Kelly: Hi everyone. So, let’s get started on our essay. Mark, have you done the research from last week?
Mark: Well, yes and no. I was trying to follow up on the suggestions from the lecture and I searched the library for books and journals. But I couldn’t find anything relevant to our topic.
Louise: Well, maybe you were too late. We got the essay title two weeks ago so other students might have taken out all the books already.
Mark: Yes, I guess so.
Kelly: It doesn’t sound likely to me. All the books couldn’t have been taken out – there’s lots of books about astronomy in the main library.
Mark: Well, there was one book but I couldn’t borrow it because it’s a reference only book.
Kelly: Mm. We should have started this project earlier. What are we going to do now?
Louise: The other students must have been very keen to start! Well, don’t worry. Why don’t we just reserve the books we want? I’ve found some articles we can start reading now and then w e’ll be more focused for when the other students return the books we need.
Dave: So Abi, can Helen and I show you our presentation to see if you think it’s okay?
Abi: Of course, no problem.
Helen: Thanks a lot. Okay first of all, we’re going to show the explorers’ route on the map here and explain what happened on the expedition by highlighting some key events.
Helen: And we think it’s important to mention that the expedition started quite badly. You see the original base camp had to be moved. The original plan was to start from the tree line at the bottom of the mountain but the explorers couldn’t set up camp
there because of the rain so they moved higher up.
Dave: The idea is to highlight the importance of planning in exploratory expeditions. The
Robertson team should have known that they couldn’t have started from the tree
line in the rainy season.
Abi: Yes, they really should have checked that!
Dave: In the end the camp was set up on the edge of the snow line. Okay, so moving on,
Joan Robertson and her team found several new plant species on the lower slopes of the peak and when they were halfway up the mountain they came across somefossils which they worked out were from dinosaurs.
Abi: How did they know the fossils were from dinosaurs? Surely they couldn’t have identified them so easily w hilst on the expedition?
Helen: But that’s the important point. This team were not just explorers but also scientists. In order to make the trip more useful, they took scientific equipment to analyse anything they found so they were able to identify the dinosaur fossils correctly.
Abi: It’s good to make this clear if your project is supposed to be about the importance of scientific expeditions rather than exploratory ones.
Abi: So am I right to think that the Robertson expedition took longer as a result of the research?
Dave: Well, they should have taken longer because they were conducting a lot of experiments but modern technology enabled them to do the experiments and reach the sum m it in under four weeks. In fact they arrived at the top on day 26 of the trip.
Andrew: Hi Penny. Hi Terry. [Hellos] How are you both getting on with your natural disaster essays? I can’t believe we all chose the same subject of earthquakes! I’ve found it really interesting.
Penny: Yes, it is interesting Andrew, but I could have made the topic narrower. There is so
much to cover. It’s really hard to organize the information I’ve found.
Terry: Ah, but that just gives you more to write about. I’d rather have too much m aterial
than not enough! I think Andrew is right. I’ve found the topic fascinating too!
Penny: Maybe. I’m not so sure Terry. Andrew, how have you done on the statistics research? That’s what you were researching when I last saw you.
Andrew: It’s been interesting, but I had to look really hard for relevant information.
Penny: But you found some in the end?
Andrew: Yes, I’ve got lots of statistics on past earthquakes and where the plates are more unstable.
Penny: That’s great! I’ve been working on plate movement. I think by adding this to my essay I’ll have a really good foundation of how earthquakes come about.
Terry: I was looking at future earthquake predictions, but I didn’t find much information actually. I should have focused more on how earthquakes are scientifically identified and measured. I think that would have been more relevant.
Penny: That’s a shame. Well, why don’t we compare some of the information we’ve found? It m ight all give us some ideas of what to read next!
Andrew: Well, it turns out that many earthquakes could have been predicted according to the frequency of past earthquakes in the area. Really, that’s not what I found out at all. I think you should go back and check that.
Andrew: I don’t know – maybe I should.
Penny: Well, my research looks particularly at how convergence and divergence of the plates causes movement of the Earth. We sometimes forget that the planet is not a still object but actually it is constantly moving. This causes things like new seas, mountains, and earthquakes. The whole world is moving! Terry, didn’t your
research find anything?
Terry: Unfortunately not. I think I need to research another area as I couldn’t see any evidence of earthquakes being predictable.
Andrew: Well, I can also show you what I’ve got and maybe that will help.