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Coastal Terminology and Geologic Environments

Course Outline

This course is one of a series of courses that provide an overview of coastal geology and a discussion of data sources and study methods applicable to coastal geological field studies. The course materials are based entirely on Chapter 2 of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Engineering Manual EM 1110-2-1810 Coastal Geology, which provides general background information on coastal nomenclature and concepts like datums and water levels. It also discusses waves and tides and changes in sea level - processes which cause geologic change in the coastal zone. The intent is to give a reader a basic understanding of some of the processes which cause coastal change and serve as a foundation for the discussions of specific coastal features in the other courses of the series.

This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of course materials.

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this course, the student will:

Course Content

The purpose of this course is to describe geologic features and processes in the coastal zone, to discusses water level datums and tide terminology, and to present an overview of the geological, oceanographic, biological, and human factors that shape and modify landforms found along the shore. You are required to study the following U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Engineering Manual:

Chapter 2 of Coastal Geology
(Engineering Manual EM 1110-2-1810, 1995 edition, 33 pages, PDF file).

Please click on the above underlined hypertext to view, download or print the document for your study.

The following contains the outline of Chapter 2 of the Engineering Manual EM 1110-2-1810:

Engineering and Design - Coastal Geology

Chapter 2 - Coastal Terminology and Geologic Environments

2-1 General
2-2 Coastal Zone Definitions and Subdivisions
2-3 Geologic Time and Definitions
2-4 Water Level Datums and Definitions
2-5 Factors Influencing Coastal Geology
2-6 Sea Level Changes
2-7 Cultural (Man-Made) Influences on Coastal Geology

Related Links

For additional technical information related to this subject, please visit the following websites or web pages:

USGS - Coastal and Marine Geology Program
USGS - Center for Coastal & Watershed Studies: St. Petersburg/Tampa
USGS - Western Region Coastal and Marine Geology
University of New Hampshire Jackson Estuarine Laboratory Home Page

Once you finish studying the above course content you need to take a quiz to obtain the PDH credits.

Take a Quiz

DISCLAIMER: The materials contained in the online course are not intended as a representation or warranty on the part of or any other person/organization named herein. The materials are for general information only. They are not a substitute for competent professional advice. Application of this information to a specific project should be reviewed by a registered professional engineer. Anyone making use of the information set forth herein does so at their own risk and assumes any and all resulting liability arising therefrom.