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Program Schedule

Technical Sessions

The deadline to submit abstracts has passed. Contact Technical Program Chair Eric Oches with any questions about the technical program. If you have questions about your abstract, please contact Nancy Wright, +1-303-357-1061, .


1. The State of Florida's Geology.
Tom Scott, Florida Geological Survey.
This session is designed to bring together geologists investigating all aspects of Florida's geology. The interdisciplinary approach will allow investigators to discuss their research with a wide spectrum of geologists. We welcome papers on any aspect of Florida's geology.
2. MARGINS Science at the End of the Decade.
Jeff Ryan, University of South Florida.
The MARGINS Program, a decadal, community-driven research initiative, funded jointly by the Ocean Sciences and Earth Sciences Divisions of NSF-Geosciences, has supported multi-disciplinary investigations of processes at active continental margins for the past ten years. This session will highlight accomplishments spawned by the four MARGINS research Initiatives (The Subduction Factory; the Seismogenic Zone Experiment; Rupturing Continental Lithosphere; Source to Sink), and promote community discussion as to the future directions of MARGINS research, and the NSF-MARGINS funding program.

Topical Sessions

1. Geologic Maps, Digital Geologic Maps, Geophysical Maps and Derivatives from Geologic Maps (Posters).
Michael W. Higgins and Ralph F. Crawford, The Geologic Mapping Institute.
Geologic maps are the most fundamental tool in geology. Almost all other geoscience research is ultimately based on the geologic map. A new tool for presentation, printing, and publication of geologic maps is geographic information systems (GIS), which locates topographic base maps in real space. All categories of digital and paper-based geologic maps are sought for this session.
2. Evaluating Educational Outcomes in Geoscience Courses and Curricula.
Laura Wetzel, Eckerd College; Dorien McGee, University of South Florida.
Although federal, state, and institutional pressures increase the need to document the educational benefits of college courses and curricula, effective tools, instruments, and methodologies are not widely available, and necessarily vary by discipline. This session seeks to highlight promising practices for assessment and evaluation in the geosciences, including effective measures of student learning; techniques for addressing the effects of varied learning styles; the educational impacts of varying course delivery methods (i.e., live vs. online vs. blended); and the means for evaluating geoscience curricula and curricular changes.
3. Undergraduate Research (Posters).
Cosponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research-Geosciences Division.
Laura Guertin, Penn State University-Brandywine.
For this session, which seeks to highlight the research contributions of undergraduates in the geosciences, presenters must be undergraduate students. Submissions to this session will be co-listed within appropriate topical or disciplinary sessions, to highlight undergraduate student contributions to the varied geoscience subdisciplines. Student research results from National Science Foundation-Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) and like programs are welcome.
4. Cave and Karst Studies in Florida (Posters).
Lee Florea, Western Kentucky University; Jason Polk, University of South Florida.
Florida has experienced a major upswing in cave-related science this past decade, partly the result of major population growth. Talks in this session will span a range of topics pertaining to the study of Florida caves, including, but not limited to, geomorphology, hydrogeology, paleoclimatology, geochemistry, and management.
5. Climate Events Recorded in Cave Speleothems.
Bogdan Onac, University of South Florida; Philip van Beynen, University of South Florida.
Karst caves are unique repositories for paleoclimatic information. The dating methods available for speleothems (e.g., stalagmites and flowstones) combined with their highly resolvable stratigraphy and calcite crystallography make them a valuable complement to other climate proxy data. Because karst is regionally widespread, climatic data extracted from it can be used to test space- and time-dependent climate models. This session welcomes papers that address the questions of how climate events are recorded in speleothems, and/or how speleothems are used to support and/or document hurricane activity, El Niño events, and paleontological or cultural studies.
6. Morphodynamics of Coastal Depositional Systems.
Ping Wang, University of South Florida.
This session seeks to highlight studies on the processes controlling the morphological and sedimentological evolution of coastal systems. Specific topics include, but are not limited to, coastal responses to sea-level rise, reduced sediment supply, extreme storm events, and substantive human impacts.
7. Stresses and Strains within Passive Continental Margin Sedimentary Basins, Such As the Gulf Coast Sedimentary Wedge (Posters).
Allan Lowrie, Picayune, Mississippi, USA.
This session seeks to highlight studies of stresses within sedimentary wedges, with time ranges from long to short to instantaneous and spatial extents from local to regional. How do these stresses and strains interact, and how do they impact the operation of other geologic processes along sedimented continental margins?
8. Volcanology: A Southeastern Perspective.
Charles Connor, University of South Florida-Tampa; Diana Roman, University of South Florida-Tampa; Paul Wetmore, University of South Florida-Tampa.
This session will highlight volcanological research from universities across the southeastern United States. These efforts encompass physical, geochemical, and geophysical models of volcanoes and volcanic systems, volcano monitoring, volcano structure and tectonic setting, geologic mapping, and numerical modeling of volcanic processes. We especially encourage submissions describing research efforts in Central and South America and the Caribbean.
