Kent Ratajeski

  • Senior Lecturer
  • Earth & Environmental Sciences
301 Slone
859-257-4444
Other Affiliations:
  • Visiting Instructor
  • Wheaton College Science Station
Research Interests:
Education

Ph.D. in Geology, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, 1999

M.S. in Geology, University of Maryland, 1995

B.S. in Geology, New Mexico Tech, 1992

Teaching

Dr. Ratajeski's teaching responsibilities at UK have included Introductory Environmental Geology (EES 110), Geology of Natural Resources (EES 120), Geology of National Parks (EES 180), Phyiscal Geology (EES 220), Fundamentals of Geology I (EES 230), Fundamentals of Geology II (EES 235), Mineralogy (EES 360), Graduate Seminar (EES 570), and Experiential Education (EXP 396). 

Research

Kent Ratajeski’s research interests include: (1) the igneous petrology, geochemistry, and geochronology of granitic rocks, and (2) geoscience education and online curriculum development.  His doctoral work in igneous petrology with Allen Glazner at UNC-Chapel Hill involved a study of the Late Cretaceous granites in Yosemite Valley, California which included field mapping, whole-rock and mineral geochemistry (including isotopes), U-Pb zircon geochronology, and partial melting experiments carried out at the USGS in Menlo Park, California.  The results of his research imply that large-volumes of granitic magma may be derived by partial melting of mafic lower crust of continental-margin arcs, without the appreciable addition of an ancient crustal component.  Kent has been back to the Sierra Nevada several times for collaborations with other researchers.  Dr. Ratajeski has advised undergraduate research projects of igneous and metamorphic rocks in Maine and Georgia.  More recently, Dr. Ratajeski has applied the hornblende-plagioclase geothermobarometer to constrain depths of emplacement for the Buena Vista Crest and the Yosemite Valley intrusive suites in the Sierra Nevada batholith of California. 

Kent has also been developing innovative ways to integrate research and education.  His postdoc with David Mogk at Montana State University in 2004-2005 resulted in several online educational modules housed at the Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College which use web-based geochemical and crystallographic databases to encourage interactive learning within the mineralogy and petrology curriculum.  A member of the International Association for Diversity in Geoscience, his work on making the imagery of introductory geology courses more accessible to students with visual impairments was recently the topic of a poster presentation at a professional conference and earned the "Breaking Barriers Award" from the University of Kentucky's Disability Resource Center.  

Selected Publications: 

Ratajeski, K., 2017, Examples of tactile aids for teaching introductory geology students with visual disabilities.  Earth Educators Rendezvous, Albuquerque, NM, July 17-21, 2017. https://serc.carleton.edu/earth_rendezvous/2017/program/posters/wednesday/174527.html

Ratajeski, K., Duff, J.R., and Phelps, D.J., 2016, The Ark Encounter: a new obstacle for scientific understanding for the religious public in northern Kentucky: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 48.  https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2016AM/webprogram/Paper285177.html

Ratajeski, K., Barth, A.P., Miller, R.B., and Pignotta, G., 2015, How deep was the Intrusive Suite of Buena Vista Crest? Contrasting results from hornblende-plagioclase thermobarometry of granodiorites and zircon geochronology of broadly coeval volcanics (Minarets and Merced Peak complexes), Sierra Nevada batholith, California: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 47, p. 47.  https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2015CD/webprogram/Paper255068.html

Ratajeski, K., Greenberg, J.K., Allard, S.T., Schwandt, C.S., Tulimiero, C.J., and Gates, C.H., 2013, Diverse, widespread static porphyroblasts: the last gasp of Proterozoic metamorphism in the Black Hills, South Dakota?: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 45, p. 113.  https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2013AM/webprogram/Paper230892.html

Campbell, D., Campbell, L.D., Cates, C., Davidson, G., Long, K., Mercer, R., Ratajeski, K., Young, D.A., 2010, PCA geologists on the antiquity of the Earth: Modern Reformation, v. 19, no. 3, p. 6-9.  http://www.asa3.org/ASA/topics/Physical%20Science/EarthAntiquity[1].pdf

Stock, G.M., Glazner, A.F., Ratajeski, K., and Law, B., 2010, Geologic mapping of the vertical southeast face of El Capitan, Yosemite Valley, California: Abstract V11C-2304 presented at 2010 Fall Meeting, AGU, San Francisco, Calif., 13-17 Dec.

Ratajeski, K., 2010, Coeval mafic-felsic magmatism in the intrusive suite of Yosemite Valley, in Putirka, K. (ed.), From the Coast Ranges to the Sierra Nevada: the geology of central California: National Association of Geoscience Teachers Far Western Section Fall Conference, Oct. 8-10, 2010.
 
Loveless, W.T., and Ratajeski, K., 2007, High-precision U-Pb zircon geochronology of the Elberton Granite, northeast Georgia: preliminary Ca-TIMS results: Geological Society of America, Southeast Section meeting. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2007SE/webprogram/Paper118886.html
 
Ratajeski, K., 2006, A digital resource collection supporting the use of Earthchem databases in geoscience courses: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 38, p. 524. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2006AM/webprogram/Paper113697.html
 
Lehnert, K., Ratajeski, K., and Walker, D., 2006, Using online igneous geochemical databases for research and teaching: handbook for short course at the Geological Society of America Meeting, Philadelphia, October, 2006. 
 
