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Exploring Geology on the Isle of Arran

Exploring Geology on the Isle of Arran
A Set of Field Exercises that Introduce the Practical Skills of Geological Science

  • Date Published: April 2000
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521635554


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About the Authors
  • The Isle of Arran in the Firth of Clyde is a classic location to introduce beginners to field geology because of the richness and variety of over 600 million years of history packed into its tiny area. This book breaks the mould of 'excursion guides' by teaching the basic skills needed by any beginner when dealing with rocks in situ. It leads the student through a series of problem-solving exercises which include step-by-step instructions on what observations to make in order to find a solution. They increase in difficulty and cover the spectrum of field skills that a first/second year undergraduate or A-level student needs to master. The exercises include many of the more interesting aspects of Arran's geological history and also introduce some of the fundamental concepts behind the science and the people responsible for them, such as James Hutton and Charles Lyell. This approach injects greater flexibility into teaching and assessing progress in learning. Above all, it shows that the subject is dynamic, thought provoking and fun.

    • Breaks the mould of 'excursion guides' by using exercises to teach the basic skills needed by the beginning geologist in the field
    • Injects greater flexibility into teaching and assessing progress in learning
    • Shows that the subject is dynamic, thought-provoking and fun
    • Includes a quick-reference section on the 25 most basic field skills and a 'Help!' section at the end of each exercise
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    Reviews & endorsements

    ' … a very welcome new approach to teaching and learning about field geology on this much-visited island … it is pleasing to see emphasis placed on both safe-working and respect for the land and its inhabitants.' Geoscientist

    'Chis Nicholas has written a fascinating little book, full of good, interesting exercises that most field parties going to the Isle of Arran could use. Each exercise includes photocopiable pages of field notes, maps and cross-sections. Practical field skills are rarely found in textbooks and the quick reference section explaining some of these would be useful to someone new to fieldwork. … they can be adapted to fit into any field trip to Arran and it has certainly given me new ideas about changing my own exercises and using some new locations.' Brian Clissold, Teaching Earth Sciences

    'On the face of it, this book looks as if it should be a fascinating study of the geology of the isle of Arran. It certainly is that … if you were planning to explore the geology of Arran or leading a field trip, I think this book would be invaluable and probably necessary.' Wendy Owens, OUGS Journal

    'I applaud the exercise-based approach of Nicholas's book, and I recommend Arran as an excellent location for providing practical training in geological field skills … The book is attractively produced in a handy, pocket size format.' Geological Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2000
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521635554
    • length: 250 pages
    • dimensions: 203 x 127 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.28kg
    • contains: 115 b/w illus. 12 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. An Introduction to the Field Work: Part II. Learning Basic Field Skills:
    1. Present day processes (Sannox Burn and Sannox Bay, north-east coast)
    2. Clastic sedimentary rocks (Corrie, east coast)
    3. Intrusive igneous rocks (Tormore shore, west coast)
    4. Changing the record: metamorphism and deformation (Rubha Airigh Bheirg, north-west coast)
    5. 3-D thinking in time and space (Glen Sannox, north-east coast)
    6. Cuvier's catastophies (Corrie, east coast)
    7. Prof. Speyside's theory (Glen Rosa, east Arran)
    8. The curious case of 'Catacol Cairn' (Catacol Bay, north-west coast)
    9. Dr. Hutton's dilemma (North Glen Sannox, north-east Arran)
    10. Pluto's revenge (Drumadoon, west coast)
    Part III. Practical Field Skills: Quick Reference Section

  • Author

    C. J. Nicholas, University of Oxford

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