Earth Processes and Products

Course code GEOS1050Units 10Level 1000Faculty of Science and Information TechnologySchool of Environmental and Life Sciences

Earth Processes & Products builds on the "big picture" presentation of Earth systems presented in semester 1 (GEOS1040). The course details the processes that have shaped and continue to shape our planet, and the products of these processes that form the world around us. To this end, the course examines in detail the chemistry and structure of rock forming minerals, the characteristics of volcanoes and their products, changes in rocks caused by internal processes of deformation and heating, and processes that sculpt Earth's surface. Formation and human use of Earth's energy and mineral resources are also addressed, including current and possible future energy sources. A two-day field trip is held over one weekend during the semester to bring students into direct contact with the processes which shape our planet.

The topics covered provide the necessary grounding for continuing studies in a major in Earth Sciences and Environmental Sciences.

In order to participate in this course, students must complete a compulsory Workplace Health and Safety requirement. Students will receive full information on this compulsory component in the course outline provided by the school.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 2
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesAt the successful completion of this course, students will have:

1. the foundation for further studies in the Earth Sciences;
2. a basic theoretical introduction to the major themes in Earth Science: Chemical bonding & Minerals, Igneous Petrology, Metamorphism and rock deformation processes, surface processes, Earth hazards, and Earth Resources;
3. the practical skills in: mineral and rock identification; manipulation & interpretation of scientific data; map and aerial photograph interpretation; basic field observation, interpretation and note-taking; selected laboratory analyses; construction of geologic cross-sections and an understanding of 3-dimensional concepts & structure; basic use of computer GIS modelling, data analysis and presentation.

These objectives deliver the assumed knowledge required in ensuing courses in the Bachelor of Science program in the Earth Science Discipline, as well as the Bachelor of Environmental Science program.
ContentThe course examines the dynamics of planet Earth, concentrating on the physical processes, the products of which make up our planet. Topics are broadly categorized into the major themes of Building Blocks, Volcanic Processes & Products, Mountain Building: The Processes & Internal Effects, Geomorphology & Earth Hazards, Sedimentary Environments & Products, and Earth Resources.

An emphasis is placed on the chemical makeup of planet Earth, and the processes which operate. Specific topics include:
(a) rock-forming minerals - chemistry structure and relation to environment, formation and properties of magmas,
(b) volcanoes and their products,
(c) varieties of igneous rocks and their origin,
(d) metamorphism and deformation processes in rocks,
(e) weathering, soils, geomorphology and Earth hazards,
(f) sedimentary environments and sedimentary rocks,
(g) renewable and non-renewable resources, fossil fuels, metallic resources, environmental consequences.
Replacing Course(s)The course replaces the existing GEOS1110 (Earth Materials) course.
TransitionGEOS1050 will not count for credit with GEOS1110.GEOS1040 will be an assumed knowledge for GEOS1050.
Since GEOS1040 was only delivered for the first time in 2003, either of the courses it replaced (GEOS1100 and GEOS1010) will also be accepted as assumed knowledge for GEOS1050 during this transition.
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeGEOS1040 will be assumed knowledge for GEOS1050.
Modes of DeliveryInternal Mode
Teaching MethodsField Study
Assessment Items
Essays / Written AssignmentsExcursion assignment.
Examination: FormalScheduled end of semester.
Laboratory ExercisesMarked practicals and practical examination.
Contact HoursField Study: for 12 hour(s) per Term for Full Term
Practical: for 2.5 hour(s) per Week for 11 weeks
Lecture: for 3 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Compulsory Components
Compulsory Course ComponentWHS-Safety Induction or Risk Assessment. Compulsory Course Component: In order to participate in this course, students must complete a compulsory fieldwork induction.
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for GEOS1050