Technical Sessions and Speaker Information

Speaker Ready Room

              The Speaker Ready Room is Walnut G, across from the exhibit area. This room is open Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m., Thursday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Friday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. All computers will have Microsoft PowerPoint for viewing presentations, and limited projectors may be available for larger format reviewing.

Oral Presentations

              Oral presentations in all technical sessions are 15 minutes long with 5 minutes for questions and discussion. Conveners and chairs for all oral sessions are required to keep their sessions on schedule. Speakers are provided with a laser pointer and timer.

              All oral sessions use a single digital projector and Microsoft PowerPoint software running on Gateway laptop computers. Please embed all links in your PowerPoint Presentation. Presenters should bring their presentation PowerPoint file on a CD-ROM or USB memory device to be loaded onto the computer in your session room at least one hour prior to the start of your session. If your presentation is prepared using a MAC system, the presenter must confirm formatting compatibility for presentation using a Windows system. Several computers are available in the speaker ready room to review your presentation or to copy to Windows format.

              An email account has been set up for authors to preload PowerPoint presentations onto the server. Authors are strongly encouraged to send their presentation as an attachment with the extension .ppt (or .pptx if using the new MS Office suite products) to the following address e-mail address: Put the words "NCGSA08," the author's name, and the first few words of the title in the subject heading of the email. We will confirm that we have received the file, and preload the presentation onto the server. Any author wishing to take advantage of this process must have done so before Friday April 18, 2008. Authors must also bring a CD ROM or USB storage device with the file on it as a backup. Speakers making presentations on Thursday are particularly encouraged to take advantage of this system.

Poster Presentations

              Each poster board is 4' × 8' (48" × 96") landscape with fabric backing. Ideally, prepared posters will be sized to 44" × 90" for optimum fit. Presenters are encouraged to bring their own mounting material, but it should also be available from the poster assistant prior to the session. Posters are presented for four hours each session, and authors must be present at their poster for at least two hours.

Technical Sessions

Submissions for the technical program were invited from professionals and students in either oral or poster format. An individual may present only one volunteered paper; symposium invitees may present an additional volunteered paper.

The abstracts submission period has now closed. Contact Nancy Wright, +1-303-357-1061, , if you have any questions about your abstract.


1. Living in Ruhe's Shadow with Loess, Paleosols, and Tills: A Session in Honor of Bob Hall's Contributions to Quaternary Science.
John P. Szabo, University of Akron; Timothy G. Fisher, University of Toledo.
Bob Hall spent considerable time working on the chronology of glacial deposits in the Wind River Range using new techniques, such as hornblende etching. Additionally, he tackled the old problem of possible middle Wisconsinan glaciations in southwestern Ohio and southeastern Indiana and was able to decipher the numerous paleosols and nonglacial deposits in the area. Bob's thoroughness and attention to detail in the field and laboratory is worthy of recognition.
2. Applications of Optical Dating in the Midcontinent.
Ronald J. Goble, University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Kenneth Lepper, North Dakota State University.
Oral presentations will cover applications of optical dating in Quaternary geology, geomorphology, archaeology, and luminescence geochronology. Topics including general optical dating methodology and OSL dosimetry as well as comparative geochronologic studies using other techniques are also welcome.
3. New Approaches and Initiatives in Paleozoic High-Resolution Stratigraphy: A Session Commemorating 15 Years of Views from the Craton and Beyond.
Patrick McLaughlin, Wisconsin Geological and Natural History Survey; Brad Cramer, The Ohio State University; Mark Kleffner, The Ohio State University-Lima.
This session will showcase the development of new high-resolution techniques and case studies in Paleozoic stratigraphy. Its goal is to commemorate 15 years of research since the Great Lakes Section of SEPM (the Society for Sedimentary Geology) hosted two very successful sessions on sequence stratigraphy and other high-resolution approaches at the 1992 GSA North-Central Section Meeting, which resulted in GSA Special Paper 306 (Witzke et al., 1996). Since then, major advances in sequence and event stratigraphy, stable isotope chemostratigraphy, and biostratigraphy have resulted in chronostratigraphic resolution at the sub-million-year scale in several parts of the Paleozoic and in many cases have expanded our views from the craton to views of the entire globe.
4. Water Availability and Use in the Great Lakes Basin.
E. Randall Bayless, U.S. Geological Survey.
The Great Lakes water resource is invaluable to the nation's economy and ecosystem diversity. Regionalized multidisciplinary information sharing is needed to grapple with complex issues of water availability and use. This session provides an opportunity for scientists to share the results of studies and information needed to characterize groundwater and surface-water availability and use in the Great Lakes Basin.
5. Cultural Geology: Historic Cement and Mortar, Building Stones, Terrain, and More.
Joe Hannibal, Cleveland Museum of Natural History; Frank R. Ettensohn, University of Kentucky.
This symposium will include talks dealing with the interaction of geology and culture. Possible topics are historic cement, mortar, and concrete; stone used for buildings, monuments, and gravestones; the terroir of fermented and distilled drinks; geology and warfare; and the relationship of the geological landscape to cities.
6. Environmental Controls and Human Impacts on Stream Biota of Ohio's Western Allegheny Plateau.
Michael L. Hughes, Ohio University.
Symposium papers will present the results of ongoing studies of the environmental controls and human impacts on stream biota on Ohio's Western Allegheny Plateau and will explore the occurrence and variability of environmental factors driving biological variability in regional stream ecosystems. The development of a predictive stream classification system and implications for water-quality biocriteria will also be discussed.

