DIRECTORIES: Rocks for Web Jocks

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Science  09 Feb 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5506, pp. 951
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5506.951b

Cyberspace seems an especially rich medium for the very visual discipline of geoscience. Web surfers can see erupting volcanoes from space, download all kinds of maps, even track earthquakes through near-real time seismograms. Six years ago, University of Houston geoscience professor John Butler starting compiling such links for his classes and other educators. The result is the voluminous Virtual Geosciences Professor.

Click on Course Resources and you'll find a sampling of sites that Butler says are “good places to visit to get ideas.” To delve deeper, check out a database of some 4300 links searchable by type (handouts, data, maps, student projects) or key word. There are plate tectonics animations, maps of the ocean floor, and a course on gems and precious stones. Students can analyze stream gage data or take a virtual field trip with Butler to China's famed Stone Forest. The best links bear Butler's “good practices” seal of approval. Virtual Geosciences Professor also offers a Web site of the week and a listserv where profs swap tips on Internet education.∼jbutler/anon

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