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Exemplary Teaching Activities

Beginning in 2011, On the Cutting Edge began a process to review the extensive collection of activities submitted by workshop participants and members of the geoscience community. The Review Processes page illuminates the details of the peer review process, and the activities are scored on 5 elements: scientific veracity; alignment of goals, activity, and assessment; pedagogical effectiveness; robustness; and completeness of the ActivitySheet. The activities that score very highly in these areas become part of the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection and are featured below. To date, activities in the mineralogy, petrology, geochemistry, environmental geology, structural geology, geophysics, and tectonics areas have been reviewed so the exemplary collection is composed of activities from these topics. As the review of additional areas is completed, exemplary activities from the rest of the collection will be included here.


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Is the New Madrid Seismic Zone at risk for a large earthquake? part of Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
Eliza Richardson, Penn State
In this lesson we discuss the controversy regarding the extent of seismic risk in the central United States today. We learn how to estimate earthquake recurrence interval using a variety of methods. This lesson ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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NanTroSEIZE in 3-D part of Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
Donald Reed, San Jose State University
We have developed a web-based virtual expedition, NanTroSEIZE in 3-D, based on a seismic survey associated with the NanTroSEIZE program of NSF-MARGINS and IODP to study the properties of the plate boundary fault ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Geologic Mapping Exercise part of Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
Andrew Smith, Vincennes University
This exercise is designed to simulate some of the mapping aspects of a basic geological investigation. This mock geological investigation is a good wrap-up exercise because it incorporates a variety of geological ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Observing Streams & Rivers in Google Earth part of Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
Jennifer Piatek, Central Connecticut State University
Students are asked to observe fluvial features on both Earth and Mars in satellite images via Google Earth (as well as online panoramas) and explore processes of erosion and deposition and the relationship of ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Using Excel to plot numerical and analytical forms of the diffusion equation part of Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
Anne Lightbody, UNH
This computer-based assignment forces students to compare and contrast integral and differential forms of the conservation of mass equation, as well as analytical and numerical approaches to solution. Students are ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Guided Reading of Scientific Journal Articles part of Structural Geology:Activities
Carol Ormand, Carleton College
This is a sequence of assignments for my Structural Geology course that guides students through the process of critically reading and analyzing scientific journal articles. For each article, I outline the general ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Comparing Carbon Calculators part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Teaching with Data:Examples
Mark McCaffrey, National Center for Science Education
Carbon calculators, no matter how well intended as tools to help measure energy footprints, tend to be black boxes and can produce wildly different results, depending on the calculations used to weigh various ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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How Effective is a Remediation System at a Regional Landfill? part of Geochemistry:Activities
Kevin Theissen, University of St. Thomas (MN)
In this activity, students begin exploring the effectiveness of a remediation system installed at a closed landfill system. Students learn the importance of redox chemistry in a real-world context and build field ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Analyzing Continuous Data - Climate Variability part of Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2011:Teaching Activities
Sarah Rubinfeld, Carthage College
The exercise focuses on the analysis of continuous data as applied to climate variability. Using data freely available on the internet, students work in Excel to import their data, organize it, and analyze it using ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Bedrock Geology Mapping Exercise part of Geoscience in the Field:Activities
Jim Miller, University of Minnesota-Duluth
As a final exercise in a course on Geological Maps, students conduct a field mapping of a one square mile area over a weekend. Back in the classroom, students are introduced to ArcMAP and Illustrator, with which ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
Learn more about this review process.