About This Chapter
How it works:
- Identify the lessons in the Glencoe Earth Science Fossils and the Rock Record chapter with which you need help.
- Find the corresponding video lessons within this companion course chapter.
- Watch fun videos that cover the fossils and the rock record topics you need to learn or review.
- Complete the quizzes to test your understanding.
- If you need additional help, rewatch the videos until you've mastered the material or submit a question for one of our instructors.
Students will learn:
- The definition of relative dating and principles of original horizontality
- The rock record
- Geological dating methods
- Fossil remains
- Geological evolution theories
- Major eras and eons
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1. Geologic Time Scale: Major Eons, Eras, Periods and Epochs
The geologic time scale is an essential tool for understanding the history of Earth and the evolution of life. In this lesson, explore the principal eons, eras, periods, and epochs that help us track major events in geologic history.
2. Theories of Geological Evolution: Catastrophism vs Uniformitarianism
Geologists haven't always agreed about the history of our planet. They have debated between catastrophism and uniformitarianism over the last few hundred years! Learn about the two main theories of geologic evolution and how scientists came to resolve the dispute.
3. Methods of Geological Dating: Numerical and Relative Dating
Learn how scientists determine the ages of rocks and fossils. We'll explore both relative and numerical dating on our quest to understand the process of geological dating. Along the way, we'll learn how stratigraphic succession and radioactive decay contribute to the work of paleontologists.
4. What is Relative Dating? - Law of Superposition, Principles of Original Horizontality & Cross-Cutting Relationships
Discover how geologists study the layers in sedimentary rock to establish relative age. Learn how inclusions and unconformities can tell us stories about the geologic past. We'll even visit the Grand Canyon to solve the mystery of the Great Unconformity!
5. Principles of Radiometric Dating
Radiometric dating is a method used to determine the age of rocks and other materials based on the rate of radioactive decay. Learn about three common types of radioactive decay: alpha decay, beta decay and gamma decay.
6. Radiometric Dating: Methods, Uses & the Significance of Half-Life
Radiometric dating is used to estimate the age of rocks and other objects based on the fixed decay rate of radioactive isotopes. Learn about half-life and how it is used in different dating methods, such as uranium-lead dating and radiocarbon dating, in this video lesson.
7. Conditions of Fossil Preservation: Rapid Burial, Hard Parts & the Elements
Learn how fossils are formed and how varying conditions affect the preservation of organisms. What is the best way for a dinosaur to become fossilized? Find out here!
8. Relative Dating with Fossils: Index Fossils as Indicators of Time
You may already know how to date a fossil with a rock. But did you know that we can also date a rock with a fossil? Watch this video to find out how we use index fossils to establish the relative ages of rocks.
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Other chapters within the Glencoe Earth Science: Online Textbook Help course
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 1: The Nature of Science
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 3: Matter and Change
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 4: Minerals
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 5: Igneous Rocks
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 6: Sedimentary and Metamorphic Rocks
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 7: Weathering, Erosion, and Soil
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 8: Mass Movements, Wind, and Glaciers
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 9: Surface Water
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 10: Groundwater
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 11: Atmosphere
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 12: Meteorology
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 13: The Nature of Storms
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 14: Climate
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 15: Earth's Oceans
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 16: The Marine Environment
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 17: Plate Tectonics
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 18: Volcanism
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 19: Earthquakes
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 20: Mountain Building
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 22: The Precambrian Earth
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 24: Earth Resources
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 25: Energy Resources
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 26: Human Impact on Resources
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 27: The Sun-Earth-Moon System
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 28: Our Solar System
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 29: Stars
- Glencoe Earth Science Chapter 30: Galaxies and the Universe