19.1. Measuring Geological Time – Learning Outcomes

After reading this chapter of the textbook, learning the vocabulary, and working through the review questions, students should be able to:

  • Describe the difference between absolute and relative dating. Describe approaches used for each dating approach.
  • Name the principles of stratigraphy and explain each one.
  • Explain how radioactive decay of isotopes is used to date rocks.
  • Give examples of radioactive isotopes that are useful for dating rocks.
  • Describe how dendrochronology and magnetic reversals are used in dating rocks.

Learning outcomes not covered in the textbook chapter in detail, but we may discuss them in class (depending on your professor):

  • Describe the types of geological events used to determine relative ages.
  • Define isotope and describe how the isotopes of an element differ from one another.


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Physical Geology Workbook Copyright © 2019 by Joyce M. McBeth is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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