Department of Geological Sciences

The undergraduate degree programs offered by the Department of Geological Sciences—a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geology, and a Minor in Geology—reflect the Department’s policy of offering the opportunity for a comprehensive education of the highest quality, individualized to the needs and interests of the student. Completion of a basic science curriculum allows students to apply for entry into one of several highly specialized areas in geology. Students who have majored in one of these degree programs are eligible to apply for positions in education, industry, or government as well as for entry into professional or graduate schools.

Bachelor of Science Degree in Geology

The Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Geology provides opportunities to prepare for careers in the geosciences and for successful studies in graduate school. The program of study focuses on fundamentals and learning skills used by geologists in their professional careers.

The minimum number of semester credit hours required for this degree, including the Core Curriculum requirements, is 120, at least 39 of which must be at the upper-division level. All major and support work courses must be completed with a grade of “C-” or better.

All candidates seeking this degree must fulfill the Core Curriculum requirements and the degree requirements, which are listed below.

Core Curriculum Requirements (42 semester credit hours)

Students seeking the B.S. degree in Geology must fulfill University Core Curriculum requirements in the same manner as other students. If courses are taken to satisfy both degree requirements and Core Curriculum requirements, then students may need to take additional courses in order to meet the minimum number of semester credit hours required for this degree.

For a complete listing of courses that satisfy the Core Curriculum requirements, see Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements.

Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements

First Year Experience Requirement (3 semester credit hours)

All students must complete the following course, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AIS 1203Academic Inquiry and Scholarship3

Communication (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

WRC 1013Freshman Composition I (Q)3
WRC 1023Freshman Composition II (Q)3

Mathematics (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

MAT 1023College Algebra with Applications3
MAT 1033Algebra with Calculus for Business3
MAT 1043Introduction to Mathematics3
MAT 1073Algebra for Scientists and Engineers3
MAT 1093Precalculus3
MAT 1193Calculus for the Biosciences3
MAT 1214Calculus I4
STA 1053Basic Statistics3

Life and Physical Sciences (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

ANT 2033Introduction to Biological Anthropology3
AST 1013Introduction to Astronomy3
AST 1033Exploration of the Solar System3
BIO 1233Contemporary Biology I3
BIO 1243Contemporary Biology II3
BIO 1404Biosciences I4
BIO 1414Biosciences II4
ES 1113Environmental Botany3
ES 1123Environmental Zoology3
ES 1213Environmental Geology3
ES 2013Introduction to Environmental Science I3
ES 2023Introduction to Environmental Science II3
GEO 1013The Third Planet3
GEO 1123Life Through Time3
GES 2613Physical Geography3
PHY 1013Universes3
PHY 1943Physics for Scientists and Engineers I3
PHY 1963Physics for Scientists and Engineers II3

Language, Philosophy and Culture (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AAS 2013Introduction to African American Studies3
AAS 2113African American Culture, Leadership and Social Issues3
ANT 2063Language, Thought, and Culture3
ARA 1014Elementary Arabic I4
ARC 1113Introduction to the Built Environment3
ARC 1413Architecture and Culture3
CHN 1014Elementary Chinese I4
CLA 2013Introduction to Ancient Greece3
CLA 2023Introduction to Ancient Rome3
CLA 2323Classical Mythology3
CSH 1103Literary Masterpieces of Western Culture I3
CSH 1113Literary Masterpieces of Western Culture II3
CSH 1213Topics in World Cultures3
CSH 2113The Foreign Film3
ENG 2013Introduction to Literature3
ENG 2213Literary Criticism and Analysis3
ENG 2383Multiethnic Literatures of the United States3
ENG 2423Literature of Texas and the Southwest3
FRN 1014Elementary French I4
FRN 2333French Literature in English Translation3
GER 1014Elementary German I4
GER 2333German Literature in English Translation3
GLA 1013U.S. in the Global Arena3
GES 1023World Regional Geography3
GRK 1114Introductory Classical Greek I4
HIS 2123Introduction to World Civilization to the Fifteenth Century3
HIS 2133Introduction to World Civilization since the Fifteenth Century3
HIS 2533Introduction to Latin American Civilization3
HIS 2543Introduction to Islamic Civilization3
HIS 2553Introduction to East Asian Civilization3
HIS 2573Introduction to African Civilization3
HIS 2583Introduction to South Asian Civilization3
HUM 2093World Religions3
ITL 1014Elementary Italian I4
ITL 2333Italian Literature in English Translation3
JPN 1014Elementary Japanese I4
LAT 1114Introductory Latin I4
MAS 2013Introduction to Chicano(a) Studies3
PHI 1043Critical Thinking3
PHI 2023Introduction to Ancient Philosophy3
PHI 2033Introduction to Early Modern Philosophy3
PHI 2123Contemporary Moral Issues3
RUS 1014Elementary Russian I4
RUS 2333Russian Literature in English Translation3
SPN 1014Elementary Spanish I4
SPN 2333Hispanic Literature in English Translation3
WS 2013Introduction to Women’s Studies3
WS 2023Introduction to LGBTQ Studies3

