Job Detail

Organization: Lewis & Clark College
Title: Adjunct Professor for GIS-based course in Earth Systems Science
Location: Portland, OR

Posted: 2021-04-30
Application Deadline: 2021-06-01

Position Description:

Position: Adjunct professor to deliver a beginner to intermediate level GIS-based course for non-majors titled "Spatial Problems in Earth Systems Science" (GEOL 340). Course content focuses on Earth system science, with select topics drawn from the lithosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and/or biospheres, depending on instructor’s expertise. Course content may include societal dimensions as well. Students pose spatial questions, perform spatial analysis, and learn about some aspects of the Earth system in depth. Students develop and complete an independent research project using GIS analysis skills.

Lewis & Clark College is a private liberal arts college with about 2,000 undergraduates in Portland, OR. This class is typically small (< 15 students) and typically taken by upper class students. Fall 2021 instruction is expected to be fully in-person.

Course Schedule: (in-person instruction)
Class dates: Aug 30th - Dec. 8th 2021 (14.5 weeks)
Final exam: Tues Dec 14th
Lecture: Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:40 - 11:10am
Lab: Thursdays 11:30-2:30pm.
No class on Oct 7 (fall break) and Nov 25 (Thanksgiving break)

We are seeking applicants with excellent demonstrated classroom teaching and laboratory instruction at an undergraduate institution. Applicants should have research experience related to some aspect of earth system science (biosphere, atmosphere, ocean, lithosphere). Ideally the successful candidate will incorporate their research area into the lecture material and GIS-based exercises that lead to independent student research projects. Applicants should be capable of guiding student exercises in ArcGIS Pro and ArcGIS Online.

As an example, a previous offering of this course introduced concepts of atmospheric science relevant to hurricane dynamics, including the influences of El Nino, climate change, and decadal oscillations on hurricane development. Guided lab exercises on hurricane tracks, coastal impacts, and land cover data (NLCD) provided the background skills and knowledge for students to complete independent GIS-based research projects related to hurricanes. Previous reading material has included textbooks "Making Spatial Decisions Using GIS" by Keranen and Kolvoord, "Developing Spatial Thinking" by Sorby, and primary research articles.

The course content is flexible and can be tailored to the instructor's strengths. Given the non-standard nature of this course, we are happy to work together with you on course development to best meet the needs of the students.


The College is committed to preparing students for leadership in an increasingly interdependent world, and affirms the educational benefits of diversity. (See https://www.lclark.edu/about/equity-and-inclusion/)

A complete application should include (1) a letter of application which includes a statement of teaching philosophy, past teaching experience, and research interests; (2) a curriculum vitae or resume; and (3) contact information for three references. All materials should be emailed to Jessica Kleiss: [email protected] with subject line "GEOL 340 Application." Review of applications will begin on Tuesday, June 1st, and continue until the position is filled. Feel free to contact me ([email protected]) with interest.

Course title: Spatial Problems in Earth System Science
Course description: Recognition and interpretation of spatial patterns in Earth system science. Firsthand analysis of current research questions with a strong spatial component. Familiarization with the background of the research questions and their broader contexts. Hypothesis development about Earth processes from remote data (e.g., topographic data, satellite imagery), articulation of appropriate field tests for hypotheses. Development of analytical skills and use of spatial analysis tools, including geographic information systems (GIS) software. Lecture and laboratory.

Please feel free to contact Jessica Kleiss ([email protected]) with any questions.

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