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Author Topic: Good luck on your schooling for a new career, Pete!  (Read 4828 times)
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Isgrimnur
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« on: October 02, 2008, 05:08:32 PM »

(Formerly "Good Luck on your test, Pete!")

You're going to rock that PG test.  Give 'em shale and don't take no schist!  We know you'll do asbestos you can!
« Last Edit: February 27, 2010, 01:55:13 PM by Isgrimnur » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2008, 05:43:08 PM »

 icon_lol

Thanks for the well-wishes.  They're appreciated.  Fortunately I'm not really stressed about it.  However, I don't have high expectations, either.  Hence why I haven't been making a big deal about it.  In college you prepare for exams for specific classes.  Each class covers a specific subject area, and that subject area is typically a subset of a larger topic.  For example, sedimentology, mineralogy, and paleontology are all subsets of geology, and each is usually presented in its own class.  When preparing for an exam in any one of these subjects, typically your studies are focused on that specific subject area which is usually rather broad in and of itself.

The Professional Geologist exam is broken up into two 4-hour parts, general geology and practical geology.  The first portion covers the general realm of geology while the second covers actual application of the subject in the professional world.  When taking the PG exam for the first time you are forced to take both sections in the same day.  The problem is that the exams cover the entire subject of geology, including paleontology, sedimentology, mineralogy, petrology, structural geology, hydrogeology, rock identification, plate tectonics, metamorphology, igneous geology, well drilling, contamination plume migration, specific yield calculations, crystallography, etc.  And I mean the exam covers it all.

While I have been preparing for months, there's just no way to know everything.  And it's a crap-shoot as to what you may find within the 100-something questions on each exam.  What really concerns me is that last night I was working through yet another practice exam, and there were questions on topics that I have never learned about in my entire educational career.   icon_eek   And they didn't appear in any of my many textbooks, either.  When I say "I've never learned about them", it's not that I've forgotten the information or we only touched on it briefly, I'm saying that it was never at all covered in my education.  How is one able to pass an exam when it covers things you didn't even know existed?  I started to get rather frustrated last night with questions covering information I've never learned, studied, or even heard or read about.

Months of preparation, and yet I'll be pleased if I pass even one of the exams.  Hell, I'll be happy if I fail as long as my scores aren't too abysmal and I at least learn something about the examination process.  I personally don't know a single geologist who has passed both exams on the first go-round.  And I know many who have taken the exams three or four times in order to earn their PG.  My wife managed to pass the first exam on her first try and only had to take the second exam once more to get her PG.  But I'm not exactly confident that I'll have the same experience.  She retains far more information than I do for a much longer time period.  Fortunately I have fulfilled all application requirements, so I now have five years to pass both exams before having to go through the application process again, and the next time I take the exam I only have to do one 4-hour part at a time.  That at least makes preparation a little more managable.

I consider this a learning experience.  Pass or fail I'll at least get some exposure to the process so that the next time around (and trust me, there will be a next time) I'll have a better handle on preparation and exam content.  Fortunately this first go-round was funded by my company.  Any subsequent tests will be on my dime, but at least I'll be able to break things down into more managable chunks.

Christ, how the hell am I supposed to have enough patience to take two back-to-back 4-hour exams?  And while rumor is that I'll be able to finish the first in about 2 1/2 hours, the second is said to take the time limit down to the wire and few ever finish it in time.   icon_eek  The beer tomorrow night will certainly taste good, not necessarily in celebration of earning my PG, but to at least celebrate completing my first exam attempt.  Tomorrow's going to be a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooong day. 

 
« Last Edit: October 02, 2008, 05:47:59 PM by PeteRock » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2008, 05:45:21 PM »

Good luck.  Personally, I find that taking off my pants during tests helps me to think.
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« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2008, 08:46:21 PM »

Quote from: hepcat on October 02, 2008, 05:45:21 PM

Good luck.  Personally, I find that taking off my pants during tests helps me to think.

 saywhat

Oh yeah, Good luck, PeteRock!
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« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2008, 12:52:09 AM »

I just want to tell you good luck. We're all counting on you.
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« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2008, 04:24:15 PM »

Oops, missed this yesterday. You're probably suffering through one of the tests now.  So, instead of saying "Good Luck, Pete!" I'll say "Congratulations Pete, job well done!!"  nod

Oh, and enjoy your beer, whatever the result, you have earned it.   icon_razz
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« Reply #6 on: October 03, 2008, 04:33:13 PM »

I just want to tell you good luck. We're all counting on you.
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« Reply #7 on: October 03, 2008, 05:29:24 PM »

Pete will pass.

