This is a partially developed activity description. It is included in the collection because it contains ideas useful for teaching even though it is incomplete.

Shoreline and Sea Level Change

Robert de Groot, Michele, Cooke, Chris Condit, Matthew Arsenault (facilitator), Ed Nuhfer, Bill Slattery, Helen King, and Tim Slater
Topic: Coastal Geomorphology, Geologic Hazards, Climate Change
Course Type:intro


This activity and assessment is organized around materials, processes, and changes through time.

To draw out prior knowledge and organize content, the students will first review shoreline processes by watching videos, animations, and viewing powerpoint slides.

Concepts to be reviewed include:

- What do beach deposits look like?
- What are the various depositional environments?
- What is the difference between bathymetry and elevation?

This activity will examine shoreline changes resulting from sea level change, longshore drift, tectonics, climate change, tectonics, and other effects. Students will learn about paleoshorelines.
Students will use aerial photos and other data to show what would be lost during an inundation event.

Students will do a hands-on activity that includes tracing on a map. Students will see what happens if the sea level were to increase or decrease by a number of meters.

After the basic content is covered the students will address a societal issue that is related to shoreline and sea level changes such as climate change, economic effects (e.g. keeping harbors open, loss of real estate). Students may also choose to examine particular places as a case study (e.g. Washington, D.C., Boston, San Francisco Bay, Los Angeles Harbor, New Orleans)

Additionally there was interest in critically reviewing official government statements regarding these issues and the scientific literature (e.g. examine the use or misuse of statistics and uncertainty).


-How to gather information from static images and dynamic simulations
-How to use, manipulate, and draw conclusions from numerical data
-How to evaluate and critically examine scientific issues
-Learn about primary sources and their value in scientific discourse
-Learn how scientists do their work (nature of science)
-Make connections between the basic content and current environmental issues


-Knowledge surveys
-Timed essays