One of the best teaching facilities of Bucknell's Geology Department is its geographic location. Bucknell is located along the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, in the folded strata of the Valley and Ridge Province of the Appalachian Mountains. Local opics for study seem endless, and current faculty and student research ranges from studies of the nature and structure of the sedimentary strata, effects of landslides in the Appalachians, Acid Mine Drainage in the nearby coal regions and studies of the geology and hydrogeology of local karst terrane. Our location along the West Branch of the Susquehanna River provides us with a riverine laboratory in which to study the processes of a major river, its tributaries and associated wetlands. Bucknell also lies at the southern terminus of the great ice sheets that covered North America several millions of years ago, providing us with the opportunity to study the deposits and features associated with this unique environment.
The Geology Department's primary teaching and research facilities are housed in the O'Leary Center, which was dedicated in November, 2002 (below right). This state-of -the-art facility includes a 50-seat lecture hall, Seminar Room, introductory and upper-level teaching labs and separate research labs for each faculty member. In addition, each spacious teaching lab and lecture room is equipped with data projection, multimedia equipment and is linked to the campus network. The Carnegie Building (below left) was the home for the Geology Department for 26 years and currently houses our sample preparation facilities and broadband seismometer.
Bucknell Geology Students are assigned keys and can work on assignments in the Geology Student computer Lab (see photo below), Student Research Room, or can "spread out" in the Seminar Room or our 2 upper-level teaching labs.
|Our lecture and laboratory rooms in the O'Leary Center were specifically designed to promote teacher-student interaction. Our "large" lecture hall (above right) which seats 50, is used for some of our introductory-level courses, and is a great size for invited speakers. Some smaller classes are held in our Seminar Room (above left) in an environment that promotes discussion and interaction between students and faculty.|
|Our Introductory Labs are spacious, with flexible seating. Each lab has a multimedia station with computer projection. In addition, we have several digital microscope cameras where a sample or thin section can be projected on the "big screen" for the entire class.|
|We also have two upper-level teaching labs with similar features as described above. These labs are adjacent to each other so that samples and equipment can easily be shared. Upper level class sizes are relatively small, ideal to provide high quality instruction.|
|Each faculty member has his or her own lab to conduct their professional research. Resources and equipment are commonly shared between faculty and students. Students are encouraged to make use of these spaces which allows for better collaboration between them and their research advisor.|
|The Student Computer Lab is a private facility for our students and faculty. Our students use this room extensively, working on everything from course assignments to designing talks and posters for presentation at professional meetings. This room is equipped with 2 flatbed scanners, a Nikon slide scanner, lazer printer, a 42" HP Designjet color plotter, and a wide range of scientific, illustration, GIS, and presentation software.|
A view of Bucknell's campus, looking southeast towards the Susquehanna River.
|Finally, a word about the campus community. There is a great deal of interaction between the faculty and students of different departments at Bucknell. Many of our students take courses in the other sciences and engineering to round out their education (approximately 1/4 of our students double-major), and we often have students from other majors in our geology classes. As a result, we are able to take advantage of other campus facilities by sharing equipment and resources with other departments. This interaction greatly extends the opportunites available to our students and fosters a positive professional atmosphere.|