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AP/IB/Honors Environmental Science Activity Browse

Search for activities specifically designed for introductory college level environmental science courses. Refine this search by either clicking on the terms in boxes to the right or typing a term into the search box below. Activities include a description, background information, and necessary student documents.


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Online Discussions in an Environmental Geology Course part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
In this introductory-level course, the online discussions are the heart and soul of the course. Throughout the 7 online discussions, much of the course content is presented and digested, students employ critical ...

Modeling Glacier Erosion Through Time part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Climate Change:Activities
This lab could be adapted for an introductory geology course, upper division geomorphology course, or a climate change course. This activity is borrowed from John Harbor's paper in the Journal of Geoscience ...

Simulation of international negotiations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Climate Change:Activities
In order to convey how the international community is responding to climate change, students engage in a simulation of the international negotiation process. Participants learn first hand the interests of different ...

Understanding the Carbon Cycle: A Jigsaw Approach part of Cutting Edge:Topics:Climate Change:Activities
In this "jigsaw" exercise, each student is assigned one of five geochemical processes in the carbon cycle to research, fully understand, and then explain to others in groups of five. At the end of class ...

Determining Earthquake Recurrence Intervals from Trench Logs part of Rates and Time:GSA Activity Posters
Trench logs of the San Andreas Fault at Pallett Creek, CA are the data base for a lab or homework assignment that teaches about relative dating, radiometric dating, fault recurrence intervals and the reasons for uncertainty in predicting geologic phenomena. Students are given a trench log that includes several fault strands and dated stratigraphic horizons. They estimate the times of faulting based on bracketing ages of faulted and unfaulted strata. They compile a table with the faulting events from the trench log and additional events recognized in nearby trenches, then calculate maximum, minimum and average earthquake recurrence intervals for the San Andreas Fault in this area. They conclude by making their own prediction for the timing of the next earthquake.

Exploring El Niño part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Sedimentary Geology:Sedimentology, Geomorphology, and Paleontology 2014:Activities
In this introductory-level lab activity, students first view a 20-minute portion of an informative video to learn about the operation of an array of moored buoys that is used to detect changes in the El Niño ...

Introduction to Scientific Journals part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
In this activity, students are introduced to locating and reading peer-reviewed scientific journal articles. It helps ease students into the process of locating, reading, and using journal publications. This ...

Examining Short-Term Tree Growth and Environmental Variables near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
The Smithsonian Institution's Global Tree Banding Project is a citizen science program that contributes to research about tree biomass by tracking how trees respond to climate. Students around the globe are ...

Library Research Lab: Does the Ozone Hole cause Global Warming? part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
In this lab activity students get to investigate a specific question (Does the Ozone Hole cause Global Warming?) and formalize their investigation as a briefing paper for the President of the United States. This ...

Earthquake Hazards: The next big one? part of Cutting Edge:Develop Program-Wide Abilities:Undergraduate Research:2014 Workshop:Activities
Students work in small groups or individually to investigate the earthquake hazards in California, Missouri, and their own location. Students begin the activity with an exploration of the concept of probability, ...

Tsunami and the Depth of the Ocean part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
An inquiry approach to using the celerity (=velocity) of a tsunami to measure the depth of the ocean along its path. Tsunami are shallow-water waves, because their wavelengths are so long relative to ocean depth. ...

Grocery Store Survey of Aquaculture Products part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
Students work in pairs to survey seafood items sold in local grocery stores or fish markets, recording whether items are farm-raised or wild caught, fresh, frozen or preserved, as well as country of origin. ...

Global Warming in 5 Steps part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
Scientists say the planet is warming because of human activities, namely the greenhouse effect from carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere when burning fossil fuels. But, how do we know? How do scientists know? ...

Exploring Cation Exchange Capacity through the use of the Soil Survey part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
This assignment allows students to utilize real soil data/information presented online to learn how the some of the physical properties of the soil influence the chemistry of the soil and health of the ecosystem.

Round Robin Field Methods Protocols for Improved Outcomes part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
This activity provides an approach to teach field methods that is programmed to avoid common pitfalls in teaching field methods to students. The two common problems that are avoided is familiarity with equipment ...

Calcium (Ca) availability to ecosystems: Weathering of limestone, apatite, and Ca-plagioclase (anorthite) part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
Sequence of laboratory activities to develop familiarity with geochemistry bench laboratory experimental methods; demonstration of different weathering rates of different Ca-bearing minerals; connection between ...

An integrated view of the Glendale Landscape part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
Students work in groups to develop posters that communicate their concept of landscape following several field labs (soils, sediment analysis, river discharge, vegetation survey, aquatic life) at one location. They ...

Soils —Field Characterization, Collection, and Laboratory Analysis part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
Field characterization of soil profiles in coniferous and deciduous settings; sample collection of soils from different horizons; laboratory analysis of soil moisture, soil organic carbon (by loss on ignition), and ...

Environmental Research Project part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Hydrogeology:Hydrogeology, Soils, Geochemistry 2013:Activities
The assignment is the development of scientific research project proposal, tailored to a specific range of course-appropriate topics and mimicked after current calls for NSF proposals in Environmental Science, ...

Role playing the 2009 L'Aquila Earthquake and trial to debate responsibility for communicating and understanding risks and natural hazards part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching about Risk and Resilience:Activities
In this activity, students reenact key events leading up to and following the 2009 L'Aquila Earthquake and trial. This leads into a debate on responsibility for communicating and understanding risks and natural hazards.