After all, how hard is it to study Geology?

Fill in the blank.  These are             .


100 - A+

Good job Pete!
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« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2008, 07:14:21 PM »

Kinda takes the fun out of the old joke about what you're going to do after college with your degree.

"Yeah, that'll be great when they open up those geology mines... nvrmind."

Of course, you could always substitute factory, although I think geology may be joke proof along that vein.

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« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2008, 08:02:33 PM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 03, 2008, 07:14:21 PM

Kinda takes the fun out of the old joke about what you're going to do after college with your degree.

"Yeah, that'll be great when they open up those geology mines... nvrmind."

Of course, you could always substitute factory, although I think geology may be joke proof along that vein.



Well played.
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« Reply #10 on: October 03, 2008, 08:51:35 PM »

Quote from: Purge on October 03, 2008, 08:02:33 PM

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 03, 2008, 07:14:21 PM

Kinda takes the fun out of the old joke about what you're going to do after college with your degree.

"Yeah, that'll be great when they open up those geology mines... nvrmind."

Of course, you could always substitute factory, although I think geology may be joke proof along that vein.



Well played.

 ninja  icon_biggrin
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« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2008, 12:12:48 AM »

I am finally home after 8 hours of exams.  I have a cold beer in my hand, the dogs are asleep at my feet, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed is loaded up on my 360, and I plan to drink heavily until I have to go to dinner with the wife and the in-laws.  I would much rather unwind from an exhausting day of exams with a nice, relaxing pool marathon with Moliere, especially since it has been almost a month since we last played as he's been in Europe for a number of weeks.  I'm anxious to hear about his trip, but having dodged my in-laws for the past three days while making final preparations for my exams, I have to make an appearance tonight in order to keep from making a difficult situation for my wife ("Why doesn't Pete ever spend time with us?"  "Because he thinks you're an ignorant, condescending, pretentious, attention-whoring fuckwad.")  Yeah, I'll just go to dinner and keep my mouth shut, hoping that the drinking doesn't hinder my lack of an internal filter too much.   ninja 

The first half of the exam was pretty managable, and I even felt some level of pride in my problem-solving ability and general knowledge on a number of questions.  Granted, there were some that got the "WTF?" response (sometimes audibly), but it'll be interesting to see how I fared.  By the time I hit the 60th question I was pretty short on patience and losing interest fast, but I took a break to fill in some of the answer sheet circles to take a mental break and when I got to the next unanswered question I was ready to continue.

The second part was brutal.  While it was shorter than the 1st part in terms of questions (the first part had 130 questions, the 2nd only 100), each question was a complex problem taking 2 to 5 minutes each to determine a solution.  And those bastards at ASBOG love to make all multiple-choice responses so similar that process of elimination is easier said than done.  The first half was general principles, and the second half was practical application.  I would have been far better off if I had a bit more practical application (which is tough to come by as a director of industrial hygiene  ninja), but because I fulfilled all necessary application requirements to sit for the exams, it would be silly for me to not go through with becoming a licensed professional.  Plus, the "PG" after my name on my business card would be kind of fabulous.  Fabulous

Thanks to everyone for the well-wishes and especially to Isgrimnur for making it a point to start a "good luck" thread, and hopefully in 60 days the news I receive from ASBOG will provide a reason for celebration.  But, if not there's always the exam in March.  I appreciate all of the support.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a lot of beer to drink to celebrate finally being finished with this, at least for now (and to prepare for dinner with the in-laws).
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« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2008, 12:23:36 AM »

Way to go Pete.
Rock on!

(sorry)


I'm curious what types of questions are on these tests.  Could you give an example of something that was a WTF type question?  and perhaps an example of something you found 'simple'?

(feel free to give it later, tonight you should just clear your head)
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« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2008, 12:35:36 AM »

I just want to tell you good luck. We're all counting on you.
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« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2008, 01:21:22 AM »

So, anyone with a PG-13 after their names took 13 times to pass the tests???

I hope it finished well, and enjoy those beers!  Will keep an eye out in 60...
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« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2008, 04:01:04 AM »

Pete Rock, PG - Some material may not be suitable for children. 

