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Welcome from the Chair

Welcome to this information source for the Boise State Department of Geosciences. I encourage you explore these pages to learn about our discipline and our community of scholars. Our department is a community of over 20 faculty and research staff who engage with over 150 undergraduate majors and 50 graduate students.

While Geoscience is the broad discipline encompassing all of Earth’s processes and properties, we organize ourselves into three themes: Geology, Geophysics, and Surface Dynamics. Our Geology group studies the physical and chemical properties of rocks that make up the solid earth and the processes responsible for their origin and evolution. Our Geophysics group integrates geology, mathematics, and physics to understand the Earth’s properties. Our Surface Dynamics group investigates the integrated hydrological, geomorphological, and ecological processes responsible for shaping Earth’s surface and maintaining Earth’s ecosystems. Cutting across and integrating all themes is the human element.

Our academic programs reflect the expertise of our faculty with degrees in general geoscience, geology, geophysics, and hydrologic science; including  two doctoral programs, four masters programs, and three undergraduate degree programs.  We strive to integrate our global laboratory into our curriculum and to engage our students in a rich and productive educational experience.

Our research seeks not only to advance understanding of the surface, near surface, and deep Earth environments, but also to produce science that addresses societally relevant problems such as climate change, human-environment interactions, alternative energy sources, and basic materials. Our students learn to approach research problems with creativity and critical thinking.

We especially welcome prospective students who may be interested in joining our community, and we urge you to contact directly those faculty whose work is of most interest to you, as well as visit pages where you’ll find more information about Undergraduate Degrees and Graduate Degrees.

Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have about the Department of Geosciences.

Jim McNamara, Professor and Chair
Phone: (208) 426-1354

The department of Geoscience supports Geology, Surface Dynamics and Geophysics. Provided are Computational Resources, Analytical Facilities, Experimental Sites, and Measurement Systems.