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Geochemistry Activities

Stream sampling in the Animas River
USGS photo

This collection of activities can be used in geochemistry courses. The collection includes lab exercises, classroom activities, problem sets and more. The materials below are sorted by topic, and may be listed under more than one topic. Help us expand the collection by contributing your favorite teaching activity.


Results 76 - 90 of 145 matches

Chemical Differentiation in the Palisades Sill part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Petrology:Teaching Examples
Matthew Gorring, Montclair State University
The purpose of this assignment is for students to synthesize field observations, petrography, and whole-rock chemical analyses in order to investigate chemical differentiation processes in a basaltic magma chamber. ...

Calculating Rb-Sr Isochrons part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Petrology:Teaching Examples
Andy Barth, IUPUI
This is a spreadsheet that I use in petrology to walk students through calculating Rb-Sr isochrons and talking about isotope heterogeneity and sampling at various scales. The example exercise is the Tuolumne ...

Research Paper part of Cutting Edge:Early Career:Previous Workshops:Workshop 2010:Teaching Activities
Alan Wanamaker, Iowa State University
This writing assignment was a major part of a class entitled "Stable Isotopes in the Environment" at Iowa State University. The main goals of the assignment were to foster effective scientific writing and ...

Modeling Exsolution (and Perthite Formation) as an Example of Complex-System Behavior part of Cutting Edge:Complex Systems:Teaching Activities
Dave Mogk, Montana State University-Bozeman; Barb Dutrow, Louisiana State University
Students use a physical model, computer simulation, examples from the natural world, visualizations, and overarching thought experiments to explore this phenomenon. Exsolution embodies attributes of a complex ...

Modeling U-Series Concordia/Discordia Using STELLA part of Rates and Time:GSA Activity Posters
Kirsten Menking, Vassar College
U-Series dating techniques are widely used to determine the absolute ages of some of Earth's oldest rocks, but the concordia/discordia diagram can be quite difficult for students to grasp. I have produced a STELLA-based lab exercise to develop students' understanding of this important chronologic technique. Students create models of the two isotopic decay systems and run these models to create the concordia diagram. They then carry out experiments in which they "add" or "remove" varying amounts of lead or uranium in simulation of metamorphism. In the course of the lab, students are introduced to the concepts of exponential decay and secular equilibrium as well as modeling concepts such as the creation of if-then statements.

Introduction to Equilibrium Thermodynamics: Salt Dissolution part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Andrew Knudsen, Lawrence University;
Students dissolve simple salts, halite and sylvite, in water at different temperatures and explore the thermodynamics of this simple system to build a foundation for further studies.

Stable Isotopes and M&Ms part of Cutting Edge:Oceanography:Activities
Roman de Jesus, SUNY at Stony Brook
Students are often confused by the concepts of stable isotope signatures and conventional notation. This activity is designed to introduce students to the del notation (isotopic signature), fractionation, and end ...

Geochemistry all around us part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Andrew Knudsen, Lawrence University
We look at a variety of natural waters in and around Appleton over the course of the term. The goal is for students to recognize differences and how those play into the topics we have covered in the course.

Rock Samples and Geochemistry Analyses part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Maria Rosa Lourdes, Bahia Federal University
We will emphasize the importance of rock sampling and preparation for geochemistry analyses.

Integrating research methods into geochemistry using local resources part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Jeanette Jerz, DePauw University
This is a semester-long project that introduces students to research methods and practices. Students learn both field and lab techniques and how to develop testable hypotheses. Using local resources is an easy way ...

Nitrous Oxide Transport and Transformation part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Pierre-Andre Jacinthe, Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis
In this laboratory exercise, students gain experience manipulating gas concentration data, determining soil properties related to transport of gases through porous medium like soils. This exercise is appropriate ...

Geochemical debates part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Nancy Hinman, University of Montana-Missoula, The
Students are given the task of defending or refuting a statement about global warming. Students are expected to work in groups to develop the strongest argument in their favor, but must also address issues raised ...

REE Modeling of Melting and Crystallization part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Mark Schmitz, Boise State University
This exercise is used in and out of class for exploring the use of trace elements to model melting and crystallization processes; it emphasizes quantitative skills and constructing numerical models.

Crystallization-Differentiation of Basaltic Magma part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Kent Ratajeski, University of Kentucky
In this exercise, students use geochemical data from volcanic glasses and minerals in lavas and drill cores from the solidified Kilauea Iki lava lake to learn about the petrologic processes related to the eruption ...

Periodic Table of the Elements Activity part of Cutting Edge:Geochemistry:Activities
Laura Wetzel, Eckerd College
Students work in groups to create the Periodic Table of the Elements in class using cards that they completed as homework. This is meant as a review of the Periodic Table and a direct illustration of how Dmitri ...