Disadvantages of relative dating in geology

In Assignment 3, we began exploring the age of the Earth. Through presentation and discussion of individual ideas, the class reached agreements as to the best way to complete each of the prompts.

You worked in small groups and as a class to complete the "If Scientists Think. Today's assignment will allow you to compare and contrast your ideas to some of the actual methods scientists used to develop an estimation of the age of the Earth.

PART 1: Back to Basics PART 2: Problems with the Assumptions PART 3: Making Sense of the Patterns This three-part series will help you properly understand radiometric dating, the assumptions that lead to inaccurate dates, and the clues about what really happened in the past.

You will investigate Steno's Laws, radiometric dating, and then visit an interactive site that will help you better understand how to tell time - with geology! As you proceed through Assignment 4, be sure to compare your answers from "If Scientists Think. ." to the actual methods scientists use to estimate the age of prehistoric objects.

By looking at layers of rocks, scientists can tell which layers are older or newer than others; however, they can not tell exactly how old these layers are.

Technology has progressed phenomenally since Steno's time.

Because this assignment is linked with your work in Assignment 3, you will have "If Scientists Think. Before scientists had modern technology to assist them in their research, they had to use their power of observation to infer the relative ages of the rocks they were studying.

The process of Relative Dating was established by Nicholaus Steno in the 1600's.

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Steno developed a set of Laws (Steno's Laws) to help explain his method of inferring the ages of geological structures.

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