Department of Earth Science          Northeastern Illinois University

INTRODUCTION TO EARTH SCIENCE                                                                                     J. Hemzacek homepage 
1-4            SPRING 2013
                                                                                                   questions?  send me an email
This course section is specifically for the CASEP cohort

(click on caption or image for story)

Sandy Revives Debate Over Sea-Level Rise

NOAA image, 29 Oct 2012


This webpage is the primary informational source for this class. 
Resources and detailed information that you will need to succeed
will be provided in class and on this page.

Review List for Exam 2 - final version
Term project information - don't forget about this!!
             and    list of project topics
syllabus "live" version with assignments  
                                             due dates, details, resources, etc.

course documents  printable versions  
class resources and web links:
 info about textbooks for this course
        Academic Integrity: do you know how to avoid problems? 
--> Many people are unclear as to what constitutes plagiarism.
                Use the resources below to be sure that your work is free of violations:

NEIU Student Conduct code
                       ►NEIU on-line tutorial
                       ►Indiana University: How to Recognize Plagiarism

volcanic eruptions:          Hawaii 3          MtStHelens
         volcano videos and info:  1- plate tec     2-kilauea     pele    lava lab  
                               3-pompeii   4-pyrocl 
                               5-montserrat    6-pinatubo    7-predicting? NZ      8-ring of fire
                               Hawaii 2 - flows     flow2     Hawaii 1 - spectacular eruptions
                                           Kilauea full episode    Sicily and Hawaii
                               Iceland:    typical     1news     dramatic video
                               Volcanoes of the World | Galápagos Islands
                               Flores Volcano, Azores (Portugal)
                               El Hierro, Canary Islands
        virtual volcano                             magma viscosity
        How Volcanoes Work - hydrovolcanic eruptions    

              hotspot oceanic

              Yellowstone:     caldera 1        caldera 2         hotspot    
                                                        caldera 3

                figure         active1        active2         Volcano Explosivity Index
                                                                              (and recurrence interval)
               magmas, igneous rocks, volcanoes

Types of deformational behavior of solid materials:
silly putty time lapse          SP drop
             rock deformation images:    ductile1    ductile2       ductile and brittle
                                           structural images         how rocks deform
             wax:     brittle     vs.
                       ductile (and convection):    lavalamp1      real mantle convection

              folding & faulting           foldfault2   

 plate tectonics:  rifting and continental collisions             animation: rifting
              animation: subduction, collision       
   what a geologist sees:      seeing plate boundaries        fault zone          folds

    tsunamis and related:

Course Handouts
and Other Important Stuff

printable versions - as given in class: 
course syllabus (schedule of topics)
course information (grading, etc.)
tips for success              classroom / lab rules
criteria for homework and rubric for assignments

additional course information:

General Education program goals


Material on the website links below supports our discussions and use of topographic maps in class:
    USGS Mapping Information: Topo Map Symbols -- Reading Topo Maps
    HowStuffWorks "How to Read a Topographic Map"
    Reading Topographic Maps  -
this is a long document, and we will not
                         be working with all of these aspects.
                The most relevant sections for our purposes are "reading the margins"
                         and "interpreting contour lines"

Weathering examples:   wthrg    wthrgA   wthrgB   wthrg1         wthrg2        wthrg3



some documents are in .pdf form;     
if you do not have Adobe(R) Reader(R),     
click here to download.      

Last updated 7 January 2013
(c) 2013
J Hemzacek



  ANNOUNCEMENTS             scroll down for earlier announcements
6 Mar   
For Monday: complete the map scales worksheet as homework.  See the assignment page for helpful information about completing this worksheet!
3 Mar    My apologies - there is not, after all, an assignment for Monday.  I was unable to attend to this.  I am sorry for any inconvenience.

