Concentration Areas

The undergraduate curriculum has three areas of concentration: geology, environmental geology, and geophysics.

The geology curriculum prepares undergraduates for graduate study in geology and geophysics and related fields and for a wide range of professional careers, including teaching, research, resource exploration and development, and environmental management and remediation.

Geology students in the geology and environmental concentrations follow the same basic curriculum during the first five semesters of study. Students during this time receive a  firm foundation in mineralogy, petrology,  structural geology, and sedimentology, as well  as basic courses in biology, chemistry, physics,  and mathematics. The geophysics concentration has additional emphasis on mathematics and physics. Emphasis for all concentrations is on fundamental  geologic processes operating on and within the  earth. Laboratory and field studies are  integrated into the curriculum at all levels and  include a six-week field geology course at the  department's permanent field camp in the Colorado Front Range.

The curriculum is designed to leave much  of the final three semesters of study relatively  unstructured so that students, with the guidance and approval of the department, can  develop a program of advanced course work  most appropriate to their area of concentration and career objectives.  Students selecting the geology and environmental concentrations take, in addition to the first five  semesters of courses, history of the  biosphere and nine hours of geology 4000-level electives. Students selecting the environmental geology area of concentration take physical hydrogeology. Students selecting the geophysics area of concentration take additional mathematics and physics courses as well as plate tectonics, and well-logging in petroleum engineering, and twelve hours of geology courses at the 4000 level.  All three areas of concentration are designed to provide students with a sound foundation in basic geology and to prepare them for entry into a graduate program or directly into a professional career.

Graduate and undergraduate majors in geology must pay a $35 field service fee each semester. Students not majoring in geology who schedule courses requiring field trip fees will be assessed a pro rata part of the amount above as determined by the department chair. Part-time students enrolled in seminar courses only and students registered for thesis or dissertation only are exempt from the fee. Additional information concerning fees for field geology courses is available from the Geology Field Camp Director, Department of Geology & Geophysics.

An undergraduate minor in geology is available (17 hrs.). Required courses arc GEOL 1001, 1003, 1601, 1602, and at least three of the additional hours must be taken at the 3000 or 4000 level (excluding GEOL 3909) and on this campus.

For further information please contact:

Dr. Achim Herrmann
Undergraduate Advisor

In order to schedule an appointment with Dr. Herrmann, complete the following steps:

  1. Download the Navigate Student App
  2. Select Service: Academic Advising
  3. Location: College of Science
  4. Purpose: Faculty Advising (GEOL)
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Geology Minor

An undergraduate minor in geology is available (20 hours). Required courses are: GEOL 1201 (or GEOL 1001 and GEOL 1601, or GEOL 1002 and 1601), GEOL 1202 (or GEOL 1003 and 1602, or GEOL 1004 and 1602) and 12 additional hours, of which at least six of the additional hours must be taken at the 3000 or 4000 level (excluding GEOL 3909 and GEOL 3999)