Cutting Edge > Courses > Petrology > Teaching Activities > Variation Diagrams and the Evolution of Thingmuli Lavas, Iceland

Variation Diagrams and the Evolution of Thingmuli Lavas, Iceland

Jeff Tepper
,
University of Puget Sound
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Summary

In this problem set students are provided with an EXCEL spreadsheet containing major element analyses of lavas frm Thingmuli Volcano in Iceland. They are asked to construct variation diagrams (Harker plots) and then explain the trends they see for various elements. I use this problem set to introduce the use of EXCEL and to help students to think about the connections between mineral assemblage and rock chemistry.

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Context

Audience

This activity is designed for use in a sophomore or junior level required petrology course for majors.

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

Students should have a basic understanding of how to use Excel.

How the activity is situated in the course

This is a stand-alone exercise.

Goals

Content/concepts goals for this activity

This problem set uses Excel to help students to think about the connections between mineral assemblage and rock chemistry.

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

Other skills goals for this activity

Description of the activity/assignment

In this problem set students are provided with an EXCEL spreadsheet containing major element analyses of lavas frm Thingmuli Volcano in Iceland. They are asked to construct variation diagrams (Harker plots) and then explain the trends they see for various elements. I use this problem set to introduce the use of EXCEL and to help students to think about the connections between mineral assemblage and rock chemistry.

Determining whether students have met the goals

More information about assessment tools and techniques.

Download teaching materials and tips

  • Instructors Notes (Microsoft Word 22kB May30 08)
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