Major

Thirteen courses:

All majors will take the following courses:
ERSC 141 (Earth's Hazards) or ERSC 142 (Earth's Changing Climate)
ERSC 151 (Foundations of Earth Sciences)
Four of the following core courses:

  • ERSC 302 (Structural Geology)
  • ERSC 305 (Earth Materials)
  • ERSC 309 (Sedimentology and Stratigraphy)
  • ERSC 331 (Geochemistry)
  • A 300-level geophysics course (ERSC 333: Environmental Geophysics or ERSC 335: Global Geophysics and Tectonics)

CHEM 131 or 141 (General Chemistry)

To complete the major a student may choose from three options:

Environmental Geoscience:
ERSC 218 (GIS)
MATH 170 (Single Variable Calculus) or MATH 121 (Elementary Statistics)

Two from the following:
ERSC 201 (Surface Processes)
ERSC 202 (Energy Resources)
ERSC 205 (Introduction to Soil Science)
ERSC 206 (Volcanology)
ERSC 221 (Oceanography)
ERSC 301 (Field Geology)
ERSC 311 Special Topics (when topic is relevant)
ERSC 320 (Hydrogeology)

One from the following:
BIOL 314 (Ecology)
BIOL 412 (Coastal Biology)
CHEM 490 (Environmental Chemistry)
ENST 335 (Analysis and Management of the Aquatic Environment)
ENST 340 (Forest Ecology and Applications)
PHYS 310 (Energy and the Environment)

Capstone - one from the following:
ERSC 491 (Field Camp)
ERSC 500 (Internship for Credit)
ERSC 550 (Independent Research)
ERSC 560 (Student/Faculty Collaborative Research)

Geoscience:
MATH 121 (Elementary Statistics)
MATH 170 (Single Variable Calculus) 
PHYS 131 or PHYS 141

Two from the following:
ERSC 201 (Surface Processes) or ERSC 301 (Field Geology)
ERSC 205 (Introduction to Soil Science)
ERSC 206 (Volcanology) or ERSC 306 (Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology)
ERSC 221 (Oceanography)
ERSC 307 (Paleontology)
ERSC 311 Special Topics (when topic is relevant)

Capstone - one from the following:
ERSC 491 (Field Camp)
ERSC 550 (Independent Research)
ERSC 560 (Student/Faculty Collaborative Research)

Student-designed:
Students must propose a coherent group of at least four upper-level electives within the semester they declare an Earth Sciences major.

MATH 170 (Single Variable Calculus) or MATH 121 (Elementary Statistics)

Capstone - one from the following:
ERSC 491 (Field Camp)
ERSC 500 (Internship for Credit)
ERSC 550 (Independent Research)
ERSC 560 (Student/Faculty Collaborative Research)

Earth Sciences Capstone:
Majors who complete the capstone with research must complete either ERSC 550 (Independent Research) or ERSC 560 (Student/Faculty Collaborative Research).  Students will earn 0.5 credit in the spring semester of the junior year as they conduct background research, formulate a testable hypothesis and draft a project proposal. Should a student be abroad for the first 0.5 credit, the student will meet regularly via Skype (or other appropriate real-time media) with the faculty member on campus who is advising the capstone project.  The second 0.5 credit will be completed in the fall semester of the senior year with data collection, analysis and writing.  If students wish to continue into the spring semester of the senior year, they will be permitted to register for an additional 0.5 or 1.0 credit of research.

Minor

Six courses including 141 or 142, and 151.

Suggested curricular flow through the major

The ERSC major was designed with the requisite flexibility to enable our students to study abroad for either a semester or a full academic year. As a result, we developed the curriculum so that the student who did spend a year abroad could complete all the requirements for the major, as long as they followed a few guidelines.

