Courses in Geological Sciences (Division 377)

A. Introductory Courses and Courses for Non-concentrators

G.S. 100-115 are short (half-term) courses. They consist of detailed examinations of restricted geologic topics. The department lists the specific courses from this series in the Time Schedule for the terms they are offered (fall and winter terms only). Each course, when offered, meets twice weekly for half of the term (first half or second half), and the specific dates for each course are printed in the Time Schedule. These courses are designed primarily for students with no prior geologic training and they are open to all interested persons. G.S. 100-115 are offered on the graded pattern (optional pass/fail).

100. Coral Reefs. (1). (NS). (BS).

Coral Reefs will be an in-depth tour of the biological and physical processes active in modern reef systems to provide a detailed understanding of the ecology of the individual organisms and the complex nature of their interactions within the reef community. Evolution of the reef community will be examined, ranging from the crude framework structures formed over one billion years ago by primitive algae to the luxuriant and diversified reefs of the modern-day oceans, to define the evolutionary strategies of reef building organisms. By tracking these evolutionary strategies through geologic time, the implications of man's intervention with the Earth's hydrosphere and atmosphere on the character of future reef communities will be considered. Cost:1 WL:4 (Lohmann)
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101. Waves and Beaches. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 276. (1). (NS). (BS).

This short course approaches the subject of "waves and beaches" by combining relevant topics in both oceanography and geology, although no previous background in these subjects is required. We shall attempt to understand this dynamic place where land and sea interact by emphasizing the processes responsible for the major types of coastlines and the geologic/oceanographic phenomena associated with them. Some of the topics which will be considered include: fundamentals of wave and tide theory; the impact of waves and tides upon beaches; coastal geology; coastal processes on a short- and long-term time scale; estuaries; and, the impact of plate tectonics upon coasts. Instruction will be by lecture. Grades will be based on one exam which shall be given at the end of the course. Cost:1 WL:1 (Wilkinson)
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105. Continents Adrift. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 205 or 270. (1). (NS). (BS).

In this one-credit course we will explore the mobility of the continents and oceans in present and past times. The goals of this course are to present the most exciting recent developments in the earth sciences, a unifying concept that explains ocean evolution, mountain building, earthquakes, and volcanoes. Conceptual and factual material will be used to explain the principles of plate tectonics and the dynamics of the solid earth. No special background is needed. Evaluation is based on quizzes and final exams. Cost:2 WL:1 (Ruff)
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106. Fossils, Primates, and Human Evolution. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 125. (1). (NS). (BS).

Anatomical and behavioral characteristics of living primates are reviewed, and the fossil record is used to document the course of human evolution through the past 60 million years. No special background is required. Students seeking a more detailed course with laboratory exercises may follow this with Geology 438 (Evolution of the Primates). Course consists of 12 lectures, and a one-hour final examination. Cost:1 WL:4 (Gingerich)
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107. Volcanoes and Earthquakes. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 205, 270, or 271. (1). (NS). (BS).

The course is a study of the earth in action and includes the following topics: geography of earthquakes and volcanoes; catastrophic events in historic times; size and frequency of occurrence of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions; the products of volcanism; volcanic rocks; volcanic activity through geologic time; volcanic exhalations and the evolution of the earth's atmosphere and oceans; relationship of earthquakes and volcanoes to plate tectonics and the internal dynamics of the earth; volcanism and geothermal energy; manmade earthquakes; and earthquake prediction and control. Instruction by lecture, evaluation on basis of final exam. Cost:1 WL:3 (Nyman)
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115. Geologic Time. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 135 or 269. (1). (NS). (BS).

Until the middle of the 18th century the Earth was generally thought to be less than 10,000 years old, and according to many, close to its apocolyptic end. We now know that the Earth formed 4.5 billion years ago and that the entire history of mankind is nothing but the latest tiny fraction of Earth history. The formation of rocks, continental drift, volcanoes, and earthquakes is evaluated in the framework of geologic time and plate tectonics. The discovery of time from the Renaissance to the latest high tech developments in radioactive dating is reviewed. Finally, the history of planet Earth will be described including its accretion out of dust and giant impacts, the origin of the Moon, the formation of the atmosphere and oceans, the development of life and the building of continents. The course will draw upon examples meaningful to the student to illustrate the principles. Lectures twice weekly for half the term. Course pack provides most of the diagrams. A final one hour examination. Cost:1 WL:3/4 (Mukasa)
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117. Introduction to Geology. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 116, 119, or 120. Those with credit for GS 205 may only elect GS 117 for 4 credits. (5). (NS). (BS).

