Wednesday, 24 May 2006

Fossils and the history of life

Another large cardboard box arrived.
Now this one had
  • A course book
  • A colourful atlas of ancient life
  • A couple of ECA papers
  • A DVD
  • Some notes
  • A pack of fossil casts
The encyclopaedia is very colourful, but a little difficult to balance when lounging on the settee trying to read it. The course book is quite thorough and keeps directing you to read various bits of the atlas.
Its a fascinating course as we move from no life, to early life to the cambrian explosion and so on.
Then horror of horror, you have to use the supplied fossils with a supplied hand lens, and SKETCH them. Draw? DRAW? Don't they know I can barely write these days and I do all my work on computers? I've never been much good at drawing, so this is a bit of a shock!

I make a valiant stab at it - but lets face it, it wont win any prizes!

There is also confusion about the difference between bivalves and brachiopods - the rules seem simple but the most common of fossils flaunts the rule cruelly.

Anyway, this course finishes with a CMA (Computer marked assignment) so its pick one of A,B,C,D,E,F etc, or in some cases two or three. So there is no worry about getting the words right - but the questions are a lot more difficult than they sound.

Anyway - this one you can submit online if you like, so I did that, and passed he course. Another one down!

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