Two hundred million years ago the Earth's continents were joined together to form one gigantic super-continent, called Pangea. Plate tectonic forces broke Pangea apart and caused the continents to drift. We study the evidence for plate tectonics and the large-scale dynamics of the Earth's interior that is responsible for mountain building, earthquakes faulting, volcanic eruptions, changes in Earth's magnetic field and much more.
The course involves three hours of weekly meeting time and selected reading material. No background in Earth science is necessary. Evaluation is based on class participation, three exams, a series of student presentations on selected topics and written essays on the same subject.