Approved by University Studies Sub-Committee.  A2C2 action pending.




Department GEOSCIENCE____________________________ Date ____2 April, 2003__________

___280_______________ ___Field & Analytical Methods I_________________ _________2___

Course No. Course Name Credits

This proposal is for a(n) __XX___ Undergraduate Course

Applies to: __XX__ Major __XX___ Minor

__XX_ Required __XX_ Required

_____ Elective _____ Elective

University Studies (A course may be approved to satisfy only one set of outcomes.):

Course Requirements:

Basic Skills: Arts & Science Core: Unity and Diversity:

_____ 1. College Reading and Writing _____ 1. Humanities _____ 1. Critical Analysis

_____ 2. Oral Communication _____ 2. Natural Science _____ 2. Science and Social Policy

_____ 3. Mathematics _____ 3. Social Science _____ 3. a. Global Perspectives

_____ 4. Physical Development & Wellness _____ 4. Fine & Performing Arts _____ b. Multicultural


_____ 4. a. Contemporary


_____ b. Democratic Institutions

Flagged Courses: __XX_ 1. Writing

_____ 2. Oral Communication

_____ 3. a. Mathematics/Statistics

_____ b. Critical Analysis

Prerequisites ____ENG 111 and instructor's permission; Corequisite: GEOS 220___________________________________

Provide the following information (attach materials to this proposal):

Please see "Directions for the Department" on previous page for material to be submitted.

Attach a University Studies Approval Form.

Department Contact Person for this Proposal:

___Dr. Cathy Summa _______________________ _____X5269 ____ ____csumma@winona.edu__________

Name (please print) Phone e-mail address



Routing form for University Studies Course approval. Course__GEOS 280________

Department Recommendation _XX__ Approved _____ Disapproved

_________________________________ __2 April, 2003_____ ___csumma@winona.edu____________________

Department Chair Date e-mail address

Dean’s Recommendation _____ Approved _____ Disapproved*

_________________________________ ________________

Dean of College Date

*In the case of a dean’s recommendation to disapprove a proposal, a written rationale for the recommendation to disapprove shall

be provided to the University Studies Subcommittee.

USS Recommendation _____ Approved _____ Disapproved _____ No recommendation

_________________________________ ________________

University Studies Director Date

A2C2 Recommendation _____ Approved _____ Disapproved

_________________________________ ________________

Chair of A2C2 Date

Faculty Senate Recommendation _____ Approved _____ Disapproved

_________________________________ ________________

President of Faculty Senate Date

Academic Vice President Recommendation _____ Approved _____ Disapproved

_________________________________ ________________

Academic Vice President Date

Decision of President _____ Approved _____ Disapproved

_________________________________ ________________

President Date

Please forward to Registrar.

Registrar _________________ Please notify department chair via e-mail that curricular change has been recorded.

Date entered

The purpose of the Writing Flag requirement is to reinforce the outcomes specified for the

basic skills area of writing. These courses are intended to provide contexts, opportunities, and

feedback for students writing with discipline-specific texts, tools, and strategies. These

courses should emphasize writing as essential to academic learning and intellectual


Courses can merit the Writing Flag by demonstrating that section enrollment will allow for

clear guidance, criteria, and feedback for the writing assignments; that the course will

require a significant amount of writing to be distributed throughout the semester; that

writing will comprise a significant portion of the students' final course grade; and that

students will have opportunities to incorporate readers' critiques of their writing.

Geoscience 280-Field and Analytical Methods I-is a required core course for all geoscience major

options and for Earth Science Teaching majors. This course is designed as a field-based experience

in which students work outdoors each week to solve basic geologic problems. It is designed as a

sophomore-level course that introduces students to the fundamental principles of working in the

field-an activity central to the practicing geoscientist. As such, it is critically important that

students become familiar with writing in the field. All students in this course are required to keep a

detailed field notebook, and to complete field reports summarizing their work on each project

during the semester. In this regard, students encounter two very different styles of writing in the

geological sciences in this course. The first, in the field notebook, may be considered more

informal, but is necessarily focused on detailed observations. The second, in the field report, is a

more formal style of writing, and requires the student to synthesize the detail and data collected in

the field to draw more broad conclusions about the project.

