House Bill 2504

Spring 2012 Course Syllabus

GEOL-1404-01 - Historical Geology

Faculty Information
SemesterSpring 2012
InstructorTaylor, Ronald Shearer
Phone(409) 984-6575
Business, Math, and Science
Chair:Percy Jordan
Phone:(409) 984-6335
Hours:TR 8:00-8:30 & 11:00-12:00
Building:Madison Monroe Education (MMED)
MyLamarPA Be sure to check your campus E-mail and Course Homepage using MyLamarPA campus web portal ( When you’ve logged in, click the email icon in the upper right-hand corner to check email, or click on the “My Courses” tab to get to your Course Homepage. Click the link to your course and review the information presented. It is important that you check your email and Course Homepage regularly. You can also access your grades, transcripts, and determine who your academic advisor is by using MyLamarPA.
Course Information
Course Number10517
Course Description Earth history, a study of the Earth through time; formation of the crust, oceans and atmosphere and the change in animal and plant life through time.
Course Prerequisites None
Required Textbooks 1) The Changing Earth: Exploring Geology & Evolution, 6th Ed., by J.S. Monroe & R. Wicander, Brook/Cole publisher, 2012. 2) Historical Geology, 5th Ed., by M.S. Stevens & J.B. Stevens, Thomson Custom Publishing, 2011.
Attendance Policy Research has shown a cause and effect relationship between attendance and college success. Makeup lecture exams are not given. The final-exam grade is substituted for one missed lecture exam. If a second of the three scheduled lecture exams is missed, the grade recorded for the second missed exam is a zero. Students are expected to attend all class meetings. Absence does not negate full responsibility for all material covered and any changes in course plan announced during the missed class. Missed quizzes and most lab activities cannot be made-up.
Course Grading Scale The natural cut-off point between the "A" and "B" course grades is generally lower than 90%. Such happenstances require grade adjustments downward by increments of 10% beginning with the "A" to "B" cut-off point.
Determination of Final Grade Three lecture exams - 45%, quizzes - 12%, lab work -13%, final exam - 30%.
Final Exam Date May 10, 2012 - 8:00 AM
Major Assignments Week 1: Course introduction & syllabus review; Earth as a dynamic planet & Matter; Chapters 1 & 3 in TB. Quiz on "Restless Earth" video & lab on "Measuring Materials".

Week 2: Minerals & igneous rocks; review chapters 3, 4, & 5 in TB; quiz and lab on "Earth Materials"

Week 3: Sedimentary & metamorphic rocks; review chapters 6, 7, 8 in TB; quiz and lab on "Earth Materials"

Week 4: Plate tectonics; chapter 2 in TB; quiz and lab on plate tectonics; LECTURE EXAM I

Week 5: Deformation, mountain building, & earth's crust; chapter 10 in TB; quiz on video and lab on chapter 6 in LM

Week 6: Geologic time; chapter 17 in TB; quiz on video and lab on chapter 7 in LM

Week 7: Introduction to life & fossil groups; organic evolution; chapter 18 in TB; quiz on video and lab on chapter 4 in LM

Week 8: Extinctions; scattered references in TB & handouts; quiz on video & lab on chapter 18 in LM; LECTURE EXAM II

Week 9: Spring Break

Week 10: Precambrian earth and life history; early Paleozoic earth history, chapters 19 & 20 in TB; quiz on video and lab on chapter 9 in LM

Week 11: Late Paleozoic earth history & Paleozoic life history; chapters 20 & 21 in TB; quiz on video and lab on chapter 3 in LM

Week 12: Introduction to reef-forming fossil groups; geology of coal & petroleum; handouts; quiz on video and lab on chapters 10-12 in LM

Week 13: Plate tectonics during the Permian and Triassic; quiz on video and lab on chapters 10-12 in LM; LECTURE EXAM III

Week 14: Mesozoic earth and life history; chapter 22 in TB; quiz on video and chapter 8 in LM

Week 15: Cenozoic earth and life history; chapter 23 in TB; quiz on video and chapters 10-12 in LM

Week 16: Pleistocene earth and life history; chapter 23 in TB; quiz and chapters 10-12 in LM


Calendar of Lecture Topics and Major Assignment Due Dates Week 1: Course introduction; planetary systems & Earth as a dynamic planet

Geologic principles and Matter

Week 2: Minerals

Igneous rocks

Week 3: Sedimentary rocks

Metamorphic rocks

Week 4: Plate tectonics


Week 5: Deformation

Mountain building and earth's crust

Week 6: Relative geologic time & unconformities

Absolute geologic time & geologic maps

Week 7: Organic evolution

Life groups and their fossil record

Week 8: Asteroid impact and mass extinction vs. background extinction


Week 9: Spring Break

Week 10: Precambrian earth and life history

Life history, sequence stratigraphy, and paleogeographic maps

Week 11: Paleozoic earth history

Paleozoic life history

Week 12: History of reef & lowland environments

Geology of coal & Petroleum

Week 13: Scientific milestones and chief contributors


Week 14: Mesozoic earth history

Mesozoic life history

Week 15: Cenozoic earth history

Cenozoic life history

Week 16: Pleistocene earth history

Pleistocene life history

Week 17: LAB FINAL (May 8)


General Education/Core Curriculum Student Learning Outcomes
Reading:Demonstrates the ability to analyze and interpret a variety of printed materials.

