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GEL 1007

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First off: Don't Panic!  We will collect most of the data for the project as part of our in-class lab exercises.

Subject The paper will discuss the environmental geology of the area in which the student lives. The purpose is for the student to apply the concepts discussed in the lecture and the lab to an area with which they are familiar. The subject area should be the township section (approximately one-square mile) in which the student lives. Specific requirements are listed below.

Date due See class schedule.

Length The  paper will be graded based on content, so the primary requirement is that the points listed in the outline are all covered.  (This should result in a paper at least 8 to 10 pages, double-spaced.)

Resources  This web page has on-line resources I encourage you to use.  Environmental Research

Best resources:

  • family (interview grandma!  sample interview)
  • local officials (fire chief, water department, mayor, etc.)
  • library local history room
  • newspapers
  • YOU: look around for what we have discussed

Outline The paper should follow this outline and, at a minimum, cover the following points. Listed items should be discussed (even if only to say they are not a concern); 'etc.' indicates that additional items may be appropriate.

  1. Introduction
    1. Location of study area - county, township, range, and section how to use the coordinate systems
    2. Description of study area - past and present land use, overall topography, etc.
    3. Description of surface and bedrock geology (This can also be included in the Natural Resources scection)
    4. General overview of findings - a paragraph summarizing 6 (see below).
  2. Natural Resources - must include a discussion of: water resources and nearest mineral or energy resource (if several mineral and energy resources are nearby, you should discuss them) & include a discussion of how these are currently used
  3. Natural Hazards - must include a discussion of flooding, landslides, earthquakes, radon gas (whether or not they are present) & include a discussion of how these are currently being dealt with
  4. Human-Induced Hazards - pollution and possible pollution sources (must include: the closest LUST and enviromapper (USEPA) sites and where your waste water and trash go) and the impact of mining (must include: closest mine, surface or underground) & a discussion of how these are currently being dealt with
  5. Plans for Future Use - what they are (if any), what they should be (based on what you know)
  6. Summary - the impact this report has had on you.
  7. References - You must reference all findings!!! (textbook, maps, books, local officials, etc.); they should be in alphabetical order and in one of the formats (APA or MLA) recommended in the IVCC style book (http://www.ivcc.edu/stylebook/)
  8. Figures - maps and diagrams are extremely useful for explaining points; the minimum requirement is a copy of the topographic map showing the study area with important features labeled and photos of important features.

Grading: The paper is worth 100 points as indicated on the grading sheet. Grammar, punctuation, and spelling are worth 10% your grade.

Questions: If you need help, please ask me.


Typed: The report must be typed for ease of reading; all students have free access to the on-campus computer labs and should use the computers to type their reports.

Presentation to Class: You will present the key findings to the class. Please pick the three or four most interesting and important things you discovered and the implications. You may use PowerPoint. You must use visual materials from your report.

References: I do not expect you to be all knowing; the information in your reports will be the result of research and observation. When you obtain information from a source, you must reference that source!!! If you make an observation, indicate that you observed it.

Visuals: You should include pictures and maps to illustrate you findings. These visuals should be used within your report by calling out from the text to the map or picture to show the reader what you are talking about.

Conclusions: To receive full credit, you must make conclusions based on your observations. This is key to receiving maximum credit. This project is intended to allow you to apply what you learn in the class and, at the same time, show me that you understand the material and can use it to interpret the area where you live. I expect to see indications that the material you include in the report means something to you.

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last updated: 12/08/16