Ocean Trash Pollution (oceanography)

Reach the Beach Report Instructions

The purpose of this report is to deepen your understanding of oceanography by applying what you’ve learned in the classroom to the real world. Ideally you should base your study on the same beach selected for your scouting report, although you may select another location. Make sure you have your thesis statement approved before beginning work on the report.

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The final report needs to be saved in Microsoft word and should be 3-5 typed, double-spaced pages long, not counting the title page, reference page, and pages with maps and photos. AGAIN, COMPRESS YOUR IMAGES. The grading system is attached on the third page. Below are some tips on preparing your report. Examples are given in italics.

Topic: The topic for the beach report is your choice, as long as it is based on 1) your own observations, and 2) is related to one of our topics in oceanography. You may ask a question about shore zone engineering at your beach, the distribution of sediment, or the pattern of wave activity. If you are interested in the environment, do a study where you document the distribution of trash on your beach. For marine biology you might look at the distribution of sessile benthos on the rocks, or the behavior of seabirds. Don’t do a project on plate tectonics or chemical pollution in the oceans, because those are not things you can study with your own eyes. The best studies include quantitative data – counts and measurements.

Title page: This should include a title that clearly states both the purpose of the report and the location. Your name, the date, and ESCI 104 should appear below the title.

Index Map: An index map shows the general area where your study was conducted. You may cut and past from a website like Mapquest or any other online mapping website Be sure to write a caption, and directly indicate the location of your study on the map.

Subtitles: Make sure you divide your report into sections using subtitles. Each report should have the following clearly labeled sections: Introduction; Observations; Interpretations; References. You may either include your maps and photos within the text, or as a separate section in the back.

Introduction:Clearly state the purpose of your report (in other words, your thesis statement). You should also describe the location you chose for your study, and mention the date(s) and time(s) you visited your beach to make your observations. You might also include background information from library and Internet source if appropriate. Your thesis statement should be in bold lettering in the introduction.
Observations:These are the things you actually see, and should be described separately from the conclusions you draw from the observations. Where possible be specific with your observations, and include counts or measurements where appropriate. You may be able to summarize some of your data in a table. If you’ve included a photograph to document an observation, refer to the photo by number directly in the text. Example: A groin approximately 20 meters in length extends into the ocean perpendicular to the shoreline at this location. The beach to the north of the groin is 10 meters wide, while the beach to the south is only 2 meters wide (see photo 3).
Interpretations:This is the section where you attempt to draw conclusions from what you saw (and counted or measured) at the beach. Support your conclusions with library or Internet research, and with specific observations of your own. End this section with a clear statement of what you consider to be your most important conclusion. Example: The fact that the beach to the north of the groin is so much wider than that to the south (see above; also photo 3) clearly indicates that the predominant direction of longshore transport is from north to south at this location (Thurman and Trujillo, 1999, p. 319).

Photographs: Each photograph should be numbered, with a caption indicating the location and what is significant in the photo. One of the photos should show you at your study area. Three to five photos are appropriate for a report of this length.

References: References for this project can include newspaper articles, books, journal articles and web sites. The references you use should be cited directly in the text. At the back, references should be listed in alphabetical order by last name of the author. Listings should include author (last name first), publication date, title, and publisher. For Internet references include author and date (where you can), title, and finally the web address. You will not get full credit for listing the web address alone without a title. The format I have given to you is the APA format. You should include 3-5 references, not counting your textbook. To help you with the correct APA citation use this website: http://citationmachine.net/
(Links to an external site.)

Quotations: Where you use a direct copy of someone else’s writing, you must use quotation marks and include the reference at the end of the quotation. Copying someone else’s work without giving them credit is considered academic dishonesty, and your paper will not be accepted if you do this.

Example: “Hard stabilization can take many forms and often results in predictable outcomes (Thurman and Trujillo, 1999, p. 318).”

If you take information or ideas from another source, but don’t directly copy the words, you omit the quotation marks, but still cite the reference directly in the text. In some cases two or three references might contribute to the same piece of information.

Example: There are many problems with trying to protect buildings within the shore zone. Wave erosion and flooding during storms are particularly dangerous problems on barrier islands (Leatherman, 1983; Dolan and Lins, 1987).

ESCI 104 Beach Report Grading

Item Point Value

Spelling and Grammar 10

Title Page 2

Index Map 2

Introduction 4

Observations 10

Interpretations 12

Photos or sketches with captions 6

References 4


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