May 30, 2024  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog 
2021-2022 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Geological Sciences Department

College of the Sciences
Discovery Hall, room 129
Mail Stop 7418
Fax: 509-963-2821
    See website for how these programs could be used for educational and career purposes.

Faculty and Staff

Anne Egger, PhD

Associate Chair
Breanyn MacInnes, PhD

Anne Egger, PhD, Earth science education and structural geology
Lisa L. Ely, PhD, geomorphology, paleohydrology, and quaternary geology
Carey Gazis, PhD, environmental geochemistry, stable isotope geochemistry, and hydrogeology
Susan Kaspari, PhD, climate and environmental variability and glaciochemistry
Chris Mattinson, PhD, metamorphic petrology, geochronology, tectonics
Timothy I. Melbourne, PhD, seismology, continental dynamics

Associate Professors
Audrey Huerta, PhD, geodynamics, climate, and mountain building
Breanyn MacInnes, PhD, sedimentary geology, coastal geomorphology
Walter Szeliga, PhD, geophysics and GPS geodesy

Assistant Professor
Hannah Shamloo, PhD, igneous petrology, volcanology, geochemistry

Faculty Research Associates
Ken Austin, MS, UNAVCO, Geodetic Infrastructure
Beth Pratt-Sitaula, PhD, earth science education and geomorphology
Andrew Sadowski, L.G., Department of Natural Resources, Washington Geological Survey
Paul Winberry, PhD, glacier dynamics, seismology

Keegan Fengler, MS, earthquakes
Winston Norrish, PhD, petroleum geology
Adrienne Sorenson, MS, paleontology

Emeritus Professors
Robert D. Bentley, PhD, structural geology, igneous and metamorphic petrology, regional geology of the Pacific Northwest
Wendy A. Bohrson, PhD, volcanology, isotope geochemistry, igneous petrology
James Hinthorne, PhD, mineralogy, geochemistry, spatial information systems
Jeffrey Lee, PhD, active and regional tectonics, structural geology

Rex Flake, tiltmeter engineer, PANGA network engineer and geologist
Angela Halfpenny, engineering technician
Moriah Kauer, fiscal specialist
V. Marcelo Santillan, scientific programmer and GPS data analyst
Craig Scrivner, systems analyst
Nick Zentner, geology outreach and education director

Department Information
Geosciences encompass the scientific study of the origin and evolution of the earth. Energy, mineral and water resources, geologic hazards, pollution of natural waters, and earthquake prediction are just a few of the pressing societal concerns that are addressed by geoscientists. The geological sciences program has two major parts: (1) solid-earth geosciences, such as rocks, minerals, deformation, and tectonic evolution of the Earth’s crust; and (2) Earth processes over the last 10,000 years, such as active faulting, environmental geochemistry, hydrogeology and water resources, geologic hazards, seismology, surface processes, and volcanology. Field, laboratory, and computer skills are essential to the study of the geological sciences. Research in the geosciences is active and varied, with faculty and students interacting closely. BS and BA degrees are offered in geology and a BS degree in environmental geological sciences. A BA in Earth sciences is also offered and is intended for future secondary school teachers. Minors in geology and Earth sciences are also available to supplement careers in other fields.

Students who declare a major in geology must register with the department and work out a specific program of study with the chairperson or an assigned advisor. Course programs can be tailored to the student’s needs and interests with the aid of an academic advisor. Other course requirements may be modified in cases where past performance indicates superior ability. Students must be evaluated for math placement upon declaration of the major with the goal of establishing proficiency at the MATH 154 level early in the major program.

Program Outcomes
For information on program outcomes, please go to:

Course Offerings
Frequency of course offering information can be found at the department website: or by contacting the department directly.


    Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)Bachelor of Science (B.S.)Minor


      Geological Sciences (GEOL)