Texas Earth Science Task Force Works to Add Earth Science to High School Curriculum
On May 7, 2004, the State Board of Education adopted an amendment to
the Texas School Curriculum Requirements that would change high school graduation requirements
to require four credits of science instead of three, starting in the fall, 2005. In addition to
the three traditional courses--one course of biology and two chosen from IPC, chemistry, and
physics--students will have to take a fourth course, one of which can be Earth Science
(usually known as Geology, Meteorology, and Oceanography, or GMO). This is undoubtedly
a significant change in Texas science education, for it gives Science the same importance as that
held by English and Social Studies, for which students are required to take four courses.
It is hoped that many or most high school students will choose Earth Science (GMO) as their fourth
science course, although they will have the choice of several others. The four-year science
requirement is contingent, however, on adequate funding by the Texas Legislature.
Texas Earth Science Documents
Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills: Geology, Meteorology &
Oceanography. This document can also be downloaded as a four-page
PDF file. May 2, 2004
Geology, Meteorology & Oceanography Curriculum Guide (PDF Only!). This
extensive guide is 98 pages long and contains extensive resources, including the course's scope and
sequence, the course's TEKS curriculum requirements and TAKS requirements, lab and field materials,
required safety equipment, links to virtual field trips and resources on the Web, helpful agencies and
organizations, suggested research activities, suggested teaching guide, and suggested assessment
questions. May 2, 2004
Texas Science Education Leadership Association's (TSELA) Position Statement
supporting Earth Science as a core science. TSELA joins
the Science Teachers Association of Texas (STAT) and the Texas Earth Science Teachers Association (TESTA)
in urging the Texas Education Agency and the State Board of Education to work together to designate earth
science based courses as one of the optional courses which will satisfy the third year of mandated science
instruction for high school graduation. This document can also be downloaded as a
four-page PDF file. May 2, 2004
(No) Earth Science in Texas
by Edward C. Roy Jr., Geotimes, September 2001.
Earth Science in Texas: A Progress Report
by Edward C. Roy Jr., Geotimes, September 2002.
Science in Texas by Edward C. Roy Jr., Geotimes, February 2004.
Battle Brewing Over Earth-Science Classes
in Texas Schools by Dave Ferman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, March 14, 2004.
Report of the Earth Science Task
Force, June 2003, presented to the State Board of Education.
Description of the Proposed Amendment to the Texas
State Board of Education establishing Earth Science as a core science credit course, February 27, 2004.
Text of the Proposed Amendment changing the graduation
requirements of high school students allowing Earth Science to be taken as a core science course.
(This document will download as a PDF file)
Earth Science Resources
The World Wide Web has many resources available for students of Earth Science.
Last updated: 9 October 2006