OSHR 1896 - Earth History - The Last 541 Million Years

  • Noncredit

This course is offered through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Colorado State University. You must be a member of Osher to enroll in this course.

In this journey through the last 541 million years of Earth history, we will examine the co-evolution of the lithosphere, atmosphere and biosphere. We will reconstruct the formation and breakup of super continents, the formation of mountain ranges, flooding and emergence of land areas and the warming and cooling of climates. We will also examine the evolution of life from the explosion of marine invertebrate organisms with shells to the invasion of land by plants and animals, the origin and extinction of dinosaurs and the evolution of mammals and humans.

The course is designed for those with an interest in geologic processes and history, including biological evolution.

Noncredit courses do not produce academic credit nor appear on a Colorado State University academic transcript.


Frank Ethridge


Frank G. Ethridge, professor emeritus of geology at Colorado State University, worked as a geologist with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Texas Highway Commission, and Chevron Oil Co. Frank has conducted courses and led field trips for geological societies and petroleum companies. He taught geology at Southern Illinois University and Colorado State University for a total of 35 years. Frank also conducted geology courses and led field trips for geological societies and petroleum companies. He and his graduate students conducted research on sedimentary rocks. Frank has a long- term interest in the economic geology of Colorado and has taught lectures on the subject for both CSU and Osher.