Welcome to Geosystems. This course deals with the world as you experience it. Fire, Earth, Air and Water. In this course you will learn the basic concepts of systems geology and the scientific approach to problem solving. This is an SOL tested course.

Geosystems uses the systems approach to the study of the earth sciences. This course will also emphasize the use of technology to explore the concepts and interactions of the different spheres of our planet. Course content is designed to strengthen competencies in Astronomy, Geology, Meteorology, and Oceanography. Technology is principal player in this course. Computers are used for data acquisition, data manipulation, word processing, web publishing, image processing and geographic information databases.

Course Goal: To convey the systems in earth science through as current and practical a means possible.

Textbook: Blue Planet, 2nd Edition (1999), John Wiley & Sons.

Online Geosystems Course Outline

Solid Earth
Fluid Earth

1. The Big Bang
2. Distance
3. Gravity
4. Stars
5. The Sun
6. Planets
7. Galaxies
8. Earth
9. Unit Project




10. Maps
11. Cross-section of Earth
12. Plate Tectonics
13. Volcanoes
14. Faulting & Folding
15. Earthquakes
16. Minerals
17. Rocks
18. Geologic Time
19. Weathering & Soil
20. Groundwater
21. Erosion & Deposition
22. Virginia Geology
23. Earth's Resources
24. Unit Project

25. Composition & Structure
26. Clouds
27. Energy Patterns
28. Bathymetry
29. Ocean Currents
30. Tides & Longshore Movement
31. Waves & Tsunami
32. Ocean Zones
33. Human Interactions
34. Unit Project





Expectations, Procedures and Rules

A. Code of Conduct

1. No chewing gum, drinking while online or working barefoot. NOT !

2. Behave courteously and respectfully to all others in the chat areas or discussion boards.

3. Timeliness is important. While each and every assignment is not graded for when you turn it in, your work and comments are important, not only to your own learning, but to the learning of other members of the online class.

4. Deadlines, when they occur, are fixed and final. The computers will note the date and time files are created and transferred. A record is always created. Because of the open nature of this course and the opportunity to finish the work at any time of the day, students not meeting deadlines may be asked to withdraw from the course. Students failing to log in will be warned after 7 missed day, and can be dropped anytime there after for continued failure to work.

5. Quiz scores ARE recorded. Most can be taken multiple times. Students not scoring well on quizzes my be required to turn in assignments on a schedule and graded basis.

6. There is no such thing as absences. Just a failure to log in and do work. Parent's notes are not needed if you dont log in that day. However, the work must be done. Course lessons do not match the school calendar. Christmas and Easter vacations are outstanding opportunities to catch up or move ahead. Each week has lessons due if you are to keep up and finish by June 1, 2004.

7. There is no make-up work. The course moves on regardless of whether you did the work or not, so keep current. Ask questions early when you don't understand a concept. Concepts taught in one lesson will often be used in other lessons, this is the "systems approach". It is important to understand them the first time they are presented. If you miss a concept, that concept will confound you later. If you need extra help you may email fellow students, the teacher, or post questions to the discussion board. (All teachers and fellow students are listed in the communications button under e-mail.)

8. Organize and manage your time wisely. Use a planner and a notebook, keep up with assignments, never wait until the last minute to accomplish a task or assignment. Remember...This Is School...you're just doing it in a different place.

9. Always, Always, Always keep a copy of your work. Files can be damaged in transfer. Another copy can be sent quickly if it exists. (A copy on your machine and one on floppy or zip or CD is prudent.)

10. Appropriate Posting. When looking at a picture an appropriate response is not, "It looked like a river". A good response would use all the knowledge you have on the subject, the vocabulary associated with the lesson, plus other things you can tie into your comments. "It looked like an old river because of the meanders and ox bow lakes that resulted from the bank and bed erosion as well as siltation caused by the weathering and erosion of the sedimentary rock features commonly found in this active uplifting area of faulting and folding." Always endeavor to transfer as much as you know.

11. All assignments should be written with standard writing and grammar conventions applied. Spelling always counts, especially when you are dealing with new vocabulary. Your understanding of the material can only be determined by reading what you have written, so write well thought out, thorough answers in drop box assignments and on the discussion board.

B. Supplies

1. Computer
2. ISP
3. Discs
4. Extra storage - discs, zip discs, writable CD, flash memory
5. Notebook - Lesson can be printed. Copies of work make study at a later date easier.

C. Grades

1. Your work and learning will be evaluated through a variety of activities, including tests, quizzes, labs, essays, worksheets, projects, e-mails and discussion boards. Your performance on these activities will have an important impact on your learning and therefore your grade. All assignments are assigned points for completion, and given a teacher rating of M-Mastered, C-Completed, and I-Incomplete. Assignments are presented sequentially and designed to be completed in order but and the sequence supports the spiraling but can be submitted in any order

2. You will be required to attend two lab days at Annandale High School. The first lab should be scheduled near the end of the Space Unit. It will bring together many of the concepts learned in that unit. The second lab should be scheduled at the conclusion of the Solid Earth Unit. In these labs you will work through as many activities as will fit in the 2-2.5 hour lab. All activities will support the Unit most recently studied and will be graded.

3. An end-of-unit project will be undertaken in at the end of the three units in this course. This project will be your opportunity to apply all you have learned to a real-life situation. Your project should demonstrate your mastery of the material and showcase your use of technology. It will be graded by the rubric supplied with the instructions for each project.

4. The Earth Science SOL test must be completed on an assigned date and time which will be communicated to you at a later date. The location for most students will be your base school. Homebound students will complete the SOL test with the homebound teacher, in most cases.

5. A mid-term and final exam will be administered, face to face, at the same place you completed your labs. This must be done in person. (Parents are not required at these sessions but may attend.) The exams usually take slightly less than an hour in most cases.

6. Your three projects, your lab grades, your lesson activities, and mid-term and final exams are all averaged together to determine your final grade. Because this course has rolling enrollment, the quarter and interim grade reported to the school system may not reflect the student's quality of work because of the time component. Communication with the teacher is the best measure of your work.