Systematics of some enigmatic "fossils" part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
Students and instructor work through a guided exercise to construct a character matrix and cladograms describing relationships between different types of paper clips. Students then break into small groups to complete a related exercise with a larger set of different types of pasta.
Trial by fire in the vertebrate graveyard part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Activities
Students work through a series of stations displaying isolated bones, and answer short-answer questions designed to introduce them to formulating and defending hypotheses concerning anatomical and taxonomic identity. Responses are then compared and discussed as a group.
Use of a Lab-Field Couplet to Link Rock Classification and Facies Interpretation part of Cutting Edge:Sedimentary Geology:Activities
Students examine hand samples in the lab, then describe formations and interpret facies succession at a local outcrop. Linked lab and field components doubly reinforce understanding of course concepts.
Paleontology and Stratigraphy part of Cutting Edge:Paleontology:Courses
This course introduces the major groups of modern and fossil invertebrates and the fundamental concepts of stratigraphy. Students will develop and employ a variety of field and laboratory skills while investigating elements of earth history and changes in the tectonic setting of eastern North America through geologic time. The course includes two multi-day field trips focused on correlation of strata and paleoecological analysis.