Undergraduate Catalog 2018-2019


Geology (GLY)

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)

8 Semester Plan

120 Credit Hours

CIP Code: 40.0601 - Track 1 of 2

College of Arts & Sciences


Major Description

The Bachelor of Arts program is designed primarily for the liberal arts student who has an interest in careers in Geoscience education or environmental policy and law. A student who elects the B.A. program and decides to pursue the geology profession or attend graduate school will need at least field geology in his/her program.

State Mandated Common Course Prerequisites

Students wishing to transfer to USF should complete an A.A. degree at a Florida College System institution. Some courses required for the major may also meet General Education requirements thereby transferring maximum hours to the university.

If a student wishes to transfer without an A.A. degree and has fewer than 60 semester hours of acceptable credit, the student must meet the university’s entering freshman requirements including ACT or SAT test scores, GPA, and course requirements.

Transfer students are also required to comply with the immunization, foreign language, and continuous enrollment policies of the university.

Students should complete the following prerequisite courses at the lower level prior to entering the university. If these courses are not taken at a Florida College System institution, they must be completed before the degree is granted.

Unless stated otherwise, a grade of C is the minimum acceptable grade in prerequisite courses.

  • CHM X045/X045L General Chemistry I (with lab) or CHM X045C or CHM X040/X041
  • CHM X046/X046L General Chemistry II (with lab) or CHM X046C
  • GLY X010C Introduction to Physical Geology or GLY X010/X010L
  • MAC X311 Calculus I or MTH X281
  • PHY X048C* General Physics and Laboratory I or PHY X048/X048L or PHY X053C
  • PHY X049C* General Physics and Laboratory II or PHY X049/X049L or PHY X054C
  • XXX XXXX Historical Geology STRONGLY recommended

*The choice of physics sequence depends on the area of geology specialization.

Required Supporting Courses for the Major: 22-23 Hours

The following courses are prerequisite and supporting courses for this major. They are required for the major, but are not counted in the total hours for this major. The degree will not be awarded if these courses have not been taken by the end of the student’s final semester.

  • CHM 2045 General Chemistry I and CHM 2045L General Chemistry I Laboratory
  • CHM 2046 General Chemistry II and CHM 2046L General Chemistry II Laboratory
  • MAC 2311 Calculus I or MAC 2241 Life Science Calculus I
  • STA 2023 Introductory Statistics I
  • PHY 2048/2048L General Physics I - Calculus Based with Lab and PHY 2049/2049L General Physics II - Calculus Based with Lab (recommended) or PHY 2053/2053L General Physics I with Lab and PHY 2054/2054L General Physics II with Lab

Total Major Hours: 34 Hours

Major Core

The B.A. in Geology degree requires 34 total credit hours of degree-applicable Geology coursework, comprising one introductory course (4 credit hours), four core courses (15 credit hours), and four upper-level electives (15 credit hours).

Major Core Courses - 19 Hours

*Transfer students who have taken GLY 2010C or the equivalent will be deemed to have met the introductory sequence requirements. However, ALL students are strongly encouraged to take GLY 2000L, as this course will greatly facilitate success in the upper-level offerings.

  • Introductory Sequence* (4 credit hours):
    • One course, chosen from:
      • ESC 2000 Introduction to Earth Science
      • GLY 2010 Dynamic Earth: Introduction to Physical Geology
      • GLY 2030 Hazards of the Earth’s Surface: Environmental Geology
      • OCE 2001 Introduction to Oceanography
      • Or other comparable acceptable course offerings, as approved by the undergraduate advisor
    • GLY 2000L Essentials of Geology Laboratory
  • Core Courses (15 credit hours):

In the event that GEO 3280 is not offered in a calendar year, the undergraduate advisor may approve GLY 4822C Hydrogeology to count in its place.

Major Elective Courses - 15 Hours

Students choose 15 hours of upper-level electives from the following list of courses:

Quantitative Requirement: Of these upper-level electives, at least three (3) hours must be drawn from courses identified by the department as including high-quantitative content. Courses that meet this requirement are highlighted with a *. Other comparable quantitative offerings in geology may be approved by the undergraduate advisor.

Additional Major Requirements

Major Foundations of Knowledge and Learning (FKL) Requirement

Geology B.A. students are encouraged to fulfill the University's Foundations of Knowledge and Learning (FKL) General Education requirements with courses in the School of Geoscience relevant to their interests, whenever possible.

FKL General Education courses recommended for the Geology B.A. degree:

  • Natural Sciences Life Science (CANL): GLY 2100 History of Life
  • Human and Cultural Diversity in a Global Context (CAGC): GEA 2000 World Regional Geography or GEO 2400 Human Geography

Major Foundations of Knowledge and Learning (FKL) Exit Requirement

Geology B.A. students are encouraged to fulfill the University's Capstone Learning Experience requirements with courses in the School of Geoscience relevant to their interests, whenever possible.

FKL Exit courses recommended for the Geology B.A. degree:

  • WRIN - Writing Intensive and State Communication Requirement (formerly known as Gordon Rule Writing): GLY 4921 Scientific Communication
  • CPST - Capstone: EVR 4114 Climate Change or EVR 4027 Wetland Environments

Additional Major Information

Major Faculty

School of Geosciences Chairperson: M. Rains; School of Geosciences Associate Chairperson: S. Reader; Professors: C. Connor, T. Dixon, S. McNutt, J.G. Ryan; H.L. Vacher, P. Wang; Associate Professors: G.S. Herbert, S.E. Kruse, B. Onac, M. Rains, P. Wetmore, J. Wynn; Assistant Professors: S. Charbonnier, A. Germa, J. Gulley, R. Malservisi, M. Pasek; Research Assistant Professors: Z. Atlas, J. Braunmiller, G. Thompson; Instructors: T. Juster, J. McIlrath; Adjunct Faculty: E. Rodriguez; Research Associates: L. Connor.

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