Global Warming in the Field
University of Rhode Island, Department of Geosciences
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This field trip involves group problem solving using aspects of glacial geology, paleoclimatology, and sea-level change predictions. The strengths are in getting students in the field in coastal RI: peaty/swampy terrain meets moraines meets coastal beaches.
300-level course on climate
Skills and concepts that students must have mastered
- Team work, note-taking, dealing with inclement weather.
- Familiarity with past footprints of glaciers in New England, scale of ice volumes and extent, and a sense of geologic time.
How the activity is situated in the course
This is a stand alone trip taken in the mid-course. It helps students telescope out from individual perspectives to group thinking and more regional and global concepts of climate change and global warming.
Content/concepts goals for this activity
Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity
Other skills goals for this activity
- gaining field experience
- using pacing, survey tapes, compass, inclinometer, rudimentary map drawing to scale
- group work
Description of the activity/assignment
Field trip handout (Microsoft Word 52kB Oct27 10)
Determining whether students have met the goals
I request scans of field notes and their field responses to On-The-Fly questions (content and concept checks at each field stop), plus a one-page reaction essay that ties the experience to their larger understanding of geology, climates, and global warming. More information about assessment tools and techniques.
Teaching materials and tips