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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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Building Crystal Structure Ball Models Using Pre-Drilled Templates: Sheet Structures, Tridymite, and Cristobalite part of Cutting Edge:Mineralogy:Activities
Ball models have long been used as teaching tools in Mineralogy to illustrate molecular and crystal structures. At Union College, Mineralogy students construct crystal structure ball models to help them better ...

Exercises in the Geochemical Kinetics of Mineral-Water Reactions part of Cutting Edge:Mineralogy:Activities
This module consists of a laboratory exercise and related homework problems on geochemical kinetics of mineral-solution reactions for undergraduate mineralogy. Students measure the grain sizes of equant halite ...

Short Readings from the American Mineralogist: Sneaky Tools for Teaching Scientific Reading Comprehension and Mineralogical Concepts part of Cutting Edge:Mineralogy:Activities
This activity uses short, well-written articles to enhance teaching for a mineralogy course. Articles are taken from the American Mineralogist journal.

Sea Ice Extension for the Earth as a System Learning Activity part of Cutting Edge:Visualization:Examples
The purpose is to identify global patterns and connections in environmental data contained in the GLOBE Earth Systems Poster; to connect observations made within the Earth Systems Poster to data and information at ...

Detecting El NiƱo in Sea Surface Temperature Data part of Earth Exploration Toolbook:PMEL
DATA: Sea Surface Temperature (SST). TOOL: My World GIS. SUMMARY: Examine 15 years of SST data from the Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory. Create and analyze average SST maps to identify El Nino and La Nina events.

Anthropogenic Effects on Erosion part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This exercise investigates anthropogenic effects on erosion in two parts. The first is a discussion of a paper by Roger Hooke (2000) "On the history of humans as geomorphic agents." The second half ...

Geomorphology in the news part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
The activity requires students to present a current news story that has a geomorphic component. The students must relate course material to current events and society.

Mass Wasting and Slope Stability part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
An investigation of mass movements along the shores of Lake MI. Students will assess strength characteristics of unconsolidated sediment in the field, survey the morphology of the movement, and determine the ...

Schreinemakers Analysis - Problem #3: Analysis of an Invariant Point part of Cutting Edge:Petrology:Teaching Examples
This is a challenging Schreinemakers analysis problem.

Calculating Compositional Variation and Common Substitutions for Igneous and Metamorphic Minerals part of Cutting Edge:Petrology:Teaching Examples
This problem set uses Excel spreadsheets to calculate mineral formulae from analytical data (typically from the electron microprobe) using a variety of formulations that assume numerous variations of crystal ...

Rocks, Weathering, and Erosional Landscapes part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
Students will identify a variety of silicate minerals and rocks and relate them to their topographic expression according to relative resistance.

Fault-bounded mountains and morphometric properties part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This classroom activity is designed to help students see the utility of simple morphometric properties in fault-bounded mountain and piedmont environments. Rather than listing and describing commonly used ...

Drainage basin patterns and stream courses part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This is a two- to three-day classroom activity and writing assignment that is designed to help students recognize typical drainage basin patterns and stream courses. In addition to discussing common drainage basin ...

Fluvial Landforms on Maps part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This is an in-class exercise designed to A) give students more practice reading topographic maps, B) have students identify fluvial landforms on maps, and C) get students thinking about the processes that formed ...

A Term-Long Mineralogy Lab Practical Exam part of Cutting Edge:Mineralogy:Activities
This term-long project involves identifying a set of 65 mineral hand samples by their distinguishing characteristics.

Geo-Savvy Assessment part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
I use this "landscape interpretation" exercise to assess what students know coming into my classroom - so that I can pitch the lecture at the right level. I also use a similar structured assessment at the ...

Drainage Basins Field Lab part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This field activity and follow-up assignment explores the geomorphology of drainage basins in an active tectonic setting. It introduces basic concepts of drainage basin structure and landscape analysis using ...

Nearest-neighbor analysis and the distribution of sinkholes: an introduction to spatial statistics part of Cutting Edge:Geomorphology:Activities
This is an exercise I use in an upper-division geomorphology course to introduce students to nearest-neighbor analysis, a basic technic in spatial statistics. This technique provides an objective method for ...

Using Dynamic Digital Maps to Teach Petrology part of Cutting Edge:Petrology:Teaching Examples
In this session we will examine how to utilize Dynamic Digital Maps (DDMs) in undergraduate petrology courses to bring inaccessible and exciting volcanic field areas to the students in the classroom and to engage ...

Timing of mineralization in the palm of your hand: Cross-cutting relations, copper minerals and ore-forming hydrothermal fluid evolution part of Cutting Edge:Petrology:Teaching Examples
This lab is designed to familiarize students with the geologic history of an ore-deposit, deciphered in the palm of your hand. By determining cross cutting relations of veins and mineralogy, students decipher the ...