Geoscience 280 is a 2 S.H. class that meets once a week in a four-hour block. This format allows

students the time needed to work in the field on individual projects. Students are often required to

return to the field site on their own time to complete course assignments or to review their

observations based upon instructor feedback. The course has an enrollment limit of 20 students,

and averages about 14 students, allowing sufficiently adequate faculty time for review of student

writing. Students write field notes weekly; these notes are reviewed regularly by faculty and

occasionally by peers to allow students the opportunity to incorporate feedback into their writing.

Most writing in this course consists of describing rock successions and methods of analysis. As

such, there is relatively little reliance on review of published literature. The Geoscience

Department prefers this method because it helps students build confidence in their own ability as a

scientist and as a writer. Because there are no published accounts of these projects, students have

little from which to be tempted to plagiarize (which is commonly a problem for beginning students)

and must arrive at their own original interpretations of the data they collect.

These courses must include requirements and learning activities that promote students'

abilities to...

a. practice the processes and procedures for creating and completing successful writing in

their fields;

The most basic form of writing in the geological sciences is the completion of the field notebook.

Students must learn how to detail their observations in the field. This is as much an exercise in

writing as it is an exercise in learning to observe carefully and completely, because one cannot

write of description of something one has not observed. Students take field notes each week, which

are collected and reviewed regularly by the course instructor (as often as weekly by some

instructors and with each project by other instructors in the department). Data collection in the

field takes place most weeks during the semester (weather permitting). When notebooks are

collected, they are checked for completeness of recorded observations; if incomplete, students are

required to return to the field to complete the assignment. In this manner, students are effectively

given the opportunity to create multiple edited drafts of their work. From these field notes, students

are asked to write summary field reports that synthesize their findings. Reports follow a standard

geologic format, requiring students to become familiar with the style of writing common to one part

of the geologic literature.

b. understand the main features and uses of writing in their fields;

Writing in the geological sciences takes on many forms dependent upon the purpose of the

communication. In this course, the primary focus is upon teaching students the fundamentals of

field reporting (more formal writing in geoscience is taught in a junior-level course, GEOS 340,

which the department will also submit to satisfy the writing flag). Each weekly exercise requires

students to detail their observations in the field, thus giving students a chance to learn these skills.

Further, students have ample opportunity to learn how to write field reports by completing such

reports based at the end of each project during the semester. Grading in the course is based entirely

upon evaluation of student field notes, field reports and class participation.

c. adapt their writing to the general expectations of readers in their fields;

By requiring this course at the sophomore level, students learn early that they must begin to adopt

the jargon of the discipline. One reason the department developed this course was to begin to instill

a robust knowledge relatively early in the curriculum. Because writing is so critical to and varied

within the discipline, we felt it important that students begin early in their program to learn to write

in geology (as opposed to general writing). By requiring a specific and common format for field

reports and teaching students the boundaries of flexibility in taking field notes, students learn the

expectations of the discipline. They also learn that these formats are the norm in the discipline

when they see them in print as they read the geologic literature.

d. make use of the technologies commonly used for research and writing in their fields;

Students are required to purchase a field notebook for this course. Geologic field notebooks vary in

style. Perhaps the most common is the "Rite-in-the Rain" brand, which contains paper treated to

allow the geologist to write notes when the paper is wet. Most field notebooks are designed to fit in

a back pocket or field case. Some prefer the use of stenographers notebooks for ease of grading. In

all cases, students are taught that the field notebook is the equivalent of the geological bible-that the

notebook is perhaps the most highly valued of all geologic tools, because it contains the record of

the geologists observations. Students learn how to catalog their notes (effectively to archive notes)

so that they can refer to them in years to come, perhaps long after an outcrop has been removed for

development. Field reports and data analysis are done using computers; students work primarily

with MS Word and Excel in this course, but also make use of specific geologic software that allows

for the presentation of rose diagrams and stereonets (graphic representation of field measurements).

