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Google Earth mashup of the geology in the Presidential Range, New Hampshire: Linking real and virtual field trips for an introductory geology class

By
J. Dykstra Eusden, Jr.
J. Dykstra Eusden, Jr.
Department of Geology, Bates College, Lewiston, Maine 04240, USA
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Mathieu Duvall
Mathieu Duvall
Bates College Imaging and Computer Center, Bates College, Lewiston, Maine 04240, USA
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Marita Bryant
Marita Bryant
Department of Geology, Bates College, Lewiston, Maine 04240, USA
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Published:
October 01, 2012

A Google Earth–based virtual field trip, part of an introductory geology class, has been developed to illustrate the geology of the Presidential Range, New Hampshire. During a class field trip to Mt. Washington, the highest peak in the Northeast, students record GPS locations of exposures and collect information in the form of field notes and digital images from outcrops. Students upload the GPS waypoints into Google Earth and their images into a class PicasaWeb album, and they also make video clips that are uploaded into a class YouTube account. In Google Earth, the students embed and geologically annotate their images and embed their video clips. The final product is a Google Earth .kmz file or what is termed a mashup. The mashup provides a permanent record of the excursion and, if made available on the Internet, allows any user the ability to easily view the geology at any time. Constructing the mashup from the real field trip initiated reflective, independent, student-motivated learning and group work using technology that the students regularly use and enjoy doing. The resulting mashups have been very good, with an appropriate level of geologic content for an introductory course. Grading, which normally is onerous, is actually enjoyable, entertaining, and easy.

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GSA Special Papers

Google Earth and Virtual Visualizations in Geoscience Education and Research

Steven J. Whitmeyer
Steven J. Whitmeyer
Department of Geology & Environmental Science, James Madison University, Memorial Hall, MSC 6903, Harrisonburg, Virginia 22807, USA
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John E. Bailey
John E. Bailey
Scenarios Network for Alaska & Arctic Planning, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, Alaska 99709, USA
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Declan G. De Paor
Declan G. De Paor
Department of Physics, Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Virginia 23529, USA
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Tina Ornduff
Tina Ornduff
Google Inc., 1600 Amphitheatre Pkwy, Mountain View, California 94043, USA
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Geological Society of America
Volume
492
ISBN print:
9780813724928
Publication date:
October 01, 2012

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