Landscape Models

David Marchetti
Western State College of Colorado
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An introduction to using WILSIM, an on-line lanscape evolution model.

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undergraduate course in geomorphology

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

background in initiation of overland flow -- critical distance, turbulent flow, etc.

genetic drainage terms - consequent, resequent, etc

understanding of hypsometry concepts

ususally done near the end of a semester-long geomorphology course

How the activity is situated in the course

as a lab


Content/concepts goals for this activity

a first step at attempting to model surface processes and test the relationship between simple variables

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

applying class/academic concepts to a computer simulation

testing hypotheses of process and response

Other skills goals for this activity

Description of the activity/assignment

In this assignment students model different scenarios of landscape evolution using an on-line landscape evolution model. The assignment takes them through several situations involving changes in commonly modeled landscape variables like overland flow, faulting and uplift, erosivity, and drainage incision. At the end I have students devise a situation (of variables) that tests a hypothesis or the sensitivity of the model to changes in a variable.
Designed for a geomorphology course
Uses online and/or real-time data

Determining whether students have met the goals

Their answers to questions on the lab and my observations of their working during lab.

More information about assessment tools and techniques.

Teaching materials and tips

Other Materials

Supporting references/URLs