Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Schedule of Events at the March 2-4 Meeting of the Far Western Section at Zzyzx, CA

Check beneath the fold for the final version of the schedule for the events at the spring meeting of the Far Western Section, to be held this weekend (March 2-4). Hope to see you there!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Honors Earth Science and University of California "d" Level Laboratory Courses

From Wendy Van Nordon at NESTA (National Earth Science Teachers Association):

"Are you interested in teaching an Honors Earth Science class? Would you like to help a local high school teacher to do so? At the website honorsearthscience.com you can find the curriculum of an Honors Earth Science course that was accepted by the University of California as an honors, “d” level laboratory course. It is designed to be a capstone course for 11th and 12th grade college bound high school students. It can easily be adapted to be a dual level course by collaboration with a local college. At the website you will also find a link to an Honors Geology course that is also a dual-credit course, and a podcast explaining the benefits of a dual-credit course. You are encouraged to add your name and the name of your school if you are interested in adopting one of these courses or partnering with a high school teacher who would like to adopt one of the two honors courses. For more information, contact Wendy Van Norden ."

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Acute Need for Geoscientists (From GSA)

From the Geological Society of America:

Acute Demand for U.S. Geoscientists Prompts Call for Higher Ed Action

Boulder, CO, USA – A recent American Geosciences Institute workforce evaluation estimates that by 2021, some 150,000 to 220,000 geoscience jobs will need to be filled. The AGI report notes that at current graduation rates, most of these jobs will not be able to be filled by U.S. citizens.

Citing great concern about the acute need for well-trained, well-educated geoscience graduates to fill the geoscience workforce, Geological Society of America President John Geissman is calling for colleges and universities to recognize the value of strong, adequately supported geoscience departments. High-quality geoscience education, Geissman notes, is essential to understanding and adequately addressing the “very pressing needs of our society,” including sustainability and human-caused climate change, as well as keeping the growing number of geoscience jobs filled by U.S. citizens.

Included in his call for action, Geissman refers to two very recently approved GSA Position Statements that focus on the importance of teaching earth science and expanding and improving geoscience education in institutions of higher learning.

Both position statements are online at www.geosociety.org/positions/. All GSA position statements include suggestions for how to implement and support the call to action.

The Importance of Teaching Earth Science recognizes that basic knowledge of earth science is essential to meeting the environmental challenges and natural resource limitations of the twenty-first century and notes that earth-science education should begin at the K–12 level and include advanced classes led by well-qualified science teachers.

Expanding and Improving Geoscience in Higher Education calls specifically for robust, well-supported geoscience departments not only to ensure an increase in the number of geoscience students available to the workforce but also to provide the training necessary “to address crucial societal issues that have the potential to impact global economic security and the well-being of human populations” across the globe.

John Geissman is a professor at The University of Texas at Dallas, emeritus professor at the University of New Mexico, and Geological Society of America president through 30 June 2012.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Spring Meeting of the Far Western Section-NAGT in the Mojave Desert at Zzyzx, CA on March 2-4: Updated Information

The spring meeting of the Far Western Section of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers will take place on March 2-4, 2012 at the Desert Studies Center in Zzyzx, California. We appreciate the work that El Camino College is doing to organize the meeting. Field trips will explore the mining history, geologic history, and volcanism of the Mojave Desert, the Quaternary landscape and distribution of biota, and the lava tubes of Pisgah Crater. More information and registration forms can be found on the Far Western Section website at http://nagt-fws.org/conferences.html.

Updated information on the field trips and field trip leaders can be found below the fold:

Monday, February 6, 2012

A Note from Cal Paleo (April 14th)

A note from Cal Paleo:
A brief update concerning registration and abstract submission for Cal Paleo 2012:

The Cal Paleo 2012 website (http://calpaleo.ucr.edu) is now up! We will be adding more information concerning the conference program, parking, lodging, etc. in the next few weeks.

Please register at http://calpaleo.ucr.edu/registration.html. The registration deadline is March 31st, 2012.

In addition to graduate and undergraduate students, post-doctoral researchers, faculty and non-university affiliated researchers are invited to submit abstracts for poster presentations; graduate students will be given preference for oral presentations. Using the downloadable abstract template at http://calpaleo.ucr.edu/abstract.html, please submit abstracts as attachments by email to calpaleo1@gmail.com. Please be sure to include your last name in the subject line. Please also note (in the email body): 1) whether you are a faculty member, post-doc, graduate student, undergraduate student or other and 2) whether you would prefer an oral or poster presentation. Abstracts are due by March 1st, 2012.

Once again, please pass on this information to your paleontological colleagues and students! Also feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns at calpaleo1@gmail.com.

 Hope to see you at UC Riverside on Saturday, April 14th!


Paleobiology Program
Department of Earth Sciences
University of California, Riverside
900 University AveRiverside, CA 92521