Date of Defense





A description of expertise is essential in any field as it helps to gear the education methods and the development of the skills fundamental to becoming an expert. Many researchers have tried to gain insight into how one might progress from a novice to an expert in a particular discipline. Expertise within the field of geosciences is the subject of this study, with field mapping being the key indicator of such. Geologists regard field mapping as necessary for the development of expertise, and courses in geologic field mapping play a significant role in departmental curriculum and expectations. How does one become an expert field mapper, and what type of skills, strategies, or thinking defines an individual's place on the novice-expert continuum?

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Campus Only