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Glossary of Geology 102, UND, Practice Questions

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Outline the "scientific method."
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Explain clearly the difference in meaning of the word "theory" to a scientist and to a layperson.
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What makes scientific creationism "unscientific"?
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What is James Hutton said to have first realized while looking at rock exposures at Siccar Point, Scotland, and what observations led him to this realization?
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What is the modern interpretation of the Principle of Uniformitarianism?
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Give a realistic example of how an earth scientist might apply the Principle of Uniformitarianism.
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What was the idea of Catastrophism, and what were some observations that led to the downfall of the concept?
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Scientists have determined or estimated Earth's age, in years. How was that done?
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Approximately how old are the oldest known Earth rocks?
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How long ago did Earth form? (What is Earth's age?)
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How does Earth's age compare with the age of the universe?
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About how old is the solar system (in years)?
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About how old is the Universe (in years)?
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How old are the oldest moon rocks brought to Earth by the Apollo astronauts?
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In determining the age of Earth, why do people think it's important to determine the ages of meteorites and moon rocks?
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How old are the oldest meteorites?
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The oldest known Earth rocks are quite a bit younger than our estimated age of Earth itself. What may account for the "missing time"? In other words, give a plausible reason to explain why we have found no rocks formed during the early part of
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There's iron in your blood and elsewhere in your body. Where did those iron atoms come from--ultimately? Compose a brief story that follows one iron atom from its origin (beginning) until it finally winds up in a hemoglobin molecule coursing through your
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Describe the "Nebular Hypothesis."
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Earth's internal structure might be compared with that of a Tootsie Roll Pop; in other words, it has concentric layering. But there is more than one way we can define the layers--we can define layers on the basis of physical properties (how the layers be
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In the "big picture," Earth basically has two kinds of crust. Name and describe the two kinds of crust. Don't be skimpy on the description: give the composition, thickness, etc., of each crust type.
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What is a plate?
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Which tectonic plate are we riding on right now?
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Name at least one plate that borders on (touches) the North American plate to our west, and one plate that borders on the North American plate to our east.
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In broad terms, what is happening at a divergent plate boundary? At a convergent plate boundary? At a transform plate boundary?
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Why do so few earthquakes of any consequence occur in North Dakota?
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Give the standard geological definition of "mineral."
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Explain how "rock" differs from "mineral."
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Explain the difference between the terms "atom" and "element."
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Explain the difference between the terms "element" and "mineral."
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Briefly distinguish between ionic and covalent bonding.
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Explain the difference between the terms silicon and silicate.
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What do all ferromagnesian minerals have in common?
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Name the elements corresponding to these chemical symbols:
C
Cl
O
Si
Fe
Mg
Al
Na
K
Ca
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Which mineral is ordinary table salt?
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Name a common carbonate mineral.
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What is the most common member of the amphibole group?
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What is the most common non-ferromagnesian member of the mica family?
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Which high-temperature ferromagnesian silicate has a name that is based on its color?
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Which is the most common of all mineral groups in Earth's crust?
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Which common mineral tastes salty?
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Name a common mineral that fizzes when a drop of dilute hydrochloric acid is applied to it.
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Name the three families of rocks.
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How do all igneous rocks form?
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How do all sedimentary rocks form?
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How do all metamorphic rocks form?
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How does magma differ from lava?
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How does "intrusive" differ from "extrusive"?
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How does "volcanic" differ from "plutonic"?
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What must you determine in order to name an igneous rock?
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What can we learn from the texture of an igneous rock?
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How would you recognize phaneritic texture, and what does it indicate?
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How would you recognize aphanitic texture, and what does it indicate?
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Here are four terms. Two are basically synonyms of the other two. Which words match which?

Intrusive
Volcanic
Plutonic
Extrusive
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Did a rock with aphanitic texture cool relatively quickly or relatively slowly? Is this rock more likely to be intrusive or extrusive?
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Did a rock with phanertic texture cool relatively quickly or relatively slowly? Is this rock more likely to be intrusive or extrusive?
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What is foliation?
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On what basis are metamorphic rocks classified?
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What causes metamorphism? (Be as complete as possible.)
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Name at least two fairly common unfoliated metamorphic rocks.
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What is metamorphic grade (or just "grade")?
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With some metamorphic rocks, we can tell what the protolith was. (The protolith is the "parental rock"--the original rock before metamorphism occurred.)

What is the protolith of quartzite?
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With some metamorphic rocks, we can tell what the protolith was. (The protolith is the "parental rock"--the original rock before metamorphism occurred.)

What is a likely protolith of marble?
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State whether or not these rocks are foliated, then arrange them in order from low-grade and finer grain size to high-grade and coarser grain size.

