Christine Allen

Christine Allen
Mentor: Dr. David Foster
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
"I got involved with research in order to gain understanding and experience outside of the classroom. Geology is a hands-on science and it is a great opportunity to be able to participate in the field work involved, the analysis of your data and the presentation of your findings. This year, I hope to complete my research and become a more confident geologist."





Research Interests

  • Plate Tectonics

Academic Awards

  • UF University Scholars Program
  • Florida Bright Futures


  • UF Geology Club


  • Can You Dig It? (Geology Outreach)

Hobbies and Interests

  • Camping
  • Hiking
  • Playing Piano
  • Soccer

Research Description

Timing of Metamorphism of the Sawtooth Metamorphic Complex, Idaho
The goal of my project is to ultimately help reconstruct ancient western North America and the tectonic evolution of our continent. My project is to determine the timing of metamorphism of the meta-sedimentary rocks in the Sawtooth metamorphic complex (SMC) in central Idaho. The project will test the hypothesis that the metamorphism of the Precambrian meta-sedimentary rocks took place prior to the intrusion of the Sawtooth batholith during the Eocene (50 million years ago). I have collected multiple samples of quartzite (a metamorphic rock that contains the mineral zircon) from the SMC and will be testing zircons to determine a rock's radiometric age by measuring the abundance of uranium and lead isotopes for individual grains. By determining the ages of zircons within the rocks, I hope to be able to determine the timing of metamorphism and better understand the early crustal development/tectonic processes that occurred in North America.