Website Tour Links

     This website is designed to introduce the fundamental concepts of igneous and metamorphic petrology to users who have some background in geology including mineralogy. It is intended for students who are taking an intermediate-level college course in petrology, but it includes many interactive diagrams and images that will be useful for teachers of petrology. The website was created to take pedagogical advantage of features of the internet that we all use daily: images, animation, video, web connectivity, access to data, and especially interactivity. Readers are given control over diagrams with buttons, sliders, and mouseover effects. They can select data or upload their own data to be plotted on a variety of geochemical diagrams. There is an extensive visual Rock Library filled with photos and thin section photomicrographs to use as examples or reference. Students who read this text will be prompted to engage with the concepts and information presented through questions and responses requiring exploration that may include clicking on images, changing graphs with sliders, entering data for calculations, searching for information, and more. The following sections provide links to pages on the website that demonstrate the variety of interactive features offered.
Website Organization
     Begin the tour with the "Everyone Read This" and "Contents" pages to see the overall layout and navigation information.
Active Reading
     A major goal of the website is to encourage student engagement with the material by prompting them for responses as they use the website.
     Motion captures your attention, but only intially. It is possible to sleep during a movie. However, motion that you control can hold your attention until you can predict the motion. The website has a number of diagrams that not only give the reader control, but also reveal information embedded in a diagram or chart that may not be apparent to a novice. Igneous and metamorphic rocks form at high temperatures that promote the achievement of chemical equilibrium. Many of the animated diagrams are equilibrium diagrams that relate the chemical and mineralogical compositions of rocks. Use your mouse and look for buttons and sliders that will change the appearance or response of the diagram.
Working with Geochemical Data
     Science is data driven. The chemical compositions of igneous and metamorphic rocks can reveal features of their origin and evolution. Geologists have measured the chemical compositions of thousands of rocks and in recent years, these data have been incorporated into online databases. Tools are available on this website to work with geochemical data both from preselected datasets and also from datasets easily uploaded by students who use the website.
Rock Library
     Rocks are physical items that can be held and studied in the field, in hand samples, and in petrographic thin sections. For the visual aspects of petrology, pattern recognition is an important skill that is developed through looking at many rocks. This website has a rock library with images of hand samples and thin sections, eventually for a great many rocks. Tools are provided to view the rocks and to see inside them with "x-ray vision." Many rock images are still needed...
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