Teach the Earth > Paleontology > Teaching Activities > Predator-Prey Interactions in Modern Settings

Predator-Prey Interactions in Modern Settings

H. Allen Curran
Smith College
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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: Jun 4, 2009


A project on predator-prey interactions in modern marine settings, with emphasis on developing student skills in producing and analyzing paleontologic data. Project designed by Prof. Sara Pruss at Smith College.

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Undergraduate required course in invertebrate paleontology and paleoecology.

Skills and concepts that students must have mastered

  • observation and identification of shell materials
  • data compilation and presentation
  • data interpretation
  • basic statistical analysis
  • use of paleontologic literature
  • oral presentation
  • written final report
  • team-work skills

How the activity is situated in the course

Semester-length research project.


Content/concepts goals for this activity

Higher order thinking skills goals for this activity

data compilation and analysis, formulation of hypotheses, critical analysis of data and of pertinent paleontologic literature, synthesis of ideas.

Other skills goals for this activity

  • short report writing
  • PowerPoint presentation
  • working with a partner

Description of the activity/assignment

Guidelines, rationale, and expected outcomes for the predator-prey interactions paleontologic project are described in detail on the project description sheet.

Determining whether students have met the goals

Critical evaluation of final report and oral presentation.

More information about assessment tools and techniques.

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