Baylor University
Department of Geology
College of Arts and Sciences




Geology News Items

Turning over an old leaf: Baylor geologist finds climate clues in fossilized plants
[2/21/2014]
Research by Dr. Daniel Peppe, an assistant professor of geology in Baylor's College of Arts & Sciences, has revealed a new set of tools for reconstructing ancient ecosystems using fossilized fern leaves. The study, published this month in the American Journal of Botany, suggests that fern fossils can reveal environmental data from earlier periods compared to existing methods, which rely on plant groups with a shorter fossil record.
(FULL STORY)

Discovery by Baylor University Researchers Sheds New Light on the Habitat of Early Apes
[2/18/2014]
WACO, Texas (Feb. 18, 2014)-- Baylor University researchers, in collaboration with an international team of scientists, have discovered definitive evidence of the environment inhabited by the early ape Proconsul on Rusinga Island, Kenya. The groundbreaking discovery provides additional information that will help scientists understand and interpret the connection between habitat preferences and the early diversification of the ape-human lineage.
(FULL STORY)

GEO 3343 Sedimentology/Stratigraphy Symposium
[5/1/2013]

Spring 2013 GEO 3343 Sedimentology/Stratigraphy Symposium: "Various Topics on the Cretaceous of Central Texas"

Date: May 2, 2013
Time: 11:00am to 4:20pm
Location: BSB D410


Printable Symposium Itinerary

(FULL STORY)

O.T. Lecturer, Henry Posamentier to Present February 28 and March 1
[2/20/2013]
Dr. Henry W. Posamentier is a Senior Geological Advisor with Chevron Energy Technology Company. He serves as a worldwide consultant to exploration teams focusing on lithofacies prediction risk issues. Before coming to Chevron, Dr. Posamentier served as Chief Geologist with Anadarko Petroleum and was a senior exploration and research advisor with ARCO and, prior to that, with Exxon production Research Company. Dr. Posamentier has published widely and his research interests have been in the fields of sequence stratigraphy and depositional systems analysis. Most recently, he has employed an interdisciplinary approach to the prediction of lithofacies distribution through time and space by integrating stratigraphy, geomorphology, and depositional systems analysis, using 3D seismic visualization integrated with borehole data. In 1971-1972, Dr. Posamentier was a Fulbright Fellow to Austria. He has served as an AAPG Distinguished Lecturer to the United States (1991-1992), an AAPG Distinguished Lecturer to the former Soviet Union (1996-1997), an AAPG Distinguished Lecturer to the Middle East (1998-1999), and an AAPG Distinguished Lecturer to Europe (2005-2006). Recently (2008), he was awarded the Pettijohn Medal for excellence in sedimentology from the Society for Sedimentary geology (SEPM), the William Smith Medal (2010) for contributions to applied and economic aspects of geology from the Geological Society of London, and the Robert Berg Award for Outstanding Petroleum Research from the AAPG (2012).
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology Representing
[2/12/2013]
Five students from the Baylor Geology department presented their research at the USDA Soil science and land resource conference held at Texas A & M University on February 7th.
(FULL STORY)

SENIOR-LEVEL PALEOCLIMATOLOGY/PALEOCLIMATE MODELING FACULTY POSITION
[8/29/2012]
The Department of Geology at Baylor University is pleased to announce a search for a new senior-level faculty position for hire at the Associate or Full Professor level with an open starting date beginning in August of 2013, in Paleoclimatology or Paleoclimate Modeling.
(FULL STORY)

TENURE-TRACK APPLIED GEOPHYSICIST
[8/29/2012]
The Department of Geology at Baylor University invites applications for a tenure-track Assistant Professor in Applied Geophysics, beginning August 2013. Applicants must hold a Ph.D. in geophysics, physics, or geology with an emphasis in geophysics at the time of appointment.
(FULL STORY)

Documentary on Rusinga Island Featuring Baylor Geologists!
[8/18/2012]

(FULL STORY)

Apply to the Graduate Program
[8/18/2012]
Learn more about the Graduate Program!
(FULL STORY)