Creative Arts (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AHC 1113Survey of Art and Architecture from Prehistoric Times to 13503
AHC 1123Survey of Art and Architecture in Europe and the New World from 1350 to 17503
AHC 1133Survey of Modern Art3
ARC 1213Design I3
ARC 1513Great Buildings and Cities of the World3
ART 1103Introduction to Visual Arts3
ART 1143Art for Non-Art Majors3
CLA 2033Introduction to Classical Literature3
DAN 2003Introduction to Dance3
ENG 1113Introduction to Creative Literary Arts3
HUM 2023Introduction to the Humanities I3
HUM 2033Introduction to the Humanities II3
HUM 2053History of Film3
MAS 2023Latino Cultural Expressions3
MUS 2243World Music in Society3
MUS 2623Fundamentals of Music for the Non-Music Major3
MUS 2633American Roots Music3
MUS 2663History and Styles of Jazz3
MUS 2673History and Styles of Rock3
MUS 2683Masterpieces of Music3
MUS 2693The Music of Latin America and the Caribbean3
MUS 2743Music and Film3
PHI 2073Philosophy of Art3

American History (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

HIS 1043United States History: Pre-Columbus to Civil War Era3
HIS 1053United States History: Civil War Era to Present3
HIS 2053Texas History3

Government-Political Science (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

POL 1013Introduction to American Politics3
and one of the following two courses:
POL 1133Texas Politics and Society3
POL 1213Civil Rights in Texas and America3

Social and Behavioral Sciences (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AMS 2043Approaches to American Culture3
ANT 1013Introduction to Anthropology3
ANT 2043Introduction to Archaeology3
ANT 2053Introduction to Cultural Anthropology3
BBL 2003Language, Culture, and Society3
BBL 2243Globalizing the Local: Bilingual Families, Communities, and Schools3
BIO 1033Drugs and Society3
CRJ 1113The American Criminal Justice System3
ECO 2003Economic Principles and Issues3
ECO 2023Introductory Microeconomics3
EGR 1343The Impact of Modern Technologies on Society3
GES 1013Fundamentals of Geography3
GES 2623Human Geography3
HTH 2413Introduction to Community and Public Health3
HTH 2513Personal Health3
IDS 2113Society and Social Issues3
PSY 1013Introduction to Psychology3
SOC 1013Introduction to Sociology3
SOC 2013Social Problems3
SOC 2023Social Context of Drug Use3

Component Area Option (CAO) (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete either one of the following courses or any additional Core Curriculum course not previously used to satisfy a core component area requirement, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

COM 2113Public Speaking3
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization3
EGR 1403Technical Communication3
ENG 2413Technical Writing3
PAD 1113Public Administration in American Society3
PHI 2043Introductory Logic3
Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements
First Year Experience Requirement 3
Communication 6
Mathematics 3
Life and Physical Sciences 6
Language, Philosophy and Culture 3
Creative Arts 3
American History 6
Government-Political Science 6
Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
Component Area Option 3
Total Credit Hours 42

Gateway Courses

Students pursuing the B.S. degree in Geology must successfully complete each of the following Gateway Courses with a grade of “C-” or better in no more than two attempts. A student who is unable to successfully complete these courses within two attempts, including dropping a course with a grade of “W” or taking an equivalent course at another institution, will be required to change his or her major.

CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Laboratory
MAT 1224Calculus II

Degree Requirements

A. Major courses
1. Required courses
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Laboratory
4
GEO 1123
GEO 1131
Life Through Time
and Life Through Time Laboratory
4
GEO 2003
GEO 2011
Mineralogy
and Mineralogy Laboratory
4
GEO 2113Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS)3
GEO 3043
GEO 3051
Petrology
and Petrology Laboratory
4
GEO 3063
GEO 3071
Paleontology
and Paleontology Laboratory
4
GEO 3103
GEO 3111
Structural Geology
and Structural Geology Laboratory
4
GEO 3113Geologic Field Investigations3
GEO 3123
GEO 3131
Sedimentation and Stratigraphy
and Sedimentation and Stratigraphy Laboratory
4
GEO 4933Field Geology Part I3
GEO 4943Field Geology Part II3
2. Select 20 additional semester credit hours from the following list of courses. Students should meet with their academic advisor and/or a member of the Department of Geological Sciences to verify that they have taken the necessary prerequisites.20
Fundamentals of Plate Tectonics (Fundamentals of Plate Tectonics)
Economic Geology
and Economic Geology Laboratory
Oceanography
Polar Regions and Climate Change
Introduction to Geospatial Technologies
Geochemistry
General Geophysics
Introduction to Isotope Geochemistry
Volcanology
Profession of Geology
Advanced Environmental Geology
Principles of Remote Sensing
Geomorphology
and Geomorphology Laboratory
Groundwater Hydrogeology
Independent Study
Independent Study
Independent Study
Special Studies in Geology
Special Studies in Geology
Special Studies in Geology
Special Studies in Geology Laboratory
Honors Research
B. Courses within the College of Sciences
CHE 1103
CHE 1121
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory
4
CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
4
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization3
MAT 1214Calculus I4
MAT 1224Calculus II4
PHY 1943
PHY 1951
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I
and Physics for Scientists and Engineers I Laboratory
4
PHY 1963
PHY 1971
Physics for Scientists and Engineers II
and Physics for Scientists and Engineers II Laboratory
4
Total Credit Hours87

