Montana State University
MSU 2010-2012 Catalog > Earth Science Courses

ERTH
Earth Science


ERTH 201IN HONORS EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE



ERTH 212RN YELLOWSTONE SCIENTIFIC LAB

ERTH 290R UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH

ERTH 291  SPECIAL TOPICS

ERTH 303  WEATHER AND CLIMATE

ERTH 307  PRINCIPLES OF GEOMORPHOLOGY

ERTH 432R SURFACE WATER RESOURCES

ERTH 450R SNOW DYNAMICS & ACCUMULATION

ERTH 455  PHYSIOGRAPHY OF THE UNITED STATES

ERTH 494  SEMINAR

ERTH 498  INTERNSHIP

ERTH 490R UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH

ERTH 502  FLUVIAL GEOMORPHOLOGY

ERTH 505  GEOMICROBIOLOGY

ERTH 512  MOUNTAINS AND PLAINS RIPARIAN PROCESSES

ERTH 516  NORTHERN ROCKY MOUNTAIN GEOLOGY

ERTH 517  ELECTRONIC HYDROLOGY

ERTH 519  HYDROLOGY OF STREAMS AND LAKES

ERTH 551  SNOW SCIENCE SEMINAR

ERTH 582  QUATERNARY PALEOECOLOGY & VEGETATION HISTORY

ERTH 583  TOPICS IN PALEOECOLOGY

ERTH 584  QUATERNARY ENVIRONMENTS OF THE WESTERN UNITED STATES

ERTH 585  ADVANCES IN GEOBIOLOGY

ERTH 588  PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

ERTH 589  GRADUATE CONSULTATION

ERTH 590  MASTER'S THESIS

ERTH 591  SPECIAL TOPICS

ERTH 592  INDEPENDENT STUDY

ERTH 594  SEMINAR

ERTH 598  INTERNSHIP

ERTH 605  HISTORY OF GEOLOGICAL CONCEPTS

ERTH 689  GRADUATE RESEARCH/CREATIVE ACTIVITY INSTRUCTION

ERTH 690  DISSERTATION RESEARCH

ERTH 694  DOCTORAL SEMINAR

ERTH 201IN HONORS EARTH SYSTEM SCIENCE
F 4 cr. LEC 3 LAB 1
PREREQUISITES: Enrollment in the MSU Honors Program.
-- This Honors course explores the complex interactions occurring at all scales between the Earth's geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and anthroposphere. The goal of the course is to understand the Earth as a "system" of interconnected sources of energy through deep geologic time and space.

ERTH 212RN YELLOWSTONE SCIENTIFIC LAB
F 4 cr. LEC 3 RCT 1
-- The Yellowstone region is an unparalleled laboratory for earth scientists. The volcanic, glacial, climatic, and ecological processes that shaped the region will be introduced through lecture, discussions, and projects. Recitation sections and field trips provide additional hands-on experiences.

ERTH 290R UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH
F,S 1-6 cr. IND may be repeated
-- Directed undergraduate research/creative activity which may culminate in a written work or other creative project. Course will address responsible conduct of research.

ERTH 291 SPECIAL TOPICS
On Demand 1 - 4 cr. Maximum 12 cr.
PREREQUISITES: None required but some may be determined necessary by each offering department.
-- Courses not required in any curriculum for which there is a particular one-time need, or given on a trial basis to determine acceptability and demand before requesting a regular course number.

ERTH 303 WEATHER AND CLIMATE
F 3 cr. LEC 3
PREREQUISITE: GPHY 111.
-- The climates of the continents, and their classification, characteristics and interrelationships with other factors of the physical and human environment.

ERTH 307 PRINCIPLES OF GEMORPHOLOGY
F 4 cr. LEC 3 LAB 1
PREREQUISITE: GEO 101 and GPHY 111; familiarity with spreadsheets and word-processing is assumed. Junior standing
-- Framework, process, system, and time as factors which control the generation of land forms. Laboratories involve field trips and map interpretation, and computer modeling.

ERTH 432R SURFACE WATER RESOURCES
F alternate years, to be offered odd years 3 cr. LEC 2 LAB 1
PREREQUISITE: Junior Standing, GRHY 111 and STAT 216 or STAT 332 and PHSX 205 or PHSX 220.
-- Physical analysis of the surface portion of the hydrologic cycle: climate, evapotranspiration, precipitation, runoff, flooding, stream channels, sediment production, sediment transport and drainage basins. The surface-water resource in terms of regional supply and human use and intervention. Laboratory fee required.

