Earth Science



1. Instructions (please read carefully): Write a 1½ to 2 page paper on a geosciences topic of in” rel=”nofollow”>interest to you that is related to the material that we have covered in” rel=”nofollow”>in the textbook durin” rel=”nofollow”>ing (approximately) the first one-third of the course (chapters I through 5 or 6). Some suggested topics are listed below, but you are free to choose other relevant topics for your paper. Your paper must use 12 poin” rel=”nofollow”>int, Times Roman font (or equivalent), be sin” rel=”nofollow”>ingle spaced and utilize one in” rel=”nofollow”>inch margin” rel=”nofollow”>ins (sides, bottom and top). With these formattin” rel=”nofollow”>ing choices, the 1½ to 2 page paper (main” rel=”nofollow”>in body of paper, text only, not in” rel=”nofollow”>includin” rel=”nofollow”>ing references) should have 750 to 1000 words (750 words is the required min” rel=”nofollow”>inimum). In addition, provide a references section at the bottom of your paper (or on a separate page) listin” rel=”nofollow”>ing your book, journal or in” rel=”nofollow”>internet (complete URL) references, and use citations in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text to note quotations or specific in” rel=”nofollow”>information that you used from your references. In order for a source to be in” rel=”nofollow”>included in” rel=”nofollow”>in your reference list, it needs to be cited in” rel=”nofollow”>in the text of your paper. Also, be sure to use metric units (used almost universally in” rel=”nofollow”>in science) in” rel=”nofollow”>in your paper. You can also add (optional) copies of a small number of figures, photos or tables to support or illustrate the topics or concepts that you describe in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text. Figures, photos and tables must in” rel=”nofollow”>include a caption and a citation showin” rel=”nofollow”>ing the source. 2 It is not necessary to have a large number of references – two or three, or so, good references are all that is necessary. You can use the textbook as a reference, but it cannot be the only reference that you use. The easiest (and recommended) way to handle references and citations is illustrated by the examples below (the author’s name(s); if more than 3, put first author’s name “and others”; followed by the date of publication. If publication is a book, also in” rel=”nofollow”>include the page number(s) in” rel=”nofollow”>in the citation, such as “(Lutgens, Tarbuck and Tasa, 2017, p. 107)”): Examples of citations (needed for referrin” rel=”nofollow”>ing to specific in” rel=”nofollow”>information, or quotes, that you obtain” rel=”nofollow”>ined from your references) in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text: Earthquakes which occur in” rel=”nofollow”>in stable contin” rel=”nofollow”>inental crust are commonly associated with ancient rift zones (Johnston and Kanter, 1990). (Note: if the above sentence is a direct quote, it needs to be placed in” rel=”nofollow”>in quotation marks.) ….. Johnston and Kanter (1990) show that although in” rel=”nofollow”>intraplate earthquakes occur less frequently than earthquakes at plate margin” rel=”nofollow”>ins, their potential size and efficient wave propagation in” rel=”nofollow”>in stable contin” rel=”nofollow”>inental crust results in” rel=”nofollow”>in significant seismic risk. (Note: if the above sentence is a direct quote, it needs to be placed in” rel=”nofollow”>in quotation marks.) ….. For an Internet source, the citations should be similar to the followin” rel=”nofollow”>ing examples; and the reference section should be similar to the example reference list shown below. Note that this is the full URL for this specific source – not a reference to an extensive website, such as If you are makin” rel=”nofollow”>ing multiple citations from a site such as, you must cite multiple URLs unique to each citation. For example, you could have a citation in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text for acid rain” rel=”nofollow”>in such as (What is acid rain” rel=”nofollow”>in,, 2015) with the related reference and full URL shown in” rel=”nofollow”>in the reference list below. A summary of recent earthquake activity and possible causes of earthquakes on the Midwest is provided by Braile (2011). ….. Example of reference format for separate reference section (all sources cited in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text must be listed in” rel=”nofollow”>in the reference list [if it is an Internet source, the complete URL in” rel=”nofollow”>in parentheses can serve as the citation and the reference], and all entries in” rel=”nofollow”>in your reference list need to be cited in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text): Braile, L., 2011, Midwest Earthquakes, Johnston, A.C., and L.R. Kanter, Earthquakes in” rel=”nofollow”>in stable contin” rel=”nofollow”>inental crust, Scientific American, 262, 68-75, 1990. What is acid rain” rel=”nofollow”>in,, retrieved May 5, 2015,” rel=”nofollow”>in/what/in” rel=”nofollow”>index.html. 3 Good references can be found in” rel=”nofollow”>in the Purdue libraries (the Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences library is on the second floor of Hampton Hall/Civil Engin” rel=”nofollow”>ineerin” rel=”nofollow”>ing buildin” rel=”nofollow”>ing), local public libraries and on the Internet. For Internet sources, try to fin” rel=”nofollow”>ind reliable sites such as from government agencies (US Geological Survey, NOAA, NASA, EPA, DOE, etc.), and websites (search on a topic, but be selective in” rel=”nofollow”>in which website you use) developed by scientists or professional scientific societies. A wealth of geosciences educational materials can also be found at the followin” rel=”nofollow”>ing websites: (some advertisin” rel=”nofollow”>ing is in” rel=”nofollow”>included on this website),” rel=”nofollow”>index.html,” rel=”nofollow”>index.html. A list of useful references (books, journal articles, periodicals) on many geosciences topics can also be found at: 2. Review of geoscience video option: For at most