Andrew Goodliffe

Andrew M. Goodliffe

Associate Professor
Associate Dean of the Graduate School


  • PhD, Geology and Geophysics, University of Hawai'i at Manoa, 1998
  • MS, Geophysics, University of Alaska Fairbanks, 1993
  • BSc, Applied Geology and Physics, University of Plymouth (UK), 1989


Research Interests

As a geophysicist, Andrew has worked throughout the world on geophysical projects including active volcanoes, continental rifting, seafloor mapping, and geological carbon sequestration. Other important projects include the application of geophysical techniques to the location of sub-sea-ice crashed aircraft and the drilling of 8 deep exploration wells (wildcats). Andrew has spent extensive time at sea in almost all oceans and is a proud Shellback. Andrew has served as an observer for the United Nations SOPAC program.

Andrew is extensively published, including three articles in Nature. So far in his career, he has brought in well in excess of $10 million in grants.

Other interests include science outreach and education advocacy. In the past, Andrew has taught a weekly geology class to elementary school children and is frequently invited to talk at local schools in the Tuscaloosa area. As a past president of the Alabama Geological Society Andrew has participated in the Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama “Adopt-a-School” program. As an officer of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers Andrew is involved in Education policy, professional development for geoscience teachers, and governmental engagement.

In addition to his teaching and research responsibilities Andrew serves as Assistant Dean of the Graduate School. In this capacity, he is responsible for admission, recruitment, fellowships and Graduate School student support programs. Key activities:

  • Chair of The University of Alabama Graduate Strategic Enrollment Planning Committee
  • Growth and modernization of Graduate School recruitment activities
  • Streamlining of the admission process
  • The creation of policies designed to help UA recruit the best and brightest graduate students
  • Growth of the Tide Together minority mentoring program and the Graduate Parent Support Program
  • Planning and implementation of the annual Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) research communication competition (and associate professional development program)
  • Planning and implementation of the annual Women in STEM Experience (WiSE) symposium that celebrates the participation of women in STEM fields

Current Research Projects

  1. Application of marine geophysical techniques (seismic reflection, gravity, magnetics, heat flow, and seafloor mapping) to tectonic problems. Potential student projects include kinematic rift reconstruction and well-seismic correlation. Scientific problems include:
    • Evolution of active continental rifting and the transition to seafloor spreading (primarily in the Woodlark Basin, Papua New Guinea)
    • Evolution of back arc extension
  2. Application of geophysical techniques to geological carbon sequestration. Potential student projects include the application of advanced geophysical processing techniques to terrestrial seismic reflection data, the reprocessing and interpretation of vertical seismic profiling data, and reservoir characterization
  3. Creation of K-12 and undergraduate classroom curriculum based on recent research results (primarily from the GeoPRISMS program)

** Please note that I am currently not accepting undergraduate or graduate students at this time**

Courses Taught


  • GEO 101 Dynamic Earth
  • GEO 104 Sustainable Earth
  • GEO369 Introduction to Geophysics


  • GEO 546 Scientific Computing
  • GEO 545 Multi-Channel Seismic Processing and Interpretation
  • GEO 525 Methods in Carbon Sequestration
  • GEO 525 Hydrocarbon Exploration Methods
  • GEO 538 Tectonics Seminar
  • GEO 525 Imperial Barrel Award
  • Introductory Geology for Graduate Students (University of Hawai’i)
  • Marine Geophysics (University of Hawai’i)

Selected Publications

  • Nixon, C,W., L.C. McNeill, J.M. Bull, R.E. Bell, R.L. Gawthorpe, T.J. Henstock, D. Christodoulou, M. Ford, B. Taylor, D. Sakellariou, G. Ferentinos, G. Papatheodorou, M.R. Leeder, R.E.LI. Collier, A.M. Goodliffe, M. Sachpazi, and H. Kranis (2016), Rapid spatiotemporal variations in rift structure during development of the Corinth Rift, central Greece, Tectonics, 35, doi:10.1002/2015TC004026.
  • Robinson, D.M, R.M. Bailey, and A.M. Goodliffe (2012), Structure of the Alleghanian Thrust Belt under the Gulf Coastal Plain Sediments, GCAGS Memoir Series: Gulf Coast Geology, 01/2012; 1:44-54.
  • Taylor, B., J.R. Weiss, A.M. Goodliffe, M.Sachpazi, M., Laigle and A. Hirn (2011), The structures, stratigraphy and evolution of the Gulf of Corinth rift, Greece, Geophysical Journal International, 185 (11), 1189-1219.
  • Robinson, D.M, M.G. Gates, and A.M. Goodliffe (2009), Structure of the Wills Valley Anticline, Alabama, Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies Transactions, 59, 663-671.
  • Oakley, A.J., B. Taylor, G.F. Moore, and A.M. Goodliffe (2009), Sedimentary, volcanic and tectonic processes of the central Mariana arc: Mariana Trough backarc basin formation and the West Mariana Ridge, Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems, 10 (8), doi:10.1029/2008GC002312.
  • Taylor, B., A.M. Goodliffe, and F. Martinez, F. (2009), Initiation of transform faults and the origin of spreading center segmentation at rifted continental margins, Comptes Rendus de l’Académie des Sciences, 341, 428-438.
  • Kington, J.D. and A.M. Goodliffe (2008), Plate motions and continental extension at the rifting to spreading transition in Woodlark Basin, PapuaNew Guinea: Can oceanic plate kinematics be extended into continental rifts? Tectonophysics, 458, 82-85.
  • Goodliffe, A. M. and B. Taylor (2007), The boundary between continental rifting and seafloor spreading in the Woodlark Basin, Papua New Guinea. In: Karner, G. D. Manatschal, G. & Pinhiero, L. M. (eds) Imaging, Mapping and Modelling Continental Lithosphere Extension and Breakup. Geological Society, London, Special Publications, 282, 213-234.
  • Gunther, R.H., S.L . Klemperer, and A.M. Goodliffe (2006), Modeling sideswipe in 2D oceanic seismic surveys from sonar data: application to the mariana arc, Tectonophysics, 420, 333-343.
  • Robb, M.S, B. Taylor, and A.M. Goodliffe (2005), Re-examination of the magnetic lineations of the Gascoyne and Cuvier Abyssal Plains, off NW Australia, Geophys. J. Int., 163, 42-55.
  • Zelt, B.C., B. Taylor, J.R. Weiss, A.M. Goodliffe, M. Sachpazi, and A. Hirn (2004), Streamer tomography velocity models for the Gulf of Corinth and Gulf of Itea, Greece, Geophys. J. Int., 159, 333-346.
  • Goodliffe. A.M., B. Taylor, and G.D. Karner (2001), Correlations between seismic, logging, and core data at ODP Leg 180 sites in the western Woodlark Basin. In B. Taylor, P. Huchon, and A. Klaus, (Eds.), Proc. ODP, Sci. Results, 180.