ERTH 450R SNOW DYNAMICS & ACCUMULATION
S 3 cr. LEC 1 LAB 2
PREREQUISITE: Junior or Senior standing; STAT 216; ability to ski at intermediate level in alpine terrain; PHSX 205 or 220 and GPHY 111 or consent of instructor.
-- Senior capstone for the Snow Science Option. The accumulation, redistribution, and metamorphism of snow as related to humans. Avalanche, recreation, agriculture, silviculture, runoff, and the alpine environment. Field studies are conducted on a regular basis under rigorous field conditions.

ERTH 455 PHYSIOGRAPHY OF THE UNITED STATES
On Demand 3 cr. LEC 2 LAB 1
PREREQUISITE: Junior standing, ERTH 307.
-- The physiographic provinces of the United States, their physical characteristics, evolution, and identification.

ERTH 490R UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH
F,S,Su 1 - 6 cr. IND May be repeated. Max 12 cr.
-- Directed undergraduate research/creative activity which may culminate in a research paper, journal article, or undergraduate thesis Course will address responsible conduct of research.

ERTH 494 SEMINAR
On Demand 1 cr. SEM 1 Maximum 4 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Junior standing and as determined for each offering.
-- Topics at the upper division level not covered in regular courses. Students participate in preparing and presenting discussion material.

ERTH 498 INTERNSHIP
On Demand 2 - 12 cr. IND
PREREQUISITE: Junior standing, consent of instructor, and approval of department head.
-- An individualized assignment arranged with an agency, business or other organization to provide guided experience in the field.

ERTH 502 FLUVIAL GEOMORPHOLOGY
On Demand 3 cr. LEC 3
PREREQUISITE: ERTH 307 or other introduction to fluvial systems or instructor permission.
-- This course provides a foundation for understanding fluvial processes, interpreting fluvial forms, and teaches basic tools for use in watershed and river assessment. Course will cover drainage networks, channel form, and apply these concepts to a river assessment problem.

ERTH 505 GEOMICROBIOLOGY
S alternate years, to be offered even years 3 cr. SEM
-- The course will examine geochemical and microbial interactions that control earth surface processes and ultimately major bigeochemical cycles. The course will study integrated approaches to research problems using geochemistry, stable isotope geochemistry, culture-based and molecular microbial techniques.

ERTH 512 MOUNTAINS AND PLAINS RIPARIAN PROCESSES
Su On Demand 2 cr. SEM 2
PREREQUISITE: Introductory geology (GEO 101), secondary teaching certification plus two years teaching experience; recommended ERTH 516 and access to the world wide web.
-- Riparian hydrologic and gemorphic processes with examples drawn from the mountains and plains. Ground-water recharge and discharge; Horton overland flow; partial variable runoff areas; riparian best management practices; sapping, types of springs; sediment from slopes. K-12 riparian science education.

ERTH 516 NORTHERN ROCKY MOUNTAIN GEOLOGY
Su 2 cr. SEM 1 LAB 1
PREREQUISITE: Introduction to physical geology (GEO 101), intro to physical geography (GPHY 111), early history and evolution (GEO 211); graduate standing; secondary teaching certification plus two years teaching experience ; a computer with modem.
-- Geologic history of Northern Rocky Mountains, and landscapes from Archean to present. Structural, tectonic, and surficial elements. Field examination of geologic evidence for history of the Gallatin Range, Bridger Range, and Yellowstone National Park. Exploration and development of teaching methods and resources for the K-12 classroom.

ERTH 517 ELECTRONIC HYDROLOGY
Su On Demand 2 cr. SEM 2
PREREQUISITE: GEO 101, GPHY 111; secondary teaching certification plus two years teaching experience; access to the world wide web linked with telnet. Recommended ERTH 511 or ERTH 519.
-- Electronic acquisition, analysis, and interpretation of hydrologic data for K-12 teachers. Data acquired through the world wide web and telnet. Students will learn to download, analyze and interpret data including rainfall, snowfall, precipitation probability, temperature, stream flow, flood frequency, evapotranspiration, and reservoir capacity.

ERTH 519 HYDROLOGY OF STREAMS AND LAKES
Su On Demand 3 cr. SEM 3
PREREQUISITE: Introductory geology/physical geography; two years K-12 teaching experience; recommended ERTH 516, and a basic course in physics.
-- Streams lakes in the mountains and plains: drainage basic analysis, stream hydraulics, slope, channel plan, channel cross section, channel types, geologic origin, evaporation, ground water recharge/discharge. Applications in the K-12 science classroom (habits of a scientific mind).

