Geo Buff Talks
How Mountains Shaped US Society
Professor Craig Jones
Historians view human interaction with the land more as the human choices being made rather than reflecting on how the geology limits those choices. An excellent example is how the multiple sources of gold in the Sierra Nevada changed western settlement, mineral laws, land laws, and water laws, changes with such far-reaching impacts as water disputes with Kansas and Wyoming as well as ski resorts like Aspen and Breckenridge.
Using GPS Data to Study the Water Cycle
Professor Eric Small
For more than 20 years, GPS has been used to study plate tectonics. Recently, it has been discovered that GPS data can be repurposed to monitor hydrologic variables, including snow depth and soil moisture. We describe novel applications of GPS data to solve hydrologic problems, on both point and watershed scales.
Illuminating the ghosts of biospheres past
Associate Professor Boswell Wing
The solid Earth as we know it is ancient, likely some 4.3 billion years old. However, a recognizable biosphere, in the form of widespread macroscopic lifeforms visible to the naked eye, is much younger, around 0.6 billion years old. How then do we examine the nature and functioning of Earth's biosphere over the intervening ~80-90% of earth history? In this talk, I'll introduce a strategy of combining stable isotope geochemistry with the principle of biological congruence to illuminate ghosts of past biospheres, and touch on tactical combinations of genetic engineering, experimental evolution, and systems biology that allow us to approach such questions as the nature of the primary producers at the base of the mid-Proterozoic food web, the role of cyanobacteria in the ~2.3 billion year old great oxidation event, and, perhaps, the transition to a protobiology soon after the origin of life itself.
Undergraduate Geoscience Education: Past, Present, & Future
Assistant Professor Leilani Arthurs
Have you ever considered the parallels between human medicine practice and geoscience education practice? Just as a medical doctor's practice is informed and enhanced by research on practicing medicine, research on teaching and learning geoscience can inform and enhance the instructional practice of geoscience instructors. This presentation broadly explores the relationship between research and practice in undergraduate geoscience education.
Friday, October 26, 2018 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Benson Earth Sciences, 380
2200 Colorado Avenue, Boulder, CO 80309