Geology Department Overview

The geology major at Wheaton College was established over eighty years ago, and the tradition of excellence in geological education continues today.

Curriculum and Degree Program

Geology majors take courses that cover all the major subdisciplines in earth science. Core courses include Dynamic Earth and Environment, Earth History and Stratigraphy, Geochemistry, Mineralogy, Petrology and Petrography, Process Geomorphology , and Structural Geology. A summer field course is required and can be taken at the Wheaton College Science Station in the Black Hills of South Dakota. Elective courses include Hydrogeology, Soil Science, Geographic Information Systems, and Climate Change. Most courses feature day-long or overnight field trips to local and regional geological localities. Extended field trips are also offered for credit or as extracurricular activities between semesters.

The Earth and Environmental Science Department also offers general education courses for Wheaton College students from all majors to meet Christ at the Core thematic courses in Science Practice, Science Issues and Perspectives, and Advanced Integrative Seminars. Geology courses include Dynamic Earth and Environment (SP), Energy and Climate Change (SIP), Humanitarian Disasters and Recovery (SIP, AIS), and Water the Essential Resource (SIP, AIS).

Wheaton College Science Station

The college is blessed with a fifty acre science station in the South Dakota Black Hills where exciting field oriented courses are offered for biology, geology, and environmental science majors as well as general education students. The beautiful Black Hills and surrounding western mountain and plains settings give students numerous opportunities to study geological features on a regional scale. 

Other Student Opportunities

There are a number of other opportunities offered by the Earth and Environmental Science Department. While most courses include on or off campus, there are a growing number of research and for motivated students. Students have the opportunity for independent study projects or for participation in ongoing faculty research. Internships are available in both the government and the private sector and provide students with valuable hands-on training. Wheaton’s also offers students service oriented internships in third world countries.