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GEOLOGICAL SCIENCES


www.bsu.edu/geology

Fine Arts Building 117, 765-285-8270




PROGRAMS

 

Master of arts (MA) and master of science (MS) in geology and master of arts (MA) in GIScience; the latter is cooperative with the Department of Geography.

See the Science listing under the College of Sciences and Humanities, page 180, for the doctoral programs in science education and philosophy in environmental science.

 

Admission requirements

 

Applicants must meet the admission requirements of the Graduate School and have cumulative undergraduate grade-point averages (GPA) of at least 2.75 overall or 3.0 for their junior and senior years and Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores of at least 470 verbal, 530 quantitative, and 520 analytical (or an acceptable combination of GPA and GRE scores). Candidates must have completed acceptable geology field courses as undergraduates or must complete a Ball State field course as part of the master’s requirements.

 

MASTER OF ARTS IN GEOLOGY

 

Degree requirements

 

Requires 30 hours of graduate courses, and passing the following National Association of State Boards of Geology (ASBOG) tests: the Fundamentals of Geology Examination and the Practice of Geology Examination. Each student must register for the 1-credit Research Colloquium during each Fall and Spring Semester of full-time graduate study.

 

PREFIX   NO    SHORT TITLE     CR HRS

 

Geology seminar requirement,

9 hours from

GEOL     605   Sem Strat (3)

               610   Sem Sediment (3)

               626   Sem Tectonic (3)

               660   Sem Hydrogeo (3)

               670   Sem Geochem (3)

               671   Sem Geomorph (3)  9

 

Research methods requirement

GEOL     685   Geo Res Meth          3

 

Approved graduate electives in

geology, including up to three

counted credits from

GEOL     500   Res Colloq               9

Approved major or minor in a

second discipline or GEOL and/or

other approved electives                  9

                                                    ———

                                                    30 hrs

 

MASTER OF SCIENCE IN GEOLOGY

 

Degree requirements

 

Requires 30 hours of graduate courses. Each student must register for the 1-credit Research Colloquium during each Fall and Spring Semester of full-time graduate study, and write a thesis, which fulfills 6 hours of the 30-hour requirement. In a normal course of study, students are required to determine the thesis topic by the end of the second semester. The completed thesis document is subject to approval by the committee following a public oral defense.

 

PREFIX   NO    SHORT TITLE     CR HRS

 

Geology seminar requirement,

9 hours from

GEOL     605   Sem Strat (3)

               610   Sem Sediment (3)

               626   Sem Tectonic (3)

               660   Sem Hydrogeo (3)

               670   Sem Geochem (3)

               671   Sem Geomorph (3)  9

 

Thesis requirement

THES      698   Thesis (1-6)             6

 

Approved graduate electives in
geology, including up to three

counted credits from

GEOL     500   Res Colloq               6

 

Approved major or minor in a

second discipline or GEOL and/or

other approved electives                  9

                                                    ———

                                                    30 hrs

GEOLOGY (GEOL)

 

500 Research Colloquium. (1) Presentations on geological science research topics by faculty, students, and visiting professional speakers. Enrolled by every departmental graduate degree candidate, each semester in residence.

      A total of 8 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 1 in any one semester or term.

 

502 Global Positioning System Techniques. (1) Global Positioning System (GPS) surveying and mapping techniques. Overview of satellite and system technology, examination of various GPS units available for applications, techniques using units individually or in combination for mapping and navigation, differential GPS methods, use in computer-generated maps.

Prerequisite: permission of the department chairperson.

A total of 3 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 1 in any one semester or term.

 

508 Sedimentary Geology. (3) An introduction to the study of sedimentary rocks and processes. Sedimentary rock description, depositional environments, and the application of stratigraphic methods. Regularly scheduled laboratory and a field trip.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201 or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 308.

 

509 Micropaleontology. (3) Morphology, classification, preparation techniques, and evolution of paleontologically significant microfossil groups and their biostratigraphic and paleoecologic significance. Emphasizes foraminifera, conodonts, and ostracodes. Regularly scheduled laboratory. Includes an immersion experience.

