Stephen Moshier, Ph.D.



Professor of Geology, Black Hills Science Station Director, Department Chair
On Faculty since 1991

Phone: (630)752-5856


Ph.D., 1987, LSU, Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Geology

M.A., 1979, SUNY Binghamton, Binghamton, New York; Geology

B.S., 1977, VPI & SU, Blacksburg, Virginia; Geology

About Stephen Moshier

Dr. Stephen Moshier has practiced geology as a college professor and an oil company explorationist. Much of his early research in geology involved describing and interpreting oil reservoir rocks. He has published papers on oil fields in North Ameirca, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. This work contributed to our understanding of the origin of oil in giant oil-sand deposits and the formation of porosity in subsurface limestone reservoirs. Dr. Moshier is also interested in ancient and modern reef depositional environments (allowing him occasional trips to snorkel in the Bahamas and Belize).  He is featured as one of the Wheaton Experts.

More recently, Dr. Moshier's research efforts are in the field of geoarchaeology. In 1998, he visited the northwest Sinai coast with Egyptologist James Hoffmeier (Trinity International University) to look for potential excavation sites associated with the ancient Egyptian New Kingdom. From 1998 to 2007 Dr. Moshier served as team geologist in Dr. Hoffmeier's excavation of Tell el-Borg. Field mapping conducted in the area of the excavation has resulted in a reconstruction of the area's physical geography in New Kingdom times, putting archaeological sites in proper geographic context. For example, an ancient stream that ran through the site, now buried beneath the desert floor, was discovered using satellite photography and hand-dug trenches. In 2008, Dr. Moshier joined the Harvard University-Leon Levy Expedition to Tell Asheklon in Israel. Dr. Moshier involves students in his research, including fieldwork at archaeological sites and lab and remote sensing work back at Wheaton College.

Dr. Moshier has served as past president of the Geological Society of Kentucky and the Affiliation of Christian Geologists. He is a member of several professional geological societies.

In the Department of Geology and Environmental Science, Dr. Moshier is responsible for education in the areas of earth history, sedimentology, stratigraphy, marine biology, petroleum geology, and geoarchaeology. He teaches general education courses on Natural Disasters, Geology of National Parks, and Theories of Origins. Dr. Moshier serves as Director of the Black Hills Program at the Wheaton College Science Station.

Dr. Moshier and his wife have two grown sons. Dr. and Mrs. Moshier are active in their church in Geneva IL and have served on the local advisory board for YoungLife in Kane County. The Moshier family enjoyed many summers together in the Black Hills at the Wheaton College Science Station.

Doc Mo, as students call him, was interested in space exploration as a child and active in scouting, which led to his study of geology in college. His other interests include music (his sons are jazz musicians), travel (a benefit of being a geologist) and reading space history and historical biographies.

Courses Taught

  • Natural Disasters (nonmajor course)
  • Geology of National Parks (nonmajor course)
  • Theories of Origins (nonmajor course) (co-teacher)
  • Earth History and Stratigraphy
  • Biogeology
  • Geoarchaeology
  • Petroleum Geology
  • Marine Biology (co-teacher with Biology faculty)
  • General Petrography and Petrology (co-teacher)
  • Senior Geology Seminar

Membership in Professional Societies

  • Geological Society of America
  • Affiliation of Christian Geologists, President 1999-2002
  • American Scientific Affiliation
  • Geological Society of Kentucky (President--1990; Eastern Vice President--1989)


Individual Projects

Geoarchaeology, Quaternary paleoenvironmental analysis- study areas in east Nile Delta and NW Sinai, Egypt and Tell Ashkelon, Israel.

Carbonate petrology (sedimentology and diagenesis): modern and ancient depositional environments, porosity; carbonate-coal depositional systems; carbonate petroleum reservoirs.

Research with Students

Geoarchaeology (field work, remote sensing and GIS)

Watershed analysis for urban planning and community development (previous projects in Chicago suburbs and rural Honduras).


Moshier, S. O., and J. K. Hoffmeier, 2015. Which Way Out of Egypt? Physical Geography Related to the Exodus Itinerary. In: Israel's Exodus in Transdisciplinary Perspective: Text, Archaeology, Culture, and Geoscience, Th. E. Levy, Th. Schneider, W.H.C. Propp (eds.), Quantitative Methods in the Humanities and Social Sciences XXII, Springer International Publishing Switzerland: 101-108.

Hoffmeier, J. and Moshier, S. O. 2014. “The Ways of Horus” – Reconstructing Egypt’s East Frontier Defense Network and the Military Road to Canaan in New Kingdom Times. In Exacavtions in North Sinai: Tell el-Borg I, ed. J. K. Hoffmeier, 34-61. Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns. 

Moshier, S. O., 2014. Geologic Setting of Tell el-Borg with Implications for Ancient Geography of the Northwest Sinai. In Exacavtions in North Sinai: Tell el-Borg I, ed. J. K. Hoffmeier, 62-83. Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns.

Hoffmeier, J. and Moshier, S. O. 2013. “A Highway Out of Egypt”: The main road from Egypt to Canaan. In F. Förster and H. Riemer (eds.) Desert Road Archaeology in Ancient Egypt and Beyond. AFRICA PRAEHISTORICA 27: 485-510.

Moshier, Stephen O., Daniel Master, Jacob Lepori, David Wheatley, Benjamin Felker, Elisabeth LaVigne. 2011. Geological foundations of ancient seaport Ashkelon, Israel Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 43, No. 5, p. 292

Moshier, Stephen O., and Greenberg, Jeffrey K., 2010. History and Future of Geology Field Instruction at the Wheaton College Science Station, South Dakota Black Hills. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 42, No. 3, p. 9


Hill, C. A., and Moshier, S.O. 2009. Flood Geology and the Grand Canyon: A Critique. Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 61: 99-115.

