2004 Denver Annual Meeting (November 7–10, 2004)

Paper No. 1
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


STIMAC, John P., Geology/Geography, Eastern Illinois Univ, Charleston, IL 61920-3099, COOKE, Michele L., Geosciences, Univ of Massachusetts, 611 North Pleasant Street, Amherst, MA 01003-9297, CRIDER, Juliet G., Geology, Western Washington Univ, 516 High Street, MS 9080, Bellingham, WA 98225, JIANG, Dazhi, Department of Geology, Univ of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742, RESOR, Phillip, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Wesleyan Univ, 265 Church Street, Middletown, CT 06459, TIKOFF, Basil, Dept. of Geology and Geophysics, Univ of Wisconsin-Madison, 1215 W. Dayton St, Madison, WI 53706 and TORO, Jaime, Depart. of Geology & Geography, West Virginia Univ, 425 White Hall, Morgantown, WV 26506, cfjps@eiu.edu

The Modeling Structural Processes Working Group of the recent NAGT Workshop: "Teaching Structural Geology in the 21st Century" (TSG21) presents a catalog of models used in the teaching of structural geology to undergraduate students. Structural geology models are simplified constructs of complex earth system processes that have long been known to engage students and enhance their intuition of the deformation of earth materials. We recognize four classes of models: conceptual models, data representation models (including maps, stereonets, three-dimensional renderings, and statistical descriptions), analog models (including experiments with rock and non-rock materials), and mathematical models (including analytical expressions and deterministic or stochastic numerical models). We have limited this teaching catalog to analog and mathematical (including analytical, numeric, and statistical). Crider et al. (this session) address the educational goals of using models to address different learning objectives.

The premise behind modeling in structural geology is to understand how earth materials deform. We have divided the analog and mathematical modeling resources by subject matter and activity length (in-class demonstration to long-term projects). All presented models share a number of characteristics: they are accelerated relative to natural phenomena; they are descriptive; they can handle large variations in problem type; they allow the selection of appropriate variables and alternatives for comparison back to known parameters, and they show the complexity of natural systems.

Goals for the Modeling Structural Processes resource collection include a searchable catalog of analog and mathematical models useful for teaching, with photos, reviews, and a discussion of their best use in the classroom. Entries will include limits and assumptions made using the models and a list of "expert" contacts concerning the various models. We hope that this catalog of models will serve as a teaching resource for structural geology instructors, but success relies on the completeness of the catalog. We encourage our colleagues to consider contributions to this site by contacting either Michele Cooke (cooke@geo.umass.edu) or Basil Tikoff (basil@geology.wisc.edu).