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Geoscience (GEOS) Courses

GEOS 505 INTRODUCTION TO NUMERICAL METHODS FOR THE GEOSCIENCES (1-2-3)(S). Programming and numerical methods using MATLAB. Standards and practices of programming within MATLAB. Survey of numerical methods critical to geoscientists, including root finding, interpolation and extrapolation, linear algebra, numerical integration, solving differential equations, and simulation and random numbers. PREREQ: MATH 175 or equivalent.

GEOS 511 HYDROLOGY: LAND-ATMOSPHERE INTERACTION (3-0-3)(F). Introduction to the hydrologic cycle and connections between the land surface and atmosphere. Atmospheric circulation, global hydrologic budget, atmospheric radiation, meteorology and climatology of rainfall, snow processes, surface energy and moisture balance, turbulent fluxes, and modeling and remote sensing. PREREQ: MATH 175.

GEOS 512 (CE 512) HYDROGEOLOGY (3-0-3)(S). Introduction to the hydrologic cycle focusing on subsurface water and its relationship to surface water. Physics of flow through porous media, physical properties of aquifer systems, methods to determine aquifer characteristics, groundwater modeling and relationships between groundwater and streamflow. May be taken for CE or GEOS credit, but not both. PREREQ: CE 330 or ME 330 or MATH 175.

GEOS 516 HYDROLOGY (3-0-3)(F). Interdisciplinary earth science concerned with movement and occurrence of water. Watershed-based hydrologic phenomena including hydrologic cycle water-cycle analysis, precipitation, evapotranspiration, snow-snowmelt, streamflow, floods, routing and surface runoff events. Application of analytical techniques to solve water resource problems. PREREQ: MATH 175 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 518 APPLIED HYDROLOGIC MODELING (2-2-3)(S). Review, critical analysis, and application of surface hydrology modeling techniques used in hydrology and engineering practice. Covers empirical, statistical, and physics-based approaches. Application of commonly used modeling software to practical problems. PREREQ: GEOS 516 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 523 ADVANCED GEOMORPHOLOGY (V-V-3)(F/S). Study of Quaternary dating methods, applications of geomorphology to environmental problems, mapping and landscape analysis using GIS, soils, geomorphic response to Quaternary climate change, and climatic, tectonic and autocyclic controls on geomorphic processes. Field trips and a field-based research project required. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 525 WHOLE EARTH GEOCHEMISTRY (3-0-3)(F/S). Basic tools and topics of modern geochemistry with an emphasis on solid-earth applications. Essentials of thermodynamics, kinetics, radiogenic and stable isotopes, and trace element chemistry necessary to study Earth processes in the crust, mantle, hydrosphere and atmosphere. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 526 (CE 526) AQUEOUS GEOCHEMISTRY (3-0-3)(F/S). Basic tools and topics of aqueous geochemistry with an emphasis on low temperature processes in natural waters. Essentials of thermodynamics, kinetics, aqueous speciation, mineral-water interaction, and elemental cycling in the context of surficial earth processes and environmental challenges. May be taken for CE or GEOS credit, but not both. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 529 FIELD HYDROGEOLOGIC METHODS (1-4-3)(Offered as Justified). Field observations and data collection at active drilling projects. Survey course covering water well design and construction, geologic data collection from well cuttings, geophysical methods, and other technical, legal and environmental aspects of water well drilling and operation. Requires weekly 4-hour field trips to local drill sites. PREREQ: GEOS 512 and PERM/INST.

GEOS 531 GEOLOGY AND TECTONICS OF WESTERN NORTH AMERICA (3-0-3)(F/S). Class traces the timeline of processes and events that shaped the continental architecture of Western North America by integrating all relevant aspects of geology and geophysics. A research paper is required. PREREQ: Graduate standing or PERM/INST.

GEOS 535 INTRODUCTION TO GEOINFORMATICS (3-0-3)(F/S). Explores theory and practice of digital information systems applied to the geosciences. Databases, GIS, schemas, standards and protocols, and examples. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 540 TECTONICS SEMINAR (2-0-2)(F/S). Examination of specific orogenic systems, tectonic environments, and tectonic processes. PREREQ: GEOS 314, PERM/INST.

