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USA Undergraduate/Graduate Bulletin 2014-2015

DEPARTMENT OF EARTH SCIENCES

Chair: Miriam L. Fearn (251) 460-6381   
Professors: Kimball, Ryder   
Associate Professors: Allison, Blackwell, Clark, Fearn, Haywick, Rivizzigno   
Assistant Professors: Sawyer, Shafer, Terwey   
Instructors: M.A. Connors, Jordan, Mujica, Murray, Stutsman   
Emeriti: Dilsaver, Isphording, Lamb, Sebastian, Williams, Wilson   
Department of Earth Sciences web site
http://www.southalabama.edu/
earthsci   
The Department of Earth Sciences includes the disciplines of Geography, Geology, and Meteorology, and it offers a B.S. degree as well as a minor in each of these three majors. Students can also earn a GIS Certificate or a minor in Geographic Information Technology (GIT).   
Geography, which is both a natural and a social science, studies the location, spatial distribution, and spatial interaction of Earth’s natural and human environments. Courses cover the subfields of Human Geography, Physical Geography, Regional Geography, and Geographic Information Science.    
Geology is the study of Earth, its composition, and the forces that form and change it, as well as the natural mineral resources it contains. As such, it encompasses a broad spectrum of studies and draws from the other basic sciences: chemistry, physics, and biology.   
Meteorology is the study of atmospheric phenomena and the processes that cause weather. The science of meteorology is firmly rooted in basic physical laws governing mass, momentum, and energy. Many weather processes are simulated by complex computer models; however, accurate weather analysis and forecasting often requires meteorologists to identify and conceptualize weather patterns often missed by automated techniques.   
The programs of the Department of Earth Sciences are designed to give the non-major a background in Earth and atmospheric science and the human impact on the landscape as part of a general education. Students pursuing a degree in Geography, Geology, or Meteorology must also have a minor in another discipline.    
The Earth Sciences Department offers a departmental honors program that allows exceptional students to pursue independent research. Students work with a faculty committee to choose an Earth Sciences research project (Geography, Geology, Meteorology), develop a prospectus, and complete a senior thesis. Students completing this program graduate with departmental honors.    
Requirements for successful completion of an honors degree in Geography, Geology, or Meteorology require a GPA of at least 3.50 at graduation and completion of ES 492 (Honors Earth Sciences Seminar), ES 497 (Senior Thesis Prospectus), and six hours of ES 499 (Senior Honors Thesis). These classes are in addition to those required for the major in Geography, Geology, or Meteorology. All honors courses are listed under the prefix ES. Students interested in Earth Sciences honors must apply for the program by their junior year. Complete requirements are available on the departmental web page.    
All first-time freshmen must successfully complete CAS 100: First Year Experience as a degree requirement. Students must enroll during their first term at USA, except for summer-entry students who must enroll in the fall semester following entry. Students must demonstrate technology proficiency by passing the designated class in their major. GEO 331 for Geography majors, GY 301 for Geology majors, or MET 455 for Meterorology majors.   
GRADUATE STUDIES   
Although the Department of Earth Sciences has no graduate degree program, courses are offered at the graduate level for students enrolled in Marine Sciences and Ecotoxicology, and others who need such course work. Contact the Department for more information.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MAJOR IN GEOGRAPHY   
A student with a major in geography must take a group of required core geography courses as well as six (6) additional upper division courses for a total of 48 semester hours. The six (6) additional upper division courses must be chosen from at least three (3) of the following categories: Human, Physical, Regional, and Technical. Geography 101 and 102 are prerequisites to most upper level physical geography courses and Geography 114 and 115 are prerequisites to most upper level human geography courses listed below.   

