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Earth Science

Geologic History Test
Study Guide

1. What is the study of the universe?

2. Define steady-state theory.

3. Explain the Big-Bang theory.

4. What is cosmic background radiation?

5. What theory does cosmic background radiation support?
6. How old is the universe?
7. When looking at undisturbed rock layers, where is the oldest layer located? The youngest?

8. Define half-life.

9. What is the general shape of a half-life graph?
10. Define unconformity. List and describe the types of unconformities.

11. What are the divisions of the geologic time scale?
12. How do we determine the absolute age of a rock?
13. How old is the Earth?
14. The solar system formed from ____________?
15. The boundaries of the geologic time scale are marked by what?

16. What is the name of the “longest” region of the geologic time scale? 17. What happens to the number of protons and neutrons of a radioactive substance as it changes over time?

18. Define parent element.
19. Define daughter element.
20. Define the geologic time scale.

21. Define relative dating. What does it allow geologists to do?

22. Define intrusion.

23. Define inclusion.

24. Define the law of superposition.

25. Define the principle of original horizontality.

26. Define the principle of uniformitarianism.

27. What does the phrase “correlating rock layers” mean?

28. Define index fossil.

29. Define fossil.

30. Define cross-cutting relationships in terms of rock layers.

31. Be able to analyze a diagram of rock layers. Recall the relative dating activity we completed in class.

32. Be able to analyze a diagram depicting the half-life of a substance. Recall the absolute dating activity we completed in class.
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