Dave Gosselin

Dave Gosselin

  • Contact Information
  • My Story
  • Publications & Presentations
  • Background
  • Expertise & Interests
  • Advising
  • Courses Taught
  • Outreach

Title Environmental Studies, Director
Address 150a Hardin Hall
3310 Holdrege Street
Lincoln NE
Phone 402-472-8919
FAX 402-472-3610
E-mail dgosselin2@unl.edu
Vitae Download file
Contact Preference


Office Hours

MWF 8:00

Hi, I'm Dave Gosselin, a professor of Earth science in the School of Natural Resources. I am also the sirector of UNL's environmental studies program, which currently serves more than 100 undergraduate students. Over the past 15 years, developing educational programs in the area of Earth systems science has become my passion. My work in Earth systems science education started by providing professional development opportunities for K-12 educators as the director of the Nebraska Earth Systems Education Network (NESEN). The NESEN theme is to create a community among Earth science educators and scientists. For more information on NESEN, please see our homepage at http://nesen.unl.edu. My work with K-12 educators has involved traditional classroom teaching, summer workshops, and most recently the delivery of online, distance-delivered courses, as part of the Laboratory Earth professional development series. In 1999, I received the Catalyst Award from the Nebraska Association of Teachers of Science, a group that works closely with NESEN.

The common theme among my research activities throughout my career has been geochemistry, water-rock interaction and fluid migration. Most recently, my work has emphasized understanding the occurrence of arsenic and uranium in public water supplies and trying to develop a more economic approach to dealing with this water quality issue. I have also worked to understand the relationship between groundwater and surface water. In this context, I have been involved in physical hydrogeologic investigations, groundwater-lake modeling, and the use of remote sensing to study variability in lake behavior over large geographic areas.

David C. GosselinDave takes a water sample from a Sand Hills lake.

Since getting my Ph.D., my research has evolved from working in high-temperature environments to low-temperature surface and groundwater systems. My low temperature work has involved the application of major ions, rare earth elements, radiogenic isotopes, natural uranium, thorium radionuclides, and the stable isotopes of oxygen and hydrogen, to assess the history of groundwater movement through geologic materials.

My doctoral research emphasized the Archean rocks in the Black Hills of South Dakota, and focused more specifically on elemental behavior and fluid migration at mid-crustal levels. My interest in remote sensing evolved out of my work on planetary materials, and colleagues using remotely sensed planetary data sets.

Selected Publications

Harvey, F.E., Ayers, J.F. and Gosselin, D.C. 2008. Ground Water Dependence of Endangered Ecosystems: An Example from Nebraska's Saline Wetlands, Journal of Ground Water, 45, 6, 736-752.
Gosselin, D.C., L.M. Klawer, R. M. Joeckel, F.E. Harvey, A.R. Reade, and K. McVey. 2006. Arsenic in Rural Public Water Supplies, Nebraska, U.S.A., Great Plains Research, 16, 137-148.
Gosselin, D.C., V. Srihdar, F.E. Harvey and J.W. Goeke. 2006. Hydrological effects and groundwater fluctuations in interdunal environments in the Nebraska Sand Hills. Great Plains Research, 16, 17 – 28.
Anumalla, S, Ramamurthy, B., Gosselin, D., and Burbach, M. 2005. Groundwater monitoring using smart sensors. Proceedings of the IEEE EIT Conference, May 22-25, 2005, Lincoln, NE.
Bonnstetter R.J. and D.C. Gosselin. 2004. Present Status on Earth Science Education in the USA. Proceedings of the Joint Conference (SITH2003) of The 38th Conference of Société Internationale des Techniques Hydrothermales and The 56th Annual Meeting of the Balneological Society of Japan, August, Okayama, Japan.
Gosselin, D.C., F.E. Harvey, C.D. Frost, R. Stotler, and A. Macfarlane. 2004. Strontium isotope geochemistry of ground water in the central part of the Great Plains (Dakota) aquifer. Applied Geochemistry, 19, 359–377.
Gosselin, D.C. and J.L. Macklem-Hurst. 2002. Pre/Post Knowledge Assessment of an Earth Science Course for Elementary/Middle School Education Majors. Journal of Geoscience Education. 50:169-176.
Gosselin, D.C., R.H. Levy, and R.J. Bonnstetter. 2003. Using Earth science research to develop collaboration between scientists at a research university and K-12 educators: Insights for future efforts. Journal of Geoscience Education. 51:113-120.
Gosselin, D.C. and J.L. Macklem-Hurst. 2002. Pre/Post Knowledge Assessment of an Earth Science Course for Elementary/Middle School Education Majors. Journal of Geoscience Education. 50:169-176.
Stotler. R., F.E. Harvey, and D.C. Gosselin. (in review) Chemical & Isotope Evidence for a Black Hills Origin for Ground Water in the Dakota Aquifer Beneath Northeastern Nebraska, Journal of Ground Water.

Educational Background

  • BS - College of St. Thomas, Geology (1982)
  • PhD - South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, Geology (1987)


  • 2016 – Spirit of Service Award awarded by Center for Civic Engagement 
  • 9/3/2014 – Omtvedt Innovation Award for Teaching awarded by UNL-IANR 

SNR Mission Area(s)

  • Environmental Science

Affiliations (index)

Professional Organizations

  • Association for Environmental Studies and Sciences
    • AESS seeks to strengthen teaching, research and service in environmental studies and sciences, and to improve communication across boundaries that too often divide the traditional academic disciplines.
    • Member of Board of Directors 2016

Notable Websites

Other Areas of Interest

Groundwater Chemistry, Environmental Isotopes, Groundwater and Surface, Water Relationships, Sand Hills Hydrology, Science Education, Dakota aquifer/stratigrphy/geochemistry, Isotope hydrology for environmental tracking, Nebraska Earth Systems Education Network, Water quality, Wetlands

Graduate Program(s)

Master of Science in Natural Resource Sciences

Doctor of Philosophy in Natural Resource Sciences

Courses Taught
Course Number Course Title Fall Even Years Fall Odd Years Spring Even Years Spring Odd Years Summer Session Cross Listing
ENVR 101 Environmental Studies Orientation X X X X n/a
ENVR 201 Science, Systems, Environment, & Sustainability X X n/a
ENVR 289 Environmental Studies: Sophomore Orientation X none
ENVR 319 Environmental Engagement and the Community X None
ENVR 489 Environmental Studies Seminar none
ENVR 491 Environmental Studies Seminar n/a
ENVR 495 Internship in Environmental Studies X X X X n/a
ENVR 496 Independent Study X X X X n/a
ENVR 497 Intern Environmental Study X none
ENVR 498 Independent Study X X none
ENVR 499A Environmental Studies Senior Thesis I X X X X none
ENVR 499B Environmental Studies Senior Thesis II X X X X n/a
ENVR 499H Honors: Environmental Studies Senior Thesis I and II X X X X n/a
NRES 108 Earth's Natural Resource Systems Laboratory X X n/a
NRES 108 Earth's Natural Resource Systems Laboratory X X n/a
NRES 422 Laboratory Earth: Earth's Changing Systems NRES 422/822
NRES 814 Laboratory Earth: Earth Natural Resource Systems n/a
NRES 822 Laboratory Earth: Earth's Changing Systems NRES 422/822