A.    Geography Major Requirements (48 HRS)   
Core requirements for a geography major (30 HRS):   
GEO 101 & 101L     4 hrs     GEO 102 &102L     4 hrs    
GEO 114     3 hrs     GEO 115     3 hrs    
GEO 201     1 hr     GEO 331     4 hrs    
GEO 332     4 hrs     GEO 435     3 hrs    
GEO 480     3 hrs       
B.    One additional natural science course, one additional social science course outside of geography, ST 210, and CIS 150.    
C.    Select six courses (for at least 18 hrs) from a minimum of three groups.    
Human Geography Courses:    
GEO 312     3 hrs     GEO 321     3 hrs    
GEO 365     3 hrs     GEO 370     3 hrs    
GEO 381     3 hrs        
Physical Geography Courses:    
GEO 310     3 hrs     GEO 341    3 hrs    
GEO 342     3 hrs     GEO 353     4 hrs    
GEO 410     3 hrs     GEO 411     3 hrs    
GEO 412    3 hrs     GEO 440     2 hrs    
GEO 441     2 hrs        
Regional Geography Courses:    
GEO 313     3 hrs     GEO 314     3 hrs    
GEO 315     3 hrs     GEO 320     3 hrs    
Technical Geography Courses: *    
GIT 460    4 hrs     GIT 442    4 hrs    
GIT 462    4 hrs     GIT 461    4 hrs    
GIT 490    4 hrs   
*Only two courses in the GIT minor may be counted toward the Geography major.    
D.    Complete at least 15 semester hours in residence in major at the 300 and/or 400 level. A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in major.    

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS FOR GEOGRAPHY MAJORS   
Areas I and II of the General Education Requirements for Geography are specified in the College of Arts and Sciences section. Note that a portion of Area IV (GEO 114, GEO 115) and the Natural Sciences portion of Area III (GEO 101, GEO 102, ST 210) are fulfilled by the major requirements specified above.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MINOR IN GEOGRAPHY   
A student must take 20 semester hours of Geography, including 101, 102, 114, and three electives at the 300 or 400 level.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MINOR IN GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY   
A minimum of 22 hours of Geographic Information Technology related classes. The student must take all three core classes (GIT 460, GIT 461 or 462, and CIS 110) and three additional electives from the following: GEO 331, GEO 332 or MET 370, GY 301, GIT 442, GIT 461, GIT 462, or other GIT electives.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A GIS CERTIFICATE    
Students who want to earn a GIS (Geographic Information Science) Certificate must take all six of the following courses. GEO 331, GEO/GY 332, GIT 442, GIT 460, GIT 461, and GIT 462.    
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MAJOR IN GEOLOGY   
Students should complete a minimum of 44 semester hours in Geology. GY 111 and GY 112 are prerequisites for most upper level geology courses. The core requirements for a degree in Geology are listed below:   
Core requirements for a geology major   

GY 111 & 111L     4 hrs     GY 112 & 112L     4 hrs    
GY 301     3 hrs     GY 302     4 hrs    
GY 303     4 hrs     GY 304     3 hrs    
GY 401     3 hrs     GY 402     3 hrs    
GY 403     4 hrs     GY 480     6 hrs    
GY Elective 1     3/4 hrs     GY Elective 2     3/4 hrs    
Total 44-46    

Additional requirements from other disciplines   
MA 125, MA 126, CH 131, CH 132, and a minimum of 8 hours of Physics (algebra/trigonometry-based; PH 114 and PH 115, or calculus-based; PH 201 and PH 202). Students can elect to substitute GY 305 for PH 115/PH 202 and/or substitute GY 420 for MA 126; however, those intending to pursue graduate study are encouraged to complete a full year of calculus and physics at the University of South Alabama.    
A minor in Composite Sciences has been approved as an acceptable minor for Geology majors, See Composite Science Minor under Arts and Sciences Interdisciplinary Programs. A Geology major may also seek a traditional minor. A Certificate in Geographic Information Science (GIS) can be obtained simultaneously with a B.S. in Geology if the student elects to minor in Geography or GIT. Contact the Department of Earth Sciences for information concerning the GIS certification program, the composite sciences minor, Geology elective courses, and Department Honors opportunities in Geology. An overall GPA 2.0 is required for the major.   
GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS FOR GEOLOGY MAJORS   
Areas I, II, and IV of the General Education Requirements for Geology are specified in the College of Arts and Sciences section. Note that Area III requirements (Mathematics and Natural Sciences) are fulfilled by the major requirements specified above.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MINOR IN GEOLOGY   
A student must take a minimum of 20 semester hours of Geology courses including GY 111, GY 111L, GY 112, , GY 112L and a minimum of two courses from the following list: GY 301 (Geomorphology), GY 302 (Crystallography and Mineralogy), GY 304 (Stratigraphy), GY 401 (Paleontology), and GY 425 (Hydrology). Any GY courses numbered 300 and higher may be used to satisfy the remainder of the 20 hour requirement. A geology faculty advisor is recommended for planning an appropriate minor curriculum past the initial introductory sequence.    
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MAJOR IN METEOROLOGY   
A student with a major in Meteorology must take a group of required courses totaling at least 47 semester hours. Meteorology students must take a core of 32 semester hours of meteorology courses, plus one of the three specialty tracks listed below. Each specialty track allows for flexibility with required course selections and electives.   
The meteorology degree also requires MA 125, 126, 227, 238, PH 201, 202; ST 315.   
Meteorology Major Requirements (47 HRS)    

