Teach the Earth > Geomorphology > Teaching Activities > Glacial Landforms

Glacial Landforms

Mark Sweeney
University of South Dakota
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This activity was selected for the On the Cutting Edge Reviewed Teaching Collection

This activity has received positive reviews in a peer review process involving five review categories. The five categories included in the process are

  • Scientific Accuracy
  • Alignment of Learning Goals, Activities, and Assessments
  • Pedagogic Effectiveness
  • Robustness (usability and dependability of all components)
  • Completeness of the ActivitySheet web page

For more information about the peer review process itself, please see http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/review.html.

This activity has benefited from input from faculty educators beyond the author through a review and suggestion process. This review took place as a part of a faculty professional development workshop where groups of faculty reviewed each others' activities and offered feedback and ideas for improvements. To learn more about the process On the Cutting Edge uses for activity review, see http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/review.html.

This page first made public: May 9, 2008


Students learn to identify glacial landforms on aerial photography and other imagery. Students appreciate the value of seeing the images in 3-D.

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Undergraduate course in geomorphology

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

Understanding of glacial landforms.

How the activity is situated in the course

Stand alone exercise


Content/concepts goals for this activity

Identify glacial landforms using imagery, interpret their formation, and interpret the relative timing of events.

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity


Other skills goals for this activity


Description of the activity/assignment

The students have been lectured to about glacial processes, but the homework was given prior to a lecture about glacial landforms. A field trip surveying the glacial landforms of SE South Dakota was just completed. The students must draw upon their knowledge and utlize other sources to interpret the landforms they see in the imagery.
Designed for a geomorphology course

Determining whether students have met the goals

I check for the quality and accuracy of their answers.
Students complained that the lecture on landforms would have been handy prior to the homework (I was hoping for some independent learning). However, the students valued the use of the steroscope to see landforms in 3-D.

More information about assessment tools and techniques.

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