Tectonic Geomorphology: Exploring activity on the San Andreas fault with ArcGIS
This activity was selected for the On the Cutting Edge Reviewed Teaching Collection
This activity has received positive reviews in a peer review process involving five review categories. The five categories included in the process are
- Scientific Accuracy
- Alignment of Learning Goals, Activities, and Assessments
- Pedagogic Effectiveness
- Robustness (usability and dependability of all components)
- Completeness of the ActivitySheet web page
For more information about the peer review process itself, please see http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/review.html.
This page first made public: Jun 9, 2014
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Description and Teaching Materials
What happens to the land surface when a major earthquake occurs? How might erosion be effected by faults? How would this erosion be expressed on the landscape? Make a map-view sketch of a strike slip fault segment where part of it moved recently, but other parts did not. What would happen to erosion in the different parts of the fault? Make some hypotheses.
2) This is followed by students downloading the GIS data necessary for the exercise (which I provide on a server). I then do a short workshop on the ArcGIS skills they will need to use for the lab. Each student has his/her own computer and I walk them through the techniques. I give them space for notes on this lab write up for this.
3) Students get comfortable with the ArcGIS measure tool by measuring stream offsets and making an estimate of slip rate. This part of the lab is optional and I have skipped it completely. It is available here for completeness' sake.
4) We then re-group and have another discussion. I ask them, in small groups, to answer this question:
How can slope profiles be used to say something about the timing of motion on the SAF?
After the small group discussion, we come back together and we collectively develop a methodology whereby we can use detailed slope profiles across the SAF to ascertain the timing of motion (relative). They must keep track of the methodology we collectively have developed, then they apply the methodology to their GIS and LiDAR dataset.
5) Students are required to submit a map and a lab write up that summarizes their hypothesis, results, and interpretations.
Lab Write Up/Hand out (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 410kB Jun9 14)
All GIS data (Zip Archive 643.4MB Jun9 14)
Teaching Notes and Tips
References and Resources