Writing:Produces clear, correct, and coherent prose adapted to purpose, occasion, and audience.

Speaking:Communicates orally in clear, coherent, and persuasive language appropriate to purpose, occasion, and audience.

Listening:Demonstrates the ability to analyze and interpret various forms of spoken language.

Critical Thinking 1:Applies qualitative and/or quantitative skills analytically and creatively to subject matter.

Critical Thinking 2:Demonstrates the ability to evaluate arguments and construct alternative strategies.

Computer Literacy 1:Uses computer-based technology to communicate, solve problems, and acquire information.

Computer Literacy 2:Demonstrates an understanding of the limits, problems, and possibilities associated with the use of technology.

Intercultural Competence 1:Demonstrates awareness of similarities and differences between cultural groups.

Intercultural Competence 2:Demonstrates the ability to recognize global interconnectedness.

Intercultural Competence 3:Demonstrates a general knowledge of cultural evolution.

Program Student Learning Outcomes 1) Uses critical thinking skills

2) Demonstrates technology literacy

3) Uses mathematical and scientific skills

4) Demonstrates universal cross-cultural understanding and cooperation
Course Student Learning Outcomes (Uses critical thinking skills) - The principles of Historical Geology are based on logic and an innate understanding of how nature operates around us. These principles must be stated and modeled to be fully appreciated.

(Demonstrates technology literacy) - Smart phones and desk computers when utilized regularly reveal the accelerated rate at which scientific breakthroughs occur.

(Uses mathematical and scientific skills) - The birth of a theory such as plate tectonics is traced in order to illustrate the scientific method.

(Demonstrated cultural understanding & cooperation) - Approaches are at the individual and international levels. Examples are environmental and climatic issues.
Academic Honesty Academic honesty is expected from all students, and dishonesty in any form will not be tolerated. Please consult the LSC-PA policies (Section IX, subsection A, in the Faculty Handbook) for consequences of academic dishonesty.
Facility Policies
  • No food or tobacco products are allowed in the classroom.

  • Only students enrolled in the course are allowed in the classroom, except by special instructor permission.

  • Electronic devices (including but not restricted to cell phones, MP3 players, and laptop computers) shall not be used during examinations unless specifically allowed by the instructor.

  • Use of electronic devices during normal class hours distracts other students, disrupts the class, and wastes valuable time. Instructors have an obligation to reduce such disruptions.

  • Turn your cellphones to vibrate when you enter the classroom.
Additional Information I will not discuss your grades over the phone or by email. If you want to discuss your grades, you must come by my office, in person. Addition work is never assigned for the purpose of improving someone's grade. The impracticality of such a request should be apparent when you consider that the same offer should be available to everyone in the class.
Important Information
ADA Considerations The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Special Populations Coordinator, Room 231, in the Madison Monroe Building. The phone number is (409) 984-6241.
Copyright Violations Some material in this course may be copyrighted. They may be used only for instructional purposes this semester, by students enrolled in this course. These materials are being used fairly and legally. No one may distribute or share these copyrighted materials in any medium or format with anyone outside this class, including publishing essays with copyrighted material, uploading copyrighted material to Facebook or YouTube, or painting or performing copyrighted material for public display.

Copyright violation is not the same thing as plagiarism. Plagiarism is intellectual dishonesty. Offenses of plagiarism result in lower grades or failing scores, and professors and the college strictly enforce plagiarism rules. There is never any acceptable use of plagiarism. Copyright violation is a legal offense, punishable by large fines and penalties.

Copyrighted material can be used if permission from the material’s creator is obtained, or if its use meets the standards of fair use in an educational setting. For example, a student can quote a line from Shakespeare’s Hamlet in a report without violating copyright but still be guilty of plagiarism if the quotation is not properly documented.

If you are in doubt about what material can be freely used, ask your professor or contact the Dean of Library Services, at (409) 984-6216.
Assessment Statement Assessment is a process by which LSCPA can help you learn better and gauge the level of progress you have made to attain knowledge, skills, beliefs, and values. It also helps your professors understand how to improve teaching and testing methods in your classes, and it helps each department understand and improve degree and certificate programs.

