I feel strongly that a critical aspect of my job as a faculty member at Boston College is to educate students of all levels with the goal of  making them more effective critical thinkers and better citizens, and to help train future scientists so that they can better serve society. As an educator, I seek to create learning environments and opportunities for students in which they can see the world, and their unique place in it, in an entirely different way. I want all students to understand the importance of observation and inquiry, and to understand that science is a unique and powerful approach that allows us to address fundamental questions and challenges facing the Earth, its environments, and humanity as a whole.

I teach a variety of courses within the Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, ranging from introductory undergraduate courses in Earth Materials to advanced graduate-level courses in Tectonics and Microstructures. Details on my most recent course offerings are listed below.

  • Spring 2022EESC 6695


    Microtectonics deals with the interpretation of microstructures, small-scale deformation structures in rocks that yield abundant information on the history and type of deformation and metamorphism. This course will emphasize the microstructural, textural, and chemical analysis of deformed rocks to aid in the interpretation of tectonic evolution. Topics covered in this course will include: identification of rock microstructures, petrofabrics and textures; identification of deformation mechanisms at the grain- and crystal-lattice scale; secondary foliation and lineation development; the origin of lattice preferred orientation; porphyroblast growth; microgauges of temperature, pressure and differential stress; special techniques used to study deformation fabrics; and the association of these features with igneous and metamorphic assemblages and chemical trends to deduce geological histories and processes.

  • Fall 2022EESC 5543


    Plate Tectonics, the idea that the surface of the Earth moves and reshapes itself through time, has revolutionized geology. While a great deal has been learned about the movements and evolution of the Earth's lithospheric plates through time, the full implications of this theory remain an area of active research and debate. Modern studies increasingly document important feedbacks between patterns of climate, deposition, metamorphism, magmatism, seismicity and deformation that can be understood in the context of the past and present motions of the Earth's plates. This course will focus on understanding the linkages between these dynamic processes through time.

  • Fall 2022EESC 1132

    Exploring the Earth

    The Earth is a dynamic planet that our species is clearly changing. A great challenge of the twenty-first century is to maintain the Earth's ability to support its growing human population. This course discusses the origin and materials of the Earth and the processes by which it has evolved. It is a first course for Geological Sciences majors and also provides a background for departmental majors and minors. EESC1132 is appropriate as a natural science core course for students interested in the Earth Sciences. The laboratory consists of in-class exercises, analysis of rocks, and a weekend field trip.

  • Spring 2023EESC 3385

    Structural Geology

    The goal of this course is the development of skills in the structural analysis of rock bodies as seen in outcrops, or small areas, to gain an understanding of the geometries, sequencing, and kinematics of deformational features. Structures such as folds, faults, foliations, lineations, and shear zones will be considered at various scales, as visible in the field, or in thin section. We also discuss inter- and intra- granular deformation mechanisms. The 3-hour laboratory consists of in-class problems and some field-based problems.