Stephen Rowland

Professor of Geology
Expertise: Geology of Southern Nevada, History of Geology, Paleoecology, Paleontology, Stratigraphy


Steve Rowland studies the history of life on Earth as recorded in the fossil record, particularly the paleontology of Southern Nevada and adjacent regions. His research ranges from the earliest (late pre-Cambrian) animal fossils, to Jurassic dinosaur tracks (and those of co-existing animals) in Red Rock Canyon and Valley of Fire State Park, to Ice-Age fossils of the Tule Springs area. His history of geology research focuses on 18th century Russia as well as the history of the relationship between geology and religion in American history—especially as recorded in the writings of Thomas Jefferson and Mark Twain. 

Stephen Rowland In The News

October 22, 2020
Hikers stumbled upon the oldest vertebrate footprints ever discovered in the Grand Canyon.
August 26, 2020
A rock tumble at the Grand Canyon revealed fossil footprints that researchers say are among the oldest in the park.
Las Vegas Sun
August 26, 2020
Fossilized animal tracks discovered in the Grand Canyon were likely left by a reptile some 313 million years ago, among the oldest found on Earth, a UNLV professor said.
Epoch Times
August 26, 2020
Finding fossil footprints at the Grand Canyon isn’t particularly unusual. The expansive stretch of red rock is home to an array of formations containing preserved remains of the past.

Articles Featuring Stephen Rowland

Campus NewsSeptember 15, 2020
UNLV takes on another school semester with precaution and discovery.
ResearchAugust 25, 2020
UNLV geologist investigating 310 million-year-old fossil trackway from ancient reptilian creature.
Interior of Grand Canyon with individual looking at rocks
ResearchMay 1, 2020
Las Vegas Valley rock layer matches that of a famous interval of rocks at the Grand Canyon; findings reported in the journal Geology.
petri dish and beakers containing liquids
ResearchDecember 26, 2018
In 2018, faculty and students collaborated with one another and international colleagues on scientific exploration that sought to help people make sense of themselves and the world around them.