Laura Guertin

Earth Science

Penn State Brandywine

Laura Guertin is an associate professor of Earth science at Penn State Brandywine. For more information, visit Laura Guertin's faculty web page from Penn State Brandywine.

Workshop Participant, Website Contributor

Website Content Contributions

Activities (43)

Connecting Cross-Sectional Data from the Red Sea to Plate Tectonics part of MARGINS Data in the Classroom:MARGINS Mini-Lessons
Students will use map views and cross-sectional profiles across the Red Sea to determine plate tectonic processes in the region. Google Earth is a technological tool used to facilitate the investigation.

Reducing Volcanic Hazards to People and Property - An Assignment with Electronic Peer Review part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This electronic peer review exercise has students discuss the major volcanic hazards and risks to humans. -

Viewpoint on Causes of Global Warming - An Assignment Using Anonymous Electronic Peer Review With a Dropbox part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This is an anonymous electronic peer review exercise that utilizes a dropbox, where students detail and support their viewpoint on nonhuman-induced global warming. -

GEOLogic: Volcanologists part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
students are asked to resolve how many days each of 5 volcanologists spent at a volcano and what day they started for the volcano. There is also a second part where students are asked to do some additional research about volcanoes on the web.

Human Impacts on Sharks: Developing an Essay Through Peer-Review on a Discussion Board part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
Through a discussion board, students comment and respond to paper topics on the human impacts on sharks. -

JiTT - Dam Removal - A Good Idea or Not? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are some of the biological effects of dam removal (good and bad)? 2) What are some of the more pressing/compelling reasons to remove a dam? Explain. 3) The Stanley and Doyle (2003) article states that, ...

JiTT - Geologic Dating part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) How are zircons formed? 2) Which of the following statements describes relative geologic dating? a) the Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus rex went extinct at the same time b) dinosaurs came later than horseshoe ...

JiTT - Ethics of Fossil Collecting part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What do you think it means for a fossil resource to be "abused"? 2) What's the issue with fossil hunting on federal land (such as National Parks)? Explain what your interpretation of the conflict ...

Using Field Observations and Field Experiences to Teach GeoscienceAn Illustrated Community Discussion part of Cutting Edge:Geoscience in the Field:Field Experiences:Posters

Examining Short-Term Tree Growth and Environmental Variables near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania part of Cutting Edge: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 ...

Exploration to Mars... or Not? An Exercise with Split-Screen Electronic Peer Review part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
This is a split-screen electronic peer review exercise where students justify whether or not we should continue our exploration of Mars. -

JiTT - Marine Archaeology and Technology part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) How has technology helped marine archaeological investigations? How has it hurt? 2) What are some of the "costs" involved with using technology for marine archaeology? Are the "costs" worth ...

Quicksand Questions: Short In-class Activity part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Interactive Lectures:Examples
Student learning on quicksand is assessed during lecture with questions posed by the instructor and responses given with classroom response systems. -

GEOLogic: Lagerstatten and Unique Fossils part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up several unique fossils with the site and location where it was found and it's geologic age.

GEOLogic: Museums and their Dinosaur Displays part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up five top Museums with 2 fossils that they have on display based on clues presented from various points of view.

GEO-Logic: How Much of the State is Wet part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
students are asked to match up students with their home state, and their states with the area and percentage of area of surface water that they contain, as well as where each of the states rank nationally in terms of water area.

GEO-Logic: Continental Drift and Plate Tectonics part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up lecturers with what day and time they teach, and how many students they have based on clues given from several different perspectives. In the second part of the activity, students are asked to learn more about the historic figures mentioned in the activity by doing reading and web research.

GEO-Logic: How Well Do You Know Your National Parks and Memorials part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to associate historical figures with a particular National Park or Memorial (and its size) as well as the number of points they scored in a fictitious game show, based on clues about the situation given from various perspectives.

GEOLogic: The Three Stooges and Their Pet Dinosaurs part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up each of the Stooges with their favorite group and species of dinosaur based on clues given from different perspectives.

GEOLogic: The Big Five Mass Extinctions part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to match up the five largest mass extinction events with their relative dates, approximate duration, and severity (percentage of species that became extinct) based on clues given from various perspectives.

GEOLogic: State Fossils part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to identify states with their state fossil and the year in which it was declared, based on clues given from various points of view.

GEOLogic: Terrestrial and Jovian Planets part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
In this two-part example, students are given clues about properties about the terrestrial and Jovian planets respectively and asked to match up the planet with the correct equatorial radius, mean orbital velocity, and period of rotation.

GEOLogic: Dinosaur Trackways part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students must associate different dinosaur trackways with their locations and the rock formations containing the trackways based on clues given from various points of view.

GEO-Logic: Stream Discharge Rates - Rappahannock River Station part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection
Students are asked to convert measurements in cubic feet per hour (cfh) to cubic feet per second (cfs) and then match up the names of the researchers measuring the flows at the river station with the correct flow rate and the year in which it was taken. There is also a second part in which students must graph the different flow rates with time and then answer questions by interpreting the information in the graph.