For Incoming Students Planning to Pursue Earth Sciences as a Major

Year Fall Spring
First Year
  • First Year Seminar
  • ERSC 151
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC 141 or 142
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC Elective
Sophomore
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
Junior
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
Senior
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • Elective
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
  • ERSC Elective
  • Optional Honors Research
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • Elective

 

For Students Beginning the Earth Sciences Major their Sophomore Year

Year Fall Spring
Sophomore
  • ERSC 141 or 142
  • ERSC 151
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC Elective
Junior
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
Senior
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • Optional Honors Research
  • College Distribution Requirement

For Students Beginning the Earth Sciences Major their Junior Year

Year Fall Spring
Junior
  • ERSC 151
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • ERSC 141 or 142
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
Senior
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • ½ Credit Capstone Research
  • ERSC 302, 305, 309, 331 or 333/335
  • CHEM, MATH, PHYS, and/or GIS*
  • ERSC Elective
  • College Distribution Requirement

* ERSC 218 (Geographic Information Systems) is difficult to get into. Therefore you should try to preregister for this class as soon as you can, and keep trying until you get in.

For information regarding the suggested guidelines, please feel free to contact an ERSC faculty member. Students not following these guidelines may still be able to study for a year abroad and still complete the major, but will face a more demanding senior year. Many students who do study abroad for a year are able to complete both the ERSC major and a second major in Archaeology or Environmental Science due to the overlap in these programs of study.

Independent study and independent research

Most of our majors do an Independent Study or Research project during their junior or senior year. Students may ask any faculty member in the department to supervise a project. Ideally, you should try to contact the faculty member during the previous semester to make arrangements for advisement. Seniors are required to complete one of three capstone experiences: independent research completion of a pre-approved field camp, or a semester of student teaching (education track only).

Honors

An Independent Research project may be considered for departmental honors if it demonstrates superior quality of work. Your advisor can nominate you for Honors at the end of the fall semester of your senior year based on your capstone research project. To be considered for Honors, you must have a cumulative GPA across the College of 3.5. Only students doing independent research for capstone can be considered for Honors (i.e., either ERSC 550 or 560). The faculty other than the thesis supervisor will decide if you are worthy of Honors. You can do more independent research in the spring of your senior year up to 2.0 credits of capstone independent research (i.e., 0.5 in JR spring, 0.5-1.0 in SR fall, and 0.5-1.0 additional credit in the SR spring should the student elect to continue). Thus you can take a maximum of 1 credit of independent research per semester in your senior year. Regardless if your research continues into the spring of your senior year, the Honors decision is based on your GPA and thesis at the end of the fall semester of your senior year.

A first draft of the paper should be turned in to your advisor four weeks before the end of classes to allow revisions so that a final draft will be ready for delivery to the research advisor and the other faculty by the last day of classes. Final revisions to the written thesis are made based on the comments of the readers. The oral defense will be scheduled for the spring semester of your senior year. Defenses are open to other majors, interested friends, faculty, and other guests. After the defense, the faculty (without the research advisor) will vote in private, based on careful consideration of the quality of the paper and defense, and of the academic maturity of the student during the project year. Students who successfully complete the defense will be named in the Commencement Program as having achieved honors.

All the previous student theses are bound and shelved in the department reading room/library (K128). Those that received honors have the designation “h” after the year (e.g., 1957h) on the spine.

Internships

Several have been done in the department. Although specific arrangements would need to be made, it is possible to arrange internships with state and federal geologic agencies in Harrisburg. Students have also done internships with local consulting companies. See any member of the department faculty for possible arrangements. 

Opportunities for off-campus study

To be an effective Earth Scientist, it benefits you to have seen as much of the planet as possible.  This helps you appreciate the atmospheric, hydrospheric, biospheric, and geospheric diversity of our planet.  With proper advance planning and declaring your major early, you can take some interesting courses abroad and see more of the world

Co-curricular activities/programs

The Geology Club is a student-run group that organizes field trips and arranges for speakers during the year. Any Dickinson student may join the group, and it is common for some non-majors to belong. Check them out at https://www.facebook.com/DickinsonGeoClub/

Each semester the department sponsors a variety of field trips for majors and those taking intro earth sciences courses. 