Prerequisite: GEOL 508 or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 409.

 

510 Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology. (3) Origin and description of igneous and metamorphic rocks. Incorporates information on recent advances in our understanding of these rocks. Provides an overview of the field of petrology and a solid foundation for more advanced studies.

Prerequisite: GEOL 220 or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 310.

 

511 Advanced Igneous and Metamorphic Petrology. (3) Processes responsible for, and the rocks and minerals associated with, the formation of both igneous and metamorphic rocks. Microscopic to macroscopic features associated with these processes. Regularly scheduled laboratory.

Prerequisite: GEOL 510 or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 411.

 

512 Sedimentary Petrology. (3) A petrographic approach to the classification and genetic interpretation of sedimentary rocks. Terrigenous sandstones and carbonate rocks will be emphasized with lesser stress on mud rocks and noncarbonate chemical rocks.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201, 220, 310, or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 412.

 

516 Geology of Hazards and the Environment. (3) Applied geology for hazard and environmental problems. Properties and mechanics of rocks and soil; geologic materials in construction; erosion, mass wasting, subsidence, flooding, shoreline, seismic, volcanic, and other natural hazards. Dams, tunnels, mines, shoreline structures, and other special construction problems; groundwater engineering problems.

Prerequisite: an introductory course such as GEOL 101, 207, 240; NREM 211 or EMHS 352; MATHS 108 or high school equivalent, or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 416.

 

520 Oceanography. (3) Description of geological and physical characteristics of the oceans, marine processes, and related topics.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201, 207; CHEM 111, or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 420.

 

525 Geophysics. (3) An introduction to the physics of the earth and the geophysical sciences. Refraction and reflection seismology, magnetic, electrical, gravity, radioactivity, and geothermal methods are included in lecture topics, laboratory exercises, and field investigations. Emphasizes the application of geophysical methods to energy, mineral and ground-water exploration, site evaluation, pollution detection, and other applied problems.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 425.

 

535 Sequence Stratigraphy. (3) Principles and practices of sequence stratigraphy. Use of surface and subsurface stratigraphic data in the reconstruction of depositional sequences and records of sea-level change. Includes an immersion experience.

Prerequisite: GEOL 508 or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 435.

 

545 Fractals in the Natural Sciences. (3) Fractal geometric models and data analysis methods of practical use in the sciences. Application examples drawn from geosciences and other natural science fields. Divider, box, size-number, variogram, and rescaled range methods, along with other techniques. Discussion of chaos and self-organized criticality as possible sources of fractals in nature.

Prerequisite: MATHS 108.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 445.

 

550 Geology of Indiana. (3) Rocks, structure, fossils, landforms, economic resources, and geologic history of Indiana. Designed for students, particularly teachers, not majoring in the earth sciences. Field-trip oriented with collection of rock, mineral, and fossil specimens.

A total of 6 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 3 in any one semester or term.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 450.

 

560 Hydrogeology. (3) Occurrence and movement of surface water and groundwater, with special reference to the geologic environment.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201 or 207 or 240 or NREM 211; MATHS 108 or high school equivalent; or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 360.

 

570 Groundwater Geochemistry. (3) Introduces the processes controlling the composition of natural waters: streams, lakes, oceans, and near-surface ground-waters. Focuses on the effects of human activities, biological systems, and inorganic geochemistry processes on water chemistry.

Prerequisite: GEOL 101; CHEM 111, 112; or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 470.

 

571 Volcanology and Volcanic Hazards. (3) Designed to give middle- and upper-level students a working knowledge of the causes and effects of the various types of volcanism ranging from quiescent Hawaiian-style volcanoes to the explosive Southwest Pacific volcanoes. In addition, looks at volcanic prediction, monitoring, and hazard response programs.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201 or permission of the department chairperson.

 

575 Glacial Geology. (3) In-depth study of the physical nature of glaciers, their deposits, and the erosional and depositional landforms they create. Introduction to the glacial history of the north central United States. Term paper required.

Prerequisite: GEOL 240; PHYCS 110 or 120; or permission of the department chairperson.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 475.

