18 Extra credit—Explore your hometown

(adapted from Cochiara, 2008)

Assignment procedure


Research the geology of your hometown or any location that is special to you. Prepare a two-page paper plus one figure that illustrates a geological aspect of your study region. Include a list of references cited for your paper.


To find topographic and geologic maps of your

location, search online at https://store.usgs.gov/maps, https://ngmdb.usgs.gov/topoview/ viewer/#4/39.98/-100.06, or use your favorite topographic and geologic map smart device apps.


Topographic map: Examine the map, and record, at a minimum, the following information:


map coverage (7.5-minute or 15-minute quadrangle?)

map scale

contour interval (with units)

map publisher

publication date of map (year)

overall relief of the map (minimum and maximum elevations), with units

the elevation of your house or point of interest, with units

latitude and longitude coordinates of your hometown

any other information that is interesting to you


Geologic map: Examine the map and record, at a minimum, the following information:


map title

map author(s)

map publisher and publication date

map scale

geologic units in your hometown area. Be sure to include the unit names and ages. For example, “lower Cambrian sillimanite-mica schist” or “Paleozoic granite gneiss.”

geologic structures in the region (faults, folds, domes, depressions, etc).

overall strike and dip of units, if given. Example: “units generally strike N-S, with east facing dips of 35-80”

any other interesting information


Note: Your geologic map envelope may contain multiple maps (such as maps of bedrock geology, “surficial” geology, glacial geology, mineral deposits, zones/types of metamorphism, etc.) depending on the region, and may also contain a summary paper of the regional geology to go along with the maps. Feel free to use any extra information from these materials in your paper if you find it interesting. Be sure to cite the authors when quoting or paraphrasing information, maps, or figures from external sources.



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