Check out previous trips at:

http://www.dickinson.edu/info/20107/earth_sciences/1809/field_experiences

 

Courses

121 Habitable Worlds
The earth is the only planet we know of that is both habitable and inhabited. Are we alone in the universe, or do other planets support life as well? In this course, we will travel in time from the Big Bang to the present day to understand that factors that underlie the habitability of the Earth since its creation 4.6 billion years ago. Emphasis will be placed on the synthesis of the chemical elements in stars, the composition and creation of terrestrial planets, the differentiation of the solid earth and the origin and evolution of the atmosphere. We will also approach the origin of life as a planetary process and examine co-evolution of both life and the planet. Students will be challenged to consider scales of distance spanning 41 orders of magnitude and to think on time scales ranging from days to billions of years. As we uncover the factors responsible for Earth’s habitability, we will also consider the rise of our species, Homo sapiens, in planetary context and contemplate the sustainability and longevity of human civilizations. Finally, with the knowledge and skills accumulated over the course of the semester, students will address the search for life on other planets and confront the age-old question: are we alone?
Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory per week.
Attributes: Appropriate for First-Year, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Lab Sciences, Quantitative Reasoning, Sustainability Connections

141 Earth's Hazards
This course examines natural processes such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, mass wasting events, and floods that have the potential to produce disastrous consequences for humans. All of these processes result from interactions between the atmosphere, biosphere, geosphere and hydrosphere directly or indirectly, which is the realm of earth sciences. Increasing global populations and increasingly interdependent national economies mean that few disasters are now only ‘local’. This course will use examples such as case studies of recent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions to examine how natural processes can be hazardous, and whether or not humans can anticipate and mitigate these kinds of hazards to prevent future disasters. Laboratory work will include analog experiments, field trips, and video analysis of historic disasters.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, Appropriate for First-Year, Can't be taken pass/fail, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Lab Sciences, Quantitative Reasoning, SINE Elective, Sustainability Investigations

142 Earth's Changing Climate
An overview of our understanding of climate processes and their interaction with the atmosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere based on studies of ancient climates, which inform our understanding of climate change now and into the future. Topics include drivers of climate change at different time scales, evidence for climate change, and major climate events such as ice ages. Emphasis will be placed on the last 1 million years of earth history as a prelude to discussing potential anthropogenic impacts on the climate. Case studies of major climate “players” such as the US and China will be contrasted with those most vulnerable, Africa and SE Asia to determine mitigation and adaptation strategies. The lab component will use historic climate data, field experiences, and climate modeling to interpret climate change processes.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, Appropriate for First-Year, Can't be taken pass/fail, ENST Foundations (ESFN), INST Globaliz & Sustain Course, Lab Sciences, Quantitative Reasoning, SINE Elective, Sustainability Investigations

151 Foundations of Earth Sciences
How do mountains and oceans form? Why do the positions of continents shift? Can rocks bend or flow? What is the history of life on our planet? This course explores the materials that make up the Earth and the processes that shape it, both at and below the surface. Students will take field trips around the Carlisle area as well as complete analytical and computer laboratory activities in order to acquire basic field, laboratory, and computer modelling skills.
This course serves as a gateway to the Earth Sciences major, but is also appropriate for non-majors. Three hours of lecture and three hours of lab per week.
Attributes: Appropriate for First-Year, Lab Sciences, Quantitative Reasoning

201 Surface Processes
Description, origin, development, and classification of landforms. Relationships of soils, surficial materials, and landforms to rocks, structures, climate, processes, and time. Topics will include interpretation of maps and aerial photographs of landscapes produced in tectonic, volcanic, fluvial, glacial, periglacial, coastal, karst, and eolian environments. Exercises will include: photo-geologic interpretation, surficial mapping, and classification of soils. Lectures, discussions, laboratories, and field trip(s).
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: 141, 142, or 151 or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Quantitative Reasoning

