Contact Us
Department of Geology
Bryn Mawr College
101 North Merion Avenue
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010
Phone: (610) 526-7392
Fax: (610) 526-5086

Facilities in the Bryn Mawr College Geology Department

Facilities and Resources

The department is fortunate to have several valuable collections from which students and faculty may draw in their research and classwork. As a repository for the U.S. Geological Survey, the department has an excellent collection of topographical and geological maps and publications. The Collier Science Library carries more than 100 geoscience journals, many of which include the entire publication history from the first issue to the present. The Geology department holds extensive paleontology, mineral, and rock collections for research and teaching. Many examples are on display in the hallways of the Science Center, including a portion of the Vaux Mineral Collection. The spectacular collection of colorful multi-faceted minerals is both a campus attraction and an invaluable source of instructional specimens.

The Department has its own computer lab for student use, and our teaching is done in AV-equipped "smart" classrooms, with wireless network access and dedicated laptops for use during lab exercises and other interactive class activities. In addition, the geology department has a separate Geographical Information Systems lab, including a large-format document printer and scanner.


A fully-equipped rock preparation facility, with rock saws, grinding, polishing, crushing, thin section and mineral separation equipment, allows students to prepare their own samples for petrographic and geochemical analysis. Students in intermediate courses use the department's petrographic microscopes, new Rigaku Ultima IV x-ray diffractometer and modern sedimentology laboratory for close analysis of minerals and rocks. We also operate a fluid inclusion laboratory, a cathode luminescence facility, and morphometric and image analysis systems for paleontology. The Department also houses a fully equipped paleomagnetic and rock magnetics laboratory.  Field equipment includes a collection of Brunton compasses, a high-precision surveying total station (theodolite and electronic distance meter), high precision GPS (both handheld and antenna based), high precision magnetic gradiometer, rock drills and ground-penetrating radar. We maintain research collaborations with colleagues at the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Princeton University, Rutgers University, Franklin and Marshall College, The University of Deleware, The University of Salamanca, The University of Victoria, The University of Michigan, Weber State University, Stanford, and Dickinson College. Our faculty and students occasionally visit these institutions to carry our research.

Through the generosity of alumnae, Ida Ogilvie, Ed Watson and Clarissa Dryden, the Department is able to offer extra support for students in geology, to assist in research, travel, and scholarships.