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Duluth Campus

Geological Sciences B.A.

D Earth & Environmental Sci
Swenson College of Science and Engineering
  • Program Type: Baccalaureate
  • Requirements for this program are current for Spring 2018
  • Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
  • Required credits within the major: 61 to 64
  • This program requires summer terms.
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
Geological sciences is the scientific study of the origin, history, and structure of the Earth. The study of geology requires a broad base of knowledge in related sciences and mathematics. The BA in geological sciences provides an appropriate educational background for work in areas related to environmental studies, land use planning, and other fields requiring sensitivity to Earth systems. Honors Requirements: To attain departmental honors, students must undertake an independent research project and maintain a cumulative overall GPA of 3.00. The research can be part of a UROP, directed research, independent study, or an internship with a faculty member. Students must either make a brief oral presentation to the department summarizing their results and produce a research paper (minimum 10 pages) OR give an oral or poster presentation of their research results at a regional or national meeting (e.g. GSA, AGU, ILSG, or similar campus event).
Program Delivery
This program is available:
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Admission Requirements
For information about University of Minnesota admission requirements, visit the Office of Admissions website.
Required prerequisites
Introductory Requirement (1 cr)
Transfer students with 24 or more credits and current students who change from a BS degree or change colleges may request to be waived from this requirement. New first-year students with 24 or more PSEO credits may request to be waived from this requirement.
UST 1000 - UMD Seminar (1.0-2.0 cr)
General Requirements
The Board of Regents, on recommendation of the faculty, grants degrees from the University of Minnesota. Requirements for an undergraduate degree from University of Minnesota Duluth include the following:
  1. Students must meet all course and credit requirements of the departments and colleges or schools in which they are enrolled including an advanced writing course. Students seeking two degrees must fulfill the requirements of both degrees. However, two degrees cannot be awarded for the same major.
  2. Students must complete all requirements of the Liberal Education Program.
  3. Students must complete a minimum of 120 semester credits.
  4. At least 30 of the last 60 degree credits earned immediately before graduation must be awarded by UMD.
  5. Students must complete at least half of their courses at the 3xxx-level and higher at UMD. Study-abroad credits earned through courses taught by UM faculty and at institutions with which UMD has international exchange programs may be used to fulfill this requirement.
  6. If a minor is required, students must take at least three upper division credits in their minor field from UMD.
  7. The minimum cumulative UM GPA required for graduation will be 2.00 and will include only University of Minnesota coursework. A minimum UM GPA of 2.00 is required in each UMD undergraduate major and minor. No academic unit may impose higher grade point standards to graduate.
  8. Diploma, transcripts, and certification will be withheld until all financial obligations to the University have been met.
Program Requirements
1. A minor or a second major in a different subject is required. 2. Math courses determined by Math ACT score.
Geology Core Courses (38-39 cr)
GEOL 2110 - Earth History (4.0 cr)
GEOL 2120 - The Earth's Dynamic Interior (3.0 cr)
GEOL 2311 - Mineralogy (4.0 cr)
GEOL 2312 - Petrology (5.0 cr)
GEOL 3210 - Geomorphology (4.0 cr)
GEOL 3420 - Sedimentology and Stratigraphy (4.0 cr)
GEOL 4450 - Structural Geology (5.0 cr)
GEOL 4500 - Field Geology (6.0 cr)
Take 1 or more course(s) from the following:
· GEOL 1110 - Geology and Earth Systems [LE CAT4, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN] (4.0 cr)
· GEOL 1130 - Introduction to Environmental Science [LE CAT4, LEIP CAT04, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN] (4.0 cr)
· GEOL 1610 - Oceanography [LE CAT5, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN] (3.0 cr)
· GEOG 1414 - Physical Geography [LE CAT4, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN] (4.0 cr)
Advanced Electives (6 cr)
GEOL 4110 or 4180 cannot be used.