GEOS 541 PLATE TECTONICS (3-0-3)(On Demand). Reviews and clarifies geologic and geophysical foundations of plate tectonic theory. Characteristics of modern tectonic environments and their use in interpreting the Earth’s geologic history. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 551 PRINCIPLES OF SOIL SCIENCE (3-0-3)(Offered as Justified). Physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of soils, the factors that govern soil formation, soils as a tool for interpreting landscape evolution and climatic change, and the feedbacks among geologic, hydrologic, and ecologic systems that influence pedogenesis. Demonstration laboratory exercises and field trips will be required. Background in geology and chemistry encouraged. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 560 VOLCANOLOGY (3-0-3)(F)(Alternate years). Study of volcanic processes and deposits, with focus on advances in volcanology since 1980 eruption of Mt. St. Helens. Course content aimed at students desiring to improve skills in working with volcanic rocks in the context of the geologic record, as well as students interested in volcanic hazards assessment. Field trip required. PREREQ: Graduate standing in geosciences or PERM/INST.

GEOS 561 EARTH SCIENCE TEACHING TECHNIQUES (3-0-3 or 4-0-4)(F/S). This course is a study of the objectives, methods, and materials of instruction in Earth Sciences. Emphasis will be placed on the preparation and presentation of lectures, laboratory exercises and field trips. This course provides the student with internship experience in the laboratory and lecture classroom. PREREQ: Graduate status or PERM/INST.

GEOS 562 ADVANCED FIELD METHODS IN VOLCANOLOGY (2-V-3)(F). Students increase their aptitude for observing and interpreting volcanic deposits in the field through field discussion and field reports that 1) clearly distinguish observation from interpretation, and 2) support interpretations with field observations and reference to the published literature. Class time is used to discuss volcanic processes and field observations. Field trips required. PREREQ: GEOS 460 or GEOS 560 or PERM/INST

GEOS 570 (GEOG 570) EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE AND GLOBAL WARMING (3-0-3)(F/S). Survey of interactions among physical biogeochemical processes involved in climate and climate feed back. Explore in detail scenarios of global warming for the next century and their reliability. May be taken for GEOG or GEOS credit, but not both. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 580 SELECTED TOPICS IN WATERSHED HYDROLOGY (1-3 credits)(F). Detailed investigation of select hydrologic processes and applications. Topics will vary each year and may include runoff generation, snow hydrology, watershed management, hydrologic modeling, sediment transport, land-use hydrology and field methods among others. Repeatable for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 583 SELECTED TOPICS IN GEOMORPHOLOGY (1-3 credits)(F/S). Selected topics in geomorphology such as environmental geomorphology, soils and geomorphology, and post-fire erosion. May be repeated for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 584 SELECTED TOPICS IN TECTONICS (1-3 credits)(S)(Odd years). Exploration of an individual topic chosen from within the discipline of tectonics. Subject of study in a given semester may be based on geography (e.g., evolution of the Cordilleran Orogen) or tectonic process (e.g., continental rifting and extension). May be repeated for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 585 SELECTED TOPICS IN ISOTOPE GEOSCIENCE (1-3 credits)(Offered as Justified). Investigation of selected isotope geoscience methods and applications. Topics vary and may include aspects of stable, cosmogenic, rare gas, and radiogenic isotope geochemistry. May be repeated for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 586 SELECTED TOPICS IN VOLCANOLOGY (1-3 credits)(F/S). Explores research questions, methods and recent advancements in volcanology through discussions on a series of volcanology research papers. Repeatable for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 598 GRADUATE SEMINAR (0-1 to 0-3). The preparation and presentation of oral and written reports on topics in earth science and/or science education. Presentation of oral reports may take the form of debate. Preparation of visual aids and geologic illustrations will be emphasized. PREREQ: Admission to candidacy or PERM/INST.

