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Physical Geology in the Rocky Mountains

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 GEOL105 Physical Geology in the Rocky Mountains summer field course for incoming first-year students will not go on as scheduled.

Consider enrolling in GEOL-101 Physical Geology (4 Credits) during fall semester. 

GEOL-101 Physical Geology (4 credits) (PN) Introduction to Earth materials (minerals and rocks), structures, composition and dynamic processes (e.g., volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, weathering, erosion, mountain-building) of the Earth. Includes a weekly 2-hour lab. Lab study involves specimens in the Fryxell Geology Museum collections and field trips.  


If you're interested in the outdoors and natural sciences, consider taking GEOL105: Introductory Physical Geology in the Rocky Mountains. This 4-credit lab science course takes place in August, just before you begin your first year at Augustana College.

Study geology in the Black Hills of South Dakota and the spectacular Rocky Mountains of Wyoming, where a wide variety of rocks and processes are evident. You will learn about earth materials (minerals and rocks), structures, composition,and a variety of dynamic processes.

This rigorous course begins and ends on campus, but in between you'll have opportunities to hike the mountains, camp with friends, and learn geology! (Students should anticipate challenging hikes at high elevations).

Dr. Michael Wolf and Dr. Jeffrey Strasser co-direct the program.

The first class meeting will be at noon Friday, Aug. 7, in the Swenson Hall of Geosciences, Fryxell Geology Museum. The course begins with one day of preliminary study on campus, followed by two and a half weeks of field study.

The field work will include geologic investigations of the Badlands and Black Hills of South Dakota, and Devil’s Tower and the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming, followed by work in the Wind River Canyon (Owl Creek Mountains), before returning to campus. Additional post-trip study ends on Aug. 23.

GEOL105 carries a Natural Science (PN) course suffix, thus partially fulfilling the general education graduation requirements.

The $1,500 program cost includes tuition, transportation and all related field expenses (i.e., food, course supplies, group tents, ground pads, camping fees, and appropriately warm and compact, brand-new synthetic sleeping bags). Participants must supply other camping gear: field clothing and boots, day pack, and personal toiletries, medium duffle bag.

The program is limited to 12 students and is targeted toward  newly enrolled students; therefore, priority is given to incoming first-year Augustana students.

New student registration for GEOL105 requires a $500 non-refundable (if accepted) deposit by May (sent along with application). Payment-in-full (the remaining $1,000) must be made by the July billing date.

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