Geology students at Bates not only study the Earth, they see a lot of it firsthand — from the coast of Maine to sheltered, inland lakes, from the Appalachian Mountains to the Arctic, from New Mexico to Scotland. Classes take you to the field and back to the laboratory for the kind of experience that leads to thinking like a geologist.
Starting with first-year courses, coordinated field and laboratory work is emphasized. You might investigate minerals at a local quarry, or study bedrock exposures on the Maine coast and in the White Mountains. You might study surface water and groundwater in the nearby Androscoggin River and in local aquifers.
Located in the northern Appalachian mountains and an hour from the Maine coast, the College affords students excellent opportunities for study and research in the geological sciences. The curriculum utilizes this setting by stressing field-oriented and laboratory-supported inquiry into bedrock, surficial, and environmental geology.
This program leads students and faculty alike to a fuller understanding and appreciation of the geosciences. Earth Surface Environments and Environmental Change (103), Plate Tectonics and Tectonic Hazards (104), Field Geology in Maine (107), Global Change (109), and Lunar and Planetary Science (110) introduce students to areas of active research and current interest in geological and environmental sciences and are vehicles for acquiring a basic understanding of processes that have formed and continue to shape the Earth and other planets.
Short Term courses in geology offer students a unique experience. Geologic field methods, mapping techniques, and geochemical analyses are learned in a variety of spectacular settings. Past Short Term courses have taken students to Hawaii, Iceland, Scotland, the Canadian Arctic, the American Southwest and Northwest, and the lakes, mountains, and coast of Maine.