According to the American Geosciences Institute’s Status of Recent Geoscience Graduates 2014 report, 51% of undergraduates choose to major in the geosciences during their first or second year in college, indicating the importance of the introductory geoscience courses as a recruitment tool for future majors. Not only are the introductory courses key for recruitment, often they contain non-science students trying to complete their science credit. Therefore, the geoscience introductory courses may be the last opportunity to teach non-science majors how to think critically and scientifically. Over a decade ago, AGI released a report presenting the enrollments in introductory geoscience courses to establish a baseline understanding of the number of students taking these introductory courses in broad subject categories. Due to the continued importance of introductory geoscience courses, AGI released a new survey updating the information last published in 2005, as well as ask for more information to add to the overall understanding of the impact of the introductory courses.
This survey on introductory geoscience courses in 2015 asks questions related to total enrollments and class sizes, title/subject area of course, the existence of a complementary lab course, the number of faculty teaching intro courses, and the total number of course hours for a semester. This presentation will present the main trends in this data for the whole United States, as well as any regional differences and/or differences between classifications of institutions.
- Geological Society of America Annual Meeting 2015