That would RULE!
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« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2008, 03:41:52 PM »

Quote from: Unagi on October 04, 2008, 12:23:36 AM

Could you give an example of something that was a WTF type question?

Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

A) calcite, calcium-aluminum garnet, epidote.
B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.
C) andalusite, calcium-iron garnet, chlorite.
D) sericite, opal, andalusite, epidote.

Quote
...and perhaps an example of something you found 'simple'?

What is the calcium carbonate compensation depth?

A) Ocean depth below which silica no longer crystallizes.
B) Ocean depth above which silica crystallizes.
C) Ocean depth below which calcium carbonate no longer forms.
D) Ocean depth above which calcium carbonate no longer forms.



Imagine 8-hours of that.   retard
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« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2008, 03:54:02 PM »

Quote
Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

A) calcite, calcium-aluminum garnet, epidote.
B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.
C) andalusite, calcium-iron garnet, chlorite.
D) sericite, opal, andalusite, epidote.

me brain just went kerplunk....
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« Reply #18 on: October 04, 2008, 04:07:58 PM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 03:41:52 PM


Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.

What is the calcium carbonate compensation depth?

A) Ocean depth below which silica no longer crystallizes.


But that's with open internet...
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« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2008, 04:14:02 PM »

Quote from: Isgrimnur on October 04, 2008, 04:07:58 PM

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 03:41:52 PM


Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.

What is the calcium carbonate compensation depth?

A) Ocean depth below which silica no longer crystallizes.


But that's with open internet...

Not during the exam. 
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« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2008, 05:26:42 PM »

I know, I was just trying to see if my non-geologist self could come up with any of the answers. 
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« Reply #21 on: October 04, 2008, 05:33:41 PM »

Think I will stick to healthcare and avoid the geologist realm for my future. 
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« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2008, 12:26:16 AM »

Quote from: soulbringer on October 04, 2008, 05:33:41 PM

Think I will stick to healthcare and avoid the geologist realm for my future. 

yeah, the path to geology looks to be kinda rocky.
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« Reply #23 on: October 05, 2008, 01:14:28 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on October 05, 2008, 12:26:16 AM

Quote from: soulbringer on October 04, 2008, 05:33:41 PM

Think I will stick to healthcare and avoid the geologist realm for my future. 

yeah, the path to geology looks to be kinda rocky.

I agree. Any hopes I had of going geologist just Petered out.
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« Reply #24 on: October 05, 2008, 08:55:44 PM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 12:12:48 AM

Plus, the "PG" after my name on my business card would be kind of fabulous.  Fabulous


One day PG, the next PG-13!
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« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2008, 07:34:40 AM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 03:41:52 PM

Quote from: Unagi on October 04, 2008, 12:23:36 AM

Could you give an example of something that was a WTF type question?

Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

A) calcite, calcium-aluminum garnet, epidote.
B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.
C) andalusite, calcium-iron garnet, chlorite.
D) sericite, opal, andalusite, epidote.

Quote
...and perhaps an example of something you found 'simple'?

What is the calcium carbonate compensation depth?

A) Ocean depth below which silica no longer crystallizes.
B) Ocean depth above which silica crystallizes.
C) Ocean depth below which calcium carbonate no longer forms.
D) Ocean depth above which calcium carbonate no longer forms.



Imagine 8-hours of that.   retard

OM Effin' G!  Glad I never wanted to do more than have a nice little collection of rose quartz when I was a kid... Congrats for having survived the day - and the In-Laws (if you did, lol.)

Just... yikes!   icon_eek
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« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2008, 03:08:04 PM »

Quote from: Eightball on October 05, 2008, 08:55:44 PM

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 12:12:48 AM

Plus, the "PG" after my name on my business card would be kind of fabulous.  Fabulous


One day PG, the next PG-13!

In Arizona the registration is called "registered geologist", or "RG", so I guess you could say that once I earn my PG and then get reciprocity in the state I'll go from being rated "PG" to "R" in a way. 
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« Reply #27 on: October 06, 2008, 06:49:19 PM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 06, 2008, 03:08:04 PM

Quote from: Eightball on October 05, 2008, 08:55:44 PM

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 12:12:48 AM

Plus, the "PG" after my name on my business card would be kind of fabulous.  Fabulous


One day PG, the next PG-13!