Mike Waters Distinguised Lecture to Speak on October 11
[8/18/2012]
Dr. Mike Waters is scheduled to speak In Search of the First Americans.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Scientists Review Impact of Geology, Climate on Cichlid Diversification
[8/17/2012]
WACO, Texas (Aug. 15, 2012) - In East Africa, the complex interaction of geologic processes and climatic changes over the past 35 million years have shaped the extraordinary diversification of over 2,000 species of cichlid fish in Lakes ...
(FULL STORY)

Baylor University Scientists Build Database for More Accurate and Efficient Soil-based Climate Reconstruction
[8/16/2012]
WACO, Texas (Aug. 21, 2012) - Baylor University scientists are developing a soils database that will help geologists and soil scientists to more quickly and accurately analyze data from fossilized soils to determine and reconstruct ancient climates.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology Hosts Mountain View Elementary Students
[5/25/2012]
On Friday, May 18th, the Baylor Geology department was host to fifty K-4 students from Mountain View Elementary School and their teachers.
(FULL STORY)

O.T. Hayward Lecture Series
[1/19/2012]
Dr. William Dietrich from U.C. Berkeley has agreed to be our next O.T. Hayward Lecturer and is scheduled to visit Baylor on February 23-24, 2012. Dr. Dietrich is a world-class researcher emphasizing understanding and quantifying the dynamics Earth surface processes, and his brief biography can be accessed here. His publication list is very impressive and includes circa 200 papers. Dr. Dietrich will be giving a lecture titled Is there a topographic signature of life? on Thursday, February 23 from 7:00-8:00pm in the BSB room D109.
(FULL STORY)

O.T. Hayward Prints
[11/29/2011]
Three O.T. Hayward sketches were scanned and made into 11" x 17" color prints. Each print is $15. Click on FULL STORY for order form and images of the prints.
(FULL STORY)

The Thomas T. Goforth Paleomagnetism Laboratory
[11/9/2011]
On Friday, November 4, 2011 the Baylor University Geology Department dedicated the Thomas T. Goforth Paleomagnetism Laboratory in honor of Professor-Emeritus Dr. Tom Goforth.
(FULL STORY)

O.T. Hayward Memorial Banquet
[11/8/2011]
A memorial banquet will be held in honor of the late Dr. O.T. Hayward during the week of Homecoming on Thursday, November 3, 2011 at Nelson's Banquet Hall in downtown Waco from 6:00-9:00pm.
(FULL STORY)

Homecoming Open House
[11/3/2011]
Come and enjoy some refreshments and mingle with fellow Geo folks!
7:00-9:00pm in the BSB 4th Floor Elevator Atrium and Clock Tower (E401)
(FULL STORY)

Sci-Tech Today: Tree Leaves Can Yield Climate History
[4/20/2011]
Sci-Tech Today, April 20, 2011 (Dr. Dan Peppe, assistant professor of geology at Baylor led the study.)
Using size and shape traits of leaves to reconstruct past climates over 120 million years is more accurate than other current methods, U.S. researchers say.
(FULL STORY)

Nature: Archaeology: Early farmers caused floods
[4/5/2011]
Nature, April 5, 2011 (brief article in the international weekly journal of science that links to published research in the journal Geology by Baylor geologists, who found before Europeans settled in North America, small Native American farming communities were already having a big impact on eastern flood plains)
Several hundred years before Europeans settled in North America, small Native American farming communities were already having a big impact on eastern flood plains -- clearing the land and thus increasing erosion, runoff and flooding.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Study Shows Native Americans Significantly Modified American Landscape Years Prior to the Arrival of Europeans
[3/30/2011]
A new study by Baylor University geology researchers shows that Native Americans' land use nearly a century ago produced a widespread impact on the eastern North American landscape and floodplain development several hundred years prior to the arrival of major European settlements.
(FULL STORY)

BBC: Newshour with Julian Marshall
[3/31/2011]
BBC, March 31, 2011 (AUDIO LINK. Live interview with Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology and dean of College of Arts and Sciences at Baylor, on Baylor's role in the landmark study that found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site)
A team of archeologists in Texas have discovered a hoard of tools that suggest that people settled in the Americas as much as 2,500 years earlier than previously thought.
(FULL STORY)

