This activity was selected for the On the Cutting Edge Reviewed Teaching Collection
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- Scientific Accuracy
- Alignment of Learning Goals, Activities, and Assessments
- Pedagogic Effectiveness
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This page first made public: Apr 10, 2006
Identifying Minerals with Chemical and Crystallographic DataKent Ratajeski
Department of Earth Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT
Published Jan. 25, 2005
In this exercise, crystal structure data for a variety of unknown minerals are downloaded and entered into a visualization program (either XtalDraw or CrystalMaker). Through a series of directed questions for each unknown, students investigate and manipulate the crystal structure to gather information about its possible identity. This exercise builds on a wide variety of content normally covered over an entire introductory mineralogy course, and could be used as a self-study exercise to help mineralogy students prepare for a comprehensive final exam.