As an Earth Science Instructor, I
dream of my students leaving our classroom with the quest to see the
world around them with a whole new set of eyes. In the classroom, my
students can only learn so much before we need to go outdoors. In the
field, their appreciation and depth of understanding come to life. They
return to class with more interest and more questions than ever before.
First on my plate for department courses is the creation of a one unit
Field Study Course to go along with or after the Introductory Physical
Geography or Geology Course.
The plan for one of the field courses consists of spending several
3-hour evening sessions working with topographic, geologic and fault
maps. We would look at the areas dam placements and create questions to
solve before we travel down the nearby South Fork American River. The
river carves canyons providing an excellent way to see an Ophiolite
Complex (cross-section of the seafloor).
A plan for a second field course includes studying the East Side of the
Sierras. After many hours with maps, we would travel to Mono Lake and
Rock Creek to investigate the unique ecosystem and history of the Owens
River. In addition, we would also be able to map the volcanic flows of
Rock Creek and determine the chronology of the flow events.
The field course location and study will change from spring to fall
semesters and year-to-year depending on the conditions.
-Article and Photo
by Danielle Widemann
New Classes in Fall 06:
Students will have the opportunity to learn more about their favorite
branch of astronomy!
Astronomy 30 The Solar System: An introductory study of solar system
astronomy, the physics related to that astronomy, the planets and their
moons, the sun, solar system debris, and the possibility of
Astronomy 40 Stars, Galaxies, and Cosmology: An introductory study of
stars, galaxies, the universe, and the physics related to these topics.
This includes an examination of the facts relating to the sun, stellar
lifetimes, supernovae, black holes, and cosmology.
Astronomy 10 General Astronomy: New Online sections have been added.
An introductory study of the universe, including the properties and
evolution of galaxies, stars, pulsars, black holes, quasars, the sun,
planets and life in the universe.
Astronomy 20 Astronomy Laboratory:
Students will gain familiarity with the sky, telescopes, and other
astronomical equipment. They will do experiments in physics related to
astronomy. Topics will cover the moon, planets, stars, galaxies, and