About the GeoPRISMIS Mini-Lesson Project

The GeoPRISMS Office and several members of the GeoPRISMS Education Advisory Committee (GEAC) have been funded by the NSF TUES Program (Division of Undergraduate Education) to prepare the next generation of MARGINS mini-lessons, specifically to integrate a decade of successful MARGINS research into upper level undergraduate geoscience curriculum. This project brings together present and former members of GEAC (and its MARGINS predecessor, MEAC), other prominent scientists from the MARGINS community, as well as curriculum experts from On the Cutting Edge, a community of geoscience faculty dedicated to improving teaching and student learning. This integration of leading scientists and curriculum experts will produce high quality science curricula informed by current educational research and practices. The resulting Mini-Lessons bring data from all four MARGINS Initiatives to the undergraduate classroom.

  • Phase I - summarizing the relevant highlights of the decade of MARGINS science, identifying gaps in the existing MARGINS mini-lesson collection, and designing additional mini-lessons to provide a more coherent and complete collection. This effort will take place via a series of webinars, a virtual workshop, and additional electronic interaction.
  • Phase 2 - designing and implementing an assessment plan for the mini-lessons, as well as placing the mini-lessons into multiple course frameworks to form coherent course segments. An assessment consultant will lead the assessment effort during a face-to-face workshop. Participants will then test the curriculum at their home institutions during that academic year.
  • Phase 3 - summarizing and evaluating results, compiling and distributing products, and publishing results. The results of the assessments will be reviewed at a face-to-face workshop, and plans made for dissemination.

This multi-institutional effort to disseminate interdisciplinary MARGINS science results offer scientists a powerful means for increasing the impact of your research, while creating a portable curricular resource to educate and engage geoscience students across a range of courses and institutional types.

At the 2014 Workshop: Bringing NSF MARGINS Research Into the Undergraduate Curriculum, participants conducted a paired review for each mini-lesson in the collection. Prior to the workshop, all mini-lessons had been submitted and pairs of reviewers were assigned. Additional time was allocated at the workshop to complete these reviews.

The pairs of reviewers for each mini-lesson consisted of an author from the same initiative with an author from another GeoPRISMS initiative (e.g., an S2S author paired with an RCL author). Both the mini-lesson author and the peer review author used the rubric developed as part of the On the Cutting Edge project.
Evaluating the mini-lesson (Microsoft Word 2007 (.docx) 17kB Sep17 14)

The peer reviewer and author discussed the reviewer's comments on the mini-lesson. Authors were encouraged to work on revisions to their mini-lesson based on the feedback they received both at and following the workshop. In addition, a pedagogical expert met with each initiative team to discuss the mini-lesson revision plans and ensure strong learning goals and assessment strategies.

MARGINS TUES Project Leads

Julia Morgan, GeoPRISMS Chair (Rice University)
Andrew Goodliffe (University of Alabama)
Jeff Marshall (Cal Poly Pomona)
Ellen Iverson (SERC, Carleton College)
Cathy Manduca (SERC, Carleton College)
Jenn Beck (EvalArts Consulting)

Curriculum Development Teams

Subduction Factory (SubFac): Chemical cycling in subduction zones
Robert Stern, Univ. of Texas Dallas - Science Team Lead
Ben Edwards, Dickinson College - Curriculum Specialist
Sarah Penniston-Dorland, Univ. of Maryland
Chris Kincaid, Univ. of Rhode Island
Seismogenic Zone Experiment (SEIZE): Seismogenic zone processes at subduction zones
Casey Moore, UC Santa Cruz - Science Team Lead
Jeff Marshall, Cal Poly Pomona - Curriculum Specialist & Project Team
Eliza Richardson, Penn State University
David Pearson, Idaho State University
Sue Cashman, Humboldt State University
Rupturing continental lithosphere (RCL): Rifting processes and feedbacks
Scott Bennett, USGS Golden, CO – Co-Science Team Lead
Rebecca Dorsey, Univ. of Oregon - Co-Science Team Lead
Andrew Goodliffe, Univ. of Alabama - Curriculum Specialist & Project Team
Jack Loveless, Smith College
Lisa Lamb, Univ. of St. Thomas
Sue Cashman, Humboldt State University
Source to sink sediment cycling (S2S): Sediment erosion, transfer, and deposition
Steve Kuehl, Virginia Inst. Marine Science - Co-Science Team Lead
Lonnie Leithold, North Carolina State University - Co-Science Team Lead
Kathleen Surpless, Trinity University - Curriculum Specialist
Adam Hoffman, Univ. of Dubuque

GeoPRISMS and SERC Staff:

August Costa (GeoPRISMS, Rice University)
Kristin O'Connell (SERC, Carleton College)

Past Margins in the Classroom Project

The MARGINS program produced rich data and scientific results for us in teaching about the Earth's continental margins. Through the MARGINS Data in the Classroom project researchers and educators collaborated to create of a set of Mini-Lessons that repurpose MARGINS data and resources for teaching undergraduate geoscience from a multidisciplinary perspective. The project hosted a series of workshops to facilitate collaborative authoring and reviewing of these materials. Some of the materials were assessed in classrooms and evaluated using a structured reflection by the instructor. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (DUE 0633124).