 

580 Special Studies and Field Problems. (1-3) Selected detailed geologic problems under the guidance of a qualified instructor.

Prerequisite: permission of the department chairperson.

A total of 6 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 3 in any one semester or term.

 

583 Field Geology. (6) A capstone experience applying field techniques to the resolution of geologic problems. Group and individual projects include accumulation and interpretation of field observations and preparation of geologic maps, cross sections, and stratigraphic sections to answer geologic questions. Five-week summer field course in the Rocky Mountains.

Prerequisite: GEOL 201, 220, 240, 508, 590; or permission of the department chairperson.

 

585 Group Field Research Experience. (3-6) Mentored, intensive, independent and/or collaborative research experience in a group setting, at an off-campus location.

Prerequisite: permission of the department chairperson.

A total of 12 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 6 in any one semester or term.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 485 same topic.

 

590 Computer Applications in the Geosciences. (1) Survey of the various computer applications in the geosciences. Designed to supplement existing geoscience and computer science courses by providing opportunity to gain experience in working with BASIC and FORTRAN programs in various geoscience data collection, calculation, and graphic display applications.

A total of 3 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 1 in any one semester or term.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 290.

 

599X Experimental Elective Course. (1-6) Experimental new specialty course in the geological sciences. Topic and mode of instruction vary by semester of offering.

A total of 9 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 6 in any one semester or term.

Not open to students who have credit in GEOL 499X same topic.

Open only to students with at least junior status.

 

600 Seminar in Geology. (1-3) Review and discussion of the literature related to a selected topic of current interest in geological research. Laboratory work and field trips may be included when necessary.

A total of 9 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 3 in any one semester or term.

 

601 Seminar in Environmental Geology. (1-3) Review and discussion of the literature related to a selected topic of current interest in environmental geology. Laboratory work and field trips may be included when necessary.

A total of 6 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 3 in any one semester or term.

 

605 Seminar in Stratigraphy. (3) Discussion of current topics in stratigraphy. Subjects may include global correlation, the record of sea level change, and global events in earth history.

 

610 Seminar in Sedimentary Petrology. (3) Advanced coverage of sedimentary rocks, their constituents, their environments of deposition, and the diagenetic processes that alter them after deposition. Proficiency in recognition of sedimentary constituents, in naming sedimentary rock types, and in interpretation of depositional, diagenetic, and provenance processes is expected.

Prerequisite: GEOL 412 or 512 or permission of the instructor.

 

611 Regional Geology. (3) Geologic history, geomorphology, structural geology, and special geologic topics of selected regions.

 

626 Seminar in Tectonics. (3) Origin and nature of tectonic processes affecting the crust and lithosphere. Plate dynamics and the tectonic evolution of orogens from a structural, petrologic, and geochronologic perspective.

Prerequisite: GEOL 315, 411, or 510 or permission of the instructor.

 

660 Seminar in Advanced Hydrogeology. (3) Seminar in advanced and contemporary topics in groundwater geology, such as pump and slug test analyses, analytic or numerical flow and transport computer modeling, wellhead protection policy, current groundwater resource and water quality research, and groundwater remediation.

Prerequisite: GEOL 360 or 560; permission of the department chairperson.

 

670 Seminar in Environmental Geochemistry. (3) Seminar in advanced and contemporary topics in aqueous geochemistry such as geochemical cycling with focus on the role of sediments, soils, freshwater streams and lakes, and oceans as reservoirs for chemical compounds, including natural and manmade contaminants.

Prerequisite: GEOL 470 or 570 or permission of the department chairperson.

 

671 Seminar in Geomorphology. (3) Review and critical discussion of key classic and recent literature in geomorphology. Student presentations and group project.

 

680 Special Studies and Field Problems. (1-3) Selected detailed geologic problems under the guidance of a qualified instructor.

Prerequisite: permission of the department chairperson.

A total of 6 hours of credit may be earned, but no more than 3 in any one semester or term.

 

685 Geology Research Methods. (3) Introduction to the use of scientific literature, design of research, analysis of data, and writing of research/grant proposals in a focused area of the geosciences. Review of literature pertinent to a special topic of student interest.