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GSW's Geology program is currently being phased out and is no longer accepting new majors.

The Department of Geology & Physics at Georgia Southwestern State University requires all graduating geology majors to complete a Senior Project. These projects allow students to pursue original research that will contribute to the general body of knowledge in the geosciences.

Besides pursuing research, students completing the Senior Project develop skills necessary for writing a formal report. Past projects have been presented at professional meetings and published in journals. Completion of the Senior Project involves selection of a project, acquisition of data, preparation of the final report, and oral presentation of the project results.

Summary of Senior Project Guidelines

  1. PROJECT SELECTION may begin early in your career at GSW. You should talk with several faculty in the Department of Geology & Physics regarding our research interests. You will select a research area in conjunction with one of us as your project advisor. Once you have selected a topic, you will prepare a Senior Project Proposal before the end of the first week of your senior year. The accepted proposal will include the following items:
    • Proposed title
    • Literature review
    • Description of topic to be investigated
    • Explanation of importance of selected topic
    • Description of specific research plan
    • Reference list
  2. DATA ACQUISITION is completed during the first semester of your senior year. Here, you carry out the specific research plan described in your proposal. Depending on your topic, your research may be field- or lab-based. Some projects may incorporate both field and lab components. Completion of this phase is necessary for a passing grade in GEOL4941.
  3. REPORT PREPARATION is completed during the second semester of your senior year. Expect to submit a detailed outline and several drafts (probably 2 or 3) before your report is polished and in acceptable form. The first complete draft of your report must be submitted by the end of midterm break. The final, polished manuscript must be complete by the last day of classes (before final exams). All Senior Project reports are bound and placed in our library (Roney 204). Completion of the final report is one requirement for a passing grade in GEOL 4942.
  4. RESULTS PRESENTATION allows faculty and students to learn about your research. This helps us broaden our knowledge, and it allows underclass geology majors to generate ideas and expectations regarding their own future Senior Projects. Your presentation may be made at a regional or national meeting (such as Georgia Academy of Science, Southeastern Geological Society of America). Alternatively, your presentation may be made at a GSW event (such as a Math/Science Colloquium, a special meeting of an upper-level geology class, or a specially-arranged presentation of departmental Senior Projects). Depending on the format, your presentation will range from 10 to 30 minutes and incorporate illustrations from your project via slides, overheads, or digital images. This presentation will be arranged by your project advisor, and its completion is one requirement to receive a passing grade in GEOL 4942. Geology majors should see their advisor for a printout of the SENIOR PROJECT GUIDELINES & CHECKLIST.

