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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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Interpreting T-X Diagrams part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This exercise is designed to help students learn how to interpret T-X phase diagrams. It also introduces them to the systematics of reactions involving a group of minerals.

What can zircons tell us about the Early Earth? part of Cutting Edge:Early Earth:Activities
Aaron Cavosie, University of Puerto Rico; Julie Baldwin, University of Montana-Missoula, The; Darrell Henry, Louisiana State University
This image shows an array of Jack Hill zircons arranged on a piece of tape prior to casting in epoxy. Details Students create U-Pb concordia plots in Excel to experience the methods used to date the worlds oldest ...

Mole %, Weight %, Compositions and Projections part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is an introductory exercise intended to get students thinking about mole vs weight % and about the power and problems of projections.

Schrinemaker Analysis - Problem #1: Analysis of an Invariant Point part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a standard Schreinemakers problem: identifying the sequence of stable and metastable reactions around an invariant point.

Schreinemakers Analysis - Problem #2: Analysis of an Invariant Point with Application of the Clausius-Clapeyron Equation part of Teaching Examples
Dexter Perkins, University of North Dakota-Main Campus
This is a standard Schreinemakers problem: identifying the sequence of stable and metastable reactions around an invariant point. The added wrinkle is that they use the Clausius-Clapeyron Equation to calculate ...

Volcanoes Around the Globe part of Cutting Edge:Visualization:Examples
Mark Abolins, Middle Tennessee State University
Undergraduate non-majors use the Arcview geographic information system (GIS) to explore volcanic hazards and the geochemistry of volcanic rocks. Students explore geochemical data from the GEOROC global database and ...

Exploring lithological assemblages and structural styles of granite-greenstone belts part of Cutting Edge:Early Earth:Activities
Dyanna Czeck, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
In this 1 week module, students use primary literature to study structural and tectonic styles within Archean granite-greenstone belts.

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 ...

Physical Geology: Amazing GeoRace part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Simon Kattenhorn, University of Idaho
Allows introductory physical geology students the opportunity to examine various uses of geological materials in society, in a manner that is also fun and enjoyable.

Metamorphism and Continental Collision part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Kenneth Howard, Wake Technical Community College
This is an exercise designed to help students link metamorphism and other geologic processes in context of the plate tectonic theory.

Rock-Tectonics synthesis lab part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Dori Farthing, SUNY Geneseo
This lab aims to draw together rock identification and plate tectonics as well as relative age relationships. It gets students to "be" geologists...looking at rock suites and trying to see how they fit ...

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 ...

Rb-Sr isotope in-class exercise part of Teaching Examples
Allen Glazner
This set of problems involves calculations of changes in radiogenic isotope ratios. It requires students to understand the concept of an isochron and how isotope ratios change (or do not change) during magma mixing ...

Properties of Rhyolite Magma part of Teaching Examples
Barbara Nash
The purpose of the exercise is to acquaint igneous petrology students with properties of silicic magmas, and to emphasize the effect of water content on viscosity of silicic magmas. Students have to determine the ...

Flow of Andesite Lava part of Teaching Examples
Barbara Nash
The purpose of the exercise is to familiarize igneous petrology students with flow properties of lava, especially viscosity, and to have them consider effects on viscosity due to temperature, crystallinity and ...