Introductory and Survey Courses

Check the online schedule of classes for the official schedules. Be sure to select the New Brunswick campus. The subject code for all Geological Sciences courses is 460.

Note: We strive to maintain the accuracy of the information presented here and on linked pages. However, this information is subject to change without notice. The only official course syllabus is the one handed out in class by the instructor, unless explicitly stated otherwise.

For Prospective Students and Student Advisors

The following list of courses in Geological Sciences offered by the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences (formerly Department of Geological Sciences) can fulfill the SAS science requirement; several courses also satisfy other core requirements. Our 100- and 200-level courses generally have no prerequisites, and are open to all undergraduate students; some courses are have online sections. 460:100 as well as all 200-level courses are designed primarily for non-majors and are taught at the introductory level. 460:101: Introductory Geology is also open to all students, but is intended more for those majoring in any of the sciences or for those with more background or interest in science. It is also a required course for the major and minor in Geological Sciences, Department of Earth and Planetary Science.

Introductory and Survey Courses for Non-Majors

01:460:100 Planet Earth (3 cr)
Introductory geology for the non-science major, designed to give a broad, basic understanding of the planet on which we reside, its age and origin, composition and evolution, interrelationships of Earth's major physical systems, scientific revolutions in Earth Science, and the role the physical Earth plays in global politics and economics. Online and in-class sections.
Instructors: Profs. Feigenson, Lepre, Browning, Turrin, Monteverde, and Mountain.
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors. partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) core requirement. Credit not given for both this course and 460:101 Introductory Geology.

01:460:110 Sea Change—The Rise and Fall of Sea Level and the Jersey Shore (3 cr)
History of climate and sea-level change during Earth history. Signature class for all students;recitation meets every other week.
Instructor: Prof. Miller
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements.

01:460:201 Earthquakes and Volcanoes (3 cr)
Plate tectonics and the origin of earthquakes and volcanoes: causes, mechanisms, consequences, and effect on man. Online course.
Instructors: Prof. Levin and Staff
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS natural sciences (NS) core requirement.

01:460:202 Environmental Geology (3 cr)
Analyses of issues and case studies related to cleaning of the environment, finding and using resources, predicting and mitigating natural disasters, and understanding global change. Online course.
Instructor: Prof. Sugarman
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) core requirement.

01:460:203 Building and Maintaining a Habitable Planet (3 cr)
Understanding human-caused environmental changes in the context of Earth's 4.6-billion-year history. Geological and human timescales; planetary habitability; planetary, biological, and civilizational flows of energy and entropy; feedback between life, the carbon cycle, and climate; the evolution of complex life; human alterations of the Earth system; intelligent life in the universe.
Instructor: Prof. Kopp and Staff
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements.

01:460:204 The Water Planet (3 cr)
Survey of the science, environmental impact, and resource allocation of water on the Earth. Characteristics of water; hydrologic cycle; runoff and erosion; river systems; past and present climates; water quality; political and economic aspects of water
Instructors: Prof. Rosenthal, Prof. Sherrell
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements. Credit not given for this course and 11:628:115, 125, 204, 221 and 01:460:120, 209

01:460:206 Dinosaurs (3 cr)
Survey of dinosaurian evolution and diversity. Discovery and collection; reconstruction of anatomy, behavior, physiology, and habitats; origin, evolutionary radiation, and extinction. Some online sections.
Instructors: Prof. McGhee and Prof. Adamo
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement.

01:460:207 Oil and Gold—the Good, the Bad and the Ugly (3 cr)
Introduction to the geologic setting and origin of the Earth’s natural resources. Topics include the exploitation of energy resources (oil and gas) and metallic and nonmetallic deposits and the impact of the exploitation of these natural resources on the environment and society.
Instructors: Prof. Withjack, Prof. Schlische
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements.

01:460:212 Earth and Life Through Time (3 cr)
Relationship between the development of continents and oceans, changes in sedimentary environments, and the evolution of life through time.
Instructors: Prof. Wright and Staff
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement. Credit not given for both 460:212 and 460:102.

01:460:213 A Walk Through Time: Evolution of Mammals (3 cr)    NEW COURSE!!
Introduction to current perspectives on the origins and fossil history of mammals. Critically evaluation of the “how” and “why” theories of evolution and adaption through a detailed presentation of the “who”, “what”, “when”, and “where” facts gathered by geological, biological, and paleontological research.
Instructor: Prof. Lepre
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement.

01:460:222 Planet Mars (3 cr)
Planet Mars is the next frontier. Cross-disciplinary evidence for the formation and evolution of the planet over 4.56 billion years and the Martian climate system will be explored. Interpretation of Mars' surface from current and future space missions will be used to search for likely landing sites on the planet.
Instructor: Prof. Gross
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements.

01:460:224 Geology of Moons and Planets (3 cr)
Origin, composition, and evolution of the solar system, meteorites, comets, asteroids, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Io, Europa, Ganymede, Callisto, Saturn and its satellites, Uranus, and Neptune.
Instructor: Prof. Tikoo and Staff
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) and Contemporary Challenges (CC) core requirements.

01:460:225 Astrobiology (3 cr)   NEW COURSE!!
Investigation of the origin, evolution, and distribution of life in our solar system and beyond. Addresses some of the biggest questions in science today such as where life began, whether there is life on other planets, and how scientists search for extraterrestrial life.
Instructor: Prof. Yee
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for non-science majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement.

 

Introductory Courses (intended for those with more interest in the sciences, those majoring in the sciences, and for fulfilling major and minor requirements)

01:460:101 Introductory Geology (4 cr)
Geological concepts, principles, processes, chemistry, and physics of the Earth and the interplay of Earth Systems. Course explores the Earth as a whole, its origin, structure, composition, history and the nature of the processes that resulted in its formation and its present state. Lecture 3 hours, lab 3 hours.
Instructors: Prof. Swisher, Prof. Monteverde
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for those majoring in the sciences, and 01:460 majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement. Non-science majors/minors should take 460:100 Planet Earth. Credit not given for both this course and 460:100 Planet Earth.

01:460:102 Introductory Geology II: Historical (3 cr)
Principles and concepts of plate tectonics and reconstructing past geography and environments; the history of Earth's climate, environments, biogeochemical cycles, and life through time.
Instructor: Prof. Wright
Prerequisite: 01:460:101 or 460:100 or by permission of instructor
Note: Designed for majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement.. Credit not given for both this course and 460:212 Earth & Life Through Time.

01:460:103 Introductory Geology Laboratory (1 cr)
Explores mineral and rock identification, geological sample analysis, structural and seismological interpretation, and field observations.
Instructors: Staff
Prerequisites: Permission of instructor or Undergraduate Program Director.
Note: For students requiring fulfillment of the Geological Sciences lab requirement who have previously taken 01:460:100 Planet Earth. Lab times are those scheduled for 01:460:101 labs.

01:460:120 Introductory Oceanography (3 cr)
The course is designed to introduce students to the oceans through methods, rationale and discoveries with emphasis on the seafloor.
Instructors: Prof. Taghon, Prof. Bidle, Prof. Severman
Prerequisites: None
Note: Designed for majors and minors; partially fulfills SAS Natural Sciences (NS) requirement. Credit not given for this course and 11:628:115, 120, 125, 204, 221 or 01:460:204, 209.