Past Senior Projects

  • Anthony, David, 1998, Use of X-Ray Diffraction to  Determine Spinel Percentages in Corundum-Spinel Standards (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Askew, Greg, 1997, Surface and Well Water  Characteristics in the Area Surrounding the Sumter  County Landfill (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Astle, David, 1997, Using GIS to Create an Interactive Database of the Structural Geology of Oak Mountain  State Park, Alabama (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Aultman, Priscilla, 1999, Study of Cold Surface Currents and Plumes in the Gulf of Mexico (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Basile, Kaley, 2014, Subsidence and Depositional Patterns in the Taconic Back-Arc Basin During the Ordovician, Alabama to New York (advisor:  B. Carter).
  • Beck, Patricia, 1997, The Origin of Feldspar Alignment in the Corbin Gneiss of the Bartow Quarry, Georgia  (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Birge, Elizabeth, 2019, Water Quality of the Monitoring Wells on the GSW Campus in Americus, GA (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Branch, William, 1984, The Paleoautecology of Ocala  Limestone Echinoids in Lee County, Georgia  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Burrows, Marty, 1995, Composition gradients in  tonalites of the Wawa Subprovince, Superior Province,  Canada (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Carter, Doug, 1998, Foram Diversity and Distributional Patterns in the Gulf Coast of Mexico  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Coleman, Gordon, 1997, Water Quality around  Taylor County Landfill, Charing, Georgia  (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Dempsey, Trevor, 2018, A Geophysical Study of Bauxite and Kaolin Deposits near Eufaula, Alabama (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Dickey, Donovan, 2015, Water Quality of the Altamaha River Near Jessup, Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Edge, Nolan, 2016, A Geophysical Study of a Gopher Tortoise Burrow at Chehaw State Park in Albany, Georgia (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Finley, J. Ben, 1998, Biodegradation of Marble  Headstones at Andersonville National Cemetery,  Georgia (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Fox, Peter E., 2008, precambrian Basement Rocks in  Georgia's Pine Mountain Window  (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Godfrey, Dale, 2002, Soil and Water Quality of the Buck Creek Watershed, Marion, Schley and Macon Counties, Georgia (advisors: M. Khalequzzaman and S. Peavy).
  • Hammack, Connie, 1999, Temporal and Spatial  Variability in Water Quality Around Taylor County  (Allied) Landfill, Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Hammack, Robert, 1987, Stratigraphic Distribution of  Jacksonian Echinoids in Georgia (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Hart, Jeremy, 2008, Depositional Environments of the Silurian McKenzie Formation of western Virginia (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Harty, Lance, 1995, Life Habits and Extinctions in the Bivalvia (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Henderson, Kelly, 2000, Weathering Processes of  Feldspar in the Granite of Shady Dale Quarry #2,  Jasper County, Georgia (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Henson, Scott, 1992, Grain Shape, Size, Sorting and  Heavy Mineral Content of the Altamaha River System  (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Herman, Steve, 1993, Paleoecology of Two  Clypeasteriod Echinoids from Southwestern  France (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Hutton, Johnny, 1996, Short-term impact of Hurricane  Opal on Deposition of Sediments along Cape San Blas  (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Jarrett, Matt, 2005, Diversity-Based Classification of  Taxa from Sepkoski's Modern Evolutionary Fauna  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Johnson, Courtney, 2013, Water Quality of Willet Creek and GSW  on Campus Locations in Americus, GA (advisors:  S. Peavy and T. Weiland).
  • Johnson, Katryn, 1995, Effects of the 1994 Flood on  Sediment Loads and Toxic Metal Influx in Apalachicola Bay, FLorida (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Johnson, Matt, 1999, Planetary x-ray diffractometry design using a low-level radiation source  (advisors: W. Anderson & P. Manker).
  • Jordan, Mike, 1995, Rhynchlampas gouldii (Bouve) in  the Oligocene of the Gulf Coast, and a comparison  with Pygorhynchus alabamensis Twitchell  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Jordan, Natalie, 1999, The Geographic Distribution of Eocene and Oligocene Echinoids, Southern Pakistan  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Jubran, Ryan, 2012, An Electrical Resistivity Survey of a Karst Area in Albany, Georgia (advisor:  S. Peavy).
  • Keene, Denise, 1998, Foram Diversity and Distributional Patterns on the North American Atlantic Coast  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Kinard, Joseph, 2015, An X-Ray Diffraction Study of Raw and Thermally-Treated Ceramic Clays (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • King, Ethan, 2015, A Study of the Ocala Limestone Exposed Along the Lower Flint, Albany to Lake Seminole (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Kitchens, Angela, 1991, Substrate preference of  Eocene Echinoids of Egypt (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Lewis, Sarah, 2020, Catching Micrometeorites (Advisor: L Chizmadia)