In Arizona the registration is called "registered geologist", or "RG", so I guess you could say that once I earn my PG and then get reciprocity in the state I'll go from being rated "PG" to "R" in a way. 

Skipped a rating!  Awesome.   icon_wink

Congrats on jumping through that hoop, however (hopefully).
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« Reply #28 on: December 09, 2008, 03:17:34 PM »

UPDATE

Well, I received my scores yesterday.  Actually, I received them sometime last week, but I hadn't checked the mail since Thursday and had no idea my scores were waiting for me in my mailbox.  It wasn't until someone at the office asked how I did on the exam as they had their own scores.  Although they only had one set as they took the Arizona version of the exam, which requires that you first take and pass the Geologist In Training (GIT) exam, which is the equivalent of the Fundamentals exam I sat for, before taking the Principles exam.  In Pennsylvania you can take both at once without having to complete the GIT requirements.

Going in I treated it all as a learning experience and didn't have very high expectations.  I wasn't stressed, I didn't have a lot of pressure riding on whether I passed or failed, and so outside of the 8 straight hours of testing it wasn't too terrible an experience.  But, I at least hoped that I would pass one part of the exam so that the next time around I'd only have to take half.  I figured if I'd have a chance at passing one part of the exam, odds were that it would be the Fundamentals part as the Principles section was pretty difficult. 

On my way home from work I grew more and more anxious.  I really didn't want to find that I'd have to sit through the entire exam all over again.  I also didn't want to have to tell my wife or anyone else that I failed the entire exam (she passed the first portion but failed the second on her first run through and then passed the second portion on her second try). 

So, first I stopped at Costco to replenish my Maker's Mark supply.  I figured either way I'd need a drink to celebrate or a drink to help the bad news go down a little smoother.  When I got home I poured myself a glass of bourbon, sat down on the couch, played with Simba and Nala for a bit, and then opened the envelope. 

At first I thought there may have been a mistake.  Or I really overestimated my performance on the Fundamentals part of the exam.  I remembered having some difficulty and a number of questions had at least three and sometimes four reasonable multiple choice answers, but I wasn't pleased with the news.  I failed the first half of the exam.  It was a pretty disappointing feeling.  And at this point I didn't even want to look at the rest of my scores because if I wasn't able to pass the first portion like my wife was able to, then I probably had no chance on the second part.  And so I'd have to tell my wife that I failed miserably.

But, as curiosity always gets the better of me, I paged through my results to the Principles exam.  At least if I was going to fail, perhaps I'd go down in a blaze of glory.  The Principles exam covers real-world professional geology, and each question takes several minutes to work out multi-staged problems.  It was certainly a challenging exam and given that I had failed what I thought would be my strongest area, I really didn't know what to expect from my scores.  So, I closed my eyes, turned the page, and then slowly opened my eyes to see how bad the news would be.....

Spoiler for Hiden:
I PASSED THE PRINCIPLES EXAM!    icon_eek

Apparently I have been out of college for so long that the Fundamentals content was pretty rusty and long forgotten, whereas the Principles content, being fresh in my mind from working around it every day, was far more managable.  And so while I was disappointed with having failed the Fundamentals exam, I at least passed what I would consider to be the harder of the two exams, and so I am right where I had hoped to be.  With half of the exam out of the way and plenty of time to prepare for re-taking the other half.  It's just that I didn't pass the part I had expected.  And while I am not quite a PG just yet, I am still very happy that I passed the first half of the exam.  I actually have yet to meet a geologist who has passed both exams on their first go-round, and many don't even pass one portion on their first try.  So while I failed part of the exam, I am still proud of my performance and very happy with passing the Principles exam.   icon_cool

At least now I am one more step closer to becoming a Professional Geologist.  I have half of the 8-hour exam process out of the way and now only have to prepare to complete the Fundamentals portion of the exam.  I will be sitting to re-take the Fundamentals exam in the spring and with enough preparation and a better understanding of what to expect I am far more prepared to complete the PG requirements than before. 

Almost there.   icon_biggrin       
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« Reply #29 on: December 09, 2008, 03:30:02 PM »

Congratulations on the test!

Now the real question is when are you going to take another shot at earning a new pool cue?  icon_wink
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« Reply #30 on: December 09, 2008, 04:13:07 PM »

Great job, Pete.  Congrats on getting the "hard" one out of the way.  With a few months to study and having to only put up with four hours of testing, I have no doubt you'll get through the fundamentals with no issues.

