Department of Earth Science
Our department offers courses in the following disciplines.
- Environmental Science
In addition some of our courses are offered in the ACE and VCAP programs .
Department Mission, Philosophy and Goals
The mission of the Earth Science Department is to provide instruction that emphasizes critical thinking and intellectual development while providing students with an understanding of and appreciation for the cultural, biological, and physical processes and diversity in the world as a whole and in their community in particular.
The department goals are categorized and outlined below.
Appreciation of Human Diversity Goals:
- to foster individual and group understanding through the study of cultural diversity by exposing students to the cultures of the world thereby increasing their sensitivity to cultural differences and similarities
- to promote understanding of diverse cultural environments that surround the college through direct studies and participation in various cultural activities of a diverse nature, i.e., active participant observation of surrounding communities
- to promote understanding of the nature of human biological diversity, its evolutionary background, and its modern implications
Earth Sciences Goals:
- to promote understanding of physical processes in the environment and in the universe
- to foster an appreciation for the environment and the impact of humans on the environment
Critical Thinking and Information Competency Goals:
- to encourage critical thinking through the use of culturally relative comparisons of diverse ways of life and ways of thinking
- to encourage the understanding and appreciation of human physical diversity through the study of human genetics and human evolution
- to promote the methods of scientific inquiry as a means of understanding the world around us
- to encourage information competency, including evaluating resources and information
Transfer Education Goals:
- to provide an AA degree program in earth science and geography
- to promote excellence by offering Honors Classes
- to provide courses that meet a wide variety of general education requirements
- to provide students with a background in cultural diversity that will better enable them to compete for a wide variety of jobs in the global market as well as interact effectively in today’s culturally diverse business community.
- to offer certificates in GIS and Scientific Visualization
General Education Goals:
- to provide courses in a wide variety of general education areas
- to encourage student attainment of the college’s general education student learning outcomes
- to promote a deeper understanding of earth and human cultural systems and an appreciation for the interactions among them
- to encourage active engagement and ethical decision making in regards to the environmental, scientific, and societal issues
- to provide students with the most pedagogically sound methods of instruction, including the use of technology
- to provide students with the most current information available by means of the active field work research and professional involvements of the department faculty
- to improve teaching and learning through the implementation of the student learning outcomes assessment cycle
- to provide students with current information by means of guest speakers brought to the campus
- to promote understanding of research methods through "hands-on" laboratory classes.