There is relatively library work required in this course; this aspect of geologic writing is covered in

considerable detail in our companion W-flag course, Geos 340.

e. learn the conventions of evidence, format, usage, and documentation in their fields.

The requirement that students turn in their field notebooks multiple times during the semester helps

ensure that they learn to adopt the format, usage, and styles of evidence presentation and

documentation required in the discipline. Students begin to practice these skills in more formal

writing by completion of the field reports, which require clear presentation of field evidence to

support conclusions. Each report follows a standard format, usage, and documentation procedure,

which mimics that found in the geologic literature. There are no exams given in this course; the

student's entire grade is effectively based upon the assessment of their writing-it becomes critical

that the student can express themselves adequately in their field notebooks and reports.


GEOS 280-Field & Analytical Methods I Syllabus

Fall, 2002

Dr. Ima Geologist

Catalog Description: Basic geologic field techniques including sampling methods, rock

identification, field descriptions and use of Brunton compass. Measurement and description of

stratigraphic sections. Corequisite GEOS 220. Prerequisites: ENG 111 and GEOS 130. Offered

yearly in the fall semester. Field trips required.

University Studies requirements: Successful completion of this course satisfies 2 S.H. of credit

toward completion of the Writing Flag requirements of the University Studies program. As a

Geoscience Major, you will complete the additional 4 S.H. of required writing flag work when you

successfully complete GEOS 340-Sedimentology and Stratigraphy. The purpose of the Writing

Flag requirement in the University Studies program is to reinforce the outcomes specified for the

basic skills area of writing. These courses are intended to provide contexts, opportunities, and

feedback for students writing with discipline-specific texts, tools, and strategies. These courses

should emphasize writing as essential to academic learning and intellectual development.

These courses must include requirements and learning activities that promote students'

abilities to...

a. practice the processes and procedures for creating and completing successful writing in

their fields;

b. understand the main features and uses of writing in their fields;

c. adapt their writing to the general expectations of readers in their fields;

d. make use of the technologies commonly used for research and writing in their fields; and

e. learn the conventions of evidence, format, usage, and documentation in their fields.

These outcomes will be coded by letter throughout the rest of this syllabus so that you have a clear

understanding of how this course will help you accomplish the above goals.

Format of course: We will meet Tuesday afternoons from 2-6 PM to conduct fieldwork (weather

permitting) in the Winona area. Students will generally work on projects in teams of two or three.

Two Saturday trips will be required of all students. These trips will take the place of two Tuesday

meetings later in the semester. When the weather gets too harsh to work outside, we will complete

previously initiated field projects indoors. No exams will be given in Field I. Although students

will work in teams in the field, each student is expected to make his/her own observations, collect

his/her own field notes, and complete individual field reports for each project (outcomes a-e).

Because this course satisfies a portion of your writing flag requirement, you will be expected to

complete a substantial amount of writing throughout the semester. One of the most critical forms

of writing in the geological sciences is the compilation of field notes (outcomes a-e). Although

there are other forms of writing in the geological sciences, you will focus, in this course, on

learning how to take detailed and complete field notes, and to synthesize those observations in final

project reports (outcomes a-e). Perhaps the most important goal you can achieve in this course is

learning how to make careful and critical observations in the field (outcomes a, b). This is crucial

to taking good field notes, and obviously crucial to being able to make accurate interpretations and

draw reasonable conclusions about geologic problems. An old geologic adage-you have to believe

it to see it-can be extrapolated nicely for our work in this class-you have to see it to be able to write

about it. Most beginning students experience difficulty taking complete field notes because they

have not learned to carefully observe geologic features. You will have the opportunity, in this

course, to hone your observational skill. In doing so, you will also learn to write scientifically

(outcome c). Writing descriptions of your observations becomes a logical and necessary extension

of your observations (outcomes a-e). It is critical that a good geologist take detailed and complete

field notes because one can never be certain that the outcrop will be there when you decide to go

back to revisit it. Most geologists develop the habit of thinking about collecting data for both the

first time and last time; this also serves to make you more efficient in the field (a skill your future

employer will greatly appreciate). Without good field data it becomes impossible to draw

reasonable geologic conclusions.

