• Total units 24 Units
  • Areas of interest Earth and Marine Sciences, Mathematics, Physics
  • Specialisation code EARP-SPEC

Corequisite majors: Physics

Physical processes in the Earth’s interior, in the ocean and in the atmosphere govern the evolution of Earth’s surface, control natural disasters and dictate our climate and its variability. Understanding these processes requires a solid foundation in fundamental physics and mathematics, coupled with detailed knowledge of the Earth system. This Earth Physics Specialisation will provide students with the detailed knowledge of Earth processes in fields ranging from earthquakes to ocean circulation, from atmospheric radiation to the structure of Earth’s core and from ice sheets to mantle convection; and will equip students with the tools to solve problems in these areas.

A key component of modern Earth Physics is prediction using numerical, or computational, models. The Earth Physics Specialisation includes a core component of quantitative prediction, applying physical principles by solving equations numerically. There is also a strong emphasis on interpreting complex and/or large datasets using computational tools, and applying these lessons to real-world problems.

The Earth Physics Specialisation will equip students to work in applied science, big data and computation, or to progress to further study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Understand how to represent processes in and on the Earth through simple numerical models.
  2. Derive numerical estimates of geophysical processes from observations through the use of appropriate theoretical representations of the processes.
  3. Undertake group laboratory experiments that mimic Earth processes and use their own observations to gain an understanding of the processes.
  4. Think critically and assimilate information from different disciplines in order to solve problems related to geophysics.
  5. Generate observational datasets and associated numerical models as well as undertake associated statistical analyses.
  6. Present research outcomes in scientific reports and seminars to inform expert and non-expert audiences on conceptual and quantitative descriptions of Earth processes.

Other Information

What first year courses should you take? PHYS1101, PHYS1201, MATH1013 or MATH115, MATH1014 or MATH1116. If your study plan includes EMSC2022, EMSC1008 must also be taken in first year.

The specialisation in Earth Physics is specifically aimed at students with strong interests in physics and/or mathematics.

Students must ensure they have taken the prerequisite courses in maths and physics needed for the compulsory courses of this specialisation.

Students should seek further course advice from one of the academic conveners of the Earth Physics specialisation.

A specialisation in Earth Physics must be taken in conjunction with a Physics major and a Math minor.

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This specialisation must be taken in conjunction with the Physics Major and Math Minor

This specialisation requires the completion of 24 units, of which

A minimum of 12 units of 3000- level courses must be completed from the lists below

The 24 units must come from completion of courses from the following lists:

6 units from the completion of the following compulsory course:

PHYS3070 Physics of the Earth (6 units)

18 units from the completion of courses from the following list:

EMSC2021 Fundamentals of Climate Science (6 units)

EMSC2022 Introduction to Global Geophysics (6 units)

EMSC3032 Melting Polar Ice Sheets, Sea Level Variations and Climate Change (6 units)

EMSC3033 Applied Geophysics (6 units)

EMSC3034 Dynamic Earth: Plates, Plumes and Mantle Convection (6 units)

EMSC3039 Climate Dynamics (6 units)

EMSC3050 Special Topics (6 units)

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