2005 Salt Lake City Annual Meeting (October 16–19, 2005)

Paper No. 1
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


THOMSON, Jennifer A., Department of Geology, Eastern Washington Univ, 130 Science Building, Cheney, WA 99004-2439, BUCHANAN, John P., Department of Geology, Eastern Washington Univ, 130 Science, Cheney, WA 99004 and SCHWAB, Suzanne, Department of Biology, Eastern Washington University, 258 Science Building, Cheney, WA 99004, Jennifer.Thomson@mail.ewu.edu

For the last fifteen years the authors and two other faculty in the geology and biology departments at Eastern Washington University in Cheney, WA have offered a seven to eleven day multi-disciplinary summer field course. The course is designed for undergraduate and graduate majors and non-majors, K-12 instructors, and for those seeking continuing education experiences. We have been successful in attracting a large number of students taking the course repeatedly and continue to draw a pool of new students by providing a different trip route each year within an 800-mile radius of our institution. Each year's trip is typically anchored at a well known national park or monument and covers a focused geological and biological theme. Recent excursions have been to the North Cascades, the Oregon coast, Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks, and to the Colorado Plateau. Our academic expectations are rigorous (students are required to maintain road-logs, answer pre- and post-trip questions, and write a term paper) and the experiences that students have on these trips are positive and rewarding. This field course is one way we get our students into the field, for a trip longer than a day or weekend experience, in order to learn about the interaction of geology and biology on both small and large scales in the western U.S.