Historical Geology Fall 2019

GEOL 210-001, 3 credits

MW 12:30-1:45 in Kinard 102


Instructor: Dr. Diana Boyer                         

Office: Sims 212B

e-mail: boyerd@winthrop.edu          

Office hours: Tuesday 9-11 and by appointment.

Text: Earth System History, 2009, Steven Stanley, Freeman, New York, 567p. 4th edition-required


Course Objective:  Through the course of this semester we will take a chronological tour of the geologic record-some highlights to the right. This is a comprehensive course that covers a broad range of topics from rock types to plate tectonics to paleontology to ancient climates. We will start with an introduction to some fundamental principles of geology and processes that shape the rock record. We will then travel through time starting in the Precambrian highlighting some of the major tectonic, biotic, and climatic events through the history of the Earth.


Attendance: Being in class for every class period is required. Attendance is also directly correlated with performance in this class. If you do need to miss class for any reason, please email me ahead of time with details of why you will miss class. I will do the same.


Code of Conduct: In this course, you will have the opportunity and, in some instances, be required to work with others. That said, all work must be your own.  I take intellectual integrity very seriously and always escalate violations.

As noted in the Student Conduct Code: “Responsibility for good conduct rests with students as adult individuals.” The policy on student academic misconduct is outlined in the “Student Conduct Code Academic Misconduct Policy” in the online Student Handbook.



6 in class quizzes-lowest score dropped         20%

In class/homework assignments                     15%

Writing Assignments                                      15%

3 exams (10% each)                                        30%

Final Exam                                                     20%






Tentative schedule of topics*



Aug 21

Introduction to time and rocks



Aug 26

Geologic time, plate tectonics

Chap 1

Why study hist. geology?

Aug 28

Rocks and minerals

Chap 2


Sep 2

Period paper assign, Fossils and life

Chap 3

Writing assign (#1)

Sep 4

Diversity of life

Chap 3


Sep 9


Chap 7


Sep 11

Sedimentary environments

Chap 5


Sep 16

Stratigraphy and time

Chap 6


Sep 18

Exam 1

Chap 1-7


Sep 23

Plate tectonics & mountain building

Chap 8-9


Sep 25

Plate tectonics & mountain building

Chap 8-9


Sep 30

In class paper presentations



Oct 2

Formation of Earth, Hadean

Chap 11

Period paper (#2)

Oct 7


Chap 12


Oct 9


Chap 13


Oct 14

Fall Break



Oct 16


Chap 14


Oct 21


Chap 15


Oct 23

Permian, Triassic

Chap 15-16

Writing assign (#3)

Oct 28

Exam 2

Chap 11-16


Oct 30


Chap 16


Nov 4


Chap 17


Nov 6


Chap 17


Nov 11


Chap 17


Nov 13


Chap 18


Nov 18


Chap 19


Nov 20


Chap 20


Nov 25

Exam 3

Chap 16-19


Nov 27




Dec 2

Holocene and review

Chap 20


Dec 3

Study Day



Dec 10

Final Exam Tues. 11:30

All material







*This schedule is subject to change