SRJC Course Outlines

10/1/2020 6:12:08 AMGEOL 11 Course Outline as of Fall 2019

Changed Course

Discipline and Nbr:  GEOL 11Title:  GEOLOGY OF CALIFORNIA  
Full Title:  Geology of California
Last Reviewed:5/14/2018

UnitsCourse Hours per Week Nbr of WeeksCourse Hours Total
Maximum3.00Lecture Scheduled3.0017.5 max.Lecture Scheduled52.50
Minimum3.00Lab Scheduled06 min.Lab Scheduled0
 Contact DHR0 Contact DHR0
 Contact Total3.00 Contact Total52.50
 Non-contact DHR0 Non-contact DHR Total0

 Total Out of Class Hours:  105.00Total Student Learning Hours: 157.50 

Title 5 Category:  AA Degree Applicable
Grading:  Grade or P/NP
Repeatability:  00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP
Also Listed As: 

Catalog Description:
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Introduction to the geologic principles and processes that formed and continue to influence California's geologic and tectonic environment. Overview of the origin and interpretation of rocks and fossils, volcanoes, earthquakes, plate tectonics, and the geologic history of California.


Recommended Preparation:
Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent

Limits on Enrollment:

Schedule of Classes Information
Description: Untitled document
Introduction to the geologic principles and processes that formed and continue to influence California's geologic and tectonic environment. Overview of the origin and interpretation of rocks and fossils, volcanoes, earthquakes, plate tectonics, and the geologic history of California.
(Grade or P/NP)

Recommended:Eligibility for ENGL 1A or equivalent
Limits on Enrollment:
Transfer Credit:CSU;UC.
Repeatability:00 - Two Repeats if Grade was D, F, NC, or NP


Associate Degree:Effective:Fall 1981
Natural Sciences
CSU GE:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 B1Physical ScienceFall 2007
IGETC:Transfer Area Effective:Inactive:
 5APhysical SciencesFall 2007
CSU Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 1981Inactive:
UC Transfer:TransferableEffective:Fall 1981Inactive:
 CID Descriptor: GEOL 200 Geology of California SRJC Equivalent Course(s): GEOL11

Certificate/Major Applicable: Major Applicable Course


Student Learning Outcomes:
Upon completion of the course, students will be able to:
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1.  Apply scientific methodologies to answer scientific questions.
2.  Evaluate and classify earth materials.
3.  Identify, locate, and interpret significant geologic and geomorphic features of California.
4.  Identify and explain processes that have formed and continue to shape the landscape of
5.  Recognize the complex interplay between humans and the environment.

Objectives: Untitled document
During this course, the student will:
1.   Define the nature of geology as a science.
2.   Utilize Plate Tectonic Theory to summarize the relationships among the rock cycle, tectonic
      setting, volcanism and earthquake activity, and provide examples illustrating these relationships.  
3.   Describe the lithologies and formation of igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks.
4.   Use classification charts to identify major rock types and sub-types.
5.   Classify and illustrate several types of volcanic features, and locate volcanic features within
6.   Explain the causes, effects, and measurement scales of earthquakes.
7.   Summarize the history of the San Andreas Fault system.
8.   Evaluate geologic hazards common to California and their effect on humans.
9.   Reconstruct the geologic evolution of California in relation to the geologic time scale.
10. Describe surface processes and identify the features associated with each process; provide
      specific examples of locations in California exhibiting these landforms.
11. Give examples of geological resources currently tapped in California, identify their location,
      geological formation, and interpret future resource exploration opportunities in California.