Evaluation: Students will be evaluated on the quality of their work, as displayed by their activity

and conduct in the field, the quality of their field notes, and by the quality of the assignments turned

in for each project (outcomes a-e). Students who miss more than two Tuesday afternoon sessions,

or who fail to turn in more than two assignments, cannot pass the course. Two Saturday (or

Sunday) trips are required, and students missing either of those trips, or failing to complete the

assignments related to those trips, cannot pass the course.

Course Format

Six projects will form most of the basis for evaluation in GEOS280. These projects will be

ongoing through much of the course, and will be weighted equally.

Project 1: Field guides to the WSU campus and the Winona area

WSU localties and questions

WSU pace and compass map

Winona area localities and questions

Field observations/notes submitted and revised

Preparation and revision of both guides

answering questions for trips and final revision

Project 2: Is there joint control on the drainage of the Winona area?

Measurement of joints at Garvin Heights overlook

Measurement of joints at various localities in Winona area

Preparation of ROSE diagrams

Stream orientations from topographic maps and ROSE diagrams

Formal Project Report

Project 3: Stratigraphy of the Winona area

Measurement and description of lower part, Garvin Heights Section

Turn in for evaluation; incorporate revisions in next step

Measurement and description of entire Garvin Heights Section

Interpretation of section and formal project report

Project 4: Rock types and weathering as exemplified by tombstones in Woodlawn Cemetery.

Comparison between degree of weathering on tombstones as a function of time (as evidenced by

date of death) and lithology

Complete and turn in field notes with observations of above for evaluation

GPS map showing locations of observed tombstones

Prepare formal report with text and graphs showing observed relationships

Project 5: Karst geology of southeastern Minnesota (Saturday trip)

Measure and describe Fillmore County stratigraphic section

Integrate with project 3 and correlate with Garvin Heights section

Observe & describe karst features within Ordovician section in field notebook (turn-in for


Sketch karst geometries & cave features observed (in field notebook)

Describe concisely the variability in karst features related to bedrock & structural elements

observed and measured

Project 6: Variables of stream flow in southeastern Minnesota (Saturday trip)

Return to field sites visited in Project 5

Compare surface water features with ground water features

Collect stream data - width, depth, velocity across stream profile at multiple stream reaches;

calculate discharge; plot data

Prepare report that postulates about connections between surface water control on ground water

features observed in Project 5

Schedule of Projects

August 28 - work on campus geologic localities; devise questions for each locality

September 4- turn in campus geologic localities (Word file, e-mail attachment); work with Brunton

compass - pace and compass map of campus localities.

September 11 - turn in pace and Brunton map of campus localities; work on Winona geologic

localities; revise campus localities

September 16 - Sunday field trip to Fillmore County

September 18 - turn in work related to previous Sunday field trip; turn in final draft of campus

localities; turn in first draft of Winona geologic localities (Word file, e-mail attachment, before

class meeting time); begin field work on joint control of drainage in Winona area - measure joints

at Garvin Heights, and prepare Rose diagrams.

September 25 - work on Rose diagrams of joint pattern at Garvin Heights; work on measuring

joints at various localities in Winona County and prepare Rose Diagrams

October 2 - turn in Rose diagrams of joint patterns at Garvin Heights, and from your Winona

County locality; work on Garvin Heights stratigraphic section

October 9 - NO CLASS; continue work on Projects 1-3

October 16 - finish Garvin Heights stratigraphic section

October 21 - Sunday field trip to Mystery Cave area

October 23 - turn in assignment on Garvin Heights stratigraphic section; work on taking the

community field trip; campus field trip for extra credit.

