From a student of paleontologist Christine Janis:
"Dinosaurs first appeared in the Thoracic" [Like Alien, I suppose].
From an Australian history exam where students were asked what Matthew
Flanders did (he was the first person to sail around Australia on a
coastal survey in a 12 foot boat). One student wrote: "Matthew
Flanders circumcised Australia with a 12 foot cutter."
[Ouch!] -- Submitted by paleontologist Paul Willis.
Scott Foss from VertPaleo submitted this one, as told to him
by a former advisor of his...
(Comparitive anatomy exam) "The maseter and temporalis muscles aid in masturbation."
Erik Paul passed along this response which his archaeologist wife received from on a student's midterm exam: "Superposition is where the oldest, crustiest lawyers are on the bottom."
Received by a geology student of Paul Barrett:
"Tetrapods evolved from Devonian lobe-finned fish which crawled from one arid pool to another. [Needless to say, I awarded him a Third.]
Dan Bryant submitted this response received from a student in
Adaptive Radiation: "The amount of radiation to which an animal can adapt and survive exposure to."
Sally Shelton, Director of Collections at the San Diego Natural
History Museum received the following response from a student in
her environmental geology class:
"Topsoil is the top layer of soil, filled with humans and other organic debris, both living and dead."
Jerry Harris submitted the following answer he received from a college freshman working on a navigational problem, when asked to calculate the time it would take to travel 7.5 nmi at 5 nmi/hr. The student responded, "20 minutes?"