one of the three writin” rel=”nofollow”>ing assignments this semester, you can choose to do a review of a video (or two or three videos if they are short); an education video – from Discovery, History, Science, National Geographic channels, etc. (some geosciences video series: How the Earth was Made, Planet Earth, The Universe, Blue Planet, The Planets, etc.), or a movie that covers a geoscience topic – Dante’s Peak, Volcano, Earthquake, San Andreas, Twister, It Could Happen Tomorrow (series, Weather Channel), Secrets of Earth (series, Weather Channel), The Core, etc.), on a geosciences topic. Many videos (and animations and visualizations – see Carleton sites above) on geosciences topics that can be found on the Internet. You can also search on ‘geology documentary’, ‘geophysics documentary’, ‘ocean documentary’, ‘atmosphere documentary’, or ‘astronomy documentary’ on and you will fin” rel=”nofollow”>ind many full-length and shorter geosciences videos. If you choose to do a review of a geosciences video, provide a description of the video, the topic and the source. Be sure to check the scientific accuracy (and use and cite a reference that you checked) and comment on the accuracy and effectiveness of the video. Also, if the movie or video portrays in” rel=”nofollow”>inaccurate or exaggerated science occurrences, provide some description of the “real geosciences” that the video contain” rel=”nofollow”>ins (this could also require consultin” rel=”nofollow”>ing and citin” rel=”nofollow”>ing additional sources). In other words, provide some accurate background in” rel=”nofollow”>information (and add citations and references to those sources to your paper) of the science that is related to the video. All other requirements of the writin” rel=”nofollow”>ing assignment are the same as described above and below. 3. Information about plagiarism: IMPORTANT! – Do not be tempted to use a paper obtain” rel=”nofollow”>ined from the Internet or some other source or to copy sentences or paragraphs (without citations and references) from the Internet or other reference! A simple Internet search can distin” rel=”nofollow”>inguish papers that are copied. When plagiarism is suspected, we also use an onlin” rel=”nofollow”>ine tool that can detect plagiarism in” rel=”nofollow”>in submitted papers. Plagiarism is just wrong (because a writer who plagiarizes is takin” rel=”nofollow”>ing credit for someone else’s work), and is educationally negative (because there is usually very little learnin” rel=”nofollow”>ing if material is just copied and pasted in” rel=”nofollow”>into your paper). Plagiarism is copyin” rel=”nofollow”>ing or direct paraphrasin” rel=”nofollow”>ing a sentence (or a significant part of a sentence) or more without citin” rel=”nofollow”>ing the origin” rel=”nofollow”>inal source and placin” rel=”nofollow”>ing the copied material in” rel=”nofollow”>in 4 quotes. (“Paraphrasin” rel=”nofollow”>ing should not in” rel=”nofollow”>include the replication of vivid phasin” rel=”nofollow”>ing, chain” rel=”nofollow”>ins of syntax or sequences of ideas. Where those thin” rel=”nofollow”>ings are in” rel=”nofollow”>involved, direct quotation marks should be employed.” Thomas Mallon, author of Stolen Words, 1989, as quoted in” rel=”nofollow”>in USA Today, January 17, 2002.) Please note (in” rel=”nofollow”>in accordance with the previous statement) that copyin” rel=”nofollow”>ing a sentence or more from the Internet (or other source) and then changin” rel=”nofollow”>ing a word or two, or leavin” rel=”nofollow”>ing out a phrase, in” rel=”nofollow”>in that sentence is still “direct paraphrasin” rel=”nofollow”>ing” and is considered plagiarism! You need to research your topic and then write your report in” rel=”nofollow”>in your own words. Direct quotation (copyin” rel=”nofollow”>ing) is permissible but must be placed in” rel=”nofollow”>in quotes in” rel=”nofollow”>in your text and be cited (citations). Specific in” rel=”nofollow”>information that you obtain” rel=”nofollow”>in from a reference must be cited. You may copy a small number of specific sentences (must be in” rel=”nofollow”>in quotes), and Figures and Tables from an Internet, book or journal source to in” rel=”nofollow”>include in” rel=”nofollow”>in your paper to support your own writin” rel=”nofollow”>ing and objective. However, the copied material (quotes, figures, photos, tables) must be cited (in” rel=”nofollow”>in the text, in” rel=”nofollow”>in the Figure caption, or Table in” rel=”nofollow”>information) and the source (Internet URL, book, periodical) must appear in” rel=”nofollow”>in your reference list. Direct quotes should not be a major part of your paper. To avoid plagiarism or fillin” rel=”nofollow”>ing your paper with direct quotes, a good method is to prepare notes and outlin” rel=”nofollow”>ines from your reference material, then use only your notes and outlin” rel=”nofollow”>ines (along with citation and reference in” rel=”nofollow”>information) to write your paper with your own organization and in” rel=”nofollow”>in your own words. Also, see additional resources below. Sources cited in” rel=”nofollow”>in your paper must be in” rel=”nofollow”>included in” rel=”nofollow”>in your reference list. Also, in” rel=”nofollow”>in order for a source to be in” rel=”nofollow”>included in” rel=”nofollow”>in your reference list, it needs to be cited in” rel=”nofollow”>in the text of your paper. Be sure that you understand the difference between references and citations. 4. Gradin” rel=”nofollow”>ing: Each writin” rel=”nofollow”>ing assignment is worth 40 poin” rel=”nofollow”>ints toward the semester poin” rel=”nofollow”>int total. Gradin” rel=”nofollow”>ing of the paper will be on the followin” rel=”nofollow”>ing criteria: followin” rel=”nofollow”>ing directions and format, appropriate references and sources, organization of paper, clear and concise writin” rel=”nofollow”>ing, and scientific content (explanations, scientific accuracy). Also, please see the gradin” rel=”nofollow”>ing section in” rel=”nofollow”>in the course syllabus.

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