  • Loembet, Kleesbatner, 2014, Subsurface Well-Logging of the Coastal Plain of Georgia (advisor:  B. Carter).
  • Luu, Huy, 2016, Water Chemistry and Quality of the Western Subbasins of the Lower Flint River (advisor: T. Weiland)
  • May, Andrew, 2018, Subsurface Drainage Patterns in Northeastern Florida (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Miller, Justin, 2006, Morphology and Evolutionary Relationships  among Cassiduloid Echinoids from the Ocala Limestone  (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Minchew, Dustin, 2007, Analysis of the Sinuosity and Fluvial Terraces of the Satilla River of Georgia (advisor: B. Carter).
  • Morrison, Shaunna M., 2011, The Clay Mineralogy of Selected Cretaceous   and Tertiary Deposits of Southwest Georgia (advisor T. Weiland)
  • Norton, Lori, 2002, A geophysical investigation of a Karst Area near Leslie, Georgia (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • O'Bara, Carina, 2001, Water Quality of the Upper Muckalee Creek Watershed, Sumter County, Georgia advisors: M. Khalequzzaman and T. Weiland)
  • Park, T. Mack, 1998, Surface Water Contamination in  Sumter County, Georgia (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Payne, Brooke, 2005, The Gravity Signature of the South Georgia Triassic Rift Basin. (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Peavy, Tara, 2006, A water quality survey of Whitewater  Creek Watershed, Macon and Taylor Counties, Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Powell, Matthew, 1999, The Nature of a Contact Between precambrian Basement and Paleozoic Metasediments  in Bartow and Cherokee Counties, Georgia  (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Puckett, Norman, 1991, A Grain Size Analysis of the Sand Dunes at Albany, Georgia (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Raines, Daniel, 2003, Using Mineralogic Variations to  Recognize Stratigraphic and Fault Relationships in  and near the Cartersville Fault Zone, Georgia (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Reyher, Scott, 2013, A Water Quality Analysis of the Altamaha River With a Focused Study in the Vicinity of Jessup, Georgia (advisor:  T. Weiland).
  • Richardson, Maureen, 1996, Sumter County Landfill GIS Project (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Roney, Ryan O., 2011, Food preferences and Evolutionary Transitions in  Oligopygoid Echinoids (advisor B. Carter)
  • Sanders, Jacob, 2019, Analysis of Drainage within Big Slough, GA and its Relationship to Surrounding Geomorphic Features (advisor: B. Carter)
  • Scheller, Monica, 2000, Petrographic Study of the Coarse-Grained Ocoee Metasediments of the Cohutta, North Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Slater, Samantha, 2005, Electrical Resistivity Measurements  and their Relationship to Rainfall and Temperature Variations  (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Smith, Mitchell, 2004, Using Geographic Information Systems and Soil Data to Increase Small Farm Productivity: The Across-the-Creek Farm Project, Sumter County, Georgia. (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Summers, John, 1996, Effects of Winter Cold Front  Passage on Sea Surface Temperature in the Gulf of  Mexico (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Summers, Tom, 1995, Quantitative Phase Analysis of  Production Refractory Materials (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Tomberlin, Tyler, 2015, Water Chemistry and Quality of the Lower Flint River Basin (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Turner, Shayna, 2018, The Geology of Chattahoochee Bend State Park (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Vaughn, Elizabeth, 2005, Determining Potential Provenance for the  Conglomeratic Units of the Ocoee Series in the Cohutta Wildlife  Management Area, Murray County, Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Veal, Brian, 2002, Petrology and Chemistry of Clasts in Coarse-Grained Ocoee Metasediments of the  Cohutta Area, Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Walgamuth, Justin, 1997, A Geographic Information  System Database for Water Quality Projects of  Southwestern Georgia (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Watts, Clayton, 2019, The Effects of Weather on the Electrical Resistivity of Subsurface Layers (advisor: S. Peavy).
  • Welter, Sarah, 2014, Using Volcano Tectonic Earthquake Date-Depth Correlations to Determine the Probability of a Volcanic Eruption (advisor:  S. Peavy).
  • Willard, Ricky, 1994, X-ray Diffraction Analysis and the Effects of Different Packing Techniques  for Mullite-Cristobalite Mixtures  (advisor: P. Manker).
  • Willett, Alan, 1996, Construction of an Interactive Geographic Database for Double Oak Mountain Area, Alabama (advisor: T. Weiland).
  • Wilson, Rob, 1996, Chemical Evidence for Shearing of  Tonalites from the Wawa Subprovince of the Superior  Province, Canada (advisor: D. Askren).
  • Wynn, Ian, 2020, A Study in the Mineralogical and Aesthetic Characteristics of Sediments in Gansu Province, China (Advisors: T. Weiland & L. Chizmadia)

Alumni Note: If your project is not listed, please contact Sam Peavy and provide him with your name, project title, year of completion, and project advisor(s).

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