The Department of Geological Sciences invites junior and senior-level geology majors and minors to participate in multi-week field trips that run in January of odd-numbered years. The trips aim to provide students a rare field experience coupled with a research experience. All trips emphasize learning geology in the field and practicing basic field methods. The January 2013 trip will be to Puerto Rico.
Students will prepare for the trip by participating in the Geology Seminar (GSCI 391) in the fall, which includes weekly meetings and completing a research presentation and term paper on a topic relevant to the field trip. The term paper becomes part of a field guide issued to all participants of the field trip. While in the field, students are responsible for designing a small-scale rseearch project, usually with the aid of a faculty member, that can be carried out during the spring semester following the field trip.
Puerto Rico is located on the boundary between the North American and Caribbean Plates and lies at the transition from predominantly strike-slip tectonics to the west and subduction to the east. The island is characterized by a diverse suite of rocks ranging from oceanic crust throught to have formed in the Pacific Ocean to more recent carbonates responsible for world-class karst features that characterize much of the island. This two week course will investigate the regional field geology of Puerto Rico.