Course Sequence Guide for B.S. Degree in Geology

This course sequence guide is designed to assist students in completing their UTSA undergraduate Geology degree requirements. This is merely a guide and students must satisfy other requirements of this catalog and meet with their academic advisor for individualized degree plans. Progress within this guide depends upon such factors as course availability, individual student academic preparation, student time management, work obligations, and individual financial considerations. Students may choose to take courses during Summer terms to reduce course loads during long semesters.

B.S. in Geology – Recommended Four-Year Academic Plan

First Year
FallCredit Hours
AIS 1203Academic Inquiry and Scholarship (core) 3
CHE 1103
CHE 1121
General Chemistry I 14
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology 4
WRC 1013Freshman Composition I (Q) 3
Spring
CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II 14
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization 3
GEO 1123
GEO 1131
Life Through Time (core and major) 4
MAT 1214Calculus I (core and major) 4
Second Year
Fall
GEO 2003
GEO 2011
Mineralogy 4
GEO 3063
GEO 3071
Paleontology 4
MAT 1224Calculus II 4
PHY 1943
PHY 1951
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I (core and major) 4
Spring
GEO 2113Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) 3
GEO 3043
GEO 3051
Petrology 4
PHY 1963
PHY 1971
Physics for Scientists and Engineers II 4
WRC 1023Freshman Composition II (Q) (core) 3
Third Year
Fall
GEO 3113Geologic Field Investigations 3
POL 1013Introduction to American Politics 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Component Area Option core 3
Spring
GEO 3103
GEO 3111
Structural Geology 4
GEO 3123
GEO 3131
Sedimentation and Stratigraphy 4
POL 1133 or 1213Texas Politics and Society (core) 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Summer
GEO 4933Field Geology Part I 3
GEO 4943Field Geology Part II 3
Fourth Year
Fall
American History core 3
Language, Philosophy & Culture core 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Spring
American History core 3
Creative Arts core 3
Social & Behavioral Sciences core 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 2
 Total Credit Hours: 120.0

Note: Some courses are only offered once a year; Fall or Spring. Check with the Department of Geological Sciences for scheduling of courses.

Bachelor of Arts Degree in Geology

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in Geology provides opportunities to prepare for careers in fields such as earth science education, law, insurance, financial services, energy business, and environmental management. It is not recommended for students planning to pursue careers as professional geologists or graduate studies in geology or related fields.

The minimum number of semester credit hours required for this degree, including the Core Curriculum requirements, is 120, at least 39 of which must be at the upper-division level. All major and support work courses must be completed with a grade of “C-” or better

All candidates seeking this degree must fulfill the Core Curriculum requirements and the degree requirements, which are listed below.

Core Curriculum Requirements (42 semester credit hours)

Students seeking the B.A. degree in Geology must fulfill University Core Curriculum requirements in the same manner as other students. If courses are taken to satisfy both degree requirements and Core Curriculum requirements, then students may need to take additional courses in order to meet the minimum number of semester credit hours required for this degree.

For a complete listing of courses that satisfy the Core Curriculum requirements, see Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements.

Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements

First Year Experience Requirement (3 semester credit hours)

All students must complete the following course, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AIS 1203Academic Inquiry and Scholarship3

Communication (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

WRC 1013Freshman Composition I (Q)3
WRC 1023Freshman Composition II (Q)3

Mathematics (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

MAT 1023College Algebra with Applications3
MAT 1033Algebra with Calculus for Business3
MAT 1043Introduction to Mathematics3
MAT 1073Algebra for Scientists and Engineers3
MAT 1093Precalculus3
MAT 1193Calculus for the Biosciences3
MAT 1214Calculus I4
STA 1053Basic Statistics3

Life and Physical Sciences (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

ANT 2033Introduction to Biological Anthropology3
AST 1013Introduction to Astronomy3
AST 1033Exploration of the Solar System3
BIO 1233Contemporary Biology I3
BIO 1243Contemporary Biology II3
BIO 1404Biosciences I4
BIO 1414Biosciences II4
ES 1113Environmental Botany3
ES 1123Environmental Zoology3
ES 1213Environmental Geology3
ES 2013Introduction to Environmental Science I3
ES 2023Introduction to Environmental Science II3
GEO 1013The Third Planet3
GEO 1123Life Through Time3
GES 2613Physical Geography3
PHY 1013Universes3
PHY 1943Physics for Scientists and Engineers I3
PHY 1963Physics for Scientists and Engineers II3

