James Repka, Ph.D.



Department of Earth & Ocean Science


Saddleback College

28000 Marguerite Parkway

Mission Viejo CA 92692


Phone: 949.582.4694




Geology Notes


Curriculum Vitae


Field Trip Photos


It’s a Cookbook! (field trip recipes)


Why Study Geology?


Why Study Science?


Study Tips


@jrepka on twitter


CO2 Data

Current CO2 concentration in Earth’s atmosphere



I was a student at Saddleback College in the early 1980s. I started out as an Art major and considered studying Philosophy, Political Science, and Environmental Studies before discovering and falling in love with Geology.


I earned an AB in Geology from UC Berkeley in 1991, then moved on to graduate school at UC Santa Cruz. My dissertation was a study of the effects of cyclic changes in past climate on landscape evolution in southern Utah.


In addition to field work, this project required a detailed understanding of climate forcing mechanisms and buffers and how they interact with one another. I also had to understand and apply radiometric dating techniques.




I teach courses that interest me. I don't know everything about every topic covered, but I try to stay current on everything by reading a lot. I find that, if I'm doing my job well, students come up with fascinating and challenging questions.


Although many of the courses I teach cover general topics, I don't recycle lectures -- every semester I spend a significant amount of time sorting through and rewriting all of my notes to keep things current and interesting.


In addition to geology, I teach a couple of astronomy classes each term, one general astronomy and one class on the geology of the planets. I also co-teach a Humanities class about the co-evolution of science and modern culture.



Saddleback College | MSE Division | Earth and Ocean Science | Curriculum Vitae


Geology Notes | Study Tips | Why Science? | Why Geology? | Recipes




Page last updated: 16 January 2013