Moshier, Stephen O., Felker, Benjamin, and Gayed, Bahaa. 2009. Field recognition and remote sensing of an ancient channel of the Pelusiac Nile, Egypt. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs, Vol. 41, No. 7, p. 75


Moshier, S.O., Maas, D.E., and Greenberg, J.K. 2009. From the beginning: faith and geology at evangelical Wheaton College. In M. Kobel-Ebert (ed.) Geology and Religion: Historical Views of an Intense Relationship between Harmony and Hostility. The Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 310, 299-314.


Moshier, S.O., A. El-Kalani. 2008. Late Bronze Age paleogeography along the ancient Ways of Horus in Northwest Sinai, Egypt. Geoarchaeology 23: 450-473.

Haddock, G.H., Neiburger, E.J. and Moshier, S.O. 2008. The Perry Mastodon: A Specimen Exhibit at Wheaton College. Central States Archaeological Journal, 55: 32-33.

Moshier, S.O., Arnold, D., Funck, L.L., Lewis, R.J., Smith, A.J., Walton, J.H., Wharton, W.R. 2007. Theories of Origins: A Multi- and Interdisciplinary Course for Undergraduates and Wheaton College. Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith, 59, 290-296.

Hoffmeier, James K., and Stephen O. Moshier. 2006. New paleo-environmental evidence from the north Sinai to complement Manfred Bidtak¹s map of the eastern Delta and some historical implications. In Timelines: Studies in Honour of Manfred Bietak, Volume II, Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta, 149. eds. E. Czerny, I. Hein, H. Hunger, D. Melman, A. Schwab, 167-176. Leuven, Belgium: Peeters Publishers.

Moshier, Stephen O. 2006. What is God's Purpose for Natural Disasters? In Not Just Science: Questions Where Christian Faith and Natural Science Intersect. eds. Dorothy F. Chappell and E. David Cook, 141-147. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan.

de Wet, C. B, Moshier, S. O., Hower, J. C., de Wet, A. P., Brennan, S. T., Helfrich, C. T., and Raymond, A. L., 1997. Disrupted coal and carbonate facies within two Pennsylvanian cyclothems, southern Illinois Basin, United States. Geological Society of America Bulletin. 109:1231-1248.

Moshier, S. O., and Stamper, M. E., 1994, Depositional facies and porosity development at Coon Creek Field (Newman "Big Lime"), Leslie County, Kentucky (abstract).  American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, v. 78, p. 1332. RECIPEINT: Vincent E. Nelson Award presented by the Eastern Section of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists for best poster presentation at the 1994 annual meeting.

Moshier, S. O., and Kirkland, B., 1993. Identification and diagenesis of a Phylloid Alga: Archaeolithophyllum from the Pennsylvanian Providence Limestone, Western Kentucky. Journal of Sedimentary Petrology. 63:1032-1041.

deWet, C. B., Moshier, S. O., Hower, J. C., Rimmer, S. M., 1991,  Deposition and diagenesis of a marine-swamp margin; the Providence Limestone and adjacent coals, West Coals, Western Kentucky, in : A. J. Lomando and P. M. Harris (eds.), Mixed Carbonate-Siliciclastic Sequences. Soc. Econ. Paleontologists Mineralogists Core Workshop No. 15: 169-204.

Moshier, S. O., 1989. Development of microporosity in a micritic limestone reservoir, Lower Cretaceous, Middle East. Sedimentary Geology. 63:191-213.

Moshier, S.O., 1989, Microporosity in micritic limestones - a review. Sedimentary Geology, 63: 217-240.

Dean, C.S. and Moshier, S.O., 1989, Cumberland Mountain: The Inside Story: Annual Field Conference of the Geological Society of Kentucky, September 22-23, 1989. 43 p.

Moshier, S. O., Handford, C. R., Scott, R. W., and Boutell, R. D., 1988. Giant gas accumulation in a "chalky"-textured micritic limestone, Lower Cretaceous Shuaiba Fm., Eastern United Arab Emirates, in : A. J. Lomando and P. M. Harris (eds.), Giant Oil and Gas Fields-A Core Workshop. Soc. Econ. Paleontologists Mineralogists Core Workshop No. 12: 228-272.

Moshier, S.O., 1986, Carbonate platform sedimentology, Upper Cambrian Richland Formation, Lebanon Valley, Pennsylvania. Journal of Sedimentary Petrology, 54:204-216.

Moshier, S. O. and Waples, D. W., 1985. Quantitative evaluation of Lower Cretaceous Mannville Group as source rock for Alberta's oil sands.  American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, 69: 161-172.

Book Reviews

Moshier, S.O. 2008. Review of Supercontinent: Ten Billion years in the Life of our Planet, by Ted Nield. Books and Culture 14/4: 10-11.

Moshier, S.O. 2007. Review of Extinction, How Life on Earth Nearly Ended 250 Million Years Ago, by Douglas Erwin. Books and Culture 13/3: 38-39.

Moshier, S.O. 1994. Review of Dolomite Reservoirs, Geochemical Techniques for Evaluating Origin and Distribution, by J.R. Allen and W.D. Wiggins. Journal of Sedimentary Research B64: 582-583.



Featured in: Evolution-What about God (2001) Public Broadcasting System

Featured in: Exodus Revealed (2006) National Geographic Channel

Provided maps for: Egypt Unwrapped: The Real Ramses (2009) National Geographic Channel


Interviewed in: Rosin, H., “Rock of Ages, Ages of Rocks” New York Times Magazine, November 25, 2007

Media Center