At the end of this exercise, students will:
- Understand how fault separation differs from fault slip direction.
- Be able to recognize fault separation on maps and cross-sections, know that it is not necessarily parallel to fault slip, and will be able to analyze the geometry of faulted layers or structures to infer slip direction.
- Be able to represent complex geometric relationships via gestures.
Context for Use
This exercise accompanies a lecture on fault separation in an undergraduate structural geology course. Students need to know the difference between strike-slip and dip-slip faults prior to beginning the activity. This is one of several gesture exercises incorporated in the course, so students are accustomed to using gesture to describe and illustrate structural concepts.
Description and Teaching Materials
Students explore the relationship between fault slip direction and fault separation by varying the geometry of faulted layers, slip direction, and the perspective from which these are viewed. They work in teams to explore these complex geometric relationships via gestures.
Fault separation gestures (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 675kB Mar21 13)
We walk around the room, watching and talking with the students as they work through the exercise. It's a quick and easy way to see whether students understand fault separation, and where they are struggling with this concept.
References and Resources
Goldin-Meadow, Susan (2011). Learning Through Gesture. Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Cognitive Science, v. 2, n. 6, pp. 595–607.