What motivates you to teach in the EES major at UCF?
My motivation was and is the high motivation of the participating students. They are very interested in the subject Earth Sciences and related topics with a lot of real good questions and discussions.
Please describe briefly the subject you teach within EES.
The course Earth Sciences deals with the development of our planet Earth through time, starting at about 4.5 Ga ago and resulting in the todays globe. The participants get to know several geoscientific methods. This includes geophysics with the Earth’s magnetic field, seismic waves to explore the deeper crust, mantle and core, radioactive decay to determine the ages of rocks, but also geochemistry which determines the composition of minerals and how those, in turn, determine the different rock compositions, rock colors, and melting points. Of course we will learn about plate tectonic theory which describes a very dynamic Earth with moving plates that are responsible for the continuous development of oceanic crust and for mountain chaines. As result of this dynamic earth different rock types like metamorphic rocks, magmatic rocks, and sedimentary rocks are related to distinct environments on these moving plates.
What about your course and your field of expertise do you consider particularly relevant to the vast field of EES?
The course wants to teach a general understanding of principles in geotectonics and its dynamics, nothing occurs by chance, nature develops systematically. To decifer these Earth Science systems enables us to apply this general knowledge to economical geology by exploring certain ressources like hydrocarbons, to environmental geology to protect nature, e.g. groundwater, to applied geology for safer living circumstances in hazardous areas.
Do you have anything else to share about your course in the context of EES?
This course should teach a basic knowledge in the Geosciences to better understand and explain natural hazards and to learn how to predict or even avoid them.