You have been asked to write an article for a magazine (or newspaper – your choice) about a major mass wasting event (a landslide, mudslide, debris flow, rock fall, etc.), informing the public about the hazards of landslides, why they happen in certain locations, and the types of devastation that may occur as a result.

You may choose from one of the following types of magazine/newspaper genre (audiences) for whom you would like to write:

NY Times, Washington Post, etc.
People, Cosmopolitan, Elle, etc.
US and World Report, Newsweek, etc.
National Geographic, Discover, Earth, etc.
Ranger Rick, Highlights, Sesame Street, etc.

Your article should discuss the following facts and concepts:

What type of mass wasting event occurred and where did it happen?
Why did this mass wasting event occur?
Was it devastating to people or places? If so, why was it so devastating?
Could it have been prevented or predicted?
Was there a way to prepare or warn the local communities of this potentially life-threatening hazard?

Your article should include the following general information about landslides

Natural causes of landslides (i.e. weather, topography, etc)
Anthropogenic causes of landslides (i.e. dams, clear-cutting, undercutting, etc.)
Angle of repose with respect to slope stability
Recovery efforts and future for this area

Other Important Information:

Your article should clearly state the NAME of the magazine or newspaper identifying your target audience.
Please be sure to address your article to that audience level.
Your article should also have a TITLE.
Your article should be at least one to two pages, typed, single-spaced, 10–12-pt font, 1” margins.
At least three credible sources must be included at the end of your article.
UP TO FIVE POINTS EXTRA CREDIT will be awarded for creativity and the quality of your article! Instead of memorizing a bunch of facts that you will promptly forget, use your knowledge to tell others a story of something that really happened, a horrifying but fascinating look at a natural hazard event. By sharing our knowledge of how these events occurred, such tragedies hopefully may be prevented in the future.
Format your article to appear as if it were in a real magazine, with pictures, graphics, etc. The more creative and realistic, the more extra credit you will earn.
Note: A “Types of Mass Wasting” Presentation, obtained from SERC Mass Wasting Overview, is attached as an additional resource to review.


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