About This Chapter
Oceanic Systems & Characteristics - Chapter Summary
If you need to review oceanic systems and characteristics, this study guide chapter shows you everything you need to know. Through a series of engaging and informative video lessons, the chapter breaks down several scientific concepts related to the ocean, such as continental margins, ocean circulation, longshore transport, tides and much more.
After completing the chapter, you should be able to:
- Differentiate between active and passive continental margins
- Understand how different types of ocean bases are formed
- Explain the process of oceanic ridge system formation
- Identify ocean water properties
- Name several types of marine organisms
- Know how the circulation of the world's oceans affect the climate
- Recognize shoreline and beach characteristics
- Determine how waves affect land erosion
Our expert science instructors craft each lesson to be straightforward, easy to follow and enjoyable. This instructional style can help you quickly review the most important oceanic systems concepts and remember what you study. To further enhance your studying experience, we've included printable lesson transcripts and interactive self-assessment quizzes. Our instructors are available to answer your questions, and you can keep track of your progress throughout the chapter on your course dashboard. Finally, we've made the chapter available 24/7 so you can study whenever you have free time.
1. Active & Passive Continental Margins
Continental margins are areas that separate the continental crust and oceanic crust. Discover the differences between the tectonically active continental margins and the relatively quiet passive continental margins.
2. Ocean Basins: Definition, Formation, Features & Types
Ocean basins are those areas found under the sea. They can be relatively inactive areas where deposits of sediment slowly collect or active areas where tectonic plates meet. Learn how ocean basins form and about features such as oceanic ridges and trenches.
3. Oceanic Ridge System: Formation & Distribution
The oceanic ridge system is a continuous underwater mountain range with parts found in every ocean of the world. The ridge system is created when magma rising between diverging plates of the lithosphere cools and forms a new layer of crust.
4. Properties of Ocean Water
Ocean waters are salty and contain minerals and dissolved gases. They also have a high heat capacity and vary in density depending on temperature and salinity. Learn more about the unique chemical and physical properties of ocean water.
5. Types of Marine Organisms
Many marine organisms thrive under the surface of the ocean. Learn about the biodiversity of the oceans, from the microscopic plankton to the enormous whales, and how these organisms adapt to their oceanic environment.
6. Ocean Circulation: Patterns & Effect on Climate
The ocean waters are always in motion and as they travel around the globe they carry and distribute heat, which affects the global climate. Learn about the ocean circulation patterns and how they impact the climate.
7. Characteristics of Shorelines & Beaches
Shorelines and beaches are constantly changing due to forces, such as waves, winds and currents. Learn about characteristics of shorelines, including headlands, bays, beach berms, sand dunes, spits, tombolos, barrier islands and lagoons.
8. Waves: Types, Features & Effect on Erosion
There are different types of ocean waves, including wind waves, tsunamis and tidal waves. Learn the features of waves and how their erosive effect creates the unique features found on the shoreline.
9. Contributing Factors of Longshore Transport: Beach Drift & Longshore Current
The longshore transport is the process responsible for the movement of sand and sediment along the coastline. Sand and other particles are transported with the help of the longshore current and beach drift. Learn how these factors shape shorelines.
10. What Are Tides? - Causes & Effects
Tides rise and fall under the influence of the gravitational pull of the moon and sun. Learn about different tides, why they are predictable and their effects on coastal regions of the world.
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Other chapters within the AP Environmental Science: Exam Prep course
- Environmental Science Basics
- Time & Dating in Geology
- The Lithosphere
- Understanding Earthquakes
- The Atmosphere and the Environment
- Weather and Storms
- Water Balance
- Flowing Water
- Ground Water Systems
- Life Cycle of Glaciers
- Water Issues & Conservation
- Minerals, Rocks & Soil
- Interaction Among Organisms in the Ecosystem
- Evolving Ecosystems
- Changing Ecosystems
- Population and the Environment
- Food and Agricultural Resources
- Forestry, Rangelands & Other Land Use
- Mining & Fishing
- Energy Concepts
- Renewable Energy Resources
- Nonrenewable Energy Sources
- Waste Management
- Effects of Humans on the Environment
- Sustaining the Environment
- Environmental Risk Analysis
- Global Environmental Economics
- Environmental Ethics & Politics
- AP Environmental Science Flashcards