Academic journal article Journal of Geoscience Education

Web Based Interactive Exercises for the Earth Sciences

Academic journal article Journal of Geoscience Education

Web Based Interactive Exercises for the Earth Sciences

Article excerpt

The world wide web has evolved to become an important tool in earth science education. Most resources are primarily static in nature, structured similarly to a textbook in which students progress through the resource in a fairly straightforward, linear pattern. A growing number of web based interactive resources, however, have recently emerged, providing a more dynamic, inquiry based mode for student learning. For some of these sites, students not only have the chance to correct their mistakes, they can learn why their particular response was incorrect. Such feedback is crucial to the learning process.

From an instructor perspective, these interactive sites can deliver measurable learning outcomes in a more engaging, interactive format. From a student perspective, these sites are often more interesting than standard sites because the user has more control over the type of response received.

Exemplifying this interactive approach is Virtual Courseware (http://www.sciencecourseware.com) a site where students can enter observations, make measurements, and receive performance feedback. Stand alone labs exist for earthquake epicenter location, relative/absolute dating, plus river flooding and discharge. These labs have accompanying supporting explanations, examples, glossaries, and learning objectives. …

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