Schist
Phyllite
Gneiss
Slate
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What is the most common igneous rock on the seafloor?
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Of the three families of rocks, which is the most likely to contain fossils?
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All sedimentary rocks can be divided into two groups. What are they?
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What do all detrital sedimentary rocks have in common?
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What do all chemical sedimentary rocks have in common?
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Which type of sedimentary rock is named according to the size of the grains it contains?
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What is a clast?
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What is the name of a detrital sedimentary rock whose clasts are all about the size of grains of table sugar?
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What is the name of a detrital sedimentary rock made of lithified gravel?
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What is the name of a detrital sedimentary rock whose grains are the size of talcum powder?
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What is the name of a detrital sedimentary rock whose grains are coarser than clay but finer than sand?
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What do all evaporites have in common? Name at least two common evaporites.
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Who is most closely associated with the idea of Continental Drift?
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Explain three pieces of evidence suggesting that now-separate continents were once connected.
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What was Mesosaurus?
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There are many natural dispersal mechanisms for organisms. That is, they can move into new areas of the globe in a variety of ways. Some organisms can fly to new areas, some can swim, some can walk, some can be blown by wind, etc., etc. Plants and animal
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What was Glossopteris?
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What was the fundamental problem with the Continental Drift idea? (That is, why wasn't it a workable idea in its original form?)
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Compare the mechanism by which continents move in the old Continental Drift idea with the mechanism by which continents move in the modern Plate Tectonics idea.
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Although there are several different tectonic plates ("plates"), there are only three different kinds of plate boundaries (different ways the plates touch each other). What are the three kinds of plate boundaries?
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What are some synonyms for "convergent boundary"? What are some synonyms for the other kinds of plate boundaries?
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Explain what happens at a divergent boundary. Go into specifics about the geologic phenomena (for example, the nature of earthquakes, kinds of volcanic and/or magmatic activity, if any).
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Explain what happens at a convergent boundary. Go into specifics about the geologic phenomena (for example, the nature of earthquakes, kinds of volcanic and/or magmatic activity, if any).
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What is a Benioff Zone? (Since Benioff Zones were discovered before Plate Tectonics, do not use Plate Tectonics in your answer. Just say what Benioff Zones are.)
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With what type of plate boundary are Benioff Zones associated?
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How does Plate Tectonics explain Benioff Zones (i.e., what is going on there)?
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What is the asthenosphere?
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What is the role of the asthenosphere in Plate Tectonics?
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What kind of plate boundary is the mid-Atlantic Ridge? What is happening there?
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Why are there so few earthquakes along the east coast of the U.S.?
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What kind of plate boundary separates the North American Plate from the Eurasian Plate?
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What kind of plate boundary separates the North American Plate from the Juan de Fuca Plate?
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What kind of plate boundary separates the North American Plate from the Pacific Plate?
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Using Plate Tectonics, explain why Washington, Oregon, and Northern California have many active volcanoes, and why we don't see the same thing in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Virginia.
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Name two places on the globe where small, new ocean basins are opening up.
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What kind of igneous activity occurs in the vicinity of a divergent plate boundary? (Be specific. I am looking for the rock name and how it is classified (which tells something about how it formed).)
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What kind of igneous activity occurs in the vicinity of a convergent plate boundary? (Be specific.)
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Which kind of plate boundary is associated with the least igneous activity?
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How does intrusion of granite fit into the Plate Tectonic model?
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What is the relationship between granite and andesite in the Plate Tectonic model?
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Which type of plate boundary is associated with andesitic volcanism?
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Which type of plate boundary is associated with granitic plutonism?
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What is an "accretionary wedge"?
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What kind of plate boundary is associated with the Peru-Chile Trench?
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What is a "subduction complex"?
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What is "tectonic melange"?
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What kind of plate boundary is the San Andreas Fault?
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Where is Mt. Rainier located? Of which mountain range is it a part? What is the origin of this mountain range?
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Where are the Aleutian Islands located? What is the origin of the Aleutian Islands, in terms of Plate Tectonics?
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Where are the Andes Mountains? What is their origin? With what kind of plate boundary are they associated, if any? What kind of rocks are these mountains made of, generally?
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What is the origin of Mt. Rainier, in terms of Plate Tectonics? What kind of rock is Mt. Rainier made of (be specific--name the rock and make sure you understand its classification and mode of formation)?
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Where are the Himalaya Mountains? What is their origin in terms of Plate Tectonics?
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Which type of plate boundary is associated mainly with basaltic volcanism?
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define geology
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define geosciences
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define physical geology
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define historical geology
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define earth history
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define scientific method
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define hypothesis
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define theory
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define paradigm
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define prediction
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define retrodiction
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define catastrophism
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define uniformitarianism
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define actualism
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organic evolution
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principle of uniformitarianism
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principle of superposition
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lateral continuity
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original horizontality
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cross-cutting relationships
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principle of fossil succession
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principle of inclusions
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rock
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mineral
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geologic record
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geologic time
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geologic time units
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relative dating
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tree-ring dating
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absolute dating
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radioactive decay
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carbon 14 dating technique
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rock cycle
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igneous rock
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various minerals
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Continuous Series (Bowen's Reaction Series)
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Discontinuous Series (Bowen's Reaction Series)
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lava
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magma
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plutonic
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volcanism
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intrusive
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extrusive
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slow-cooling history
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rapid-cooling history
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fine-grained crystalline (aphaneritic)
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coarse-grained crystalline (phaneritic)
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pyroclastic flow
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granites
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rhyolite
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basalts
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gabbro
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metamorphic rock
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contact metamorphism
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regional metamorphism
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temperature
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pressure
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banded (foliated) metamorphic rock
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nonbanded (nonfoliated)
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schistose
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slate
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marble
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gneiss
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sedimentary rock
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clasts
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clastic sedimentary rock
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nonclastic
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chemical sedimentary rock
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evaporites
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biogenic (organic) sedimentary rock
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clay-sized clasts
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silt-sized clasts
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sand-sized clasts
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congolomerate
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clay minerals
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quartz
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feldspar
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gypsum
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salt
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carbonates
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limestone
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dolostone
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dolomite
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calcite
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fossiliferous
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precipiate
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supersaturated
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depositional environment
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coal
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peat
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stratigraphy
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lithostratigraphic unit
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formation
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correlation
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time transgressive
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biostratigraphic unit
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biozone
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guide fossil
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taxon range zone
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concurrent range zone
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chronostratigraphic unit
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time-stratigraphic
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system
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series
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stage
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geochronologic unit
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era
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period
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epoch
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age
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paleomagnetism
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magnetic anomaly
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magnetic reversal
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paleontology
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evolution
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homologous structure
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homology
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fossil
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body fossil
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cast
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mold
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trace fossil
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coprolite
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organic
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lagerstatten
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destructive agents
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cohesive medium
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