Department of Earth Science Northeastern Illinois University
INTRODUCTION to EARTH
ESCI 121 Spring 2010 questions? send me an email
documents are in .pdf form;
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ADDITIONAL RESOURCES for
weathering & geologic environments **
rocks and the rock cycle
Follow-up to class on 1 Feb:
Bring this sheet to class with you on Wednesday!!
10 February 2010: Northern Illinois earthquake
USGS website info: http://neic.usgs.gov/neis/last_event_states/states_illinois.html
earthquake map: http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/
12 Jan 2010
(c) 2010 J
Last updated 27 January 2010
ANNOUNCEMENTS scroll down for earlier announcements/ assignments
weathering & geologic
rocks and the rock cycle
Plate tectonics and Mountain Building |
Please do yourself a favor! To maximize homework points, carefully follow the criteria for homework.
1. Briefly describe the types of tectonic environments and processes that are responsible for mountain-building. Give examples of world mountain ranges that are associated with the environments and processes you describe.
2. Briefly discuss the factors that are
responsible for different characteristics of various world mountain ranges,
specifically including elevation and shape
(sharp peaks vs. rounded). In discussing variation among
mountain ranges, include descriptions of specific world mountain ranges as
examples. **Include the following terms/ concepts in your
discussion: isostasy; erosion rate; crustal
Earthquakes and Volcanoes |
Consider your explorations of plate tectonic environments and the characteristics of volcanoes and earthquakes that you have already discovered, as related to those tectonic environments. Refer to your "compiled expert summary" sheet and notes from class discussions; additional information can be found from other resources (text as well as online; a short list is provided below, including the maps used in lab).
1. Various earth features are connected to, and explained by, the plate tectonic environment in which they occur. Very briefly tell how this is related to the fact that plate tectonics is a scientific theory (->what does it mean that this concept is a scientific theory?).
2. Volcanoes tend to occur in three plate tectonic environments: divergent boundary, convergent boundary, and hot spot.
A. Compare the characteristics of volcanoes in convergent vs. divergent settings, using either a list or a table to summarize the following aspects of volcanoes in those different settings:
-- physical form/ shape of volcanoes (steep sides? not steep? other characteristics?),
-- eruptive style (e.g., explosive, quiet, other?), and
-- magma composition and behavior
B. Are volcanoes at hot spots more like those in divergent or convergent settings? Comment very briefly.
3. Earthquakes can occur in many different environments (including near Chicago!). Areas with high earthquake activity, however, tend to be associated with certain tectonic environments. Which tectonic environments represent concentrations of significant earthquake activity? Compare the characteristics of earthquakes in those tectonic environments, with respect to depth of focus (shallow, medium, and/or deep) and magnitude (small vs. large).
maps: tectonic boundaries -- map1 map2; earthquake depth of focus map volcano map hot spot map
volcanoes (types, etc.): Global Volcanism Program (Smithsonian / USGS) VolcanoWorld
Volcanoes.com How Volcanoes Work USGS volcano hazards program
earthquakes: USGS earthquake home
geology.com: geologic phenomena, incl. earthquakes, volcanoes
Homework due on Wednesday, 3 Feb:
For this assignment, you will use information found at the US Geological Survey Earthquake website:
Click here for the assignment details and instructions**.
This assignment will be submitted in typed (paper) copy; click here to review the set of homework criteria.
**Note: the assignment tells you to "refer to the map used in lab", but the link for that map doesn't show up in the document.
Click here for that map.
clarification: Just to make sure that you are starting on the
correct page: you should be looking at the information for the *first*
Haiti earthquake -- that is, the earthquake that occurred at the earliest
time on that date.
21 Jan 2010|
Homework due on Wednesday, 27 Jan:
HW2: Earth Systems Standard homework criteria apply (see the handout! --> typed! one page for entire assignment!)
Answer the following, using the question numbers as provided below to identify your responses.
1. The earth itself is a system. Explain what that means: that is, what are the characteristics of a system?
2. Describe the differences between an open system and a closed system, and explain how the earth system compares with these concepts (is the earth an open system, or a closed system... and why).
3. We will be exploring earthquakes next! Refer back to your response to question #1, and explain how the very existence of earthquakes is related to the definition of earth as a system.
4. Give two additional, specific geological examples (i.e., other than earthquakes, and not biological examples!) that illustrate how the earth has the characteristics of a system; be sure to explain how your examples illustrate the characteristics of earth as a system.
If you already have your textbook, you will find information to help you formulate your responses; if you do not yet have a text, you will find helpful information on the following websites:
Remember, however, that your responses must reflect your own work, and not the words of another resource (including another student!). Refer to course information regarding plagiarism; in addition, this link from Indiana University explains and gives examples of plagiarism and provides helpful tips on how to avoid it.
11 Jan 2010|
Welcome to the course! I look forward to our time together as we explore fun facts about our home planet. :o)
Homework assignments will in future be posted
on a separate page (with a link at the top of this page), but for now
we'll get started here.