Completion of the course requires that students successfully accumulate a passing score through the following evaluations:
In this class, the following numerical equivalents for grades are used: A = 100-90% | B = 89-80% | C = 79-70% | D = 69-60% | F = 59-0%.
Materials may be submitted in person to your individual lab instructor.
This is a large class that requires substantial effort on the part of your instructors. Late work demands additional time and penalizes the rest of the class. Late materials will be accepted for only one week following the due date and will be evaluated for discounted credit. If you are aware of a pending absence that will interfere with an assignment due date, please complete and submit the work early.
There are no makeups for the comprehension quizzes.
Attendance for lecture is required. Please show up early and leave only when excused. This lecture commences at 9 AM - this is an early hour for some - plan accordingly. Attendance will be evaluated by a randomly-distributed sign-in sheet. It is your responsibility to sign-in each day the sheet is available
Lab attendance is also required for completion of this class. If you fail to attend and complete more than 2 laboratory sessions, you will be either be dropped from the class or you will receive a failing grade.
Absences will only be excused through Dr. Price. Legitimate excuses submitted prior to the lecture or laboratory assignments will be honored; those submitted after an absence will not be accommodated.
Illness is a legitimate excused absence. If you have a fever or are exhibiting symptoms you deem contagious:
Physical geology is a favorite core science class amongst college students world-wide. Unlike other introductory science courses that rely heavily on calculations and derivations, introductory geology is largely presented in a phenomenological fashion. Such presentation is broadly accessible, particularly to those who self-identify as mathematically or scientifically disinclined.
This course will labor to present the nature of our planet, its components and processes, as a series of well-defined observations linked by the prevailing theories of our day. The course will also endeavor to show that geology, like the other sciences, is evolving - its practitioners constantly provide new and better observations and concurrently develop new and more encompassing theories on the basis of these observations. And although the course is not particularly mathematical, students will be made aware that modern observations frequently push the limits of physical and chemical techniques, fully utilizing the mathematical rigor needed to make tractable such difficult and multifaceted problems.
Because the class is presented phenomenologically, it requires each student to become familiar with a few dozen rock and mineral specimens and a few hundred descriptive terms unique or limited to geoscience. It also requires each student to explore straightforward analytical concepts in laboratory. This may be labor intensive at times; students should budget their preparations accordingly.
In summary, because we will mostly point to, and not reconstruct or prove, phenomena, observation, and theory, this class is likely to be completed with a somewhat minimal outlay of effort for many. Experience suggests that those students who attend lecture, read the text, participate fully in laboratory, and prepare for exams typically earn high marks; those who fail to meet these criteria do not. However, experience also suggests that some will struggle with this class despite a dedicated effort - if you find yourself in this group, please seek additional help and resources as soon as possible.
Lastly, please note that class schedules and other information will be posted using MSU's Blackboard/WebCT system. Students will be required to use this system to participate in the class.