2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 203-5
Presentation Time: 10:00 AM

USING THE EMRIVER EM2 GEOMODEL IN THE CLASSROOM TO SIMULATE IMPACTS OF LAND USE AND RIVER MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES ON FLUVIAL GEOMORPHOLOGY


RUFFING, Claire M., Geography, Kansas State University, 118 Seaton Hall, Manhattan, 66506, KELLY, Kyleen E., Geography, Kansas State University, 118 Seaton Hall, Department of Geography, Manhattan, KS 66506 and GRUDZINSKI, Bartosz Peter, Geography, Kansas State University, 1838 Anderson Ave, Apt 8, Manhattan, KS 66502, cruffing@k-state.edu

Developing physical models for use in the classroom provides students with environmental analogies that incorporate forms and processes with a system-wide perspective. Recent advances in technology and model development have resulted in a variety of tools that are suitable for classroom demonstrations yet the dissemination of pre-developed and tested exercises is still in its early stages. We developed and tested a series of laboratory demonstrations using the EMriver EM2 geomodel that would be appropriate for a variety of introductory level geoscience courses including environmental science, physical geography, and geology. Watershed scale processes can be challenging for students to grasp because of the wide variety of system components (i.e. hydrology, soil properties, geology, land cover and land use practices, etc.) that influence the ways in which disturbances and management techniques are attenuated through the stream network. The laboratory exercises we developed simulate the impacts of land use on watershed hydrology and stream channel morphology. Specific scenarios include impervious land cover surfaces, channel modifications, as well as longitudinal and lateral network connectivity. The demonstrations are structured so that students have the opportunity to engage in scientific and applied discourse throughout the process by taking roles as actors representing stakeholder, management and scientific groups while interpreting and synthesizing system responses. Additionally, we administered pre and post testing to assess how the demonstrations influenced learning outcomes.