Transnational Pollution: Why Are You Dumping on Me?
This lesson familiarizes students with the different types of transnational pollution, and gives them an opportunity to role-play in a hypothetical case of transnational pollution involving the Danube River. The major goal of this activity is to show students that an incident in one nation may well have serious environmental consequences for other nations. Additionally, it will give students an opportunity to role-play complex roles that are meaningful and consequential to global concerns. The l
Phases of the Moon
This site contains a series of visualizations of the sun, moon and Earth System and how they relate to the changing face of the moon. Animations are in the form of Java applets, forms for field observation of the moon, and a collection of exercises and PDF versions of background material. There are practice questions and quizzes that discuss the animations.
Rio Grande Wildlife Refuge
This investigative case is part of the Starting Point module. In this exercise students role play as professional ecologists working for the fish and wildlife service. Students must develop a plan to manage a new wildlife refuge along the Rio Grande River. The fish and wildlife service plans to connect forest islands along the river, which will become not only a new refuge but also a "wildlife corridor." Users can access information regarding learning goals, context for use, teaching notes and t
Reducing Volcanic Hazards to People and Property - An Assignment with Electronic Peer Review
Through an electronic peer review assignment, students write a general summary of major hazards to humans in the vicinity of volcanoes. Then, students are provided a list of volcanoes and must choose one to determine what actions they would take to minimize the risks to a population. This activity is detailed on this Starting Point site, which includes its learning goals, context for use, teaching notes and materials, recommended assessment method, resources, and references.
Exploration to Mars... or Not? An Exercise with Split-Screen Electronic Peer Review
Split-screen technology is utilized for an electronic peer review assignment that has students justify whether humans should continue their investigations of the Red Planet or not. This Starting Point page builds a context for the activity by describing the learning goals, teaching notes and materials, and recommending assessment methods. References and resource links are included.
Using Popcorn to Simulate Radioactive Decay
In this activity popping popcorn is used to illustrate the spontaneity, unpredictability, and irreversible change associated with radioactive decay. This site provides notes and tips, a list of teaching materials and methods, and links to related online resources.
Starting Point's introduction to Interactive Lectures, and more specifically their use in the entry level geoscience setting. This module on Interactive Lectures has strategies and specific examples of activities to involve students in large and small lecture-based classes. It includes discussions of what interactive lecture is, how and why it is used, and links the user to more specific examples and further resources.
The Private Pain of Lyndon B. Johnson
Harry McPherson was special counsel to U.S. president Lyndon B. Johnson from 1966 to 1969. In this video segment, McPherson captures the thinking behind Johnson's internal stalemate: his anguish over the Vietnam War; his diminished political strength; his tension-filled relationship with newly appointed defense secretary Clark Clifford, who pushed to de-escalate; and Johnson's own inability to let go. In the interview he conducted for Vietnam: A Television History, 'Tet 1968,' McPherson provides
Space and Strategic Defense
Dean Rusk came from barefoot poverty in rural Georgia and achieved black-tie success. He was the first assistant secretary for UN Affairs, in 1949; assistant secretary of state for Far Eastern Affairs, in 1950; and the country's second-longest-serving secretary of state (1961 to 1969), after Cordell Hull. In this video segment, Rusk voices his opposition to the Strategic Defense Initiative, commonly known as 'Star Wars' and first unveiled in March 1983. In his interview conducted for War and Pea
McNamara's Whiz Kid
Alain Enthoven, an MIT economist, was the country's first assistant secretary of defense for systems analysis from 1965 to 1969. In this video segment, Enthoven recounts how public interpretation of 'flexible response' strategy ran counter to both the administration's overriding goal-to prevent nuclear war-and its bottom line: that nuclear war is unwinnable. In his interview conducted for War and Peace in the Nuclear Age: 'The Education of Robert McNamara,' Enthoven sets the stage for the missil
Linkage and Arms Control
Henry Kissinger, U.S. national security adviser from 1969 to 1973 and then secretary of state until 1977, was the dominant figure in creating the foreign policy of the Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford administrations. This video segment deals with the concept of "linkage": interlocking U.S. arms-control negotiations with leveraging Soviet behavior and policy. Kissinger's interview conducted for War and Peace in the Nuclear Age: "One Step Forward" touches on points contained in his blueprint for de
Son of Sam and Delilah
'Son of Sam and Delilah,' 1991, featuring two drag queens named Hapi and Sunny, was created by video artist Charles Atlas as a response to both sorrow over AIDS-related deaths and increasing urban violence.
Coffee Coloured Children
'Coffee Coloured Children' is a powerful exploration of the impact of cultural pressure on self-image. Based on the daily experience of mixed-race children, the narrator recalls the pain and confusion of her own childhood spent in an all-white neighborhood with a white mother and an absent black father. The work opens with a video essay showing adults and children of many ethnicities interacting harmoniously to an upbeat and soulful song with a chorus about 'coffee-colored people.' Through narra
This site provides visual resources and supporting material about the study of sequence stratigraphy. Resources accessible from this site include informational text, images, animations and short videos which can be integrated into lectures, labs or other activities.
This site is a set of lecture notes from a petrology class by Dr. Susan DeBari at Western Washington University. The lectures explain the process of mineral crystallization and phase relationships as a function of temperature and pressure. Topics covered include the phase rule, one-component systems (unary), two-component systems (binary), and three-component systems (ternary), as well as equilibrium crystallization, equilibrium melting, fractional crystallization, and fractional melting. Diagra
Underneath the Mountains
These lecture notes discuss the role of buoyancy, flexure, and erosion in the earth's topography and the lifetime of mountain ranges. It recalls Pascal's law that pressure of a material overlying a fluid is equal everywhere at a given depth and Archimedes' principle that a body in a fluid is buoyed up with a force equal to the weight (mass x volume) of the displaced fluid. Continents are buoyant crust floating on denser mantle, so a 4 km high mountain range must have a 20 km deep root. According
Teaching Structural Geology in the 21st Century
This site from the "On the Cutting Edge" workshop series offers a variety of resources for faculty members who teach undergraduate structural geology. There are collections of classroom activities, internet and computer resources, useful articles and maps, presentations from the summer 2004 workshop on teaching structural geology, working groups and a discussion forum, and lots of creative ideas for teaching structural geology. Students will also find the site useful for supplementing class lect
Teaching Structural Geology in the 21st Century
This site from the "On the Cutting Edge" workshop series contains a collection of activities that can be used in undergraduate structural geology courses. The collection includes lab exercises, classroom activities, problem sets and more.
Teaching Hydrogeology in the 21st Century
This site from the "The On the Cutting Edge" workshop series features a wealth of ideas, teaching examples and web-based resources that are useful for teaching undergraduate hydrogeology.
Solar System Animations
This site features Flash animations that illustrate phases of the moon, distances between planets, total, partial, and annular eclipses, and solar system formation that includes an example of the impact that created the moon. These resources are suitable for use in lectures, labs, or other teaching activities.