Topics and Scope
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Topics will include, but are not limited to:
I. Introduction
    A. Scientific Method
    B. Plate Tectonic Theory
    C. Structure of the Earth
    D. Geomorphic provinces of California
II. Earth Materials
    A. Minerals and rocks
    B. The rock cycle and formation of rocks
    C. Igneous Rocks
         1. Processes, textures, and mineralogy
         2. Classification
         3. Plutonic rocks in California; the Sierra Nevada, Klamath, and Peninsular Ranges
         4. Volcanoes, volcanic processes and hazards in California; the Cascades and
              Modoc Plateau
    D. Sedimentary Rocks
         1. Weathering and erosion
         2. Processes, textures, and compositions
         3. Classification
         4. The Great Valley Sequence and sedimentary rocks in California
    E. Metamorphic Rocks
         1. Processes, textures, and mineralogy
         2. Classification
         3. The Coast Range and metamorphic rocks in California
III. Faults
    A. Fault types
    B. Plate movements and Plate Tectonic Theory
    C. San Andreas Fault system
IV. Earthquakes
    A. Elastic Rebound Theory
    B. Seismic waves
    C. Intensity and magnitude measurement scales
    D. Seismic data interpretation for earthquake forecasting and hazards/risk assessment
    E. Epicentral location
    F. Historically significant earthquakes in California
V. Geologic Time
    A. Relative vs. absolute dating methods
    B. Development of the geologic time scale
    C. Paleontology and dating using fossils
    D. Introduction to common fossils of California
VI. Geologic Evolution and Formation of California
    A. Precambrian history
         1. Precambrian rock units and fossils in California: Basin and Range and Mojave Desert
         2. Changing continental margin
    B. Paleozoic history
         1. Paleozoic rock units and fossils in California: Basin and Range, Mojave Desert, Sierra
              Nevada, and Klamath Mountains
         2. Changing continental margin
    C. Mesozoic history
         1. Mesozoic rock units and fossils in California: Sierra Nevada, Great Valley, and Coast
         2. Orogenic events
         3. California's major growth spurt
    D. Cenozoic history
         1. Cenozoic rock units and fossils in California
         2. Extension in the Basin and Range
         3. Rotation in the Transverse Ranges
         4. Formation of the San Andreas Fault system
VII. Surface Processes and Landforms
    A. Coastal processes and California's coastline
    B. Glacial processes and the glacial history and features of California
    C. Desert processes and desert landforms in California
VIII. Geologic Resources Located in California (at least 2 of the following topics)
    A. Water
         1. Water rights
         2. Groundwater
         3. Surface water
    B. Rocks and minerals
    C. Petroleum
    D. Geothermal

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1. Assigned readings (20-30 pages per week)
2. Assignments (5-15): research, reaction or summary papers, written homework,
    problem solving exercises, oral presentation
3. Exams (3-5); quizzes (5-15)
4. Class participation: in-class activities, discussions, group work, attendance

Methods of Evaluation/Basis of Grade.
Writing: Assessment tools that demonstrate writing skill and/or require students to select, organize and explain ideas in writing.Writing
10 - 50%
Written homework; research/reaction/summary papers
Problem solving: Assessment tools, other than exams, that demonstrate competence in computational or non-computational problem solving skills.Problem Solving
5 - 30%
Homework problems, in-class activities
Skill Demonstrations: All skill-based and physical demonstrations used for assessment purposes including skill performance exams.Skill Demonstrations
0 - 0%
Exams: All forms of formal testing, other than skill performance exams.Exams
40 - 80%
Exams and quizzes
Other: Includes any assessment tools that do not logically fit into the above categories.Other Category
0 - 15%
Participation; discussions; oral presentation; group work

Representative Textbooks and Materials:
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California's Amazing Geology. Prothero, Donald. CRC Press. 2017
Introduction To Water In California. 2nd ed. Carle, David. University of California Press. 2015 (classic)
Geology Of The San Francisco Bay Region. Sloan, Doris and Karachewski, John. University of California Press. 2006 (classic)
California Geology. 2nd ed. Harden, Deborah. Pearson. 2004 (classic)
A Dangerous Place: California's Unsettling Fate. Reisner, Marc. Penguin Books. 2004 (classic)
Assembling California. McPhee, John. The Noonday Press. 1995 (historical text; classic)
Cadillac Desert: The American West And Its Disappearing Water. Reisner, Marc. Penguin Books. 1993 (classic)
Instructor Prepared Materials.

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