2006 Philadelphia Annual Meeting (22–25 October 2006)

Paper No. 3
Presentation Time: 2:05 PM


MOGK, David W., KIRK, Karin and MILLNER, Jennifer, Dept. of Earth Sciences, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59717, mogk@montana.edu

Human health and public policy issues provide great opportunities to demonstrate the importance and relevance of the geosciences to students and the general public. These topical issues also serve as motivators for students to access and utilize geological concepts and data to solve problems of personal or societal importance. Through the On the Cutting Edge faculty professional development program, we have convened two national workshops that have focused on geology and human health and geology and public policy issues. Two websites have also been developed to capture all workshop activities (e.g. presentations, posters, summaries of discussion sessions): http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/health/index.html http://serc.carleton.edu/NAGTWorkshops/publicpolicy/index.html These websites also contain extensive web-based collections of searchable resources that can be used to support instruction about these topics, as well as a collection of community-contributed teaching activities that are ready for classroom use. These websites also make direct connections between the primary science related to a given issue, teaching activities, recommended reading lists, and related pedagogic information (e.g. teaching strategies, assessments). Activities in the teaching collections address topics such as asbestos at Libby, Montana; resource development on Native American lands; Hurrican Katrina; Environmental risk assessment in local communities; snowmobile policy in Yellowstone National Park; Kyoto accords and the Lifestyle Project. These activities demonstrate how geologic factors must be considered as part of responsible decision-making by a scientifically literate citizenry.