Theme Sessions

1. Volatiles in Magmas: From Source to Surface.
Jim Walker, Northern Illinois University; Jim Brophy, Indiana University.
Volatiles exert a fundamental influence on terrestrial magmas: their origins, their physical properties, their compositional evolution, and their degassing and eruptive behaviors. We encourage any and all researchers conducting experimental, theoretical, and field investigations concerning volatiles and magmas to participate.
2. A Surface Water Sojourn.
David Grow.
This session will explore recent surface water research. Surface waters will include streams, lakes, and wetlands, and their interactions with each other. The session will address scientific, sociocultural, and economic issues.
3. Recycled and Industrial Byproduct Materials as Aggregate in Construction.
Nancy Whiting, Minnesota Department of Transportation.
Demand for construction aggregates has been rising along with a rising concern for sustainability, the environment, and land use. These seemingly opposing forces encourage the use of recycled products like crushed concrete, reclaimed asphalt, glass and shingles, and industrial byproducts, such as foundry sand, fly ash, and slag, as aggregate. This session invites research papers focusing on field applications and/or lab research on the engineering properties and testing of recycled and/or byproduct materials or beneficial utilization of these materials as aggregates in construction that offer environmentally friendly, cost-effective alternatives to 100% natural aggregates.
4. We have National Parks Too! Earth and Environmental Science Research and Teaching in National Lands of the Midcontinent and the Eastern United States.
Paul K. Doss, University of Southern Indiana.
Public lands such as national parks, national forests, and state and municipal parks are valuable resources for scientists and science educators. Public lands often represent the only remnants of regional natural landscapes and can serve as unique laboratories for research and outdoor teaching. Moreover, science education and research conducted on public lands have numerous potential benefits for scientists, teachers, students, land managers, and the public. This session encourages presentations that highlight current earth and environmental science research and innovative pedagogy that is in some tangible way centered on public lands of the eastern and Midwestern United States.
5. The Legacy of New Harmony and Other Topics in the History of Science and Technology in North America.
Cosponsored by the GSA History of Geology Division.
Julie R. Newell, Southern Polytechnic State University; Joe Hannibal, Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
Robert Owen's utopian experiment at New Harmony, Indiana, brought rich resources for science, especially geology, to the American Midwest during the third decade of the nineteenth century. The geological influence of the experiment at New Harmony lasted long after the utopian community had collapsed. This session will include talks related to New Harmony and other early American scientific communities and individuals.
6. Innovative Applications of Isotope Geochemistry in Environmental Geology.
Eugene Perry, Jr., Northern Illinois University; Liliana Lefticariu, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.
Presenters in this session will discuss ways in which isotope geochemistry has been used to solve environmental and geological problems.
7. Neotectonics of the Central United States.
Roy Van Arsdale, University of Memphis; Edward Woolery, University of Kentucky.
This session will address Quaternary deformation in the central United States. Of particular interest are structures that pose a seismic threat to the region.
8. Inquiry-Based, Hands-On, Class and Lab Demonstrations.
Cosponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers-Central Section. Mark Francek, Central Michigan University.
Demonstrations depicting earth-science phenomena can clarify abstract concepts and reinforce the process of scientific inquiry. Eye-opening and exciting inquiry-based demonstrations can be a memorable science experience for students. This session features engaging, easy to set up, inexpensive, and safe demonstrations. Guidelines are suggested for having students recognize independent, dependent, and confounding variables associated with the demonstrations.
9. Partnerships for Geology Education with Quarries, Museums, and Geology Parks.
Alan Goldstein, Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
Geoscience education has many opportunities for partnerships. This session will elaborate on existing opportunities between parks, museums, K-16 educators, and mine owners.
10. Geophysical Applications in Midwestern Geoarchaeology.
Harvey Henson, Jr., Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.
Papers are invited that describe geophysical applications and methods used to investigate prehistoric and historic archaeological problems and sites in the Midwestern United States.
11. Program Development and Assessment—Step 1: Identifying Learning Objectives. Cosponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers-Central Section.
Annabelle Foos, University of Akron.
A number of geoscience departments are redesigning their curriculum in an effort to attract more majors. At the same time, their university administration is requiring that they develop program assessment plans. Identifying and clearly defining a program's learning objectives is essential to the successful completion of both these tasks.
12. Coal for the 21st Century: New Science for New Applications.
Maria Mastalerz, Indiana Geological Survey; John A. Rupp, Indiana Geological Survey.
We propose this session to be variable in scope and include various aspects of coal geology, coal science, and their applications. We would like to assemble papers on coal resources and reserves, coal quality, and coal geochemistry as they relate to continuing coal utilization. Other topics to be included are coalbed methane potential and CO2 storage in coal beds.