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Tools Suggest Earlier Human Arrival in America
[3/30/2011]
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 25, 2011 (Landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and a co-author of the study appearing in the journal Science)
For many years, scientists have thought that the first Americans came here from Asia 13,000 years ago, during the last ice age, probably by way of the Bering Strait. They were known as the Clovis people, after the town in New Mexico where their finely wrought spear points were first discovered in 1929.
(FULL STORY)

Waco Tribune Herald: Baylor's role in archaeological find could yield big rewards
[3/29/2011]
Waco Tribune Herald, March 29, 2011 (article the emerging prestige of Baylor's archaeology research and science departments; quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology and dean of College of Arts and Sciences at Baylor)
Several archaeologists said Baylor University stands to gain in stature because of two professors' involvement in what is thought to be the discovery of the earliest known human habitation in the Americas. A team led by Texas A&M University's Mike Waters, and including Baylor geologists Lee Nordt and Steve Driese, found stone tools said to date back 15,500 years at the Buttermilk Creek site near Salado.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor researchers play large part in discovery of earliest inhabitants of the Americas
[3/29/2011]
For nearly a century, scientists have worked off the theory that the earliest humans to populate the Americas came over from Asia about 13,000 years ago. But now, in conjunction with scientists from Texas A&M and other universities, Baylor geology researchers have found evidence of the earliest human occupation on the continent -- and right [...]
(FULL STORY)

Waco Tribune-Herald: EDITORIAL: Archaeological discovery by Baylor, others is 'nail in coffin' for previous theories of early man
[3/28/2011]
Waco Tribune-Herald, March 27, 2011 (editorial that congratulates Baylor geologists Steve Driese and Lee Nordt and the university's latest efforts in research that contributed to the discovery of the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas)
The startling discovery of the oldest known human habitation in the Americas 50 miles southwest of Waco not only puts Baylor University in the forefront of archaeological research but Central Texas at the crossroads of a grand narrative of how the Americas were peopled.
(FULL STORY)

KCEN-TV: Central Texans: First Humans in America?
[3/25/2011]
KCEN-TV, March 24, 2011 (VIDEO LINK: story about the landmark discovery of the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site features interviews with Dr. Steve Driese, professor and chair of geology at Baylor, and Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
History is being rewritten as a team of local researchers made an amazing discovery. Archeologists and geologists from Baylor and Texas A&M have uncovered the earliest artifacts from people in the Americas.
(FULL STORY)

KWTX-TV: Researchers Find Earliest People to Inhabit the Americas
[3/25/2011]
KWTX-TV, March 24, 2011 (VIDEO LINK: story about the landmark discovery of the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site features interviews with Dr. Steve Driese, professor and chair of geology at Baylor, and Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
A big announcement at Baylor University today is catching national headlines. An archeological discovery made right here in Central Texas is rocking the scientific community.
(FULL STORY)

The New York Times: Tools Suggest Earlier Human Arrival in America
[3/24/2011]
The New York Times, March 24, 2011 (article about landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site; quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
For many years, scientists have thought that the first Americans came here from Asia 13,000 years ago, during the last ice age, probably by way of the Bering Strait. They were known as the Clovis people, after the town in New Mexico where their finely wrought spear points were first discovered in 1929.
(FULL STORY)

Scientific American: People Were Chipping Stone Tools in Texas More Than 15,000 Years Ago
[3/24/2011]
Scientific American, March 24, 2011 (article about landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site; quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
Some 15,500 years ago early nomadic North Americans had already set up camp near Buttermilk Creek in central Texas's hill country, where they left behind impressive array of stone tools and artifacts.
(FULL STORY)

KWTX-TV: Baylor, Texas A&M Researchers Find Earliest People to Inhabit the Americas
[3/24/2011]
KWTX-TV, March 23, 2011 (article about landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site; quotes Dr. Steve Driese, professor and chair of geology at Baylor and Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
A study released Thursday at Baylor University indicates the earliest inhabitants of North America lived just south of Salado about 15,500 years ago.
(FULL STORY)

