GEOL 471/571  Field Paleontology


Two Weeks, Two Credits


Application Deadline April 1, 2014

Dates: July 28 - August 8 and August 11 - 22, 2014

Register Online



Field Paleontology is a two-week experience that is designed to introduce students to the procedures of preserving and documenting fossil discoveries.  We emphasize the fact that fossils are information so the geologic context of fossils as well as the distribution of fossils at a given site is meticulously recorded.  Topics covered include field stabilization and excavation of fossil material, recording stratigraphic data, quarry mapping techniques, reading and interpreting topographic maps, proper documentation, and fossil systematics of each site.  Students taking the course for undergraduate credit will be graded based on their field notes, daily observations, and participation in field activities.  Graduate students will be required to conduct a follow-up research project the following fall semester. 




Eighty-million years ago, during much of the Age of Dinosaurs, South Dakota was covered by a shallow inland seaway.  Join us to help document fossil discoveries; including marine reptiles, pterosaurs, gigantic fish, sharks and baculites; while surveying along the Missouri River.  Enjoy the beautiful South Dakota prairie, where we will be working in the gorgeous cliffs of the Niobrara Formation, and the rolling hills of the Pierre Shale.  Led by Dr. Darrin Pagnac and Dr. Clint Boyd.  Camp is based out of Chamberlain, SD, with camping, dining and lodging services readily available.  Additional facilities are available in nearby Oacoma. 

Cost: $1200 undergraduates, $1300 graduates


Two sessions available: 


Session 1: July 28 – August 8, 2014


Session 2: August 11 – August 22, 2014


Price DOES NOT include meals or lodging. 

Students are responsible for transportation to Chamberlain and for arranging lodging. 


A few lodging options in Chamberlain SD include:

American Creek Campground:

Best Western Lee’s Motor Inn:

AmericInn Chamberlain:


For more information contact:

Darrin Pagnac (605) 394-2469



 Red Lodge, Montana;  July 13 - 26 and July 20 - August 2, 2014

Cost: $2,700 for undergraduates, $2,900 for graduates. Fees include tuition, all meals, and lodging.

The New Jersey State Museum’s 2013 Paleontology Field School experience will focus on collecting and documenting vertebrate fossils, such as dinosaurs, crocodiles, turtles, fish, and mammals in the continental rocks of both Late Cretaceous and Paleogene age in the northern portions of the Bighorn Basin in northern Wyoming and southern Montana.  Other opportunities may arise, such as collecting at Devonian, marginal marine fish and plant fossils from Beartooth Butte or Eocene mammals at Tatman Mountain.  The course is lead by David C. Parris (Curator of Natural History, NJSM) and Jason P. Schein (Assistant Curator of Natural History, NJSM).

For more information or to register, please contact Jason Schein



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