A basic single-term course in introductory geology concentrating on the evolution of the Earth in physical and chemical terms with particular reference to modern plate tectonic theory, and to the interaction of the external biosphere-atmosphere-hydrosphere with the Earth's interior. The laboratory provides a practical study of minerals, rocks, and geologic maps. One hour each week is scheduled for review and discussion of topics covered in class. Lectures, laboratory, and discussion. Cost:2 WL:4 (Mukasa, Pollack)
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118. Introductory Geology Laboratory. Prior or concurrent enrollment in GS 119, or 205 and 206, or 135. Credit is not granted for GS 118 to those with credit for an introductory course in geology (GS 116, 117, or 218). (1). (NS). (BS).

The laboratory provides hands-on experience with minerals, rocks, and maps. Participants will learn to identify common minerals and rocks, use topographic and geologic maps, and draw and interpret geologic cross sections. Examples will be drawn from areas of recent glaciation, volcanism, and earthquakes to show how these features are depicted in maps. Cost:2 WL:4 (Mukasa)
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119. Introductory Geology Lectures. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 116, 117, 120. No credit granted to those who have completed both 205 and 206. Those with credit for GS 205 may only elect GS 119 for 3 credits. (4). (NS). (BS).

This course consists of lectures shared with Geology 117 but does not include the laboratory section. A separate discussion section is also scheduled to insure continuity with class material and student-teacher contact. Students interested in ONE-TERM laboratory introductory science course should elect Geology 117. Lectures and discussion. Cost:2 WL:4 (Mukasa, Pollack)
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120. Geology of National Parks and Monuments. Credit is not granted for GS 120 to those with credit for an introductory course in geology (116, 117, 119). No credit granted to those who have completed both GS 205 and 206. (4). (NS). (BS).
Geology of National Parks and Monuments
approaches Earth history by examining the geology of places rather than by taking a process approach. It is designed for all interested undergraduates at the University of Michigan. The course format consists of three lectures each week and one two-hour demonstration-laboratory period, for four credits. Lecture material deals with the geologic history of selected National Parks and Monuments, which are chosen and scheduled so that those in which the oldest rocks are exposed (thus relating to the earliest portions of Earth history) are covered first. In so doing, we cover Earth history in a temporal progression, but do so by discussing different geographic areas. The demonstration-laboratory portion of the course will give you first-hand experience with rocks, minerals, and fossils; and an opportunity to discuss these in small groups. Cost:1 WL:1 (Wilkinson)
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123/AOSS 123/Environ. Stud. 123. Life and the Global Environment. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 277. (2). (NS). (BS).

See Environmental Studies 123. (Walker)
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135. History of the Earth. High school chemistry, physics, and mathematics recommended. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 269. Those with credit for GS 115 may only elect GS 135 for 2 credits. (3). (NS). (BS).

This course provides a broad and fundamental introduction to the Earth and explains the formation of rocks and the major geological features, as well as the changes that have occurred over the 4.5 billion years of Earth history. The course is intended for students considering a Geological Sciences concentration, as well as for students interested in studying Earth sciences as part of their general educational background. Topics include minerals and the formation of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, fossils and the evolution of life, the interior of the Earth, the measurement of time, continental drift, and the effect of the Earth's atmosphere, climate, oceans and rivers on shaping the surface of the Earth. The history of the planet will be followed from Earth's accretion from dust, through the origin of life, the building of the current continents and ocean basins, and the origin of humankind. Lectures three times a week for the full term. Textbook and course pack required. Evaluation will be based on four exams. Cost:2 WL:3/4 (Halliday)
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201/Geography 201. Introductory Geography: Water, Climate, and Mankind. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in GS 268. Those with credit for GS 111 may only elect GS 201 for 3 credits. (4). (NS). (BS).