202 Energy Resources
The study of the origin, geologic occurrence, and distribution of petroleum, natural gas, coal, and uranium. Discussions include the evaluation and exploitation, economics, law, and the environmental impact of these resources and their alternatives, including geothermal, wind, solar, tidal, and ocean thermal power.
Prerequisites: One introductory lab science or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ENST Applications (ESAP), INST Globaliz & Sustain Course, SINE Elective, Sustainability Connections

205 Introduction to Soil Science
This course focuses on giving students a basic understanding of soil formation processes and field/laboratory characterization of soils. Emphasis in the first part of the course will be on soil formation processes, while the second part of the course will focus on students conducting experiments relevant to soil formation. Weather permitting most labs will have an out-of-doors component. This course is an elective for the Earth Sciences major, and will be useful to students interested in the food studies certificate program, agricultural science, archeology, environmental science, forensic science, planetary science, and solid state chemistry and physics.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisie: one introductory lab science or permission of instructor.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Food Studies Elective, Quantitative Reasoning, SINE Elective

206 Volcanology
This course focuses on giving students a basic understanding of volcanic processes on Earth and other planets. Emphasis during the first part of the course will be on understanding basic volcanic processes through readings, lectures, video analysis and experiments. During the second half of the course students will focus on a currently active volcano (tectonic setting, magma plumbing, eruption history, future hazards). When possible, a course-related (non-required) field trip to an area of active volcanism will be organized (January/Spring break), as well as fieldtrips to see large-scale experiments (Syracuse Lava Lab) and the Smithsonian Institute Global Volcanism Program. This course is an elective for the Earth Sciences major, and will be useful to students interested in archaeology, environmental science, planetary science/astronomy, and high temperature chemistry and physics.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: one introductory lab science or permission of instructor.
Attributes: ENST Foundations (ESFN)

218 Geographic Information Systems
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a powerful technology for managing, analyzing, and visualizing spatial data and geographically-referenced information. It is used in a wide variety of fields including archaeology, agriculture, business, defense and intelligence, education, government, health care, natural resource management, public safety, transportation, and utility management. This course provides a fundamental foundation of theoretical and applied skills in GIS technology that will enable students to investigate and make reasoned decisions regarding spatial issues. Utilizing GIS software applications from Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), students work on a progression of tasks and assignments focused on GIS data collection, manipulation, analysis, output and presentation. The course will culminate in a final, independent project in which the students design and prepare a GIS analysis application of their own choosing.
Three hours of classroom and three hours of laboratory per week. This course is cross-listed as ENST 218 and ARCH 218.
Attributes: ARCH Area A Elective, ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Quantitative Reasoning, Sustainability Investigations

221 Oceanography
An interdisciplinary introduction to the marine environment, including the chemistry of seawater, the physics of currents, water masses and waves, the geology of ocean basins, marine sediments and coastal features, and the biology of marine ecosystems. Topics include the theory of plate tectonics as an explanation for ocean basins, mid-ocean ridges, trenches, and island arcs. The interaction of man as exploiter and polluter in the marine environment is also considered.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory per week. Prerequisite: One introductory lab science or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ENST Foundations (ESFN), Quantitative Reasoning, SINE Elective

250 Introduction to Arctic Studies
This course is designed to give a broad introduction to the physical/social geography, geology and ecology of the Arctic region of earth particularly through the lens of global climate change. Students will use a variety of media (lectures, readings, videos, blogs) to build knowledge about this critical region of earth to serve as a basis for individual and group projects on a specific Arctic region (e.g., Siberia, Svalbard, Greenland, Iceland, Nunavut, Alaska) and topic (e.g., climate change, Arctic tourism, Arctic flora/fauna species, Arctic archeology, Arctic exploration). Learning goals include: i) exposure to spatial analysis and Geographic Information Systems, ii) foundational knowledge of the Arctic cryosphere and its response to climate change, geological history, human geography and ecological systems, and iii) mastery of Arctic geography. Course meetings will include student presentations, fieldtrips and basic GIS instruction.
Attributes: SINE Elective