Take 6 or more credit(s) from the following:
· ESCI 3202 - Energy Resources (3.0 cr)
· GEOL 3xxx
· GEOL 4xxx
· GEOL 5xxx
· GIS 3563 - Geographic Information Science I: Theory and Analysis (4.0 cr)
· LIM 5xxx
Chemistry requirement (10 cr)
Take one of the following course sequences:
Chemistry
CHEM 1113 - Introduction to General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry I [LE CAT4, NAT SCI] (5.0 cr)
CHEM 1114 - Introduction to General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry II (5.0 cr)
or Chemistry I and II with labs
CHEM 1153 - General Chemistry I [LE CAT5, NAT SCI] (4.0 cr)
CHEM 1154 - General Chemistry Lab I [LE CAT4, NAT SCI] (1.0 cr)
CHEM 1155 - General Chemistry II (4.0 cr)
CHEM 1156 - General Chemistry Lab II (1.0 cr)
Mathematics Requirement (3-5 cr)
Take 1 or more course(s) from the following:
· MATH 1250 - Precalculus Analysis [LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR] (4.0 cr)
· MATH 1290 - Calculus for the Natural Sciences [LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR] (5.0 cr)
· MATH 1296 - Calculus I [LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR] (5.0 cr)
· STAT 2411 - Statistical Methods [LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR] (3.0 cr)
Advanced Writing Requirement (3 cr)
WRIT 3150 - Advanced Writing: Science (3.0 cr)
 
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UST 1000 - UMD Seminar
Credits: 1.0 -2.0 [max 2.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02403 - EHS 1000/UST 1000
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Facilitates the successful transition into college learning and student life at UMD. Credit will not be granted if already received for EHS 1000.
GEOL 2110 - Earth History
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
The historical development of the science of geology, nature of the geologic record, fossils, the geologic time scale, and tectonic evolution of continents and ocean basins. Concepts presented are developed within the framework of the theory of plate tectonics. prereq: 1110 or 1130 or 2610 or Ast 1040 or Geog 1414 or instructor consent
GEOL 2120 - The Earth's Dynamic Interior
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Treatment of the origin, structure and internal composition of the Earth, synthesizing geological, chemical and physical knowledge bearing on the Earth's inaccessible interior. Emphasis is placed on dynamic processes at all depths in the Earth. prereq: 1110 or 1130 or 2110 or 1610 or Geog 1414
GEOL 2311 - Mineralogy
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01406 - Geol 2300/2311
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Systematic study of minerals and their relationship to rocks. Emphasis will be placed on introductory crystal chemistry, crystallography and physical properties; optical mineralogy, and identification of minerals in hand specimen, thin section, and by x-ray diffraction. (Course fee assessed.) prereq: 1110 or 2110, 1 semester college chemistry or instructor consent
GEOL 2312 - Petrology
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Petrology of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, including their occurrence, petrogenesis and tectonic setting. Emphasis on the relationships between mineral assemblages, rock textures, geochemistry, origins, and rock-forming processes. Course fees assessed. prereq: 2311
GEOL 3210 - Geomorphology
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01407 - Geol 2210/3210
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Study of Earth surface processes emphasizing the origin and evolution of landforms; response of the physical environment to climatic change and tectonic events, and application of physical, chemical, and mathematical principles to the study and interpretation of landforms. prereq: 1110 or 2110, Math 1250 or 1290 or 1296 or 1596 or instructor consent
GEOL 3420 - Sedimentology and Stratigraphy
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to the concepts, methods, and application of sedimentology and stratigraphy, including the description and interpretation of sediments and sedimentary rocks, their provenance, stratal packaging, and tectonostratigraphic setting. (Course fee assessed.) pre-req: GEOL 1110 and MATH 1290 or 1296 or 1596 or instructor consent
GEOL 4450 - Structural Geology
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Introduction to brittle and ductile deformation, including joints, faults, shear zones, and folds; deformation mechanisms; elementary stress and strain theory. Labs include geometric, structural, and kinematic analysis, and a group project. Course fee assessed. prereq: 2312 or instructor consent; credit will not be granted if already received for 3520
GEOL 4500 - Field Geology
Credits: 6.0 [max 6.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Summer
Geological mapping of sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic terranes and of Quaternary deposits and landforms; topographic maps and aerial photographs, including preparation of geologic maps and cross sections, and map unit descriptions. prereq: 4450, department consent; no grad credit
GEOL 1110 - Geology and Earth Systems (LE CAT4, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Comprehensive survey of Earth's composition, structure, and dynamics to develop an understanding of internal processes, plate tectonics, and surface processes as a framework for geological history and development of life.