This basic introduction to physical geography emphasizes the nature and dynamics of the earth system including the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and solid earth, and their interactions. Topics include seasons, heat balance, global warming, ozone destruction, and circulation, moisture, precipitation, clouds, groundwater, ocean circulation, waves, and tides, plate tectonics, landform evolution, and soil development, the biosphere, climate evolution, and global change. Students in this lecture-lab course are evaluated by hourly and final examinations, and a term paper with satisfactory completion of the lab work a prerequisite to the final course evaluation. Cost:2 WL:3 (Stixrude)
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206. How the Earth Works: the Water Cycle and Environment. Those with credit for GS 109 may only elect GS 206 for 1 credit. (2). (NS). (BS).

This course describes behavior of earth materials in the surficial environment. Water is the main transport agent in the geological cycle; its unique properties and exchange rates among oceans, lakes, rivers, and groundwater are one focus. Interaction between water reservoirs and physical and chemical weathering of soils, sediments and rocks also are discussed. Impact of humans on the surficial environment is a unifying theme because we can affect hydrologic and geochemical cycles. No special background required. Two lectures per week. Evaluation based on exams and participation. This course, and its companion course (GS 205), may be taken singly or concurrently and together constitute a balanced introduction to modern earth science. Cost:2 WL:4 (Meyers)
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222. Introductory Oceanography. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in AOSS 203. (3). (NS). (BS). (QR/2).

This course introduces students to the scientific study of the oceans. Contents include the shape, structure, and origin of the ocean basins; the sedimentary record of oceanic life and conditions in the past; the composition of seawater and its influence on life and climate; waves and currents; the life of the oceans and how it depends upon the marine environment; the resources of the ocean and their wise use by society. The course format consists of lectures and readings from an assigned textbook. The course grade will be based on three one-hour exams and a two-hour final exam. Cost:2 WL:4 (Owen)
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223. Introductory Oceanography, Laboratory. Concurrent enrollment in GS 222. (1). (NS). (BS). (QR/2).

This course is an optional laboratory intended to provide students with opportunities to explore further various oceanography topics presented in the GS 222 lectures. Laboratory sessions will include sampling procedures, use of equipment, discussions, and demonstrations of how data are generated. The course grade will be based on written laboratory exercises and a final exam. Cost:1 WL:4 (Owen)
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265. How to Build a Habitable Planet. (3). (NS). (BS).

Formation of the Universe, Sun, and Earth, and societal interactions with our planet form the basis of this course that is primarily aimed at first-year students who wish to explore a scientific perspective to our physical world and examine humankind's role. Topics including the formation of the Universe, stars and planets, the Earth's age and inner structure, continents and oceans, climate, hazards, and human impact will be discussed. Throughout the course you will learn many fundamental scientific discoveries. We make use of multimedia resources and access the Internet for latest data and information. Grades are based on classroom participation, and a presentation and paper on a topic that contributes to the goals of the course. The paper involves learning to publish on the web. Students of all backgrounds are encouraged to take this class. Text: How to Build a Habitable Planet by W.C. Broecker (Eldigio Press). (van der Pluijm)
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270. Plate Tectonics. No credit granted to those who have completed three of GS 105, 107, and 205. Those with credit for one of GS 105 and 107 may only elect GS 270 for two credits. Those with credit for GS 205, or both GS 105 and 107, may only elect GS 270 for one credit. (3). (NS). (BS).

The theory of plate tectonics, called dogma by some and paradigm by others, describes the mobility of continental and oceanic domains of the Earth's crust, as they are in constant motion along plate boundaries with respect to each other. The theory explains earthquakes and volcanoes, the topography of the Earth and the faunal and floral diversity of its living and fossil inhabitants. Tectonic events also exert a major influence on long-term climate. Lectures about the evidence also explore alternative explanations. The course involves three hours of weekly meeting time, a textbook and selected reading material. No background in Earth science is necessary. Evaluation is based on class participation, two exams, a series of student presentations on selected topics and written essays on the same subject. Cost:1 WL:4 (Lithgow-Bertelloni)
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274. Dinosaur Extinction and Other Controversies. (3). (NS). (BS).