Fort Worth Star-Telegram: Texas artifacts 'strongest evidence yet' that humans arrived in North America earlier than thought
[3/24/2011]
Fort Worth Star-Telegram, March 24, 2011 (article about landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site; quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
Archaeologists at a Central Texas site have unearthed artifacts that the first humans arrived in North America roughly 2,500 years earlier than previously thought, raising questions about how they made it to the New World and what route they took to get here.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor, Texas A&M Researchers Find Earliest People to Inhabit the Americas
[3/24/2011]
Baylor University geology researchers, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, have found the oldest archaeological evidence of human occupation in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site located about 40 miles northwest of Austin.
(FULL STORY)

The Dallas Morning News: Central Texas site holds North America's oldest proof of human settlement, researchers say
[3/24/2011]
The Dallas Morning News, March 24, 2011 (article about landmark research by Baylor geology professors, along with scientists from Texas A&M University and around the country, who found the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in the Americas at a Central Texas archaeological site; quotes Dr. Lee Nordt, professor of geology at Baylor and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is a co-author of the study which appears in the April edition of the premier journal Science)
A Central Texas floodplain has yielded what its discoverers are calling the oldest credible evidence of human settlement in North America -- going back as far as 15,500 years, 2,500 years before the Clovis technology once accepted as the benchmark for the first Americans.
(FULL STORY)

e! Science News: Native Americans modified American landscape years prior to arrival of Europeans
[3/23/2011]
e! Science News, March 23, 2011 (The research of Dr. Steve Driese, professor and chair of the geology department at Baylor, College of Arts and Sciences, and Baylor doctoral student Gary Stinchcomb is described.)
A new study by Baylor University geology researchers shows that Native Americans' land use nearly a century ago produced a widespread impact on the eastern North American landscape and floodplain development several hundred years prior to the arrival of major European settlements.
(FULL STORY)

Waco Tribune Herald: Baylor researchers use Japan quake data to learn about earth
[3/16/2011]
Waco Tribune Herald, March 16, 2011 (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED. Baylor geology professors Jay Pulliam and Vince Cronin are studying the structure of the deep earth with help from seismic activity data.)
After helping put in place a sophisticated measuring system in 2009, two professors in Baylor University's geology department are well-positioned to use data taken from the Japanese earthquake to better understand the depths of the earth in Texas.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology Student Awarded Scholarship at Groundwater Summit
[5/20/2010]
Stephanie Wong, a graduate student in Baylor University's department of geology, was recently awarded a $500 Farvolden Award Scholarship for her poster presentation at the 2010 National Groundwater Association Groundwater Summit, held in Denver, Colo.
(FULL STORY)

Graduate student, Jason Mintz, receives scolarship award.
[5/17/2010]
Congratulations to Jason Mintz who received a scholarship award from the Fort Worth Geological Society.
(FULL STORY)

GEO Student Awards, Grants-in-Aid of-Research, Spring 2010
[5/10/2010]
Please congratulate the following Geology Graduate students who submitted grant proposals and received the following student grants-in-aid of research this spring! To our knowledge this is a Baylor Geology record!
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology Department dedicates Murphy Mineral Collection
[4/19/2010]
On Saturday, April 17th the Baylor Geology department gathered with the family of Mr. Samuel Morris (Pat) Murphy to honor a bequest of his mineral collection to the department.
(FULL STORY)

Scientist Offers New Geological Methods To Help Determine the Cause of Two Largest Extinctions
[2/18/2010]
Dr. Sam Bowring, professor of geology at MIT, will deliver a lecture about using high-precision U-Pb geochronology to test hypotheses about the timing and cause of two of the biggest extinctions in Earth history, from 3 to 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19, in the Baylor Science Building room D11O. A reception prior to the event will begin at 2:30 p.m. in the second floor landing. The event is hosted by the department of Geology and the Vice Provost for Research Colloquium Series.
(FULL STORY)

Dr. William Ruddiman to give talk at Baylor.
[2/2/2010]
Dr. William Ruddiman, Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia, will deliver a lecture on Thursday, Feb. 25th, exploring his hypothesis that early farming released a significant amount of CO2 and methane prior to the Industrial Revolution that may have offset natural cooling driven by Earth's orbital variations.
(FULL STORY)

