ADVANCED UNDERGRADUATE GEOLOGIC MAPPING: THE USE OF COLLABORATIVE EDMAP PROJECTS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN-EAU CLAIRE
Geologic mapping is conducted by a team consisting of an advanced undergraduate student (top tier field camp student) and a less-experienced field assistant. The senior undergraduate is the lead on the project, and works closely with the mentoring professors to plan and coordinate traverses, identify and describe geologic units, construct cross-sections and develop working hypotheses. At least one professor and a second field assistant form a second, collaborative mapping team. Traverses are planned and recorded on topographic maps and aerial photographs; geologic data is compiled on a master mylar overlay. Structural data and lithologic, geochemical and geochronologic sample data are recorded in a master database. Data analysis is a continual process, allowing the students to develop a three-dimensional geologic understanding in the field.
Geochemical and geochronologic analyses are spearheaded by the lead student. Geologic maps are digitized in ArcMap, normally by a different student with a strong interest in GIS, in collaboration with the lead student and professors. The final product includes a colored geologic map, cross-section(s), and ancillary geochemical and geochronologic data, which is commonly presented at a Geological Society of America meeting prior to submittal to the MBMG. Each of the nineteen (19) students who have graduated after the mapping program are employed full-time in the geological sciences.