GEOS 601 (GEOPH 601) INTRODUCTION TO RESEARCH PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT (1-0-1)(F). Overview of requirements for research and development of technical writing skills through the preparation of abstracts, proposals for research funding, and thesis proposals. May be taken for GEOPH or GEOS credit, but not both. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 605 TOPICS IN GEOMORPHOLOGY (3-0-3)(F/S). Topical investigation of geomorphic processes, including the influences of geology, hydrology, biology, climate, tectonics, and time on landscape evolution and ecosystems development. Includes field investigations. May be repeated for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 607 PALEOCLIMATOLOGY AND PALEOCEANOGRAPHY (3-0-3)(F/S). Will survey the driving forces of atmospheric and oceanic circulation, and how this information can be retrieved from the geological record from physical, biotic, trace element, and isotopic proxies. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 611 BASIN ANALYSIS (3-0-3)(S). Study of the formation and evolution of sedimentary basins. Emphasis on the concepts and qualitative tools necessary to understand how sedimentary basins are formed, their specific stratigraphic architectures, and modern approaches to correlation. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 615 TIME-SERIES ANALYSIS OF THE GEOLOGIC RECORD (3-0-3) (F/S). Analysis of modern methods for the quantification of time in the geologic record, including bio-, chemo-, magneto- and physical stratigraphy, high precision geochronology, and orbital tuning. Application to elucidating the records of tectonic reconstruction, paleobiological evolution, and paleoclimate change. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 616 WATERSHED PROCESSES (3-0-3)(F). Hydrologic processes operating in watersheds, and relationships among hydrologic, biogeochemical, and geomorphologic processes. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 620 COUPLED LAND-ATMOSPHERE MODELING (2-2-3)(F)(Offered even years). Overview of hydrometeorological theory underlying contemporary hydrometeorologic modeling. Application to the use of state-of-the-art research coupled land-atmosphere models, particularly the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. PREREQ: GEOS 505 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 621 GLOBAL HYDROLOGIC CHANGE (3-0-3)(F)(Offered odd years). In-depth study of projected changes to the global hydrologic cycle associated with climate change. Review of theory and recent literature on global hydrologic change and process-oriented, quantitative analysis of outputs of the Fifth Coupled Model Intercomparison Project.

GEOS 623 (CE 623)(GEOPH 623) ADVANCED HYDROGEOLOGY (3-0-3)(F). Treatment of groundwater occurrence and flow, theory fundamental mechanisms, hydrologic parameters, flow regimes and systems, geologic controls. May be taken for CE, GEOPH, or GEOS credit, but not for more than one department. PREREQ: MATH 275, MATH 333, and GEOS 412 or GEOS 512 or CE 412 or CE 512, or PERM/INST.

GEOS 624 (CE 624)(GEOPH 624) APPLIED HYDROGEOLOGY (3-0-3)(S). Quantitative determination of hydrologic parameter values and groundwater flow conditions. Conceptual models and geologic context, boundary condition, analytical and numerical solution techniques, measurement methods, applications to engineering and environmental problems. May be taken for CE, GEOPH, or GEOS credit, but only in one department. PREREQ: CE 623 or GEOPH 623 or GEOS 623 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 630 (CE 630) VADOSE ZONE HYDROLOGY (3-0-3)(F)(Even years). Laboratory and field methods for characterizing physical and hydraulic properties of soils, solution of variably saturated flow problems using analytical and numerical techniques. Computer simulations of flow and transport in variably saturated soils. May be taken for CE or GEOS credit, but not for both. PREREQ: CE 412, GEOS 412, CE 512, or GEOS 512 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 633 (CE 633) CONTAMINANT HYDROGEOLOGY (3-0-3)(F)(Odd years). The fate and transport of dissolved solutes and non-aqueous phase liquids in groundwater systems. Students will analyze field data and develop conceptual models for contaminated sites. The role of engineers and hydrologists in environmental litigation will be addressed through case studies. May be taken for CE or GEOS credit, but not for both. PREREQ: CE 412 or CE 512 or GEOS 412 or GEOS 512, or PERM/INST.