The extinction of dinosaurs has been ascribed to a variety of causes including, most recently, meteor impacts. This controversial idea and other such hypotheses related to the history of the earth are the subject of this course. The course will examine, among others, topics related to catastrophic vs. gradual history of the earth, the age of the earth, continental drift and plate tectonics, origin and extinction of species, and climatic change. Some questions to be dealt with include: (1) How do we distinguish science from non-science? (2) Is experimentation critical to doing science? (3) What roles do social and historical factors play in theconstruction of scientific theories? Readings will be drawn from a variety of sources, including primary scientific literature. Requirements: reading, several one-page writing assignments, midterm, final. Cost:3 WL:4 (Baumiller)
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275. The Ice Ages: Past and Present. Those with credit for GS 104 may only elect GS 275 for 2 credits. (3). (NS). (BS).

Characteristics of the Earth's climate system and how various components of that system operate to produce times when extensive ice sheets covered large parts of the Earth's surface. The role in climate change of the oceans, the atmosphere, the ice sheets themselves, orbital variations, and the movement of the continental and ocean boundaries are presented and discussed. Cost:1 WL:1 (Moore)
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278. Earthlike Planets. High school science and math recommended. Those with credit for GS 113 may only elect GS 278 for 2 credits. (3). (NS). (BS).

This first-year seminar introduces in a small class room setting the terrestrial planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth, the Moon, and Mars. Physical and chemical studies of the solid planets allow for a better understanding of the evolution and future of our own world. This class combines an historical perspective with modern scientificapproaches, augmented by the wealth of very recent planetary studies. The class grade is based on class participation, two exams, and a final project, which consists of a written report and an oral presentation. Cost:2 WL:4 (Van Keken)
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B. Primarily for Concentrators

310. Petrology. GS 231 and either an introductory geological sciences course or GS 351 to be elected prior to or concurrently with GS 310. (4). (Excl). (BS).

Petrology is the study of the origins of rocks. Emphasis is placed on igneous and metamorphic rocks in this course. The evidence for the deep crustal and upper mantle sources of igneous rocks is traced using petrographic, geochemical, and phase diagrammatic observations. In metamorphic petrology the response of metamorphites to changes in pressure, temperature, and fluid composition will be evaluated, primarily using petrographic and phase equilibrium data. Plate tectonic processes will be tied in to the origin and evolution of many igneous and metamorphic rocks. Some comparisons with extra-terrestrial igneous petrology will be made. The lectures are coordinated with microscopic laboratories using optical techniques to identify and evaluate mineral assemblages. The grade is determined through a combination of midterms, laboratory exams, and a final. Cost:3 WL:3 (Mukasa)
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351. Structural Geology. GS 117 or 119. (4). (Excl). (BS).

The description and analysis of geological structures in the Earth's crust and an introduction to global tectonics. Three lectures and one laboratory session weekly. The following topics are covered: the description of geological structures; the kinematics and dynamics of folding and faulting; stress, strain, deformation and rheology; introduction to dislocation theory; micro-structural analysis; principles of plate tectonics; selected orogenic systems of the world. This is a core course for concentrators, but is open to all who want to have a basic knowledge of geology. Evaluation is based on graded lab assignments, a lab test, a midterm and a final exam. Textbooks: Earth Structure, 1997, by B.A. van der Pluijm and S. Marshak (lectures) and Basic Methods of Structural Geology by S. Marshak and G. Mitra (labs). Cost:2 WL:4 (Nyman)
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425. Environmental Geochemistry. Introductory chemistry. (3). (Excl). (BS).

This course deals with geochemistry as it relates to humans and their geologic environment. The intended audience for the course includes advanced undergraduates and graduate students in Geological Sciences, as well as students at a similar level in related divisions such as Chemistry, Natural Resources, Public Health, and Engineering. The course reviews the composition of the lithosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere and the ways that they are related to the composition of the biosphere. Special attention is given to naturally-occurring elements and compounds of environmental interest and to geochemical processes of environmental significance. Lecture material is supplemented by problem sets and discussions. Evaluation is based on these assignments, as well as a midterm and a final exam. Reading comes largely from a course pack, class handouts, and research papers. Cost:2 WL:4 (Kelser, Meyers, O'Neil)
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439. Fossil Record and Evolution of Mammals. Permission of instructor. (4). (Excl). (BS).

