Prerequisite Course Requirements for Participation in Field Camps Across the U.S.

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Prerequisite requirements for 67 US-based field camps were identified from syllabus and camp websites and categorized into one of ten overarching course topics. Additionally, the field camps themselves were classified as either a traditional camp (4 to 6 week summer field experience) or a non-traditional camp (any camp not classified as a 4 to 6 week summer field experience) in order to understand the potential differences in prerequisite requirements between these two types of camps. There were 45 and 22 traditional and non-traditional camps, respectively.

The majority of camps, regardless of classification, required incoming students to have completed courses in mineralogy, petrology, sedimentology/stratigraphy, and structure/tectonics, as these courses likely provide a strong basis for the mapping and field exercises emphasized by many of these camps. Historical geology or physical geology courses were also commonly required by a number of camps.

Previous field courses, such as Field Methods, Field Geology, Field Techniques, or a previous undergraduate field camp, were required to attend several camps. Other courses required by individual camps include ecology, palaeontology, geophysics, maths, GIS, and First Aid, and these requirements were often related to the specialty of that field camp.

AGU/AGI’s April Heads and Chairs webinar will be on “Implementing Effective Field Camp Policies and Procedures” this Friday, April 20th, at 1 pm EDT. For more information and to register for this webinar, please visit

Date updated: 2018-04-16
Data Brief 2018-002
Written by Caroline Kelleher for AGI, April 2018

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