Language, Philosophy and Culture (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AAS 2013Introduction to African American Studies3
AAS 2113African American Culture, Leadership and Social Issues3
ANT 2063Language, Thought, and Culture3
ARA 1014Elementary Arabic I4
ARC 1113Introduction to the Built Environment3
ARC 1413Architecture and Culture3
CHN 1014Elementary Chinese I4
CLA 2013Introduction to Ancient Greece3
CLA 2023Introduction to Ancient Rome3
CLA 2323Classical Mythology3
CSH 1103Literary Masterpieces of Western Culture I3
CSH 1113Literary Masterpieces of Western Culture II3
CSH 1213Topics in World Cultures3
CSH 2113The Foreign Film3
ENG 2013Introduction to Literature3
ENG 2213Literary Criticism and Analysis3
ENG 2383Multiethnic Literatures of the United States3
ENG 2423Literature of Texas and the Southwest3
FRN 1014Elementary French I4
FRN 2333French Literature in English Translation3
GER 1014Elementary German I4
GER 2333German Literature in English Translation3
GLA 1013U.S. in the Global Arena3
GES 1023World Regional Geography3
GRK 1114Introductory Classical Greek I4
HIS 2123Introduction to World Civilization to the Fifteenth Century3
HIS 2133Introduction to World Civilization since the Fifteenth Century3
HIS 2533Introduction to Latin American Civilization3
HIS 2543Introduction to Islamic Civilization3
HIS 2553Introduction to East Asian Civilization3
HIS 2573Introduction to African Civilization3
HIS 2583Introduction to South Asian Civilization3
HUM 2093World Religions3
ITL 1014Elementary Italian I4
ITL 2333Italian Literature in English Translation3
JPN 1014Elementary Japanese I4
LAT 1114Introductory Latin I4
MAS 2013Introduction to Chicano(a) Studies3
PHI 1043Critical Thinking3
PHI 2023Introduction to Ancient Philosophy3
PHI 2033Introduction to Early Modern Philosophy3
PHI 2123Contemporary Moral Issues3
RUS 1014Elementary Russian I4
RUS 2333Russian Literature in English Translation3
SPN 1014Elementary Spanish I4
SPN 2333Hispanic Literature in English Translation3
WS 2013Introduction to Women’s Studies3
WS 2023Introduction to LGBTQ Studies3

Creative Arts (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AHC 1113Survey of Art and Architecture from Prehistoric Times to 13503
AHC 1123Survey of Art and Architecture in Europe and the New World from 1350 to 17503
AHC 1133Survey of Modern Art3
ARC 1213Design I3
ARC 1513Great Buildings and Cities of the World3
ART 1103Introduction to Visual Arts3
ART 1143Art for Non-Art Majors3
CLA 2033Introduction to Classical Literature3
DAN 2003Introduction to Dance3
ENG 1113Introduction to Creative Literary Arts3
HUM 2023Introduction to the Humanities I3
HUM 2033Introduction to the Humanities II3
HUM 2053History of Film3
MAS 2023Latino Cultural Expressions3
MUS 2243World Music in Society3
MUS 2623Fundamentals of Music for the Non-Music Major3
MUS 2633American Roots Music3
MUS 2663History and Styles of Jazz3
MUS 2673History and Styles of Rock3
MUS 2683Masterpieces of Music3
MUS 2693The Music of Latin America and the Caribbean3
MUS 2743Music and Film3
PHI 2073Philosophy of Art3

American History (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

HIS 1043United States History: Pre-Columbus to Civil War Era3
HIS 1053United States History: Civil War Era to Present3
HIS 2053Texas History3

Government-Political Science (6 semester credit hours)

Students must complete two of the following courses, for a total of 6 semester credit hours:

POL 1013Introduction to American Politics3
and one of the following two courses:
POL 1133Texas Politics and Society3
POL 1213Civil Rights in Texas and America3

Social and Behavioral Sciences (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete one of the following courses, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

AMS 2043Approaches to American Culture3
ANT 1013Introduction to Anthropology3
ANT 2043Introduction to Archaeology3
ANT 2053Introduction to Cultural Anthropology3
BBL 2003Language, Culture, and Society3
BBL 2243Globalizing the Local: Bilingual Families, Communities, and Schools3
BIO 1033Drugs and Society3
CRJ 1113The American Criminal Justice System3
ECO 2003Economic Principles and Issues3
ECO 2023Introductory Microeconomics3
EGR 1343The Impact of Modern Technologies on Society3
GES 1013Fundamentals of Geography3
GES 2623Human Geography3
HTH 2413Introduction to Community and Public Health3
HTH 2513Personal Health3
IDS 2113Society and Social Issues3
PSY 1013Introduction to Psychology3
SOC 1013Introduction to Sociology3
SOC 2013Social Problems3
SOC 2023Social Context of Drug Use3

Component Area Option (CAO) (3 semester credit hours)

Students must complete either one of the following courses or any additional Core Curriculum course not previously used to satisfy a core component area requirement, for a total of 3 semester credit hours:

COM 2113Public Speaking3
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization3
EGR 1403Technical Communication3
ENG 2413Technical Writing3
PAD 1113Public Administration in American Society3
PHI 2043Introductory Logic3
Core Curriculum Component Area Requirements
First Year Experience Requirement 3
Communication 6
Mathematics 3
Life and Physical Sciences 6
Language, Philosophy and Culture 3
Creative Arts 3
American History 6
Government-Political Science 6
Social and Behavioral Sciences 3
Component Area Option 3
Total Credit Hours 42

Gateway Courses

Students pursuing the B.A. degree in Geology must successfully complete each of the following Gateway Courses with a grade of “C-” or better in no more than two attempts. A student who is unable to successfully complete these courses within two attempts, including dropping a course with a grade of “W” or taking an equivalent course at another institution, will be required to change his or her major.

CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Laboratory
MAT 1214Calculus I

Degree Requirements

A. Major courses
1. Required courses
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Laboratory
4
GEO 1123
GEO 1131
Life Through Time
and Life Through Time Laboratory
4
GEO 2003
GEO 2011
Mineralogy
and Mineralogy Laboratory
4
GEO 2113Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS)3
GEO 3043
GEO 3051
Petrology
and Petrology Laboratory
4
GEO 3063
GEO 3071
Paleontology
and Paleontology Laboratory
4
GEO 3123
GEO 3131
Sedimentation and Stratigraphy
and Sedimentation and Stratigraphy Laboratory
4
2. Select 16 semester credit hours at the upper-division level from among the remaining GEO course offerings. Students should meet with their academic advisor and/or a member of the Department of Geological Sciences to verify that they have taken the necessary prerequisites. 16
B. Courses within the College of Sciences
CHE 1103
CHE 1121
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory
4
CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
4
or GEO 3374 Geochemistry
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization3
MAT 1214Calculus I4
PHY 1943
PHY 1951
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I
and Physics for Scientists and Engineers I Laboratory
4
PHY 1963
PHY 1971
Physics for Scientists and Engineers II
and Physics for Scientists and Engineers II Laboratory
4
C. Electives
Select 18 semester credit hours of electives to meet the 120 semester credit hour degree minimum with an appropriate number of credit hours at the upper-division level to meet the UTSA minimum of 39 upper-division hours.18
Total Credit Hours84

Course Sequence Guide for B.A. Degree in Geology

This course sequence guide is designed to assist students in completing their UTSA undergraduate Geology degree requirements. This is merely a guide and students must satisfy other requirements of this catalog and meet with their academic advisor for individualized degree plans. Progress within this guide depends upon such factors as course availability, individual student academic preparation, student time management, work obligations, and individual financial considerations. Students may choose to take courses during Summer terms to reduce course loads during long semesters.

B.A. in Geology – Recommended Four-Year Academic Plan

First Year
FallCredit Hours
AIS 1203Academic Inquiry and Scholarship 3
CHE 1103
CHE 1121
General Chemistry I 14
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology 4
WRC 1013Freshman Composition I (Q) 3
Spring
CS 1173Data Analysis and Visualization 3
GEO 1123
GEO 1131
Life Through Time (core and major) 4
MAT 1214Calculus I (core and major) 4
Life & Physical Sciences core 3
Second Year
Fall
GEO 2003
GEO 2011
Mineralogy 4
WRC 1023Freshman Composition II (Q) (core) 3
Creative Arts core 3
Select one of the following: 4
CHE 1113
CHE 1131
General Chemistry II 1
GEO 3374Geochemistry
Spring
GEO 2113Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) 3
GEO 3043
GEO 3051
Petrology 4
PHY 1943
PHY 1951
Physics for Scientists and Engineers I 4
Free elective 3
Free elective 3
Third Year
Fall
GEO 3063
GEO 3071
Paleontology 4
PHY 1963
PHY 1971
Physics for Scientists and Engineers II 4
Language, Philosophy & Culture core 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Spring
GEO 3123
GEO 3131
Sedimentation and Stratigraphy 4
POL 1013Introduction to American Politics (core) 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Component Area Option core 3
Fourth Year
Fall
Free elective 3
Free elective 3
Upper-division Free elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
American History core 3
Spring
POL 1133 or 1213Texas Politics and Society (core) 3
American History core 3
Social & Behavioral Sciences core 3
Upper-division Free elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 3
Upper-division GEO elective 1
 Total Credit Hours: 120.0

Note: Some courses are only offered once a year; fall or spring. Check with the Department of Geological Sciences for scheduling of courses.

Minor in Geology

All students pursuing the Minor in Geology must complete 21 semester credit hours. All coursework must be completed with a grade of “C-” or better.

A. Required courses
GEO 1103
GEO 1111
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Laboratory
4
GEO 1123
GEO 1131
Life Through Time
and Life Through Time Laboratory
4
GEO 2003
GEO 2011
Mineralogy
and Mineralogy Laboratory
4
or GEO 3004 Rocks, Fossils, and Global Tectonics
B. Electives
Approved upper-division geology electives9
Total Credit Hours21

To declare a Minor in Geology, obtain advice about prerequisites about approved upper-division geology electives, or seek approval of substitutions for course requirements, students should consult their academic advisor.

