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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Mineral Classification Exercise part of Mineralogy:Activities
This exercise gets students thinking about mineral classification and the properties that are most useful for classifying and identifying minerals.

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Igneous Rock Compositions and Plate Tectonics part of Petrology:Teaching Examples
In this exercise, students use whole-rock major- and trace-element compositions of igneous rocks from a variety of tectonic settings and locations to explore the importance of plate setting in determining magma ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Constraints and Implications of Groundwater Temperature on the Formation of Mississippi Valley-type Zn-Pb Deposits part of Hydrogeology:Activities
This assignment illustrates the role of groundwater in transporting heat and its implications for the formation of hydrothermal ore deposits. The assignment uses a combination of graphs and algebraic equations that ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Wooster Case Study - Capture Curve Analysis part of Hydrogeology:Activities
This Excel based exercise has students calculate the shape of the capture zone of a contaminant recovery well. Students perform a sensitivity analysis by varying aquifer and pumping parameters to observe the impact ...

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 for Aquifer Test part of Hydrogeology:Activities
Entry level undergraduate students who use commercial software packages for aquifer test often feel frustrated and distant from real field test. This session introduces a method of aquifer test using Excel ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Campus Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Campus-Based Learning:Examples
Students conduct a greenhouse gas emission inventory for their college or university. Students analyze findings and present information to the college or university community. -

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Mass Balance and Mineral Reactions part of Petrology:Teaching Examples
This is a short exercise to make sure that students understand mass balance and how the different starting assemblages may lead to different results after metamorphism. It is quick but not trivial.

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Water Wars: A look at Gallatin Valley Water Controversies part of Public Policy:Activities
This virtual field trip explores the science and policy of a ground water dispute in Gallatin Valley Montana. The virtual field trip uses a role-playing activity to explore the geology, hydrology and policy related ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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The Lifestyle Project part of Public Policy:Activities
This three-week project challenges students to learn about environmental alternatives by modifying their own lifestyles. Throughout the project, students reduce their impacts on the environment by changing the way ...

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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Vectors and slope stability part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
An in-class activity or homework for graphically solving slope-stability problems with vectors.

On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Collection This activity is part of the On the Cutting Edge Exemplary Teaching Activities collection.
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