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Location Domestic International
Lismore
National Marine Science Centre Coffs Harbour
Online

Unit Summary

Unit type

UG Coursework Unit

Credit points

12

AQF level

7

Level of learning

Introductory

Unit aim

Introduces students to basic fundamentals in geology and geomorphology, with a focus on the outer shell of the Earth. The unit outlines the composition, structure and dynamic nature of the lithosphere and the processes acting upon it that lead to the evolution of the landforms we see today. The unit seeks to develop basic geological knowledge and field skills useful to environmental science and management professionals.

Unit content

The Earth System
Plate tectonics and the lithosphere
Geological time and history
Minerals, igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks and the rock cycle
Weathering and erosion
Evolution of landforms and landscape development
Geological hazards
Geological evolution of the Australian continent

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

GA1: , GA2: , GA3: , GA4: , GA5: , GA6: , GA7:
On completion of this unit, students should be able to: GA1 GA2 GA3 GA4 GA5 GA6 GA7
1 demonstrate a knowledge of the internal structure of the earth and how the lithosphere was formed
2 apply basic rock and mineral identification skills
3 understand the processes that drive landform change, such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and plate tectonics
4 apply the concepts of geological time in the interpretation of geological maps, landform features (in the field and through analysis of satellite images and cross-section diagrams)
5 interpret the processes and timescales involved in the evolution of landforms
6 apply knowledge of catastrophic geological processes in terms of natural hazard assessment and management, and the management and exploitation of earth resources.

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. demonstrate a knowledge of the internal structure of the earth and how the lithosphere was formed
    • GA1:
    • GA4:
  2. apply basic rock and mineral identification skills
    • GA1:
    • GA4:
    • GA5:
  3. understand the processes that drive landform change, such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and plate tectonics
    • GA1:
    • GA4:
    • GA5:
  4. apply the concepts of geological time in the interpretation of geological maps, landform features (in the field and through analysis of satellite images and cross-section diagrams)
    • GA1:
    • GA4:
    • GA5:
  5. interpret the processes and timescales involved in the evolution of landforms
    • GA4:
    • GA5:
  6. apply knowledge of catastrophic geological processes in terms of natural hazard assessment and management, and the management and exploitation of earth resources.
    • GA1:
    • GA4:

Prescribed texts

  • Grotzinger, JP & Jordan, TH, 2017, Understanding Earth, 7th edn, WH Freeman and Company, New York, US. ISBN: 9781319154158.
Prescribed texts may change in future study periods.