Geology (GEO) Courses

GEO 1013. The Third Planet. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours. (TCCN = GEOL 1301)

Evolution of ideas concerning the earth’s origin, structure, and age; social impact of recognizing the antiquity of the planet and humankind’s brief presence; examination of how the distribution of planetary resources influenced the rise and clash of civilizations. May not be applied to a major in geology. May apply toward the Core Curriculum requirement in Life and Physical Sciences. Generally offered: Fall, Spring, Summer.

GEO 1103. Physical Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours. (TCCN = GEOL 1303)

Prerequisites: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in CHE 1103, CHE 1121, and MAT 1093 or higher, or satisfactory performance on placement exam. Completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 1111 required. This course is intended for geology majors and minors as well as others interested in the geologic sciences. It constitutes an introduction to the geology major and skillsets needed by the practicing geologist including; mineral and rock identification, microscopy, deep time, outcrop descriptions, and mapping. The course includes an introduction to the theory of plate tectonics and its relation to the Earth’s internal structure, surface features, hydrosphere, earthquakes, and volcanism. One or more field trips may be required. Generally offered: Fall, Spring.

GEO 1111. Physical Geology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour. (TCCN = GEOL 1103)

Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 1103. Relation of the earth’s present processes to its resources, structure, and internal composition. Field and laboratory study of minerals, rocks, maps, and aerial and satellite photos. Field trips may be required. (Formerly titled "Introduction to Earth Systems Laboratory.") Generally offered: Fall, Spring.

GEO 1123. Life Through Time. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours. (TCCN = GEOL 1304)

Concurrent enrollment in GEO 1131 recommended. A study of the origin and evolution of life on Earth including major events from the beginning of the Earth and solar system to the present, as well as the interaction of life with the lithosphere, atmosphere, and hydrosphere. This course will explore the fossil record, sedimentary rocks, plate tectonics, evolution, and climate change. May apply toward the Core Curriculum requirement in Life and Physical Sciences. Generally offered: Fall, Spring.

GEO 1131. Life Through Time Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour. (TCCN = GEOL 1104)

Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 1123. Laboratory and field study of minerals, rocks, fossils, sequences of rocks, and mapping for the interpretation of life through time and the interpretation of Earth history. This course is intended and required for Geological Science majors and minors and will introduce students to many concepts covered in upper level courses. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Fall, Spring.

GEO 2003. Mineralogy. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: CHE 1103, CHE 1121, GEO 1103, GEO 1111, MAT 1093 or higher, or satisfactory performance on placement exam. Completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 2011. Crystallography, crystal chemistry, and the physical and optical properties of minerals. Principles of optical mineralogy and the microscopic determination of nonopaque minerals. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 2011. Mineralogy Laboratory. (1-4) 1 Credit Hour.

Corequisite: GEO 2003. Laboratory study of crystal models, crystals, and minerals. Use of physical properties and the petrographic microscope for mineral identification. Field trips may be required. (Formerly GEO 2012. Credit cannot be earned for both GEO 2011 and GEO 2012.) Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 2113. Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). (2-2) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisite: CS 1173 or equivalent. This course will serve as a basic introduction to the concepts and techniques of utilizing a Geographic Information System (GIS) to study and model environmental issues. In lecture and laboratory, students will study methods of querying, analyzing, creating and displaying GIS data utilizing industry standard software. Students will also be introduced to using the Global Positioning System (GPS) as a means for creating GIS data. (Credit cannot be earned for both GEO 2113 and ES 2113.) Generally offered: Fall, Spring.

GEO 3004. Rocks, Fossils, and Global Tectonics. (2-4) 4 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103 and GEO 1111. An investigation of the major rock forming minerals, petrogenesis of the major rock types, and their plate tectonic context. Study of major trends in fauna and flora through time and their application to interpreting plate tectonics, paleoenvironments, and paleoclimate. Credit may not be applied to a B.S. or B.A. major in Geology.

GEO 3013. Fundamentals of Plate Tectonics. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, GEO 2003, GEO 2011, and MAT 1093. This course introduces the student to the mechanics of lithospheric plate motion and the physical phenomena driving the motion. The relationships between plate tectonics, mantle convection, and geomagnetism are explored, as well as common structures associated with plate boundaries. Mathematical models are introduced and used to describe plate motion on a sphere. Historical development of plate tectonic theory is also covered.

