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Petrology Activities and Examples Collection

This is a collection of educational resources used in igneous and metamorphic petrology courses. The collection includes lab exercises, classroom activities, problem sets and more. The purpose of this collection is to allow for the sharing of materials within the community of petrology teachers. You can



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Scientific debate: Mantle plumes part of Cutting Edge:Deep Earth:Activities
Brennan Jordan, University of South Dakota
A structured format for a debate of the mantle plume hypothesis and alternative hypotheses with supporting materials.

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Deciphering complex fluid-mineral interactions in the palm of your hand part of Cutting Edge:Complex Systems:Teaching Activities
Barb Dutrow, Louisiana State University
This exercise uses polished rock slabs containing veins sealed by copper-bearing minerals to understand the feedback effects in complex fluid-rock systems. By determining the minerals and their relative timing, the ...

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Earth Materials and Ancient Cultures part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Wayne Powell, CUNY Brooklyn College
Students investigate properties of earth materials through the lens of art and archeology. It allows ties to other required core curriculum courses (particularly classics and art history), and integrates the use of ...

Historical Volcanic Eruptions part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Jeffrey Nunn, Louisiana State University
Students are asked to individually research and write a paper on a historical volcanic eruption and then are formed into groups to create a 10 minute stand-alone PowerPoint presentation which is shown and discussed ...

Calculating a Simple Phase Diagram: Diamond=Graphite part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a very short exercise designed to get students to understand how the Gibbs energy equation is used to calculate the location of a reaction in P-T space. I use it in-class and have students work on it in ...

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Introduction to Gibbs Energy part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a short project that can be used in-class or as homework. It involves just a few questions and it is intended to help students understand the idea of Gibbs free energy.

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When and How Did Continental Crust Form? part of Teaching Examples
Dave Mogk, Montana State University-Bozeman
Many models have been proposed regarding the timing and mechanisms that first formed the continental crust. The purpose of this exercise is to help students explore the question of crustal genesis and evolution ...

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Teaching Stable Isotope Geochemistry in an Undergraduate Petrology or Geochemistry Course part of Teaching Examples
Steve Dunn
This assignment includes three reading assignments for students that (1) introduce the basics of stable isotope geochemistry, (2) explain carbon and oxygen isotopic shifts that result from volatilization and/or ...

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Igneous Rock Compositions and Plate Tectonics part of Teaching Examples
Allen Glazner, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
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 ...

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Schreinemakers Analysis - Problem #4 part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a straightforward Schreinemakers analysis involving two invariant points.

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T-X Phase Diagrams part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a 15 page tutorial and problem set designed to get students familiar with T-X diagrams, their implications, and uses.

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Schreinemakers Analysis - Problem #3: Analysis of an Invariant Point part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a challenging Schreinemakers analysis problem.

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The use of visualization and sketches of thin sections to encourage a better understanding of phase diagrams: Binary and ternary phase diagram exercises part of Teaching Examples
Jennifer M. Wenner and Drew S. Coleman
In these homework exercises, students manipulate two- and three- component phase diagrams. At various points during their interpretation of melting or crystallization of a composition, they are asked to ...

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Peritectic Phase Diagram part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
An exercise to help students figure out what is going on with peritectic phase diagrams. It is NOT trivial.

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Theriak-Domino Exercise part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This multidimensional project involves using several different computer programs to calculate and interpret phase diagrams and pseudosections. So, students learn lots of skills at the same time. But, an overarching ...

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