Periodically LSC-PA will collect assessment data for research and reporting purposes, including statistical data and sometimes copies of your work. Be assured that all material the college uses for assessment purposes will be kept confidential. To ensure anonymity, your name will be removed from any material we use for assessment purposes, including video-recorded performances, speeches, and projects.

If you object to allowing LSC-PA to use your material for assessment purposes, submit a letter stating so to your professor by the 12th class day. You will still be required to participate in whatever assessments are being done; we just won’t use your data.

What’s the difference between assessment and grades? The grades you get on papers, projects, speeches, and assignments are specific types of focused assessment. LSC-PA’s assessment efforts include class grades, surveys, standardized tests, and other tools.
Privacy Notice Federal privacy laws apply to college students. This means that college employees, including instructors, cannot divulge information to third parties, including parents and legal guardians of students. Even if the students are minors, information about their college work cannot be shared with anyone except in very limited circumstances.

Anyone requesting information about a student should be referred to the Registrar. Instructors will be notified in writing by that Office about what information may be released and to whom.

Please remember that releasing private information about a student, however innocuous it may seem, can be a violation of federal law, with very serious consequences.

Circumstances under which information may be released:

An adult student may submit, to the Registrar, a handwritten, signed note granting permission for release of information. The note must specify what information may be divulged, and it must specify the name of the person to whom the information may be given.

A parent or guardian may be given access to information about a student by providing a copy of a filed tax return that shows that the student was listed as a dependent of that parent or guardian. The tax return must be for last complete tax year. Again, this documentation must be submitted to the Registrar’s Office.

A parent or guardian may be given access to information about a student if the student logs on to and sends an email to the Registrar granting permission. The email must specify what information may be given and the name of the person to whom it may be given.

Co-enrollment students are protected by the same privacy laws as adult students.

The Registrar’s office is located in the Student Center room 303B, and can be reached at (409) 984-6165.

College-Level Perspectives This course helps add to the students’ overall collegiate experience in the following ways:

  • Establishing broad and multiple perspectives on the individual in relationship to the larger society and world in which s/he lives, and to understand the responsibilities of living in a culturally and ethnically diversified world.

  • Stimulating a capacity to discuss and reflect upon individual, political, economic, and social aspects of life in order to understand ways in which to be a responsible member of society.

  • Developing a capacity to use knowledge of how technology and science affect their lives.

  • Developing personal values for ethical behavior.

  • Developing the ability to make aesthetic judgments.

  • Using logical reasoning in problem solving.

  • Integrating knowledge and understand the interrelationships of the scholarly disciplines.

Degree Plan Evaluation A Degree Plan Evaluation will help you determine which classes you need to complete your program.

  1. Sign in to your account.

  2. Click on the “My Services” tab.

  3. Click on the “Student” tab.

  4. Click on Student Records.

  5. Click on Degree Evaluation.

  6. Select the term you are planning on registering for (i.e. Summer I, Summer II, Fall, or Spring)

  7. Verify that the Curriculum Information (your MAJOR) is correct

  8. Click on “Generate New Evaluation” at the bottom of the screen.

  9. Click the radio button next to Program

  10. Click on the Generate Request button.

All of the classes that you have taken that apply to your declared major will be listed on the right. If you have a class that still needs to be completed, a “NO” will be listed on the right next to the required class.

HB 2504 This syllabus is part of LSC-PA’s efforts to comply with Texas House Bill 2504.

Lamar State College - Port Arthur


Lamar State College - Port Arthur, a member of The Texas State University System, is an open-access, comprehensive public two-year college offering quality and affordable instruction leading to associate degrees and a variety of certificates. The College embraces the premise that education is an ongoing process that enhances career potential, broadens intellectual horizons, and enriches life.

Core Values

  • Shared commitment by faculty, staff and administration to a mission characterized by student learning, diversity, and community involvement

  • General education/core curriculum that develops the values and concepts that allow the student to make a meaningful contribution in the workplace or community

  • Academic and technical programs designed to fulfill our commitment to accommodate students with diverse goals and backgrounds, using a variety of delivery methods, on and off campus

  • Technical education programs that provide for the acquisition of the knowledge, skills and behavior necessary for initial and continued employment

  • Student achievement characterized by attainment of individual goals and measured by successful accomplishments and completion of curriculum

  • Co-curricular opportunities that develop social, financial and civic acuity


Lamar State College - Port Arthur operates in the belief that all individuals should be:

  • treated with dignity and respect;

  • afforded equal opportunity to acquire a complete educational experience;

  • given an opportunity to discover and develop their special aptitudes and insights; and,

  • provided an opportunity to equip themselves for a fulfilling life and responsible citizenship in a world characterized by change.

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