301 Field Geology
A course in some of the basic geological field techniques, with the preparation of topographic and geologic maps and reports from data obtained by the student in the field.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: 151 or permission of instructor.
Attributes: ENST Foundations (ESFN), Sustainability Connections

302 Structural Geology
The description and analysis of intermediate-to large-scale rock structures. Topics include the analysis and graphical representation of stress and strain in rocks, deformation mechanisms and fabric development, the geometry and mechanics of folding and faulting, and structures related to intrusive bodies. Geologic map interpretation and cross-section construction are used to analyze the structural geology of selected regions.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week; field trip(s). Prerequisite: 151 or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.

305 Earth Materials
This gives students a basic understanding of the tools and techniques used in modern science to identify and characterize solid earth materials at the macroscopic (hand samples), microscopic (polarized light), and sub-microscopic (X-ray diffraction, Scanning Electron Microscopy) levels. Emphasis in the first part of the course will be on minerals, while the second part of the course will introduce students to characterization techniques of other solid earth materials (soils and rocks) and their conditions of formation. This course is required for the Earth Science major, and will be useful to students interested in agricultural science, archeology, environmental science, forensic science, planetary science, and solid state chemistry and physics.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisites: Prerequisite: 151 or permission of instructor. Completion of both 305 and 309 fulfills the WID graduation requirement. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Sustainability Connections

306 Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology
A study of the solid-earth with emphasis on the processes that have shaped the large-scale evolution of the earth from its origin to the present. Lecture topics include meteorites and formation of the terrestrial planets, origin of the moon, the deep earth, chemical equilibria in magmatic systems, geochemical cycling in the solid earth, and isotope dating. The important magmatic and metamorphic systems of the earth are presented in a plate tectonic context.
Prerequisite: 305.
Attributes: ENST Foundations (ESFN)

307 Paleontology
A systematic study of the invertebrate and vertebrate fossil groups, plants, and their evolution and relationships to living forms.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: 141, 142, or 151 or any 100-level BIOL course. This course is cross-listed as BIOL 401.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Sustainability Connections

309 Sedimentology and Stratigraphy
A study of the processes and patterns of sedimentation as well as the spatial and temporal distribution of rock strata. This includes the origin, transportation, deposition, lithification, and diagenesis of sediments. Lithology, geochemistry, paleontology, geochronology, and seismology will be used to understand the history of rock strata.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: 151 or permission of instructor. Completion of both 305 and 309 fulfills the WID graduation requirement. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ARCH Area A Elective, ARCH Area B Elective, ENST Foundations (ESFN), Sustainability Connections

310 Special Topics in Earth Sciences
Lecture/Lab course on special topics which vary depending on faculty and student interest and need.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory per week. Prerequisite: dependent upon topic.

311 Special Topics in Earth Sciences
Seminar in special topics which vary depending on faculty and student interest and need. Three hours of classroom a week.
Prerequisite: Dependent upon topic or permission of instructor.

318 Advanced Applications in GIS
The course is intended as a continuation of the introductory course on Geographic Information Systems, 218, and will concentrate on more advanced discussions and techniques related to spatial analysis and GIS project design. The main focus of the course will be on using higher-level GIS methods to investigate and analyze spatial problems of varying complexity; however, the specific project and topical applications will vary depending on student interests. Students will be required to develop and complete an individual spatial analysis project that incorporates advanced GIS techniques.
Prerequisite: ENST 218 or ERSC 218 or ARCH 218 or equivalent GIS experience. Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory per week. This course is cross-listed as ENST 318 and ARCH 318. Offered every two years.
Attributes: ENST Applications (ESAP), Quantitative Econ Elective, Sustainability Investigations