Coleman, D.S., Bartley, J.M., Glazner, A.F., and Ratajeski, K., 2005, Field evidence for the assembly of the Half Dome Pluton by the emalgamation of small intrusions: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, p. 71. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005CD/finalprogram/abstract_85625.htm
 
Ratajeski, K., 2005, Students as field trip leaders: promoting active learning and group collaboration with a semester-culminating field trip project in Montana: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, p. 412. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005AM/webprogram/Paper92230.html
 
Ratajeski, K., Mogk, D., and Warnick, M., 2005, The Montana-Yellowstone geologic field guide database: a digital resource to integrate field-based research, teaching, and learning: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, v. 37, p. 283. https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005AM/webprogram/Paper92191.html
 
Ratajeski, K., Mogk, D., and Downs, R.T., 2005, Teaching mineralogy with crystal structure databases and visualization software: a digital resource collection: Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 15th Annual Goldschmidt Conference, Moscow, Idaho, May 20-25, v. 69, p. A665. 
 
Ratajeski, K., Sisson, T.W., and Glazner, A.F., 2005, Experimental and geochemical evidence for derivation of the El Capitan Granite, California, from hydrous, mafic lower crust: Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, v. 149, p. 713-734. 
 
Sisson, T.W., Ratajeski, K., Hankins, W.B., and Glazner, A.F., 2005, Voluminous granitic magmas from common basaltic sources: Contributions to Mineralogy and Petrology, v. 148, p. 635-661. 
 
Ratajeski, K., Glazner, A.F., and Miller, B.V., 2001, Geology and geochemistry of mafic to felsic plutonic rocks in the Cretaceous intrusive suite of Yosemite Valley, California: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 113, p. 1486-1502.
 
Ratajeski, K., 1999, Field, geochemical, and experimental study of mafic to felsic plutonic rocks associated with the intrusive suite of Yosemite Valley, California (Ph.D. thesis): Chapel Hill, University of North Carolina, 196 p.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Sisson, T.W., 1999, Loss of iron from gold capsules in rock-melting experiments: American Mineralogist, v. 84, p. 1521-1527.
 
Taylor, R.Z., Frankel, K.L., and Ratajeski, K., 1999, Variation in composition and texture with elevation within the El Capitan Granite, Yosemite National Park, California: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Cordilleran Section, p. A101.
 
Ratajeski, K., Sisson, T.W., and Glazner, A.F., 1999, Fluid-absent partial melting of mafic lower crust in continental-margin arcs: implications for the origin of low silica granites of the Sierra Nevada Batholith: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Cordilleran Section, v. 31, p. A-86.
 
Ingersoll, R.V., Ratajeski, K., Glazner, A.F., and Cloos, M., 1999, Mesozoic convergent margin of central California, in Wagner, D.L., and Graham, S.A. (eds.), Geologic field trips in northern California: California Division of Mines and Geology, Special Publication 119.
 
Ratajeski, K., Sisson, T.W., and Glazner, A.F., 1998, Generation of Sierran granite from mafic lower crust: preliminary results from partial melting experiments at 8 kbar and 800-975 C: Geological Society of America Penrose Conference on Crustal Differentiation, Verbania, Italy, July 4-10 (poster).
 
Ratajeski, K., and Glazner, A.F., 1997, Field and isotopic characteristics of mafic rocks associated with the El Capitan granite in Yosemite Valley, California: Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Cordilleran Section, v. 29, p. A58.
 
Ratajeski, K., 1995, Estimation of initial and saturation water concentrations of three granitic plutons in the central Great Basin, Nevada (M.S. Thesis): College Park, University of Maryland, 299 p.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Candela, P.A., 1995, Estimation of initial and saturation water contents of three Mesozoic granitic plutons in the north-central Great Basin, Nevada, in Brown, M., and Piccoli, P. (eds.), The Origin of Granites and Related Rocks (Abstracts), U.S.G.S. Circular 1129.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Candela, P.A., 1994, Predicted crystallization paths and oxygen fugacity-temperature trends for some Mesozoic granitic rocks of the central Great Basin: comparisons with published phase equilibria and the "MELTS" model of Ghiorso and Sack: Geological Society of America, Abstracts with Programs, v. 26, p. A-295.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Campbell, A.R., 1994, Distribution of fluid inclusions in igneous quartz of the Capitan pluton, New Mexico, USA: Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, v. 58, p. 1161-1174.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Campbell, A.R., 1992, Distribution of high-temperature, high-salinity fluid inclusions in igneous and miarolitic quartz of the Capitan pluton, NM: New Mexico Geological Society, Annual Spring Meeting, Proceedings Volume, p. 27.
 
Ratajeski, K., and Campbell, A.R., 1992, High-temperature, high-salinity fluid inclusions in igneous and miarolitic quartz of the Capitan pluton, NM: PACROFI IV (4th Pan-American Conference on Research on Fluid Inclusions), Lake Arrowhead, CA, May 21-25, p. 68.
 
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