GEOL 1130 - Introduction to Environmental Science (LE CAT4, LEIP CAT04, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Earth's physical and biological systems and human interaction with the environment. Climate, rocks, soils, ecosystems, human population, land use, energy use and its consequences, environmental policy, air and water pollution, and conservation issues.
GEOL 1610 - Oceanography (LE CAT5, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Origin and history of ocean basins, sea floor morphology, chemistry of sea water, currents, waves, tides, life in the sea, primary productivity, nutrient dynamics, human impact. prereq: Credit will not be granted if already received for 2610.
GEOG 1414 - Physical Geography (LE CAT4, NAT SCI, SUSTAIN)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
The environment is highly dynamic and is continually modified by human and environmental processes. This course examines these processes to better understand how the Earth’s landscapes were formed and how they are currently being transformed. Specifically, students will understand the fundamental processes that govern the physical environment including Earth-sun relations, water resources, landforms, weather and climate, natural vegetation, and soils.
ESCI 3202 - Energy Resources
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Geologic principles of carbon-based energy resources, with emphasis on coal and conventional and unconventional (e.g. shale oil, oil-sands, ultra-heavy crude oil) petroleum and gas; fundamentals of nuclear energy; introduction to technologies associated with the extraction, production, refinement, consumption, and byproduct treatment/disposal of carbon-based and nuclear-energy resources; importance of carbon-based energy in global industrialization and associated population growth; limits of population growth imposed by energy requirements; principles and associated technologies of renewable energy and energy conversion, with focus on solar (direct and indirect), geothermal, tidal, and biofuel energy resources. prereq: MATH 1290 or 1296 or 1596 and PHYS 1001 or 2013 or 2017 or instructor consent
GIS 3563 - Geographic Information Science I: Theory and Analysis
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
GIS 3563 emphasizes the concepts needed to use GIS effectively for acquiring, editing, querying, analyzing and visualizing spatial data. This course is an introduction to GIS and trains basic skills with industry standard GIS software in a wide variety of applications in both the natural and social sciences. The course covers basic data modeling, data manipulation, analytical methods and implications of geospatial technologies on society. prereq: credit will not be granted if already received for GEOG 3564 or 4563 and 4564 or GIS4565.
CHEM 1113 - Introduction to General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry I (LE CAT4, NAT SCI)
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Chemical principles and their applications: atomic and molecular structure, solutions, acids, bases, salts, equilibria. prereq: ACT of 21 or higher or MATH 1005; for students terminating study of chem with no more than 10 cr; credit will not be granted if already received for 1151, 1153/1154, 1161, 1173/74 or 2172
CHEM 1114 - Introduction to General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry II
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Spring Odd Year
Chemical principles and their applications: physical and chemical properties of organic compounds, organic chemistry of living systems; carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, enzymes, nucleic acids, and metabolic pathways. prereq: 1113
CHEM 1153 - General Chemistry I (LE CAT5, NAT SCI)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02278 - CHEM 1173/CHEM 1153/CHEM 1161
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Fundamental principles of chemistry exemplified by study of elements, compounds, and their reactions. Covers fundamental concepts of the atom, molecule, stoichiometry, chemical reactions, thermochemistry, gas laws, atomic structure, periodic table, chemical bonding, and other selected topics. The companion laboratory, CHEM 1154, should be taken concurrently. The combination of CHEM 1153 and CHEM 1154 meets the lab component of NAT SCI, LE CAT 4. prereq: One year high school chem, Math ACT 24 or higher or a grade of least C- in Math 1005, Credit will not be granted if already received for 1151 or 1161 or 1173.