320 Hydrogeology
An in-depth study of the interrelationships of geologic materials and processes with the occurrence, distribution, movement, and chemistry of water on and near the earth's surface. Topics include the hydrologic cycle; recharge, flow, and discharge of groundwater in aquifers; groundwater quality, contamination, development, management, and remediation. Practical experience will be gained in siting, drilling, testing, and monitoring water wells at the college's water well field laboratory.
Prerequisite: Prerequisite: 151 or permission of instructor. Offered every two years.
Attributes: ENST Applications (ESAP)

321 Isotope Geochemistry
Major analytical advancements in the past two decades have revolutionized the field of isotope geochemistry and made isotopic measurements more widely available than ever before. This course will introduce students to both stable and radiogenic isotope systems and help them develop a quantitative understanding of both radioactive decay and isotopic fractionation. With the knowledge of how isotopic variations arise in nature, we will survey the use of isotopic tracers and chronometers in a variety of disciplines including: the earth and environmental sciences, archaeology, and biology. We will also examine some emerging applications of isotopic tools such as their role in tracing the trade of illegal drugs, identifying the origins of deceased migrants in border regions, revealing food sources and adulteration, and biomedicine.
Prerequisite: One CHEM course or permission of instructor.
Attributes: Quantitative Reasoning

331 Geochemistry
An introduction to the origin, distribution, and behavior of elements in the geochemical cycles and processes of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and lithosphere. Topics include the chemistry of magma, hydrothermal fluids, weathering, fresh and ocean waters, sediment digenesis, hydrocarbons, and metamorphism. Includes radiometric dating and stable isotope applications. Lab will focus on sampling, instrumental analysis, and data interpretation of earth materials.
Prerequisites: 151 and CHEM 131 or 141, or permission of instructor. Offered every other year.
Attributes: ENST Foundations (ESFN)

333 Environmental Geophysics
Geophysics combines geological knowledge with fundamental principles from physics, mathematics, and computer science to indirectly image and elucidate Earth’s subsurface structure. This course focuses on understanding geophysical methods commonly applied to Earth’s shallow subsurface (<200 m) to solve environmental, geological, archaeological, and civil engineering problems. This course will include physical theory, field methodology (e.g., survey design and data collection), data analysis and interpretation. Course topics include refraction and reflection seismology, ground penetrating radar, electrical resistivity and conductivity, magnetism and magnetic surveying, nuclear magnetic resonance, and gravity. This course will involve collecting and integrating datasets from multiple geophysical surveys and culminate in a final project. Lectures, discussions, laboratories, and field trips.
Three hours classroom and three hours laboratory a week. Prerequisite: 151.
Attributes: ARCH Area B Elective, Quantitative Reasoning

335 Global Geophysics and Tectonics
How and why do earthquakes happen? Why does Earth’s magnetic field flip? How do we know there are magma reservoirs under mid ocean ridges? How have Earth’s tectonic plates moved in the past? Do mantle plumes really exist? Some of the answers to these questions can be found in the diverse field of geophysics. This course will address these and many other questions about our dynamic Earth. This course aims to teach fundamental physics underpinning the behavior of planet Earth. The application of physics to study plate tectonics is especially emphasized and includes observations from seismology, gravity, magnetism, isostasy, and heat flow. The course will also include units on Earth’s deep interior covering mantle convection, mantle plumes, and the geodynamo. Topics will be investigated from a mathematical perspective as well as more descriptive methods. Students will gain and/or enhance skills in manipulating and solving equations, interpreting geophysical data, presenting data, and scientific reasoning. The course will culminate in a semester project integrating and applying new geophysical knowledge to a case study plate boundary.
Prerequisite: 151.
Attributes: Quantitative Reasoning

491 Senior Field Camp
An advanced course in geological field methods. In a typical field camp experience students make maps in stratified and crystalline terranes, with rocks in varying degrees of deformation. Note: ERSC 491 is not regularly offered by Dickinson College. Students wishing to complete the capstone experience requirement with a field camp experience should plan to complete an approved summer field course offered by another collegiate institution.
For Senior ERSC majors.