9. Quantifying Coastal Vulnerability to Geohazards: Methods, Results, and Recommendations.
Randall Parkinson, RWParkinson Consulting.
Urbanization of the U.S. coastal zone has rarely been preceded by site-specific assessments of risk associated with an area's coastal geohazards (i.e., shoreline change, island overwash and breaching, sea-level rise). This omission has been largely responsible for subsequent loss of property and life. Today, more than half of the U.S. population resides in a coastal county, and the influx of an additional 12 million people is predicted by 2015. The vulnerability of these densely populated coastal areas to one or more geohazards remains high and is exacerbated by global climate change. This thematic session seeks papers that describe (a) new methods of risk assessment, (b) site-specific survey results, and/or (c) effective means by which recommendations are integrated into comprehensive plans, resource management, and regulatory oversight.
10. Energy Geoscience Literacy: What should Teachers, Students, and the Public Know?
Cosponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers.
William Witherspoon, Fernbank Science Center.
Media interest in energy independence and related topics seems higher now than at any time since the 1970s, yet public ignorance regarding the relevant science is great. This leads to a lack of understanding of the uncertainties of finding oil and gas, sequestering coal power plant emissions, and safely disposing of nuclear and other wastes underground. Energy geoscience literacy can be defined as the geoscience knowledge needed to make informed decisions about energy. It surely overlaps with climate science literacy, which climate scientists have made recent progress in defining. This session is a forum both to identify the concepts that would comprise energy geoscience literacy and to share practical experiences in teaching these concepts to teachers and K-16 students.
11. Paleobiology of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains.
Cosponsored by the Paleontological Society.
Gregory Herbert, University of South Florida; Shubhabrata Paul, University of South Florida.
This session will highlight the diverse paleobiological and paleoecological records of the southeastern U.S. coastal plain sediments, emphasizing the Neogene and Quaternary intervals. Presentations of new data and interpretations regarding evolutionary dynamics, ecological processes, and environmental changes represented in the paleontological records of the region are encouraged.
12. Correlation on a Passive Margin: Promises, Pitfalls, and Realities (Posters).
Peter Harries, University of South Florida; Rick Oches, Bentley College.
Stratigraphic correlation between discontinuous outcrops would seem to be a relatively straightforward exercise in flat-lying sediments in a passive margin coastal plain setting. However, decades of controversy have surrounded efforts to correlate, date, and interpret the Cenozoic stratigraphy of the southeastern U.S. coastal plain region. This session seeks presentations that highlight stratigraphic and geochronologic efforts to better understand the paleoenvironmental records of the region.
13. Best Instructional Practices in College-Level Earth, Planetary, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science Courses: Large Class and Small Class Perspectives.
Mary Beck, Valencia Community College; Marianne O'Neal Caldwell, Hillsborough Community College.
This session seeks to highlight and contrast effective course materials, methods, and instructional approaches used in teaching introductory geoscience courses at community colleges, small four-year institutions, and larger universities. We seek to help identify common elements of effective geoscience classroom practices and discover those approaches that may translate from smaller to larger-enrollment classes, and vice-versa.
14. Atoms to Orogens: Recent Developments in Tectonics and Provenance Studies Utilizing Isotopic Systems and Geochronology.
John S. Allen, University of Kentucky; Paul A. Mueller, University of Florida.
This session focuses on recent developments in the application of whole-rock isotopic systematics and detrital mineral geochemistry and geochronology pertinent to provenance studies, Proterozoic-Paleozoic tectonics, and plate reconstructions important for improving our understanding of the role of Laurentia and other cratons in the Rodinian, Gondwanan, and Pangean supercontinent cycles.
15.Event Sedimentation along the Gulf of Mexico.
Eastern Section, Society for Sedimentary Research (ESEPM).
Douglas W. Haywick, University of South Alabama.
The Gulf Coast region is frequently impacted by tropical storms, floods and other short duration events which can result in temporary, but major shifts in sedimentation and depositional processes. From the coastline to the coastal plain, talks in this session will examine natural and human-induced sedimentation events in the many depositional environments that characterize the Gulf Coast region of the United States.
16.My Best Student Field Experience… Ever.
Douglas W. Haywick, University of South Alabama; David T. Allison, University of South Alabama.
Be it a university class trip, or a field school outing, or a GSA-sponsored field course, most practicing geologists can look back in their education and identify one excursion that they can identify as their “best field excursion…ever”. Talks in this session will give examples of what makes field geology interesting, relevant, stimulating and above all, fun. Presentations of a humorous nature and involving notable geologists are particularly welcome.


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