TEACHING COASTAL GEOLOGY USING INTERACTIVE GOOGLE TECHNOLOGY
Friday 3:00pm-4:00pm Beren Auditorium
Poster Session Part of Friday Poster Session
The use of Google technology within the classroom provides a captivating, progressive, and hands-on strategy for teaching undergraduate science lessons. This Google TourBuilder activity provides an online comprehensive examination of coastal Virginia and North Carolina environments by leading the student through various geologic settings, identifying important features, and assessing their knowledge periodically. It will be available through the GEODE (Google Earth for Onsite and Distance Education) project, which has developed a diverse series of virtual field trips, tutorials, and mapping tools. With the focus on physical geology and Earth science curricula, this activity provides high-quality instruction based on the fundamentals of the scientific process. Quantitative concepts common to introductory physics, mathematics, and computer science classes are reinforced by embedded questions and interactive investigations. The ability for the user to navigate between map and street views forces the student to become familiar with each location, which inspires critical thinking, stresses self-instruction, and provides a unique learning experience. Although the module is designed for implementation during class time, students are also allowed to individually investigate at their own pace. Within the tour, there are several activities that utilize a simple Google Earth Engine code to perform topographic analysis, cross section profile extraction, and a distance calculation; students will have the opportunity to alter the code and see the effects in the output. There are many pictures, animations, and Google Timelapse videos embedded within the tour to capture the student and show the dynamic nature of the coastline. Because this activity was created with open source Google software, it offers an opportunity for many teachers to collaborate, customize, and expand upon the tour in an effort to improve teaching.