4 Feb
If you have not yet selected a geologic feature for your project topic, use the following information to help you to select options:
  • remember the original criteria for selection, as presented in the assignment that was due on 28 Jan; refer to that assignment for details
  • see this list of projects that are not available for selection (already chosen by your classmates)
  • in addition, Colorado, Utah, and Tennessee are already pretty well represented; please select features in other states/territories


WELCOME to ESCI 121 Section 4 !
The following information will help you navigate obtaining a course text:

There is not a specific, required text for this course.   However, you should note that your success in this class will be much enhanced if you have a textbook available as a resource.

There are many appropriate textbooks available for this course.  Some suggestions are listed below.  Beck's Bookstore will have textbooks available for other sections of this course, and you are welcome to purchase and use any of those texts; however, you should note that a text  for ESCI 121 (this course) will be different than a text for ESCI 123 (the other ESCI GenEd course). 
The focus of an appropriate text for this class will be on the physical geology (how and why the earth works the way it does; the nature and origin of earth materials, etc.) and other earth science topics (ocean and atmosphere science, including weather and climate processes). 
A text for ESCI 123 is more focused on earth surface processes and the interaction/effects of earth processes on the human experience.

New editions of texts are rather pricey, but older editions are rather widely available (through internet sites, etc.) at much reduced cost. 
While an older edition will be perfectly useful to you, I suggest that you use a text edition not older than 2 editions previous (e.g., 7th or 8th, instead of 9th).  Check with friends who may have taken this course!  Perhaps you can borrow a text from someone you know!

** ONE CAUTION:  Whichever option you choose for a text, think about the timing!  If you are ordering online, make sure to order from reputable sellers, so that you know you will receive your text in a timely manner.  Make use of options such as expedited shipping (for a very inexpensive text, this is a good investment!) or check into, for example, Amazon Prime's free 3-day shipping option.  (I believe that Prime membership is free for students)  You don't want to still be waiting for your text as the first exam approaches!

Examples of textbooks that are appropriate for ESCI 121:

title; author (publisher)

Earth Science; Tarbuck et al. (Prentice Hall)
The Blue Planet; Skinner (Wiley)
The Good Earth; McConnell (McGraw Hill)
Earth Lab; Owens (Thomson)

Of course there are others!  If you have access to another text, and want to confirm that it is appropriate for this course, simply ask me.


















Project topics:
    Name of Attraction Location 
      (city/region, state)
  Nemeh Great Basin National Park NV
  Abby Arches National Park UT
  Farrah Yellowstone National Park ID/MT/WY
  Sam Triceratops Trail (Dinosaur Ridge) Golden, CO
  Drew Carrizo Plain National Monument CA
  Adrian Mammoth Cave KY
  Allison Niagara Falls NY
  Cory Ruby Falls TN
  Danny Appalachian Trail NC
  Nancy Dinosaur National Monument CO, UT
  Daniela Haleakala National Park HI
  Tiana Yosemite National Park CA
  Nick Bryce Canyon National Park UT
  Kaitlyn Smoky Mountains National Park TN
  Jennifer Black Mountain NM
  Dyamond Glacier National Park MT
  Kareli Caves of Camuy PR
  Rebecca The Wave UT-AZ



Term Project Information and Resources

  • For an overview of the term project and requirements, see this document.


  • For more details on the evaluation of the project, see the rubric.  You should use this rubric as your "checklist" as you put together your project, in order to maximize the points that you earn!

  • Be sure to check the assignment page for deadlines and due dates of project "steps" to keep you on track!

  • The electronic element must be submitted in MS PowerPoint format.  Any other format will not be accepted.  It is your responsibility to leave yourself enough time to create or convert your work into the proper format.  

  • PLEASE!  Before submitting your PowerPoint file, name the file as specified here; the file name must begin with your last name.
    e.g., Hemzacek Grand Canyon    or   HemzacekJGrandCanyon     or  HemzacekJean
    This makes it so much easier for me!  :o)
    Grading of your project may be delayed if the file is not named appropriately (potentially resulting in a delay of your final course grade).