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

Paper No. 4
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-12:00 PM


LEE, Cherie' J.1, FERRELL, Ray E.1, ANDERSON, Laurie C.1, ELLWOOD, Brooks2, ENGEL, Annette S.1, LAMBERT, Lance3 and LORENZO, Juan1, (1)Dept of Geology and Geophysics, Louisiana State University, E235 Howe-Russell Bldg, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, (2)Department of Geology and Geophysics, Louisiana State University, E-235 Howe-Russell, Baton Rouge, LA 70803, (3)Earth and Environmental Sciences, Univ of Texas At San Antonio, 6900 N. Loop 1604 West, Sci. Bldg. 2.02.14, San Antonio, 78249, clee37@lsu.edu

Through alternative classroom settings, geology can be relayed to students in a more efficient manner. The innovative GAEMP (Geoscience Alliance to Enhance Minority Participation) program at LSU provides opportunities for under-represented minorities to become more aware of the role and importance of geoscience in society and the rewards of geoscience. During the GAEMP Summer Program, students are introduced to geology in six (6) weeks, which includes course studies in paleontology, geomicrobiology, geophysics, sedimentology, stratigraphy, and mineralogy. Following teaching of basic geoscience principles, students are exposed to field methods and observations. This approach helps students obtain a better understanding of geology, especially as it relates to them.

The summer course is organized into 1 – 6 day modules. Paleontology is introduced as invertebrate, vertebrate, and micropaleontology. Invertebrate systematics and correlation principles are presented with field collected specimens of Inoceramus sp. Geomicrobiology is taught from both the biology and geology perspectives, with a field study to introduce geochemistry field methods, and collection and analysis of water samples for microbes. For geophysics, after a mathematical introduction to seismology, students are taken into the field to collect seismic data. They then return to the classroom and calculate the slip along a local fault. Through field analyses, students observe coastal sedimentological changes in southern Louisiana. During a 6-day field excursion, students visit a Global Boundary Stratotype in west Texas for a better understanding of stratigraphic/sedimentologic principles. Petrology and mineralogy are taught from observation of outcrops from west Texas to Colorado, and samples that the students collect are returned to the classroom for identification of the minerals.

Student evaluations indicate that the intensive summer program, mixed with field studies, provide a better understanding of lecture information. The GAEMP program is dedicated to exposing underrepresented minority students in a “hands-on” setting to a field of study many would never gain knowledge about in their home universities.

GAEMP is supported by NSF-OEDG award GEO-0303138.