CONTINUING LEON LONG'S LEGACY: INNOVATIONS IN GEOSCIENCE TEACHING
As geoscience teachers, we wonder, “how do we follow in Captain Geo’s footsteps?” If you ask him this question, he will tell you about his first terrifying experience of teaching a large class of 200 students, and then about how he gained his confidence, started to love teaching, and never looked back. He will also tell you that some of the best teachers he knows are the ones who were the most uncertain, and perhaps you are a person like this. And then he will turn the conversation back to what is really interesting to him, namely, tomorrow’s work.
Leon Long is tireless in his attention to the details of his ever-evolving work, including his Introduction to Geology course at UT (GEO 303), his textbook and lab manual, simply titled Geology, which is now in its 15th edition, mentoring graduate student teachers and researchers, designing field teaching expeditions, and numerous other pursuits. Dr. Long considers Central Texas to be a perfect natural laboratory for teaching geoscience students, and he continues to develop new ways to immerse students in the wonders of our local geology. He is intrigued by the ways that innovative teaching methods and technology can enhance geoscience teaching without devaluing the essential elements of what is tried and true. The best way to honor Captain Geo’s legacy is to build upon it. So as he would say, “away we go!”