Earth Science

Writing Assignment 2


EAS 10000 Y01 Planet Earth

Online Course


Spring 2013


January 24, 2013



January 24, 2013 – Writing Assignment 2 (WA 2):  Writing Assignment 2 should include topics in Chapters 5 through 8 in the textbook.  Except for the topics, the instructions for completing Writing Assignment 2 are the same as for Writing Assignment 1.  See the Due Dates file (on the Course Contents page) for due dates of all assignments.  Be sure to read the instructions in the WA 1 assignment.  Please pay particular attention to the plagiarism discussion!   


Suggested topics for Writing Assignment 2:


Alfred Wegener Continental drift
Evidence for plate tectonics What drives the plates?
Statistics of earthquakes Earth’s magnetic field
Paleomagnetism Elastic rebound theory
The 1906 San Francisco earthquake The Mar. 11, 2011 Japan earthquake
Seismographs Locating an earthquake
Earthquake magnitude scale Largest historical earthquakes
Tsunami Earth’s interior structure
Rock deformation Faults
N. Anatolian fault (Turkey) Volcanoes
Intrusions (batholiths) Hawaii volcanism
The eruption of Mt. St. Helens Calderas
Crater Lake volcano Yellowstone volcano
Super volcanoes Plateau basalts (flood basalts)
Fossils Radiometric dating
The geologic time scale  


Suggested topics and Example References (links) for WA 2:


Alfred Wegener


Brief bio and description of Wegener’s contributions to science:


Evidence for plate tectonics


Brief history of the development of plate tectonic theory:


More detailed history of plate tectonic theory:


Statistics of earthquakes


Brief intro to EQ statistics:


EQ facts and stats in brief:





Basics of paleomagnetism:


List of links to all things geo- and paleo-magnetism:


The 1906 San Francisco earthquake


In depth look at the 1906 SF EQ:


Another view of the EQ:




Basics of seismographs:


More basic seismographs:


Earthquake magnitude scale


Intro to EQ magnitude scales:


Links to EQ magnitude scale topics at USGS:




Comprehensive tsunami website:


Basic overview:


Rock deformation


Basic overview:


N. Anatolian fault (Turkey)


Very brief intro:


A paper on fault activity since 1939:


Intrusions (batholiths)


Intrusion terms:


Basics of plutons and batholiths:


Case study:



The eruption of Mt. St. Helens


Intro to Mt. St. Helens eruptions:


Eruption history pre-1980:


Brief info and stats:


Crater Lake volcano


Basic info:


Brief intro and stats:


Super volcanoes




Topic intro:




Intro to paleontology:


Links to a variety of resources:


The geologic time scale




History of the geologic timescale:


Intro with timescale of life development:


Continental drift


Development of the theory in brief:


What drives the plates?


Driving mechanisms of plate tectonics:


Brief intro:


Earth’s magnetic field


Brief intro:


Discussion on effects of magnetic field:


Elastic rebound theory


Brief intro to Reid’s ERT:


ER on a strike-slip fault:


The Mar. 11, 2011 Japan earthquake




Brief details of EQ:


Locating an earthquake


How EQs are located:



Largest historical earthquakes


USGS lists (select location for more detail):


Earth’s interior structure


Basic look at Crust, Mantle, and Core:


Brief look at tomography techniques used to gather information on earth’s interior:




Brief overview:


Basics of faults and related topics:


More basics:




Detailed look at volcanoes and related topics:


Stats and general info:




Hawaii volcanism


Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, a database of volcanism info:


Kilauea status reports, updates, and info releases:


General info about Hawaiian shield volcanoes:




Intro to calderas:


Basics on caldera formation and caldera examples:


Yellowstone volcano


National Parks Service FAQ:


Brief geology and history:


Plateau basalts (flood basalts)


Basics of flood basalts:


More basics with info on specific examples:


Siberian Flood Basalts:


Radiometric dating


Intro to radiometric time scale:


Principles of radiometric dating:



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