- Code EMSC1008
- Unit Value 6 units
- Offered by Research School of Earth Sciences
- ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
- Course subject Earth and Marine Science
- Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Geology
This course includes an on campus activity. Check timetable for details. Contact course convener if you are unable to travel to Canberra.
This course provides an introduction to the key physical and chemical processes that shape our planet.
The main emphasis will be on the fundamental processes that controlled Earth's formation and evolution, and those that currently control mountain building and earthquakes, continental crust formation and volcanoes.
The skills needed to identify minerals and rocks, the building blocks of this planet will be taught through lectures, practicals and field trips. This course is a hands on introduction to all aspects of geology.
A second key aspect will be to explain how Earth scientists extract past climate history from the rock record. The basic skills needed to interpret Earth's ancient history will be taught during practical sessions.
The course will also examine the origin of Earth's surface, its landscapes, climate system, and environments that support life, and how they have developed through Earth's history. Geological time will be explored through introductions to the geochronological tools used to track events through Earth's history.
Some quantitative aspects of the Earth Sciences will also be presented
Honours Pathway Option
Students enrolled in the Honours pathway option (HPO) will be required to do some alternative assessment. The material will be set at a higher conceptual level, requiring more advanced and extensive research.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Identify common rocks and minerals
- Undertake basic field mapping
- Report the history of the Earth and relate it to processes that shape our planet today
- Combine field observations with theory learned in class
- Apply an understanding of time and space to the evolution of continents and life on Earth
- Comprehend the role of geological processes in controlling natural hazards
- Unravel changes in past environments from a variety of data and relate this to the potential impacts of future climate change.
There will be a 5-day field trip to the South Coast of New South Wales. The field trip is usually run during the first week of the mid-semester break. The cost for this field trip is expected to be $350-$450, of which a $50 is due prior to the trip and the remaining balance due by the end of the semester.
Payments are to be made via Scienceshop
- Assessed practicals (30) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
- Field trip assignment (25) [LO 2,3,4]
- Theory exam (45) [LO 3,4,5,6,7]
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The expected workload will consist of approximately 130 hours throughout the semester including:
- Face-to face component which may consist of 3 x 1 hour lectures plus 1 x 3 hour practical per week
- A 5-day field trip (pelase see other information section)
- Approximately 25 hours of self-study which will include preparation for lectures and other assessment tasks.
In this course, students must typically participate in an approximately 5 day field trip. In order to participate, students must be able to:
- Travel to the field location and stay in field accommodations such as basic shared cabins or dorm rooms
- Safely traverse 2-4 km at a moderate pace and short distances (10-500m) over uneven ground
- Manage an intense workload during the trip, which includes full days working in the field followed by 2-3 hours each evening completing tasks related to the day’s activities
Students who are unable to meet these requirements may be able to negotiate alternative participation and assessment requirements with the course convenor. Please see the trip information page for more information.
Requisite and Incompatibility
Preliminary ReadingUnderstanding Earth by Frank Press and Raymond Siever
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links
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