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 David Thomas
P 248.204.3600
E dthomas2@ltu.edu
O Mailbox S322

David Thomas

Natural Sciences
Adjunct Faculty

Dave Thomas currently teaches Geology 1103 at Lawrence Technological University. 

COURSE OBJECTIVES - Students will be able to:

  • Define geology as a science.
  • Draw, interpret and define topographic profiles.
  • Draw, interpret and define topographic maps.
  • Explain the concept of the rock cycle.
  • Compare and contrast the layers of Earth defined by composition and physical properties.
  • Discuss the theory of plate tectonics.
  • List the three types of plate boundaries and give a location for each type.  
    • ·       Define minerals and explain how they differ from rocks.

      ·        List the eight elements that make up most of the Earth’s continental crust.

      ·       Know physical and chemical tests used to identify a mineral sample.

      ·       Correctly identify given mineral samples.

      ·       Describe how two types of igneous rocks form.

      ·       Explain the difference between magma and lava.

      ·       List the two criteria that are used to classify igneous rocks.

      ·       Describe how the cooling of magma influences the crystal size.

      ·       Relate the mineral makeup of an igneous rock to Bowen’s reaction series.

      ·       Describe the differences between basaltic and granitic rocks.

      ·       Correctly identify selected igneous rocks.

      ·       Discuss the difference between explosive and mild volcanic activity.

      ·       Discuss viscosity, silica content, volatiles, and magma composition.

      ·       List the various materials erupted from volcanoes.

      ·       Compare and contrast shield, stratovolcanoes, and cinder cones.

      ·       Discuss the causes of explosive volcanic eruptions.

      ·       Explain the origin of calderas, necks, lava domes, etc.

      ·       List and describe the various types of plutonic igneous bodies.

      ·       Discuss igneous activity at tectonic plate margins.

      ·       Identify and explain “The Ring of Fire.”

      ·       Discuss the various processes involved in physical weathering.

      ·       Discuss the various processes involved in chemical weathering.

      ·       List and briefly explain those factors which control rates of weathering.

      ·       Define soil and explain the difference between soil and regolith.

      ·       Discuss soil formation, including those factors that control soil formation.

      ·       Explain the concept of the soil profile and how it relates to soil formation.

      ·       Discuss the characteristics of the soil horizons in a typical soil profile.

      ·       Briefly discuss soil erosion.

      ·       Briefly discuss how sediment is turned into sedimentary rock.

      ·       Explain and briefly define the major types of detrital sedimentary rocks.

      ·       Explain and briefly define the major types of chemical sedimentary rocks.

      ·       List and briefly discuss the major sedimentary depositional environments.

      ·       Discuss the most common characteristic feature of sedimentary rocks.

      ·       Describe the two broad groups of nonmetallic mineral resources.

      ·       List the energy resources that are associated with sedimentary rocks.

      ·       Correctly identify selected sedimentary rocks.

      ·       Briefly discuss the concept of metamorphism and metamorphic rocks.

      ·                 Describe the agents of metamorphism: heat, pressure, and chemical fluids.

      ·                 Briefly discuss the importance and origin of metamorphic textures.

      ·                 Compare and contrast foliated and nonfoliated textures.

      ·                 List and define common foliated and nonfoliated metamorphic rocks.

      ·                 Correctly identify selected metamorphic rocks.

      ·                 Explain the origin of earthquakes and faults.

                        Distinguish the Richter Scale from the Mercalli Scale

      ·                 Discuss elastic rebound and the accumulation of strain in rocks.

      ·                 Discuss seismology, and seismograms.

                        Identify and distinguish the characteristics of P, S and L seismic waves.

                       Measure the distance to an epicenter using Travel Time curves.

                       Distinguish the focus from an epicenter.

                       Describe the causes of the secondary effects of earthquakes.

                       Locate on a map the three major earthquake belts.

                       Understand earthquakes in relation to tectonic plate boundaries.

                       Explain how seismic waves determine earth's interior structure.

      ·                 Discuss and explain the hydrologic cycle on Earth.

      ·                 Briefly discuss the concept of discharge and gradient.

      ·                 Explain the changes from the head to the mouth of a stream.

      ·                 Compare and contrast how streams transport sediment.

                        Describe the development of a floodplain.            

                         Identify the features of a floodplain.

      ·                 Distinguish between the competence and capacity of a stream.

      ·                 List and briefly describe the various types of stream deposits.

      ·                 Briefly explain the concept of base level and graded streams.

      ·                 Compare and contrast the characteristics of stream valleys.

      ·                 List and briefly describe the various types of drainage patterns.

      ·                 Briefly discuss the importance of groundwater.

      ·                 Explain the distribution of groundwater and the water table.

      ·                 Understand how groundwater affects streams.

      ·                 Discuss factors influencing the  movement of groundwater.

      ·                 Compare and contrast springs, hot springs, and geysers.

      ·                 Discuss problems associated with groundwater withdrawal.

      ·                 Research and present a power point presentation as a team.

      ·                 Critique another student’s presentation.

      ·                 Compare and contrast the different types of glaciers.

      ·                 Briefly discuss the formation and movement of glaciers.

      ·                 Discuss the processes involved in glacial erosion.

      ·                 Compare and contrast landforms produced by glacial erosion.

      ·                 Discuss the processes associated with glacial deposition.

      ·                 Compare and contrast landforms produced by glacial deposition.



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