GENERAL GEOLOGY GEOS1113-003 Fall 2015Exam I – Study GuideHenry TurnerNote that these are NOT questions, but rather this is an outline of topics that we have covered either in class or arecontained within the reading assignments. You should use this outline as a guide to help you review what topics areimportant for the exam. You may want to give extra attention to terms and headings that are inbold.Chapter 1: Introduction to Physical Geology1)The Development of Geology & Geologic Timea.Physical Geologyvs. Historical GeologyPhysical Geology—Study of the earth materials (minerals, rocks) and geologic processes (earthquakes,landslides, volcanism, flooding).Historical Geology—Study the origin and evolution of the earth.b.Catastrophismvs.Uniformitarianism-- James HuttonCatastrophism—The principle that states that all geologic change occurs suddenly.Uniformitarianism—The idea that the same geologic processes shaping the Earth today have been at workthroughout Earth's history.c.The Standard Geological Time Scale: Eras, Periods, and Epochs (Precambrian, Paleozoic,Mesozoic, Cenozoic, etc.)Precambrian—Earth’s crust developing, 85% of the Earth's 4.6 billion years of life is during thisera, only simple, one-celled organisms lived (ex. algae)Paleozoic— more diversity of life in ocean (jaw-less fish), triliobites ruled, first land plants, insects,and amphibians, MASS EXTINCTION! ends this era and 90% of life went extinctMesozoic—age of dinosaurs and reptiles, first small mammals and birds, Pangea breaks apart,MASS EXTINCTION! ends this era and 75% of life went extinct; called the "Period of GreatDeath"Cenozoic—age of mammals, 4 ice ages occur during this era, continents move to their presentposition, man2)The Nature of Scientific Inquirya.The Scientific Method—observations, hypothesis, testing, theoryb.Hypotheses vs. Theories—Hypothesis—a reasoned prediction of a possible causal correlation; testable and falsifiableTheory—a tested, well-substantiated, unifying explanation for a set of verified, proven factors; backed byevidencec.Example of Sea Floor Spreading hypothesistheory that oceanic crust forms along the mid-ocean ridge system, and spreads out laterally away fromthem. This idea played a pivotal role in the development of plate tectonics, a theory that revolutionizedgeologic thought during the last quarter of the 20th century. Hess's theory that new seafloor is formed whenmagma is forced up to the surface at a mid-ocean ridge3)The Formation of the Eartha.The Nebular Theory—according to the explanation, stars are born from clouds of interstellar gas and dust. Thetransition from an undifferentiated cloud to a star system complete with planets and moons takes about 100million years. According to this theory, our own solar system formed about 4.6 billion years ago, and others areforming today in distant nebulae.