13. Carbon Dioxide Sequestration.
Matthew Belobraydic, University of North Dakota.
Geologic storage of carbon dioxide is a method to reduce anthropogenic release to the atmosphere and potentially slow the global-warming trend observed world wide. This session is opened to provide a review of the current research and development of geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide.
14. Biocomplexity in the Ohio River Watershed.
Ozeas S. Costa, Jr., The Ohio State University-Mansfield.
This session deals with the study of biocomplexity, a rapidly developing area of research that seeks to better understand the dynamic interactions among the biological, physical (geological), chemical (biological and geological), and human components of the earth system. Presenters will explore the interplay and feedback loops between ecological and societal issues in the Ohio River basin.
15. GIS Mapping Applications in Geology.
Kenneth Kuehn, Western Kentucky University; Joe Islas, Western Kentucky University.
Presenters will discuss geographic information system (GIS) mapping applied to geoscience problems.
16. Late Neogene Continental Ecosystems of North America.
James O. Farlow, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.
Presentations concerned with all aspects of Miocene and Pliocene freshwater and terrestrial plant (including pollen), invertebrate, or vertebrate paleocommunities and their abiotic context are invited. Presentation content may deal with paleoenvironmental reconstruction, paleoclimatic modeling, taphonomy, paleoecology, ichnology, isotopes, and functional morphology focusing on the late Tertiary of North America. In particular, presentations are sought that attempt broad paleoecological or paleobiogeographic syntheses employing multiple lines of evidence relevant to reconstructing particular habitats or biomes, or cross-community or cross-biome comparisons.
17. Petroleum Geology of Eastern North America.
Beverly Seyler, Illinois State Geological Survey.
The north-central region of North America has seen a recent increase in interest in petroleum exploration. This is due in part to the increase in prices for oil and natural gas. Much of the attention has centered on lower Paleozoic units such as the Ordovician Trenton-Galena and Blackriver units in the Michigan and Illinois basins, the New Albany Shale and other Devonian Black Shales in the Illinois basin, and Silurian strata in the Michigan and Illinois basins. It is the intent of this session to focus on some of the newer discoveries and other topics of interest in the mature basins of north-central North America.
18. Initiating a Dialogue on Dealing with Resistance to Teaching the Geologic Time Scale and Fossil Record.
Cosponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers-Central Section.
Sadredin C. Moosavi, Tulane University; Kurt A. Shoemaker, Shawnee State University; Helen Greer, University of Southern Indiana.
This session seeks to initiate a broad discussion of strategies for creating tolerant and open K-16 science classrooms in which critical scientific concepts such as the geologic time scale and the fossil record are presented accurately without causing divisiveness due to an individual's cultural or religious background. We especially encourage contributions from K-16 educators, scientists, scholars, school officials, and spiritual and community leaders interested in sharing techniques, triumphs, and challenges encountered in this area.
19. Conodont Biostratigraphy and Correlation of Paleozoic-Early Mesozoic Records of Environmental Change.
Cosponsored by the Pander Society.
Jed Day, Illinois State University.
The Pander Society invites authors to present results of research on Paleozoic and Mesozoic conodont sequences, systematic matters bearing on improvements to resolution of correlations, and advances in intercorrelation of neritic and pelagic conodont sequences, providing temporal control for study of marine records of regional and global environmental change.
20. Paleozoic-Mesozoic Regional and Global Environmental Change.
Cosponsored by the Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM)-Great Lakes Section.
Jed Day, Illinois State University.
This 2008 Great Lakes Section of SEPM-sponsored session invites authors to present results of research on records of regional and global environmental changes in surface marine and terrestrial systems stemming from recent investigations of Paleozoic and Mesozoic sedimentary rock successions utilizing lithic, biologic/paleontologic, geochemical, and paleomagnetic paleoenvironmental proxies.
21. Undergraduate Research (Posters).
Cosponsored by the Council for Undergraduate Research.
Bob Shuster, University of Nebraska-Omaha; Ed Hansen, Hope College; Jeanette Pope, Depauw University.
This session deals with undergraduate student research efforts across all geoscience disciplines.
22. Applied Geology: Environmental, Hydrogeological, and Geotechnical.
Cosponsored by the GSA Engineering Geology Division.
Terry R. West, Purdue University.
Papers are invited that focus on geological engineering knowledge applied to environmental geological, hydrogeological, and geotechnical problems.
23. Organisms and Sedimentation: Biotic Controls and Adaptations to Turbidity, Sedimentation, and Substrate in the Fossil Record.
Cosponsored by the Paleontological Society.
Benjamin F. Dattilo, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.
This session invites a broad range of papers about Paleozoic shell beds and reefs to zebra mussels in modern rivers and lakes that answer fundamental questions about how turbidity and sedimentation rates affect biological systems, how organisms cope with sedimentation and substrate variations, and how organisms control turbidity, substrate, sedimentation rates and styles.


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