BGS Fieldtrip, February 13th...spots are going fast!
[1/12/2010]
The second annual Baylor Geological Studies field trip is scheduled for Saturday, February 13th. Space is limited for the event so reserve your spot today!
(FULL STORY)

Geology 1408 students chase the Leonid Meteor Shower
[12/11/2009]
Approximately 35-40 students from Geology 1408 (Earth Science) came out at 11PM on November 16th in hopes of seeing their first meteor shower and learning something about astronomy.
(FULL STORY)

Local students learn about earthquake hazards during Earth Science Week 2009
[12/11/2009]
Approximately 100 5th graders from North Waco Elementary School had the opportunity to learn about earthquake hazards during Earth Science Week 2009.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology & Geological Society to Host Mineral Sale
[10/9/2009]
The Baylor Geology Department along with the Baylor Geological Society will host a mineral sale on Oct. 23rd from 11:00 am - 6:00 pm in the Baylor Sciences Building, Room D.410. All items are $1.00.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Geology Students Place At Research Competition
[10/2/2009]
Baylor University graduate students, Alan Gunnell and Ryan Dhillon, placed first and second, respectively, in the AAPG student expo research competition, held in Houston, Texas.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Research Indicates Wetland Used With Batch Dosing Produces Cleanest Water From Septic Tank
[8/18/2009]
With approximately one-fourth of the homes in the United States utilizing a septic tank system for on-site wastewater treatment, finding better ways to protect the surrounding environment and, ultimately, residents' drinking water are essential. Now, Baylor University researchers have created and tested several new treatment systems to see if they could be part of the next generation of residential treatment systems.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Research Indicates Wetland Used With Batch Dosing Produces Cleanest Water From Septic Tank
[8/18/2009]
With approximately one-fourth of the homes in the United States utilizing a septic tank system for on-site wastewater treatment, finding better ways to protect the surrounding environment and, ultimately, residents' drinking water are essential. Now, Baylor University researchers have created and tested several new treatment systems to see if they could be part of the next generation of residential treatment systems.
(FULL STORY)

O.T. Hayward Lecture Series presents Dr. David Montgomery
[8/14/2009]
Dr. David Montgomery, professor of geomorphology in the Department of Earth and Space Sciences at University of Washington will present a lecture on geophysical forces at 7 p.m. on Monday, October 5 in BSB D110. The lecture will be preceded by a reception beginning at 6:30.
(FULL STORY)

New Geology Professor Brings New Research Area to Baylor
[8/11/2009]
Dr. Daniel Peppe, assistant professor of geology at Baylor, is an expert in paleomagnetism, paleobotany and paleoclimatology to reconstruct past ecosystems to study climate change on land.
(FULL STORY)

Earth-shaking Science
[5/28/2009]
Baylor scientists participate in largest federal geoscience project ever
(FULL STORY)

Geology Professor Awarded Centennial Professor Honor
[5/13/2009]
Dr. Jay Pulliam, W.M Keck Foundation Professor of Geophysics at Baylor University, has been selected unanimously for the 2009 Baylor Centennial Professor award, which will allow him to research the subduction of the Indian-Australian plate.
(FULL STORY)

Change in the Forecast: Why Melting Ice is A Hot Topic
[5/12/2009]
Nearly every department within Baylor University's College of Arts and Sciences has reacted to climate change in some way -- some by leading research of geological evidence in the earth, others by studying how cultures are adapting to the changes.
(FULL STORY)

Baylor Scientists Participate in Largest Federal Geoscience Project To Date
[4/20/2009]
Baylor University scientists are playing a role in an on-going nationwide effort to image Earth beneath North America and map the country's seismic activity.
(FULL STORY)

Climate Change Expert to Speak at Baylor
[10/20/2008]
Dr. Lonnie Thompson, senior research scientist at the Byrd Polar Research Center at the University of Ohio, will present a lecture on the danger posed by climate change and the human response to it at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 30, in room D110 of the Baylor Sciences Building on the Baylor University campus.
(FULL STORY)


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