October 30 - turn in community field trip and campus field trip; turn in work from the Mystery

Cave trip; begin measurement of drainage system in Winona area

November 6 - NO CLASS; continue work on Projects

November 13 - turn in data on orientation of streams in drainage network on Winona West

Quadrangle - introduce the report on evolution of drainage network in Winona area for turn in on

December 4

November 20 - NO CLASS

December 4 - NO CLASS - turn in final report on evolution of drainage network in Winona area

Examples of Project Directives to Students:

GEOS 280-Field & Analytical Methods I

Instructions for working on Drainage Project

Between now and Thursday, November 21, you should be working on:

* completion of the map of drainage patterns (should already be done)

* the ordering of drainage courses (should already be done)

* measurement of the orientations of all drainage courses in each order (should already be done)

* complete an EXCEL spreadsheet with all the order and orientation data

* prepare ROSE diagrams for the orientations of each order of drainage course

* work on assembling references for your paper on drainage evolution in southeastern Minnesota.

Remember our discussions about using GEOREF, and getting interlibrary loan material ASAP!!!

Bring your overlay map with all drainage courses, order numbers for each drainage course, and

orientation of each drainage course to class on the 21st. Also bring a printout of your EXCEL

spreadsheet to class. Finally, bring printouts of your ROSE diagrams to class (remember that to

print the ROSE diagram, you have to save your azimuth file as a PICT file, open the PICT file in an

image processing program such as Adobe Photoshop, and print from there. Adobe Photoshop

should be on all the machines in the PA Mac Lab.)

The final project (and report) is due on Thursday, December 12. We will discuss completion of the

project in class on the 21st.

GEOS 280-Field & Analytical Methods I

Instructions for turn-in of stratigraphic sections

Construct two final vertical sections, one for Garvin Heights, and one for the Old Barn

Road/County Hwy 17 section. These are your final products, and should reflect all revisions (and

additional fieldwork in the case of Garvin Heights). Because they are your final products, make

certain that they are done with care and with pride. If you have questions, be certain to bring them

to me. The date for the completion of the entire stratigraphy project is Thursday, December 5. The

columns do not have to be completed until that time!

Include a vertical scale along the left edge of your sections. Be certain to indicate the units of

measure. This scale should be the same for both sections.

Pay attention to the grain-size scale along the base of the column. Remember that dolostone is to

be drawn to the "G" line.

Be certain to provide symbols that give a good graphic description of the all rock types in the

sequence, and their stratification and sedimentary structures.

Remember to group your descriptions in the comment column by formation. Show the formation

boundaries clearly, by drawing lines across the graphic section and comments column. DO NOT

draw lines across the entire page for individual beds or outcrops.

Some students still insist on giving descriptions for each outcrop, rather than giving thorough, yet

concise, descriptions for the formations. This is a serious short-coming, and must be addressed in

the final product. Provide a thorough and concise description of each formation in the comments

section of the column. Do NOT copy descriptions from the generalized columns that were

distributed during the last couple of weeks.

Assign formation names to the units that you have established. Use the generalized stratigraphic

section that was available in the box in PA 114. This generalized section should guide you as to the

likely position in the vertical sequence of rock types that the Garvin Heights and Fillmore County

Sections occupy. You can also use approximate thickness variations in the generalized section as a

guide, together with the generalized lithologic descriptions of the various formations.

Your strat columns and the comments must be consistent with your field notes. DO NOT go back

and change your field notes for the Fillmore County section. And do not change the original

Garvin Heights field notes. You may submit additional field notes for the Garvin Heights section,

reflecting new work that may have been done recently.

You will be asked to turn in your field notes for both sections. Do not rewrite those notes. They

should reflect your thinking on the outcrop. T hey must be consistent with the column.

You will also be asked to turn in your old sections, along with my comments (some comments were

written on yellow stickies).

Next Thursday we will discuss the interpretation of your columns in terms of a history of relative

change of sea level. You will write up your interpretations in a two-page paper as part of the final