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Student Faculty Conference April 5, 2007 Geological and Planetary Sciences Division Meeting.

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Presentation on theme: "Student Faculty Conference April 5, 2007 Geological and Planetary Sciences Division Meeting."— Presentation transcript:

1 Student Faculty Conference April 5, 2007 Geological and Planetary Sciences Division Meeting

2 Objectives Introductions History and Background Committee Objectives Issues Addressed SFC Recommendations Discussion

3 Introductions Undergraduates –Meghan Crowley, Geochemistry 2007, Student Co-Chair –Andrea Dubin, Geochemistry 2009 –Aimee Gillespie, Geobiology 2009 –Becky Streit, Geology 2007 –Sonia Tikoo, Geology 2008, Student Co-Chair –Karen Wang, Geochemistry 2008 Faculty –Paul D. Asimow, Associate Professor of Geology and Geohemistry –Mike E. Brown, Professor of Planetary Astronomy –Robert W. Clayton, Professor of Geophysics –John Eiler, Professor of Geochemistry –Joseph L. Kirschvink, Professor of Geobiology –George Rossman, Professor of Mineralogy, Division Academic Officer

4 History and Background Student Faculty Conference began in 1980 –The conference was founded in response to numerous reforms around campus (e.g. accepting women) –Two-day event –Held every other year Recent history of the Student Faculty Conference –Caltech created the office of Residence Life in 1990 to handle the most controversial student issues, particularly those pertaining to the houses. –The office of Residence Life became the target of many student gripes –Students developed a largely antagonistic attitude towards the administration, which culminated in a major student protest in 2001. –This protest motivated a reinstatement of the Student Faculty Conference after a five-year hiatus –SFC has been held as a biennial event since 2001

5 Committee Objectives Each division or option committees is being asked to evaluate: –The adequacy of requirements for the options –The relevance and effectiveness of prerequisites for requirements –Scheduling and availability of courses –Common problems encountered in major required courses –Quality of communication between students and faculty –Addition or deletion of courses available in the options –Appropriate number of classes covering practical applications and theoretical background in the options –Consideration of students from outside the division taking GPS classes Committees are to be comprised of undergraduate students and faculty members; graduate students may also be on committees.

6 Issues Addressed Recruitment of more students Course Specific Issues –Ge 11 series –Ge 109 –Ge 112 Graduation Requirements –Geobiology –Geology –ACM 95 Adding new courses –Geology lab class –Arc GIS class

7 Recruitment of more students Problem: –Low numbers of GPS majors –Inaccurate prerequisites for Ge 11a and Ge 11b Recommendations: –Encourage freshmen to take Ge 11a –Have faculty attend frosh camp –Remove prerequisites for Ge 11a and Ge 11b

8 Ge 11 series Issues: –Ge 11b curriculum Students would like a more thorough and systematic treatment of the timescale –Lack of geophysics Recommendations: –Ge 11b Create a better timescale quiz that includes order of magnitude dates for each time scale and distinguishing characteristics of the time scale boundaries –Allow students in some options to substitute Ge 11d for Ge 11c

9 Ge 109 Issues: –Students wait to take this class until senior year Recommendations: –Encourage students to take this course earlier Helpful for classes in division Useful for SURF presentations –Make it more widely-known that students need not have a major body of their own research to talk about

10 Ge 112 Issues –Too much material is covered –It was decided that Ge 112 should be split into two terms in 2005, but nothing’s changed –Need to figure out how to assimilate a second term of Ge 112 into junior year schedule for geology majors Recommendations –Split into two classes Ge 112a: Sedimentology and Stratigraphy –Fall term, Grotz Ge 112b: Geomorphology –Spring term, Sieh

11 Ge 112 Ge 112a. Sedimentology and Stratigraphy. 12 units (3-5-4); first term. Prerequisite: Ge 11 ab. This course emphasizes the systematic analysis of transport and deposition in sedimentary environments and the resulting composition, texture, and structure of both clastic and chemical sedimentary rocks. The nature and genesis of sequence architecture of sedimentary basins and cyclic aspects of sedimentary accumulation will be introduced. Covers the formal and practical principles of definition of stratigraphic units, correlation, and the construction of a geologic timescale. Field trip and laboratory exercises. Ge 112b. Geomorphology. 12 units (3-5-4); third term. Prerequisite: Ge 112a. This course is an introduction to Earth’s landscapes and strata. We explore the development and interpretation of fluvial, lacustrine, glacial, volcanic, tectonic, and various marine landforms. Emphasis is on the relationship between the development of particular landforms and the sequences of characteristic strata that result and may be preserved in the rock record. The course will describe modern, active systems and the interpretation of paleoenvironments and paleoclimates of the past million years. Field trip and laboratory exercises.

12 Geobiology Graduation Requirements Lab appropriate coursework –Issues: Does not include all relevant advanced labs Not all appropriate techniques are covered in available courses –Recommendations: Add ESE 159 (Environmental Analysis Laboratory) to list of appropriate courses Add Ge 40 to list of appropriate courses –Research must be related to field Work with biology division to make Bi 180 more applicable to geobiology

13 Geology Graduation Requirements Issues: –Students can graduate without having any formal training in geophysics or metamorphic petrology {Ge112a, Ge115b, and Ge111ab} or {Ge112a, Ge112b, Ge111ab} or {Ge112a, Ge112b, Ge115b, and 3 units of Ge10} –Ge 11d is more useful than Ge 11c for many students Recommendations –Change the above graduation requirements to the following: {Ge112a, Ge115b (12 units), Ge111ab} or {Ge112a, Ge112b, Ge115b (6 units) and Ge11d} –Let geology majors substitute Ge 11d for Ge 11c Students who pick the 6 unit Ge 115b option must take Ge 11c

14 ACM 95 Issues: –ACM 95 might not be the most relevant course for some students Geology and geochemistry majors Recommendations: –Allow geology and geochemistry majors to make the following substitutions for ACM 95: Ch 41abc and ACM/ESE 118 Ch 21abc and ACM/ESE 118 –Make ACM 95 (and substitutions) an option requirement Only Geophysics and Planetary would require ACM 95 3 out of 5 options allow for substitutions

15 Arc GIS Class Arc GIS is an important tool in geosciences –Useful for industry –Helpful for many classes in the division Ge 110. Geographic Information System Laboratory. 3 units; second term. Formal introduction to modern computer- based geospatial analysis. Covers methods and applications of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in earth and planetary sciences in the form of practical lab exercises using the ArcGIS software package and a variety of geo-referenced data (Digital Elevation Models, geodetic measurements, satellite images, geological maps...). Instructor: Avouac.

16 Geology Lab Class All undergraduates are required to take an introductory lab course Offered courses are not particularly useful for GPS majors, so this course would satisfy a graduation requirement and be very beneficial Ge 116. Analytical Techniques Laboratory. 6 units; second term. Methods of quantitative laboratory analysis of rocks, minerals, and fluids in geological and planetary sciences. Consists of five intensive two-week modules covering scanning electron microscopy (imaging, energy-dispersive X-ray spectrometry, electron backscatter diffraction); the electron microprobe (wavelength-dispersive X-ray spectrometry); optical, infrared, and Raman spectroscopy; gas source mass spectrometry for stable isotope analysis; and plasma source mass spectrometry for elemental and radiogenic isotope analysis. Satisfies the institute core requirement for an Additional Introductory Laboratory course. Instructor: Asimow.

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