The study of Earth systems, our physical environment, and the processes shaping our planet with special emphasis on field study of the region near Lexington. Topics include: plate tectonics; the materials and structure of the Earth's crust; natural hazards including earthquakes and volcanoes; the origin of landforms; and the concept of deep time. Additional topics, with emphasis varying by instructor, include: climate change; weathering and erosion; water quality and movement; energy resources; geospatial and quantitative data analysis; and the relationship between humans and the environment. Involves moderate hiking and other physical activities outside in all types of weather. No credit for students who have completed EEG 101 or 102. (4 credits, satisfies SL FDR)EEG 100A is the First-year Seminar section of EEG-100.
Explore Earth Science
Geoscience is about Earth, oceans, planets, climate, mountains, rivers, glaciers, soils, weather, and so much more. Because geoscience is interdisciplinary, many students with interests in environmental science, chemistry, biology, physics, and engineering appreciate applying their interests to the questions that geoscience studies.
Below is information about our Intro-level classes for Fall 2023, as well as information about events and the major. Let us know if you have questions!
The study of Earth systems, our physical environment, and the processes shaping our planet with special emphasis on environmental science and sustainability. There is special emphasis on field study of the region near Lexington. Depending on the instructor, various topics include: plate tectonics; the materials and structure of the Earth's crust; climate change; the nature of the Earth's interior; the origin of landforms; weathering and erosion; water quality and movement; natural hazards including earthquakes and volcanoes; energy resources; the concept of deep time; geospatial and quantitative data analysis; and the relationship between humans and the environment. Laboratory course. Involves moderate hiking and other physical activities outside in all types of weather. Not open to students with credit for EEG 100 or 101. (4 credits, satisfies SL FDR)
Large-scale geological features of the Earth are examined and compared with surface features visible on images of other planets and planetary satellites of the solar system. Features examined include those resulting from volcanism, impact cratering, and structure; eolian, fluvial, glacial and periglacial processes; and mass movement. The composition of terrestrial and lunar rocks and extraterrestrial objects is examined. Models of the origin and evolution of planets and their satellites are discussed. (3 credits, satisfies SC FDR)
An examination of the quality and quantity of water resources as a limiting factor for life on earth. Issues include resource depletion, pollution, historical use and over-use, remediation, habitat maintenance, and water supply mechanisms. Resource constraints are analyzed from a scientific perspective in order to understand water resource problems and envision solutions. (3 credits, satisfies SC FDR)
Studying Earth and Environmental Geoscience offers a highly relevant, integrative, scientific avenue for managing our interactions with the environment, providing adequate resources, ensuring the safety of the built environment in the face of natural hazards, and solving the complex history of earth and its continuing evolution. We make extensive use of the extraordinary geology of the Appalachians and other locales around the globe. You can earn a BS or a BA in Earth and Environmental Geoscience. Some students interested in minoring will do the BA.
The Integrated Engineering degree offered through the Physics and Engineering Department gives students the opportunity to apply their science to the disciplines of geoscience, chemistry, biology, or computer science. Students are required to take four geoscience courses, an Introductory course and three courses that are 200 level or above, all of which is easy to fit into one's schedule. Talk to a Earth and Environmental Geoscience professor and an engineering professor about your interests.
A geoscience education can take you many varied places. Read about what several of our recent graduates have gone of to do, from working in the solar energy and environmental consulting fields to studying earthquakes and consulting for oil and gas projects.