ERTH 551 SNOW SCIENCE SEMINAR
On Demand 1 cr. SEM 1
PREREQUISITE: Graduate Standing; PHSX 220, STAT 332 or STAT 401; Interest in snow science.
-- Seminar-style discussion of recent developments in snow science based upon current literature, important journal articles, and newly published or about to be published literature regarding snow science. Topics will depend upon the interests of the instructor and students in the course.

ERTH 582 QUATERNARY PALEOECOLOGY & VEGETATION HISTORY
F alternate years, to be offered odd years 3 cr. SEM 3
PREREQUISITE: Upper division background in ecology, biogeography, stratigraphy, or paleontology.
-- Course examines the history and development of modern biomes and the causes and consequences of long-term ecological change.

ERTH 583 TOPICS IN PALEOECOLOGY
S alternate years, to be offered odd years 3 cr. SEM 3
PREREQUISITE: Upper division background in ecology, biogeography, stratigraphy, or paleontology.
-- Course examines important themes in paleoecology. Topics change on a yearly basis addressing needs and interests of current students. It is intended for students with an interest in ecology, paleontology and environmental history.

ERTH 584 QUATERNARY ENVIRONMENTS OF THE WESTERN UNITED STATES
F, to be offered even years 3 cr. SEM 3
PREREQUISITE: GEO 445, GEOL 581, ERTH 307, GPHY 411 or equivalent course work, or consent of the instructor.
-- This graduate course examines current research and recent developments in Quaternary paleoclimatology in the western U.S. The seminar will be centered around weekly discussions of the primary literature, hands-on experience with international data bases, and class paper and presentation.

ERTH 585 ADVANCES IN GEOBIOLOGY
F, to be offered even years 1 cr. SEM 1
-- Discussion of recent developments in paleontology, paleoecology, biogeochemistry, and biogeography based on current literature and presentation of faculty and student works in progress.

ERTH 588 PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
On Demand 1 - 3 cr. May be repeated; maximum 3 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Graduate standing, teaching experience and/or current employment in a school organization, consent of instructor and Dean of Graduate Studies.
-- Courses offered on a one-time basis to fulfill professional development needs of in service educators. A specific focus is given to each course which is appropriately subtitled.

ERTH 589 GRADUATE CONSULTATION
F,S,Su 3 cr. TUT
PREREQUISITE: Master's standing and approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies.
-- This course may be used only by students who have completed all of their course work (and thesis if on a thesis plan) but who need additional faculty or staff time or help.

ERTH 590 MASTER'S THESIS
F,S,Su 1 - 10 cr. IND Maximum credits unlimited.
PREREQUISITE: Master's standing.

ERTH 591 SPECIAL TOPICS
On Demand 1 - 4 cr. Maximum 12 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Upper division courses and others as determined for each offering.
-- Courses not required in any curriculum for which there is a particular one time need, or given on a trial basis to determine acceptability and demand before requesting a regular course number.

ERTH 592 INDEPENDENT STUDY
On Demand 1 - 3 cr. IND Maximum 6 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Graduate standing, consent of instructor, approval of Department Head and Dean of Graduate Studies.
-- Directed research and study on an individual basis.

ERTH 594 SEMINAR
On Demand 1 cr. SEM 1 Maximum 4 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Graduate standing or seniors by petition. Course prerequisites as determined for each offering.
-- Topics offered at the graduate level which are not covered in regular courses. Students participate in preparing and presenting discussion material.

ERTH 598 INTERNSHIP
On Demand 2 - 12 cr. IND
PREREQUISITE: Graduate standing, consent of instructor and approval of department head.
-- An individualized assignment arranged with an agency, business or other organization to provide guided experience in the field.

ERTH 605 HISTORY OF GEOLOGICAL CONCEPTS
On Demand 3 cr. LEC 3 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Course limited to graduate students or senior undergraduates with permission.
-- Weekly seminars examine the evolution of geological thinking through an exploration of its history and contributions to science. The course enables students to research the origin and importance of concepts in their area of scientific specialization.

ERTH 689 GRADUATE RESEARCH/CREATIVE ACTIVITY INSTRUCTION
F,S 1 - 3 cr. RCT Maximum 3 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Doctoral candidate standing.
-- Directed doctoral research/creative activity projects; may include reading research publications in the field in preparation for beginning dissertation research.

ERTH 690 DISSERTATION RESEARCH
F,S,Su 1 - 10 cr. IND Maximum credits unlimited.
PREREQUISITE: Doctoral candidate standing.

ERTH 694 DOCTORAL SEMINAR
F,S,Su 1 - 3 cr. SEM Maximum 6 cr.
PREREQUISITE: Doctoral candidate standing.

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