Just one more example of how much you rock!  biggrin
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« Reply #31 on: December 09, 2008, 04:16:07 PM »

Pete failed part of the test?  how can fabulousness fail?  it's like my world is crumbling in front of my eyes! the fabulousity is a lie!  I DON'T KNOW WHO YOU ARE ANY MORE!!!!!  crybaby
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« Reply #32 on: December 09, 2008, 05:54:33 PM »

Good news.  Good luck with the next part.
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« Reply #33 on: December 09, 2008, 06:29:20 PM »

Thanks everyone.   icon_biggrin

I at least accomplished what I had hoped, which was to pass at least half of the exam.  It just so happens that it was the second half. 

At least it will be far more managable to study for a specific portion of the exam rather than the entire realm of geology and now I at least have a better idea as to what I need to review. 

The first time through was a nice test-run and it's more or less a bonus that I only have one half of the exam to go. 
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« Reply #34 on: December 09, 2008, 08:42:28 PM »

Quote from: PeteRock on October 04, 2008, 03:41:52 PM

Quote from: Unagi on October 04, 2008, 12:23:36 AM

Could you give an example of something that was a WTF type question?

Hot-water mineral alteration has occurred within a quartz porphyry dike associated with late phases of intrusion of a granitoid stock into Precambrian amphibolite. The mineral composition of the unaltered dike is: 15% quartz, 45% microcline, 30% oligoclase, 10% biotite.  From the groups of alteration products listed below, select the one most likely to have developed within, and surrounding, the porphyry dike.

A) calcite, calcium-aluminum garnet, epidote.
B) sericite, kaolinite and montmorillonite, hematite.
C) andalusite, calcium-iron garnet, chlorite.
D) sericite, opal, andalusite, epidote.

Quote
...and perhaps an example of something you found 'simple'?

What is the calcium carbonate compensation depth?

A) Ocean depth below which silica no longer crystallizes.
B) Ocean depth above which silica crystallizes.
C) Ocean depth below which calcium carbonate no longer forms.
D) Ocean depth above which calcium carbonate no longer forms.



Imagine 8-hours of that.   retard

You said "dike". Heh. Heh.
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« Reply #35 on: December 09, 2008, 08:44:07 PM »

Oh, and here's the extent of my knowledge of rocks:

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« Reply #36 on: December 09, 2008, 10:27:16 PM »

damn, that's good news pete.  sure, you still have one to go, but it's halfway over.  that feeling is great when you are studying. 

i may have to parlay some good free time tonight to help you celebrate.  drinking and call of duty?
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« Reply #37 on: December 10, 2008, 12:04:41 AM »

congrats pete on your win ... Good luck on your next test slywink
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« Reply #38 on: December 10, 2008, 07:11:43 PM »

Quote from: Caine on December 09, 2008, 10:27:16 PM

damn, that's good news pete.  sure, you still have one to go, but it's halfway over.  that feeling is great when you are studying. 

i may have to parlay some good free time tonight to help you celebrate.  drinking and call of duty?

Sorry I wasn't able to coordinate with you for an evening of killing.  My grandmother is in town and I'd feel guilty saying, "Sit down and shut up Nanny while I kill me some baddies."  But last night she and my wife went shopping for a few hours and I had an impromtu moment to log on and play a few games before they got back from the mall.  She's in town until Monday so most of my evenings have been spent going out to dinner, seeing the sights, and boozing it up with Nanny. 
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« Reply #39 on: February 12, 2009, 12:28:29 AM »

Well, I'm a little less than a month away from PG Exam Part 2: Electric Boogaloo.  I am re-taking the Fundamentals of Geology portion of the exam as I have already passed the Principles of Geology section.  The 4-hour exam is scheduled for Friday, March 6, from 8am until 12noon. 

I have all of my study materials spread out on our dining room table and I began preparing last week following the Super Bowl.  Now I just have to make sure that I don't wait until the last minute and instead continue to review my materials throughout the month of February.  I have 22 days left to prepare, and as I've been going through my materials an hour or two a night, I expect to get at minimum about 20 more hours of study in before the exam.  Anything more is a bonus.  As it's only a 4-hour exam, 20 hours of prep over three weeks should be enough to earn a passing score, especially since now I have some idea as to what to expect on the 6th. 

The countdown continues..........to PG Exam Part 2: Electric Boogaloo.   
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