Historical Geology 102
Plate Tectonics Study Guide


After watching the Earth Revealed video "Birth of a Theory" you should be able to answer and discuss the following questions.

Continental Drift

Who proposed the theory of Continental Drift and when was it proposed?
What is the Theory of Continental Drift?
What were the proposed mechanisms of continental motion?
What are the 6 pieces of evidence which were used to support the theory?
Why was the theory rejected?

Sea Floor Spreading

Who proposed the theory of Sea Floor Spreading?
What is sea floor spreading?
What are the major points of the theory?
What is subduction?

Paleomagnetism

What is paleomagnetism?
Who used paleomagnetism to study sea floors?
How was paleomagnetism used to support the theories of Continental Drift and Sea Floor Spreading?
Why does the magnetic orientation of rocks change direction?

Transform Faults

What are transform faults?
Who named these features?

Plate Tectonics

Who proposed the term "plate tectonics"?
What is Plate Tectonics?
How does the age of the sea floor relate to mid-ocean ridges?


After watching the Earth Revealed video "Plate Dynamics" you should be able to answer and discuss the following questions.

Crust

What are the two types of crust?
Which of these two types is more dense?

Plate Boundaries

What are the 3 major types of plate boundaries and how do the plates move relative to each other in each case?

Divergent Boundaries

What are the 2 types of divergent boundaries?
What types of landforms are associated with these boundaries?

Convergent Boundaries

What are the 3 types of convergent boundaries?
What are the types of crust involved in these convergent boundaries?
What types of landforms are associated with each of these convergent boundaries?

Transform Boundaries

In what kinds of settings do we find transform boundaries?

Plate Motivation

There are 4 theories or models that explain how the plates are moving.
What are these 4 theories and how do they operate?

Mantle and Core

What is convection and how does it operate?
Where is the Earth's magnetic field generated?
What is a hot spot and with what mantle feature are they associated?