A.    Meteorology Core Courses:    
MET 140     4 hrs     MET 341 (W)    3 hrs    
MET 353     4 hrs     MET 354     3 hrs    
MET 355     3 hrs     MET 356     3 hrs    
MET 454    6 hrs.    MET 455     6 hrs    
Total
32 hrs        
B.    Select one group:   
Group 1 - Professional Meteorology Track:    
MET 357    2 hrs.       
Select from one of the following:   
MET 358    4 hrs    MET 370    3 hrs   
Select from one of the following:   
MET 420    4 hrs    GIT 460    4 hrs   
Choose 5-6 hrs of electives from the list in Part C below.   
Total
15 hrs        
Group 2 - Graduate School Meteorology Track:    
MET 420    4 hrs       
Select from one of the following:   
MET 358    4 hrs    MET 370    3 hrs   
Choose 7-8 hrs of electives from the list in Part C below including at least one 2+ hour 400-level class.   
Total
15 hrs        
Group 3 - Broadcast Meteorology Track:    
MET 342    3 hrs     MET 358    4 hrs    
MET 359    2 hrs     MET 496    1 hr   
MET 497    3 hrs       
Total
13 hrs        
Choose 2 hours of electives from the list below   
Total    15 hrs       
C.    Choose from these electives as directed from the respective groups above.   

MET 191    1 hr    MET 342    3 hrs   
MET 357    2 hrs    MET 358    4 hrs   
MET 360    1 hr    MET 370    3 hrs   
MET 410 (W)    3 hrs    MET 420    4 hrs   
MET 430    3 hrs    MET 440    2 hrs   
MET 442    2 hrs    MET 456 (W)    3 hrs   
MET 490    1-3 hrs    MET 492    1-3 hrs   
MET 495    1-2 hrs    MET 496    1-2 hrs   
GY 425    4 hrs    GIT 460    4 hrs   
MGT 300    3 hrs    MKT 320    3 hrs   
MET 359    2 hrs       
Additional electives may be approved on a case by case basis.   
MET 191 may be taken up to 3 times for credit but will only count once toward a meteorology elective.   
D.    Complete at least 15 semester hours in residence in major at the 300 and/or 400 level. A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in major.   
GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS FOR METEOROLOGY MAJORS   
Areas I, II, and IV of the General Education Requirements for Meteorology are specified in the College of Arts and Sciences section. Note that Area III requirements (Mathematics and Natural Sciences) are fulfilled by the major requirements specified above.   
REQUIREMENTS FOR A MINOR IN METEOROLOGY   
A student must take 20 semester hours of Meteorology, including MET 140, MET 353, MET 341 and 9 semester hours of electives from MET 191, MET 342, MET 354, MET 355, MET 356, MET 357, MET 358, MET 360, MET 370, MET 401, MET 402, MET 410 (W), MET 420, MET 430, MET 440, MET 442, and MET 456 (W). MET 191 may be taken up to 3 times for credit but will only count once toward the meteorology minor.   
Descriptions of all Earth Sciences (ES) Courses
Descriptions of all Geography (GEO) Courses
Descriptions of all Geology (GY) Courses
Descriptions of all Meteorology (MET) Courses
College of Arts and Sciences

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Date last changed: April 8, 2014 10:22 AM
http://www.southalabama.edu/bulletin/artgeo.htm

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