Definition of relative dating
Your goal is to study the smooth, parallel layers of rock to learn how the land built up over geologic time.Now imagine that you come upon a formation like this: What do you think of it? How can you make any conclusions about rock layers that make such a crazy arrangement?Between the years of 17, James Hutton and William Smith advanced the concept of relative dating.Hutton, a Scottish geologist, first proposed formally the fundamental principle used to classify rocks according to their relative ages.Relative dating is a dating method that used to determine determine the relative ages of geologic strata, artifacts, historical events, etc.This technique does not give specific ages to items.Here is an easy-to understand analogy for your students: relative age dating is like saying that your grandfather is older than you.
Numerical dating determines the actual ages of rocks through the study of radioactive decay.
He concluded, after studying rocks at many outcrops, that each layer represented a specific interval of geologic time.
Further, he proposed that wherever un-contorted layers were exposed, the bottom layer was deposited first and was, therefore, the oldest layer exposed; each succeeding layer, up to the topmost one, was progressively younger.
It only sequences the age of things or determines if something is older or younger than other things.
Some types of relative dating techniques include climate chronology, dendrochronology, ice core sampling, stratigraphy, and seriation.