210. Not open to biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 111 - Life Through Time

The origin and evolution of life on earth, including an introduction to the geological and biological foundations of evolutionary theory in addition to an overview of the important evolutionary events in earth history. Laboratory will include examination and comparison of the primary invertebrate and vertebrate fossil groups. Recommended for non-science majors. LEcture, 2 hours; Laboratory, 2 hours.

Special Information: Not open to Earth Science majors.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 100 or higher.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 200 - Physical Geology

Introduction to the fundamental concepts of physical geology including the composition, structure, and dynamics of the earth from the atomic scale of minerals to the planetary scale of plate tectonics. Recommended for students with concentrated interest in the sciences and for those who are interested in pursuing a degree in Earth Science or science teaching certification. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 103 or higher (may be taken concurrently).

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 201 - Historical Geology

Evolution of the earth and life through time, with emphasis on the geologic history of North America. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 103 or higher (may be taken concurrently) or placement above MAT 108.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 205 - Principles of Meteorology

Description of atmospheric phenomena and discussion of their underlying physical principles. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 103 or higher.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2016

ESC 210 - Principles of Astronomy

A survey of astronomy addressing topics ranging from earth’s time of day to the solar system, stars, galaxies, and origin and evolution of the universe. Exploration of the philosophical and societal interaction with the scientific understanding of the universe. Telescopic observing sessions are included. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 108 or higher; and PHY 200 or PHY 210 or higher.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 220 - Physical and Chemical Oceanography

Introduction to the physical and chemical characteristics of ocean water and the ocean basins. The course focuses on the composition and properties of sea water, waves, tides, coastal processes, and ocean circulation. The relationships between chemical and physical oceanographic processes and the geology and biology of the oceans will be explored. Recommended for science majors or those with an aptitude for science. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): MAT 108 or higher (may be taken concurrently) or placement above MAT 108.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 303 - Environmental Earth Science

The collection, interpretation and utilization of natural resource information as it applies to environmental decision making. Lecture, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 200 or ESC 201.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 311 - Mineralogy

Systematic study of minerals. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): CHE 120 and “C” or better in ESC 200 or ESC 201.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 312 - Petrology

Occurrence, classification, and genesis of igneous and metamorphic rocks. Silicate melt equilibria, rock associations, petrography and field relations. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 311.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2015

ESC 315 - Geomorphology

Study of the earth’s surface features with emphasis on fluvial, eolian, and glacial landforms on maps and aerial photographs. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 200 or ESC 201.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2014

ESC 325 - Stratigraphy and Sedimentation

Occurrence, genesis, and physical and chemical properties of sediments. Methods of using ancient sediments to determine geological history. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): 'C' or better in both ESC 201 and ESC 311.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2016

ESC 332 - Invertebrate Paleontology and the Fossil Record

Overview of the major groups of invertebrate fossils and their depositional environments. Class discussions include important concepts in paleontology and paleobiology including the origins of life, speciation, evolutionary theory and the patterns, taphonomy, biostratigraphy, and also ethical issues in paleontology, which students examine in depth as part of a culminating project. A laboratory component includes examination of fossil invertebrates and plants using hand specimens and microscopes. Lecture, 3 hours; Laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): (BIO 102 or ESC 201) and junior or senior status.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2016

ESC 350 - Structural Geology and Tectonics

Orientation, measurement description, and analysis of planar and linear structures in rocks, including folds, faults, and fabrics. Basic concepts of strain and stress and the behavior of earth materials during deformation, linked to regional and structural data, and construction of geologic maps and cross-sections. Lecture, 3 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): 'C' or better in both ESC 201 and ESC 311.

4 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 359 - Engineering Geology

Geological factors which influence engineering practice and environmental impact of engineering works. Soils, groundwater, materials of construction, tunnels, foundations, dams, shoreline installations. Lecture, 2 hours; Laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): ESC 200 or GEO 201.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2016

ESC 398 - AdvancedTopics in Earth Science

Advanced study of subdisciplines and of current issues in the earth sciences.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 200 or equivalent.

1 to 3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 404 - Air Pollution Meteorology

Physical aspects of the atmosphere that determine air quality. Emphasis on modeling. 3 hours lecture.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 205.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2016

ESC 420 - Earth Resources

Geologic occurrence, methods of exploration, production, and use of the principal metallic and non-metallic ores. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in both ESC 201 and ESC 311.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2015

ESC 421 - Marine Geology

Provides a comprehensive survey of modern marine geology with an emphasis on the deep sea. It will examine the physical and chemical processes that control the geology and structure of the continental margins and ocean basins incuding plate tectonics and marine sedimentation. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): 'C' or better in (ESC 200 or ESC 201) and ESC 220 and one ESC course at the 300 or 400 level.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2014

ESC 430 - Field Methods

The techniques of geologic mapping and surveying by brunton compass and plane table. Geologic reports and problem solving based on field observations. Lecture, 1 hour; laboratory, 7 hours.

Prerequisite(s): 'C' or better in ESC 312 or ESC 350 or ESC 325.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2015

ESC 457 - Hydrology

The development and utilization of water resources; ground-water occurrence, stream flow, and flooding. Lecture, 2 hours; laboratory, 2 hours.

Prerequisite(s): 'C' or better in ESC 200 or ESC 201, and one course above ESC 300.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2015

ESC 458 - Soil Science

Study of the soil-forming processes and properties of soil, with special attention to soils in land use decision making. Lecture, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): “C” or better in ESC 311.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 460 - Geochemistry

The chemistry of natural materials and systems including the chemical evolution of the earth over geological time. Covers both practical and theoretical geochemistry, wtih an emphasis on how chemical principles are used to study earth sciences. Laboratory exercises focus on chemical analysis of earth matericals from field collection to common instrumental methods and data analysis. Lecture, 2 hours; Laboratory, 3 hours.

Prerequisite(s): ESC 311.

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: not yet offered

ESC 492 - Undergraduate Thesis Proposal

Preparation of an undergraduate thesis proposal in the earth sciences. Pass/fail only.

Prerequisite(s): Junior or senior ESC majors who have completed a minimum of 24 ESC credits and permission of instructor (faculty mentor).

1 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Fall 2016

ESC 493 - Undergraduate Thesis

The completion of a research project and reporting of this work in an undergraduate thesis, which must be defended successfully before the department.

Prerequisite(s): ESC 492 and permission of instructor (faculty mentor).

3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Spring 2015

ESC 499 - Independent Study and Research

Prerequisite(s): Departmental permission.

1 to 3 credit(s).

Last Term Offered: Summer 2015