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Student Research

Collaborative research between students and faculty members is an important part of the geology program at Beloit College. Under the direction of a member of the Geology faculty, all geology majors design and implement a senior thesis research project, gather and analyze their own data, and present their results. 

Research opportunities are also available through the Keck Geology Consortium which is comprised of 17 colleges committed to undergraduate education in geology through intercollegiate programs that engage students and faculty in cooperative research. Among its founders was Beloit College Professor Emeritus Hank Woodard.

Examples of Recent Student Research Projects

  • A Hydrogeological Analysis of Lodi Marsh Springs in Dane County, Wisconsin; Emma Hall '18; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • An Investigation of the Influences on the Geochemistry of Streams inDominica, Lesser Antilles: 2014-2017; Dexter Kopas '18; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • Determining sediment source: ice rafted detritus (IRD) provenance at ODP Site 697 (Jane Basin),NW Weddell Sea, South Orkney Microcontinent; Forrest Lloyd '18; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Mytilus as an Indicator of El NiƱo; Ethan Rosa '18; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • New insights and educational tools through story mapping of a glaciovolcanic tindar; Carl-Lars Engen '17; Advisors: Jim Rougvie and Sue Swanson
  • Bivalve live-dead differences record the impact of anthropogenic eutrophication on coastal ecosystems in the northern Gulf of Mexico, USA; Luke Grimmelbein '17; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • Dendrochronology and water levels as indicators of recent climate change:
    Georgian Bay, Lake Huron (Ontario, Canada); Matt Kelly '17; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • Delineating catchments to sustainably manage stormwater runoff at Beloit College; Skylar Miller '17; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • Mechanisms of sodic-calcic metasomatism and REE mobility of the Whiterock Pluton Contact Aureole, Pitkin County, Colorado; Alex Venzke '17; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Lead distribution in soils on Beloit College's campus; Selene Castrucci '16; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • Understanding the concentrations and export of dissolved organic carbon in burned and unburned catchments in the boreal forest of interior Alaska; Arianna Cocallas '16; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • Evaluation of handheld XRF (pXRF) in sedimentary lithology discrimination of unprepared drill-cores; Skyler Tiannong Dong '16; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Exploring and determining fluvial terrace boundaries in the Upper-Rock River Basin, Wisconsin; Jace Hodder '16; Advisor: Sue Swanson
  • Alkali metasomatism and metamorphism: Cathodoluminescence of the White Mountain Peak Metavolcanic Complex, eastern California; Sally Klein '16; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • The influence of land use on nutrient loads in Spring Brook, Beloit, Wisconsin; Emma Koeppel '16; Advisor: Carol Mankiewicz
  • Stability of schwertmannite and cobalt substituted schwertmannite in mining environments; Samantha Schonberger '16; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Evolution of shock melt compositions in lunar regolith; Allison Vance '16; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Hydrogeology of the Mount Vernon Creek watershed; Rick Blonn '15; Advisors: Jim Rougvie and Sue Swanson
  • Close-range photogrammetry of the Cleveland-Lloyd Dinosaur Quarry, Emery County, Utah: an updated taphonomic analysis of the world's densest Upper Jurassic bonebed; Steve Clawson '15; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • Dolomite abundance in lake sediments as a proxy for glacier extent in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA; Karly Clippenger '15; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • The effects of soil type and nutrient availability on the spread of reed canary grass at Newark Road Prairie; Joni Denker '15; Advisors: Jim Rougvie and Sue Swanson
  • Determining water input to Chamberlin Springs and Spring Creek Reserve in Beloit, Wisconsin; Isaiah Farley '15; Advisors: Carl Mendelson and Sue Swanson
  • Geochemical analysis of Acropora cervicornis rubble and fossil framework at Coral Gardens, Belize: sampling strategy and modern environmental record; Sarah Holmes '15; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • Tracing sediment fluxes in a littoral cell: seven years of seasonal-scale variability at Moss Landing Beach, California; Kayleigh Kavanaugh '15; Advisor: Carl Mendelson
  • Hydrogeology of Evansville Wildlife Springs, Rock County, WI; Monica Norton '15; Advisors: Jim Rougvie and Sue Swanson
  • Evaluating handheld XRF soil analysis methods at the confluence of the Rock River and Turtle Creek, IL; Sara Shaten '15; Advisor: Jim Rougvie
  • Alteration mechanisms in K-feldspar of the metavolcanic rocks of Skleton lake in the Mount Morrison pendant of the Sierra Nevada mountain range, California; Lauren Strug '15; Advisor: Jim Rougvie