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AP/IB/Honors Geoscience Activity Browse

Search for activities specifically designed for introductory college level geoscience 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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Using part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching about Risk and Resilience:Activities
In this classroom activity, students watch the movie "Dante's Peak" up to the point where Harry Dalton's supervisor arrives and talks to the town council. Students then compare and contrast Harry's assessment and advice to that of his supervisor, discuss the reaction of the town council members, and develop their own recommendations for how the scientists and town should proceed.

Determining Carbon Storage in Garcelon Bog part of Integrate:Workshops:Systems, Society, Sustainability and the Geosciences:Activities
This is a three-week lab sequence aimed at determining the approximate amount of carbon stored in a local bog and teaching skills for solving complex problems through collaborative work.

Action to Enhance Sustainability part of Integrate:Workshops:Systems, Society, Sustainability and the Geosciences:Activities
This assignment is a 10-hour, out-of-class project where each student designs and carries out an action plan to enhance sustainability. Students select from a large suite of alternative actions, most of which can be quantified for reductions in CO2 and energy consumption, as well as in dollar savings.

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.

Creating a Natural Disaster Blog/VoiceThread to Understand Resilience part of Integrate:Workshops:Teaching about Risk and Resilience:Activities
Student groups create blogs or VoiceThreads on selected natural disaster events including a description of the event, the cause of the disaster, response & recovery, prediction & prevention and resilience to the event.

Relative Dating on Earth and Mars part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students apply principles of relative dating to a cross-section, then to the surface of Mars.

Ocean Gyre Circulation and Patterns of Global Primary Productivity part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
This teaching activity provides a visual framework for understanding the relationship/connection between ocean gyre circulation and primary productivity. Students demonstrate their own understanding of surface ...

Observing Salinity Patterns part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
Part 1: Students measure the salinity of samples using a refractometer, and consider the units and density of these values. Part 2: Students apply concepts and reinforce what they've learned about salinity and ...

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? ...

Seasonal variation in light, mixing depth and primary productivity in temperate northern hemisphere waters part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Oceanography:Activities
In this exercise students work with light, temperature, and phytoplankton biomass proxy (chlorophyll a concentration) data to; Become more skilled in reading and interpreting semi log graphs, temperature profiles, ...

Relative Age-dating -- Discovery of Important Stratigraphic Principles part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Introductory Courses:Activities
Students don't have to be passively taught the important principles geologists use to do relative age-dating of rocks and geologic events. By careful analysis and critical thinking about photos and ...

Red Beans and Rice: Slope failure experimental modeling part of Cutting Edge:Courses:Geomorphology:Activities
Students replicate a slope failure experiment published in Science (Densmore et al., 1997) using a simple, acrylic slope failure box in an effort to forge a link between autocyclic processes, long-term landscape ...

The Boxing Day Tsunami part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
Undergraduate students map data from the National Geophysical Data Center and the United States Geological Survey on Google Earth and study visualizations in order to explore the causes and effects of the Tsunami ...

Northwest Passage part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
An investigation of changes in polar regions using Google Earth.

Soil description & analysis part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
The students pull soil cores in a transect across a hill. They describe the horizons and create a fence diagram, then determine the maturity of the soil & relate it to the climate & geologic history of the ...

1993 Missouri River Flood Exercise part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
An exercise on the effects of flooding that took place in the upper Mississippi River drainage basin in 1993, using before and after satellite images.

The Oil Game: Problem-based learning exercise in an Environmental Geology lecture-format class part of Geoscience in Two-year Colleges:Activities
This is an active engagement exercise as a capstone exercise in a unit on energy in an Environmental Geology class of non-science majors combining a 'field-based' simulation and 'office-based' geological modeling. It uses readily available supplies and easily constructed equipment that can take 1 or 2 class meetings.

Establishing relevance as a way to motivate introductory students part of Cutting Edge:Online Teaching:Activities for Teaching Online
This assignment ask students to do oral interviews with at least five people and online research on professional geology organizations and their missions. Using these interviews and research, students are to write ...

Igneous Rocks Model part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lecture Demonstrations:Examples
While working in groups to facilitate peer tutoring, students use samples of four igneous rocks (gabbro, basalt, granite, and rhyolite) to observe differences in texture, color and grain size and make inferences ...

Fun with foam, demonstrating strike and dip in class part of Cutting Edge:Introductory Courses:Activities
Colorful foam sheets are used in a classroom or lab setting to introduce students to the concept of strike and dip. It is interactive, and the instructor or TA's can quickly see which students are ...