Environmental Research

Environmental and Engineering GeologyThe Department of Earth Sciences at Kent State University offers a strong program in Environmental Research (Water, Surface and Subsurface Processes; Geohazards; and Natural Resources) at the M.S. and Ph.D. levels. The program emphasizes environmental and engineering problems related to groundwater-surface water interactions, landscape evolution, urban development, mining, slope stability, and evaluating and managing hydrogeologic problems and environmentally related processes.


The Earth’s surface environment is the critical zone where life interacts with geologic processes in what are recognized as complex feedback systems. The importance of Environmental Research is directly tied to the pressures of global population growth, industrialization, and the desire for sustainable living standards. Examples of global scale earth processes that are undergoing human induced environmental transformations include sedimentation, water transport, geochemical cycles, landscape development, species and habitat distribution and surface subsidence. The recognition of “humans as geologic agents” and human-driven global change has focused basic research in areas that directly impact human welfare including environmental remediation and stewardship, energy exploration and extraction, and natural hazards characterization and mitigation. Water related research is a primary departmental focus given its societal importance and its dominant role in the biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and geosphere. Continued climate change, global population growth, and growing societal resource needs all ensure the vital continued need for research in water related science. As the only Applied Geology PhD program in Ohio, we have a sustained, applied, and integrative research program in water resources and its interactions with the natural and built environments. 


Timothy Gallagher (Assistant Professor, Kent Campus) - Biogeochemistry, Sedimentary Geology, Soil Science

David Hacker (Professor, Trumbull Campus) – Geohazards, Landslides, Groundwater Contamination

Joseph Ortiz (Professor, Kent Campus) – Marine Processes, Water Quality (Paleoclimate and Water Quality Research)

Kuldeep Singh (Assistant Professor, Kent Campus) - Hydrogeology, Water Resources and Climate Change, Digital Rock Physics, Pore-Scale Fluid Dynamics

David Singer (Associate Professor, Kent Campus) – Environmental Mineralogy and Geochemistry, Acid Mine Drainage (Environmental Mineralogy and Geochemistry Group)

Alison Smith (Professor, Kent Campus) – Groundwater-Surface Water Interactions, Paleolimnology (Paleolimnology Research)

Allyson Tessin (Assistant Professor, Kent Campus) - Oceanography, Biogeochemistry, Sedimentary Geology

Neil Wells (Professor, Kent Campus) – Geomorphology, Surface Processes


  • Introductory Hydrogeology
  • Advanced Hydrogeology
  • Contaminant Hydrogeology
  • Watershed Hydrology
  • Urban Hydrology
  • Environmental Geochemistry
  • Environmental Mineralogy
  • Hydrogeochemistry
  • Paleolimnology
  • Introduction to Soil Mechanics
  • Environmental Isotopes
  • Energy and the Environment
  • Environmental Soil Science
  • Principles of Geochemistry
  • Natural Disasters and Geologic Hazards
  • Remote Sensing