Special Interest: Process of Science
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Exploring the nature of geoscience using cartoon cards
In this activity, students work in groups to put a set of cartoon cards in order, much in the way that we might assemble a geologic history. The primary goal of the activity is to explore the nature of science in general and the nature of geoscience or historical science specifically, without requiring any content knowledge.
Research Experiences in a Mineralogy Class
Dave Mogk, Montana State University Summary One of the goals of my Mineralogy class is to demonstrate how the principles and content covered in class can be applied to questions of geologic interest or that have ...
Oil Demand and Consumption
Data modeling activity using oil reserve and consumption data. Students predict when oil reserves meet or exceed reserves.
Interpreting Fossil Assemblages
This assignment is a synthesis of many of the skills learned throughout the course from taxonomic identification to paleoecological interpretations.
Relative Age-dating -- Discovery of Important Stratigraphic Principles
Students don't have to be passively taught the important principles geologists use to do relative age-dating of rocks and geologic events. By careful analysis and critical thinking about photos and ...
Earthquake Case Study
This activity is a multiple case study analysis of different earthquakes that leads to student interpretation of claims, evidence and prediction/recommendations.
Incorporating Information Literacy into Climate Change Teaching
This module contains 10 topics related to finding and evaluating scientific information related to climate change. The skills learned are transferable to any subject area. Each topic includes exercises.
Use of an inquiry approach for exploring relationships between small stream dynamics, channel geometry, and bedform movement
This group activity allows students to identify questions in the field on an actual physical system (in this case a small sand and gravel bed stream), then design experiments to answer their own questions. The ...
Introduction to the methods of geoscience
In this activity, students are introduced to the methods of inquiry in the Earth sciences and how they differ from what is classically taught in school science.
Calculating the radius of the Earth
Science students often have difficulty thinking about large spatial scales. The purpose of the exercise is to redo Eratosthenes' calculation of the radius of the Earth using data from to sites in ancient Egypt. The excercise teaches about the methodology of science - how Eratothenes figured it out - rather than worried about what the "right" answer is. It can also be used to discuss the role of models in geological thinking.