GEOS 636 STABLE ISOTOPE GEOCHEMISTRY (3-0-3)(F/S). Comprehensive overview of theory, methods, and applications of stable isotope geochemistry to a wide range of earth science problems. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 638 RADIOGENIC ISOTOPE GEOCHEMISTRY AND GEOCHRONOLOGY (3-0-3)(F/S). Comprehensive overview of theory, methods, and applications of radiogenic isotope geochemistry and geochronology to a wide range of earth science problems. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 641 (GEOPH 641) GEODYNAMICS (3-0-3)(F/S). Identifies and quantitatively analyzes the processes governing the dynamic behavior of Earth at a variety of spatial and temporal scales. May be taken for GEOPH or GEOS credit, but not both. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 643 ADVANCED STRUCTURAL GEOLOGY (2-3-3)(F)(Alternate years). Geometric, kinematic and dynamic analysis of plutonic rocks and metamorphic tectonites. Structural elements in plutons, their formation and interpretation as indicators of the tectonic environment during emplacement. Mesoscopic and microscopic study of rock fabrics, the mechanisms and processes of their formation and deformation, and their use as kinematic and strain indicators. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 645 PHYSICS AND CHEMISTRY OF MOUNTAIN BUILDING (3-0-3) (F/S). An introduction to modern methods for analyzing the pressure- temperature-time paths and histories of metamorphic terrains comprising modern and ancient mountain belts; subjects to include quantitative geothermobarometry, chemical diffusion and closure temperature theory, geochronology and thermochronology, the thermal structure and evolution of mountain belts. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 647 ADVANCED IGNEOUS PETROLOGY (3-0-3)(S)(Odd years). A study of igneous rocks with emphasis on their origin and the processes responsible for their diversity. Exercises will make use of the petrographic microscope and the departmental computer facilities. A field trip is required. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 652 METHODS IN HYDROLOGIC SCIENCES (1-V-3)(S). Application of laboratory and field methods to problems in hydrology, biogeochemistry, and aqueous geochemistry, inclusive of experimental design, sampling techniques, analytical methods and data analysis. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 661 ADVANCED IMAGE PROCESSING (2-2-3)(S). Techniques for data derived in the visible, infrared, and microwave spectra. Concepts of laser altimetry and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) through hands-on field training and data acquisition and image processing. Topics may include preprocessing, endmember analysis, point cloud analysis, spectral unmixing, classification, and accuracy assessment. Practical application of theory for graduate student to apply in thesis and dissertation research. PREREQ: GEOG 561 or PERM/INST.

GEOS 680 SELECTED TOPICS IN HYDROMETEOROLOGIC MODELING (1-4 credits)(Offered as Justified). Topics related to simulation of hydrologic systems including coupled land-atmosphere modeling, hydrologic forecasting and data assimilation, modeling biogeochemical cycling, land modeling in integrated Earth system modeling, and physics-based watershed modeling.

GEOS 681 SELECTED TOPICS IN REMOTE SENSING (1-3 credits)(F/S). Theory and techniques of using remotely sensed data for mapping and analysis of the environment. Topics will vary within a focus on image processing techniques for selected hydrologic, biogeochemical, geomorphologic, and ecological processes. May be repeated for credit. PREREQ: PERM/INST.

GEOS 683 SELECTED TOPICS IN SOIL SCIENCE (1-4 credits)(Offered as Justified). Selected topics related to aspects of soil science, including the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of soils. May be presented in lectures, laboratory exercises and field trips. PREREQ: Background in geology and chemistry.

GEOS 685 SELECTED TOPICS IN BIOGEOCHEMISTRY (1-4 credits)(Offered as Justified). Topics related to aspects of biogeochemistry including biogeochemical cycling, nutrient and contaminant fate in the environment, ecohydrology, reactive transport modeling, microbial processes in the environment, and climate change processes. May be presented in lectures, laboratory exercises and field trips. PREREQ: Background in chemistry, environmental sciences.

Refer to the University-wide Graduate Courses section in this catalog for additional course offerings.

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