Geology and Geography
University of North Carolina at Pembroke
Are You Smarter Than a Dinosaur? part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
Students investigate the intelligence of dinosaurs by comparing the relative size of brain and body mass to living animals.
Grand Strand Geology and its impact on Beach Nourishment part of Cutting Edge:Sedimentary Geology:Sedimentology, Geomorphology, and Paleontology 2014:Activities
Brief analysis of the geologic setting of the Grand Strand (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and vicinity) coast and the limited occurrence of sand suitable for beach re-nourishment. Students use a USGS Fact Sheet to examine the beach, near offshore, and edge of Coastal Plain geology.
History of the Gulf of Mexico "Dead" Zone part of Cutting Edge:Sedimentary Geology:Sedimentology, Geomorphology, and Paleontology 2014:Activities
Student analysis of the last 1000 years of the Gulf of Mexico hypoxia zone (informally "dead" zone) by using relative abundance of low-oxygen tolerant benthic foraminifera. In this example of environmental micropaleontology, students evaluate whether the "dead" zone has existed in its current form for many centuries or has become more intense in the time of increased anthropogenic input of organics (i.e., fertilizer).
Quaternary Paleoecology and Climate Change, Bladen County, NC part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
Interpretation of Quaternary pollen record from Carolina Bay lakes in southeastern NC. This records goes back to the last interglacial and shows how much climate has changed vegetation even in this unglaciated spot.
Tsunami and the Depth of the Ocean part of Cutting Edge: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. Shallow-water wave celerity depends on ocean depth. Students reason this out. They then determine the distance of the path of the tsunami from the epicenter of the 1964 Alaska Good Friday earthquake tsunami to various locations, use tsunami arrival times to calculate the velocity, and re-arrange the shallow-water celerity equation to calculate depth. Students evaluate the geographic distribution of water depths.
Graphing Tides part of Cutting Edge:Oceanography:Activities
Student graphing of high and low tide from locations showing the three tide types (diurnal, semi-diurnal, and mixed) and the Bay of Fundy (tidal amplitude increased by resonance). Students recognize that not all tides are the same and that location is an important control on tides.
Oceanography part of Cutting Edge:Oceanography:Courses
The course emphasizes the "container" of the ocean, the ocean contents, ocean processes, and what happens when these interact.
Paleontology part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Courses
Paleontology is the study of past life. This includes both the organisms themselves and a variety of problems that study of the organisms can solve. During this semester, we will consider the more common fossil groups and survey some of the problems that can be solved using fossils. The course will combine informal lecture and lab segments, and we will also arrange field trips to see fossils in their semi-native habitat.
Paleontology part of Cutting Edge:Sedimentary Geology:Sedimentology, Geomorphology, and Paleontology 2014:Courses
Survey of paleontology for upper-level departmental majors, earth science education majors, and others. Course combines lecture and lab across invertebrates, plants, and microfossils (vertebrates treated only indirectly in a couple of lab activities) and the major kinds of scientific questions that fossils can address. The course meets university requirements for a writing-enriched course.