GEO 3043. Petrology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, MAT 1214, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3051. Description, classification, occurrence, and origin of igneous and metamorphic rocks. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3051. Petrology Laboratory. (1-4) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3043. Laboratory study of igneous and metamorphic rocks in hand specimen and thin section. Field trips may be required. (Formerly GEO 3052. Credit cannot be earned for both GEO 3051 and GEO 3052.) Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3063. Paleontology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, GEO 1123, GEO 1131, or consent of instructor, and concurrent enrollment in GEO 3071. Study of fossil animals and plants. Emphasis on invertebrate animals. Systematics, biostratigraphy, paleoecology, and evolution of fossil organisms. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 3071. Paleontology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, GEO 1123, GEO 1131, and concurrent enrollment in GEO 3063. Study of fossil specimens, collections, and preparation techniques. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 3103. Structural Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 3043, GEO 3051, GEO 3113, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3111. Description and origin of geologic structures at the microscopic, hand specimen and mountain scales with emphasis on the response of Earth materials to stress and the role of rheology. Relationships between structure and tectonics will be explored. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3111. Structural Geology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3103. Laboratory study of structural features and concepts using maps, cross-sections, photographs, and descriptive geometric and stereographic methods. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3113. Geologic Field Investigations. (1-4) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003 and GEO 2011. Introduction to techniques for studying geologic features and processes in the field, including rock identification, construction of geological maps, orientation analysis, and report writing. Some half-day and Saturday field trips may be required. (Formerly GEO 3112. Credit cannot be earned for both GEO 3112 and GEO 3113.) Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 3123. Sedimentation and Stratigraphy. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, GEO 3063, GEO 3071, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3131. Processes of erosion, transportation, and deposition that form bodies of sedimentary rock. Depositional systems and modeling are a significant area of study. Stratigraphic principles and temporal and spatial facies relationships at various scales. Field trips may be required. (Formerly titled "Sedimentary Geology.") Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3131. Sedimentation and Stratigraphy Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, GEO 3063, GEO 3071, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3123. Laboratory studies of sedimentary processes and their products. Hand specimens, thin sections, sedimentary structures, and interpretation of depositional environments. Stratigraphic case studies, including surface, subsurface, and sequence stratigraphic analysis. Field trips may be required. (Formerly titled "Sedimentary Geology Laboratory.") Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3143. Economic Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3151. Origin and occurrence of economic natural resources including metallic ore deposits, industrial minerals, and fossil fuels. Field trips may be required.

GEO 3151. Economic Geology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: GEO 2003, GEO 2011, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in GEO 3143. Laboratory study of ore specimens and industrial minerals from important ore localities. Field trips may be required.

GEO 3163. Oceanography. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

General oceanography, with emphasis on marine geology and especially the continental margins. An optional field trip may be offered. (Credit cannot be earned for both GEO 3163 and ES 3133.) Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 3173. Polar Regions and Climate Change. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

This course covers properties, areal distribution, seasonal change and climatic change of the major constituents of the Polar Regions: the large ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica; seasonal snow cover in the high and mid latitudes; sea ice covers in the Arctic, Southern Ocean and other seas; mountain glaciers from the tropics to the polar regions; and permafrost in the high latitude land areas of the Northern Hemisphere. How to examine these constituents will be presented with illustrative examples of monitoring of climate-induced changes in the Polar Regions using remote sensing and field investigations of processes and properties. Applications discussed will include: snow and ice covers as agents of geological change; snow and ice impacts as water resources in Asia and western North America, and global environmental impact through for example, effects on the earth's radiation budget, and contributions to sea level change. Human impacts covered will include effects of ice covers of rivers and sea ice such as on petroleum extraction, transportation and navigation, frost and freezing damage to crops, and hazards of blizzards and avalanches.

GEO 3343. Introduction to Geospatial Technologies. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

This course introduces several aspects of geospatial technologies, not only what they are but how they are used in hands-on applications, all based on free internet resources not commercial software packages. This course provides a solid foundation on which further knowledge in more specialized classes, such as Geographic Information Systems, Global Positioning Systems, and Remote Sensing, can be built on.

GEO 3374. Geochemistry. (2-4) 4 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, CHE 1103, CHE 1121, and MAT 1093. A survey of geochemical processes and the distribution of elements in the earth. Application of geochemical methods and data to the solution of geologic problems. Includes geochemical laboratory experiments and use of analytical equipment. Incorporates use of standard computer software for analysis of geochemical data and graphing of results. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 3383. General Geophysics. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in MAT 1224 and PHY 1963. This course examines the interrelated geology and physics of the Earth’s interior as deduced from earthquake seismology, gravity and magnetic fields, and the application of geophysical methods to the exploration of near-surface cultural and natural resources. Topics in archeological, environmental, and engineering geophysics will be explored through the methods of refraction seismology, electrical resistivity, electromagnetic induction, microgravity, and ground penetrating radar. Field trips may be required.

GEO 3393. Introduction to Isotope Geochemistry. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, CHE 1103, CHE 1121, and MAT 1214. The course includes a review of theories of nuclear structure, stability of nucleus, nucleosynthesis and origin of elements, and introduces both radiogenic and stable isotope geochemistry. Topics include radioactive decay schemes for tritium-helium, U-Pb, Rb-Sr, Sm-Nd, K-Ar, and U-Th-Pb-He systems; isotopic fractionations of stable isotopes of C, H, O, N, and S; and application of radiogenic and stable isotopes to petrology, evolution of the crust and mantle, geochronology, geothermometry, archaeology, ecology, hydrology, and paleoclimatic interpretation.

GEO 4013. Volcanology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisite: GEO 3043 or consent of instructor. A survey of volcanoes and volcanic processes, including historically important volcanic eruptions and the prediction and mitigation of volcanic hazards. Field trips may be required.