CHEM 1154 - General Chemistry Lab I (LE CAT4, NAT SCI)
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02279 - CHEM 1174/CHEM 1154
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Basic laboratory skills while investigating the fundamental principles of chemistry. Covers fundamental concepts of the atom and molecule, stoichiometry, acid-base reactions, oxidation-reduction reactions, thermochemistry, characteristic properties of anions, gas laws and spectrophotometry. This laboratory accompanies lecture CHEM 1153. The combination of CHEM 1153 and CHEM 1154 meets liberal education category 4 requirements. prereq: Previous or concurrent enrollment in CHEM 1153 or 1173; credit will not be granted if already received for CHEM 1151, 1161 or 1174.
CHEM 1155 - General Chemistry II
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02280 - CHEM 1175/CHEM 1155/CHEM 1162
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Fundamental principles of chemistry exemplified by study of elements, compounds, and their reactions. Covers intermolecular forces, properties of liquids, solids and solution, chemical kinetics, chemical equilibrium, acids and bases, solubility, thermodynamics, electrochemistry, nuclear chemistry, and other selected topics. Solid knowledge of college algebra and General Chemistry I is required. The companion laboratory course CHEM 1156 should be taken concurrently. prereq: 1151 or 1153 or 1161 or 1173; credit will not be granted if already received for 1152, 1162 or 1175.
CHEM 1156 - General Chemistry Lab II
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Course Equivalencies: 02281
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Fundamental principles of chemistry exemplified by laboratory study of elements, compounds, and their reactions. Covers titration, intermolecular forces, colligative properties, kinetics, chemical equilibria, and qualitative analysis. This laboratory accompanies lecture CHEM 1155. prereq: 1151 or 1161 or 1154 or 1174, concurrent or previous enrollment in CHEM 1155; credit will not be granted if already received for Chem 1152, 1162 or 1176.
MATH 1250 - Precalculus Analysis (LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR)
Credits: 4.0 [max 4.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
This course introduces the concepts of analytical geometry, relations, functions, and graphs. It includes exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions as well as conic sections, sequences and series, and systems of linear equations. prereq: Math ACT 24 or higher or a grade of at least C- in Math 1005 or department consent
MATH 1290 - Calculus for the Natural Sciences (LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR)
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01420 - Math1290/1296/1596
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Differential and integral calculus needed for modeling in earth and life sciences. Computational software. Not intended for students in mathematics, engineering, or physical sciences. prereq: Math ACT 27 or higher or a grade of at least C- in Math 1250 or department consent
MATH 1296 - Calculus I (LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR)
Credits: 5.0 [max 5.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01420 - Math1290/1296/1596
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
First part of a standard introduction to calculus of functions of a single variable. Limits, continuity, derivatives, integrals, and their applications. prereq: Math ACT 27 or higher or a grade of at least C- in Math 1250 or department consent
STAT 2411 - Statistical Methods (LE CAT2, LOGIC & QR)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Graphical and numerical descriptions of data, elementary probability, sampling distributions, estimations, confidence intervals, one-sample and two-sample t-test. prereq: Math ACT 24 or higher or a grade of at least C- in Math 1005 or higher or department approval
WRIT 3150 - Advanced Writing: Science
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall, Spring & Summer
Study and practice of writing tasks in science, including oral presentations. Exploration of rhetorical situations in professional practice, including research methods, document design, editing, effective collaboration, and ethical issues in the production of professional documents, such as instructions, lab reports, proposals, short and long reports, and career documents. prereq: WRIT 1120 or MNTC completed and minimum 60 credits