This course studies the contribution of fossil record to our understanding of the evolutionary process and the origin, radiation, and systematic relationships of mammals. Emphasis on functional morphology, rates of change, origin of modern mammalian orders in the Paleocene and Eocene, and the Eocene to Recent history of whales. (Gingerich)
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442. Earth Surface Processes and Soils. Upperclass standing; an introductory course in physical geology is recommended but not required. (4). (Excl). (BS).

Study of processes resulting in landforms on the Earth's solid surface and the formation of soils on these landforms. Emphasis includes present-day processes as well as the evolution of landforms over geologic time. GS 442 is intended for a wide, but professional audience: geologists, archaeologists, ecologists, resource managers, civil engineers, at a level appropriate for seniors and first-year graduate students. A previous course in geology is not required, but would be helpful. Lectures, map exercises, and several required field trips to examine landforms and processes in southern Michigan. Grading: a midterm and final exam, exercises, and a term paper. Cost:2 WL:4 (Stearns)
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478. Aqueous Geochemistry. Chem. 365. (3). (Excl). (BS).

Solution-mineral-gas equilibrium and mass transfer in near-surface geochemical environments of environmental significance. Models for ion activity/concentration relations, reaction path for rock/water interactions, mineral dissolution and precipitation mechanisms and reaction kinetics, adsorption and incorporation of ions. Geochemical links between atmosphere, ocean, and crustal reservoirs will be quantified in light of equilibrium and kinetic constraints with consideration of human impacts on the geochemical cycle. Examples focus on surface waters, oceans, and crustal fluids. Integrated lecture, laboratory, and problem solving to relate chemical concepts to actual field and laboratory measurement of natural water chemistries. Computer modeling of activity-concentration and mineral equilibria. Two hours of lecture and two hours of practicum per week. Evaluation based on weekly problem sets and a focused research project. Cost:2 WL:4 (Walter)
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483. Geophysics: Seismology. Prior or concurrent election of Math. 215 and Phys. 240. (4). (Excl). (BS).

This course studies physics of earthquakes and the Earth's interior. Various seismological techniques to infer those from seismic waves are presented. Most treatments are application of physics to the real Earth and basic knowledge of math and physics is required. Geological background is not required. The outline of the course is: (1) basic seismological information including spatial and temporal distribution of earthquakes, magnitude and intensity scales, locating earthquakes, and seismometry; (2) elastic wave theory including stress and strain, seismic wave equations, body and surface waves, refraction and reflection, free oscillations of the Earth; (3) the Earth's structure; (4) earthquake source models. Lecture and laboratory. WL:4 (Ruff)
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486. Geodynamics. GS 420 and prior or concurrent election of Math. 215 and Physics 240. (3). (Excl). (BS).

This course introduces the student to the analysis of dynamic problems in geology and to the mathematical and physical tools by which they are solved. The basic principles of continuum and thermal physics are derived and applied to both small and large scale geological processes with principal emphasis on global processes. Four major topics in continuum physics will be considered in geological context: stress, strain, and elasticity; heat conduction, fluid flow, and advection of heat. The results of simple physical models allow us to explain a range of geophysical observations, including oceanic bathymetry and heat flow, plate kinematics, and the stress within plates. The student should take from the class an understanding of the physical causes of plate tectonics. (van Keken)
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489. Geological Sciences Honors. Permission of instructor. (1-6). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a total of six credits.

Readings, discussions, and special work in geological sciences for undergraduate Honors students. May be taken as a one-term or two-term sequence with Geol. Sci. 490.
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490. Geological Sciences Honors. Permission of instructor. (1-6). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a total of six credits.

Readings, discussions, and special work in geological sciences for undergraduate Honors students. May be taken as a one-term or two-term sequence with Geol. Sci. 489.
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498. Research or Special Work. Permission of instructor. (1-6). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a total of six credits.

Research or special work in geological sciences for undergraduate or graduate students. May be taken as a one-term or two-term sequence with Geol. Sci. 499.
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499. Research or Special Work. Permission of instructor. (1-6). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be repeated for a total of six credits.

Research or special work in geological sciences for undergraduate or graduate students. May be taken as a one-term or two-term sequence with Geol. Sci. 498.
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