GEO 4023. Engineering Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: PHY 1963 (engineering majors only) or PHY 1603 or PHY 1943, and MAT 1214; or consent of instructor. Geologic factors in construction. Geotechnical properties of minerals, rocks, and soils. Case studies. May not be applied to a major in geology. Generally offered: Fall, Spring, Summer.

GEO 4033. Profession of Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 2113, GEO 3123, GEO 3131, GEO 3113. This course is designed to provide the basic knowledge required by the ASBOG National Geologist Examination (Fundamentals) for licensure as a Professional Geologist, and introduces the geoscience student to the fundamentals of professional practice that impact, health, safety, and well-being of the public. The emphasis will be on principles and practices of geoscience that affect the economy, feasibility and design of engineering works, sitting criteria, site selection and investigation, human-land interactions, site assessment, liability, responsibility, professional report writing, and licensure.

GEO 4063. Advanced Environmental Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103 and GEO 1111. An analysis of human interaction with geologic systems; the risks and effects of natural geologic hazards such as volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and floods. Topics will include the effects of human activity on natural systems such as groundwater quality and recharge, river systems, coastal hazards, energy resources, and climate change. The meaning of "sustainability" as a long-term concept and tools to assess and work with Earth systems to avoid endangering human life and property are also topics that are applied and addressed. GEO 4063 is a writing intensive course and project management skills are utilized in working on geologic investigations and solutions for resource management and in analyzing and mitigating natural hazard events.

GEO 4093. Principles of Remote Sensing. (2-2) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: MAT 1214 or higher and PHY 1943. This course will provide a thorough introduction to remote sensing theory, technology, and application. The emphasis in this course is on understanding the underlying principles of acquiring, interpreting, and applying data from imaging systems covering the electromagnetic spectrum from the ultraviolet through the microwave. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 4113. Geomorphology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103 or GES 2613, or consent of instructor, and junior or senior standing, and concurrent enrollment in GEO 4121. Examination of landforms on the Earth’s surface and landscape-forming processes. Field trips may be required.

GEO 4121. Geomorphology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103 or GES 2613, or consent of instructor, and junior or senior standing, and concurrent enrollment in GEO 4113. Interpretation of landforms and their formative processes from maps, aerial photographs, and calculations. Field trips may be required.

GEO 4623. Groundwater Hydrogeology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 1103, GEO 1111, PHY 1943, and MAT 1214. Hydrologic cycle and the occurrence and movement of groundwater. Recharge and discharge of aquifers; water quality; exploration and development of ground-water supplies. Field trips may be required. Generally offered: Spring.

GEO 4911. Independent Study. (0-0) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisites: Permission in writing (form available) of the instructor, the student’s advisor, the Department Chair, and the Dean of the College in which the course is offered. Independent reading, research, discussion, and/or writing under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated for credit, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree in geology.

GEO 4912. Independent Study. (0-0) 2 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: Permission in writing (form available) of the instructor, the student’s advisor, the Department Chair, and the Dean of the College in which the course is offered. Independent reading, research, discussion, and/or writing under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated for credit, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree in geology.

GEO 4913. Independent Study. (0-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: Permission in writing (form available) of the instructor, the student’s advisor, the Department Chair, and the Dean of the College in which the course is offered. Independent reading, research, discussion, and/or writing under the direction of a faculty member. May be repeated for credit, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree in geology.

GEO 4933. Field Geology Part I. (1-6) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: GEO 3103, GEO 3111, GEO 3123, and GEO 3131 or consent of instructor. Part I: Field mapping and measurements. Field trips are required.

GEO 4943. Field Geology Part II. (1-6) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisite: GEO 4933 or consent of instructor. Part II: Field mapping and measurements. Field trips are required.

GEO 4951. Special Studies in Geology. (1-0) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. An organized course offering the opportunity for specialized study not normally or not often available as part of the regular course offerings. Special Studies may be repeated for credit when the topics vary, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree.

GEO 4952. Special Studies in Geology. (2-0) 2 Credit Hours.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. An organized course offering the opportunity for specialized study not normally or not often available as part of the regular course offerings. Special Studies may be repeated for credit when the topics vary, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree.

GEO 4953. Special Studies in Geology. (3-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. An organized course offering the opportunity for specialized study not normally or not often available as part of the regular course offerings. Special Studies may be repeated for credit when the topics vary, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree. Generally offered: Fall.

GEO 4961. Special Studies in Geology Laboratory. (1-3) 1 Credit Hour.

Prerequisite: Consent of instructor. An organized laboratory course offering the opportunity for specialized study not normally or not often available as part of the regular course offerings. Special Studies may be repeated for credit when the topics vary, but not more than 6 semester credit hours, regardless of discipline, will apply to a bachelor’s degree.

GEO 4993. Honors Research. (0-0) 3 Credit Hours.

Prerequisites: Enrollment limited to candidates for College Honors during their last two semesters; approval by the College Honors Committee. Supervised research and preparation of an honors thesis. May be repeated only once with approval.