Student Peer Review Through A Discussion Board to Develop an Invasive Species Paper part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review:Examples
Through a discussion board, students comment and respond to paper topics on invasive species. -

JiTT - Life on the Moon and Mars part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) Based on "Microbial Colony in US..." article, what are Archaea? 2) From the same article, which of the following is NOT evidence to support life on Mars? a) Mars' subsurface groundwater system b) ...

JiTT - Water Issues and the Aswan High Dam part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are some of the GOOD changes for the environment and positive impacts on the local people from construction of the Aswan High Dam? 2) What are some of the BAD changes for the environment and negative ...

JiTT - The Future of Global Climate part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) According to NASA, why is Earth's climate warming? 2) Is the Geritol solution the solution to global warming? Explain what the "Geritol solution" is, and then state your opinion as to why you ...

JiTT - La Brea Tar Pits part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What is "tar" and how does it form? 2) List the animals that have been uncovered in the tar pits that you didn't know were native to North America. Why do you think these animals are now extinct? ...

JiTT - Neanderthals and Modern Humans part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are Neanderthals? How do they differ from modern humans? 2) Discuss some of the new ideas as to why early human ancestors dispersed from Africa. 3) What are DNA studies telling us about human migrations and ...

JiTT - The Big 5 Extinctions and Then Some part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are the three leading ideas for the cause of the Permian mass extinction? What is the evidence for and against each? 2) Why are tropical forest species going extinct the quickest? 3) What are the ...

JiTT - Life in the Sahara Desert part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What the Sahara always a desert? How do we know? (*NOTE: for this question, I want you to focus on the physical environment) 2) What modern-day animals can be found in the desert? How do they survive? 3) Why ...

JiTT - When "Modern" Human Behavior Appeared in Early Hominids part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What is this controversy in regards to the emergence of "modern" human behavior? In your opinion, what do you think "modern" human behavior means? 2) How do beads symbolize modern human ...

JiTT - Exploring Geoarchaeology part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) How is climate connected to geoarchaeology? Explain. 2) List as many "tools" you can think of that would be useful to a geoarchaeologist and describe why it would be of use. 3) Is geoarchaeological ...

JiTT - Groundwater and Archaeology part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What is causing the groundwater to rise to the foundations of Egypt's archaeological structures? What damage is the groundwater doing? 2) Describe at least two different solutions that have been proposed to ...

JiTT - The Future of Africa's Health with Technology part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are the benefits and opportunities handheld technology can offer the health sector in Africa? Answer the question from the viewpoint of a health care provider and a patient. Does anyone else benefit? ...

JiTT - Darwin Garden part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) Why does biodiversity in an ecosystem "matter"? 2) Describe Darwin's garden experiment and the significance of it. 3) So Darwin figured out the connection between biodiversity and ecosystem health ...

JiTT - Cambrian Explosion part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) How do scientists come up with the number 2 billion years ago for the first branch of life? Explain the dating technique and information that is used. 2) Describe the evidence AGAINST the Cambrian Explosion. ...

JiTT - The Legs of Snakes and Whales part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are the adaptations needed to move from water to land (whether it be an arthropod or a "pioneering amphibian")? 2) Could snakes be linked to marine lizards? What your view and interpretations of ...

JiTT - Threats to Biodiversity part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) How is climate change a threat to biodiversity? 2) What are the impacts of pesticides on animals (including insects) and humans? 3) Can human population growth really impact biodiversity? Explain your viewpoint.

JiTT - Should Elephants be in Zoos? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are some of the health problems elephants in captivity face? 2) Pickrell (2002) states that, "apart from their drawing power as major wildlife attractions, zoo elephants are important for conservation, ...

JiTT - Are Primates Worth Saving? part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching:Examples
1) What are some of the reasons extinction rates are so high for modern primates? 2) Why are some primates worth more dead than alive? Is there a way we as a society can change this? Explain your thoughts. 3) If ...

Using Data to Teach Earth ProcessesAn Illustrated Community Discussion at the 2003 Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America part of Cutting Edge:Data, Simulations and Models:Workshop 03:Activities
Laura A. Guertin Penn State University Delaware County - The activity begins in the classroom with students graphing and interpreting apparent volcanic solar transmission values collected at Mauna Loa Observatory, ...

Teaching Method Modules (2)

Just in Time Teaching (JiTT) part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Just in Time Teaching
Original module developed by by Laura Guertin, Carol Ormand, Gregor Novak, and Andy Gavrin. Revised and enhanced by Scott Simkins with assistance from Gregor Novak, Marcelo Clerici-Arias, and Rae Jean Goodman. ...

Peer Review part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Peer Review
Created by Laura Guertin, Pennsylvania State University Brandywine "For generations, the academic community has relied on peer review as a way of enhancing the knowledge base and encouraging serious ...

Other Contribution (1)

Undergraduate Research in Geoscience at Penn State Brandywine part of SAGE 2YC:Supporting Student Success:Undergraduate Research with 2YC Students:Profiles
Information for this profile was provided by Laura Guertin, Associate Professor of Earth Sciences, Penn State Brandywine. Departmental/Institutional Context I teach at Penn State Brandywine in Media, PA, a ...