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Geology and Geophysics

Sudents in front of building with snowbuilding with lights at night flowers in forground

With 27 faculty members, our undergraduate and graduate course offerings and research interests span a broad array of earth and planetary sciences.

Situated within the Rocky Mountains, our Department provides students with diverse opportunities for geological studies. For example, the widespread and structurally complex Precambrian rocks provide an ideal setting for petrologic and structural students. Extensive Rocky Mountain basins are the focus of many sedimentological studies. In addition, we can offer many exciting research opportunities in landscape development, water management, volcanic history (Yellowstone), and climate. G&G Faculty members have conducted research in Costa Rica, Antarctica, Norway, South America, Alaska, Canada and on many of the worlds mid ocean ridges.

Our Department is also active in applied science. In tandem with the School of Energy Resources, we provide training and research in hydrocarbon exploration, carbon sequestration, water resources, and watershed management. We also have a strong program in computational geophysics, with faculty that perform large-scale parallel computations to constrain seismic-wave propagation and hydrologic flow.

Whether you come from a background in geology, physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics or computation, we think you will be able to find a group in our Department that will satisfy your professional goals, or at least sate your curiosity about how our planet functions and changes over time. 


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Department News


Honours Convocation

Geology senior and McNair Scholar, McKenzee Peterson hopes people take at least one thing away from her speech at this year’s Keith and Thyra Thomson Honors Convocation. “Fall in love with rocks,” she says. “Many people think geology is only the study of rocks, but it’s actually a study of the earth, and a lot of it is very applicable to what we use every single day. Without geology, you wouldn’t have a lot of things you have now.” Mckenzee was a student speaker at the Fall Honours Convocation.


brandon cgs discussion

Brandon McElroy- Center for Global Studies Discussion

Associate Professor Brandon McElroy will discuss his summer 2018 research in the Selenga River Delta at a GGS round table discussion Friday November 16, 12-1pm. The Selega Rover delta is geomorphologically unique and an internationally recognized wetland. Brendon will adress Quaternary changes to the delta and the complex interaction of tectonics and sediment transport.

Tyler BrownUW Mortar Board Honors ‘Top Prof’ Tyler Brown

Members of the University of Wyoming’s senior honor society recently honored their “Top Profs” at the 38th annual Top Prof Night.

Members of the Cap and Gown Chapter of Mortar Board selected professors who have positively influenced their lives at UW. These professors go beyond normal classroom expectations to help their students succeed.

Tyler, our Materials Characterization Lab. assistant manager, was nominated by Samuel Own from Columbus Ohio

Read more about Tyler's award

Minh NguyenUW Graduate student Minh Nguyen recently received the UW Alumni Association (UWAA) Graduate Scholarshi

University of Wyoming PhD Student Minh Nguyen recently received the UW Alumni Association (UWAA) Graduate Scholarship which includes a lifetime membership to UWAA and funding support to help advance his research in CO2 geological sequestration, subsurface modeling and environmental risk assessment. This award is given to one graduate student at UW who has demonstrated a breadth of research, employment, extracurricular and community service activities to the UW community.  Minh is advised by Professor Ye Zhang in the Department and Philip Stauffer, a Senior Staff Scientist at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL).

Link to list of UWAA Scholarship recipients.

Video Highlights

Department Highlights

barbara john

Faculty Highlight

Congratulations to Professor Barbara John who was recently awarded a 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award for achieving outstanding recognition in her field of endeavor from the University of California Santa Barbara

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Student Highlight

Graduate students Chris Doorn & Tanner Waggoner were recently awarded Geological Society of America student grants to support their research into the origin of oceanic crust

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