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Understanding Planet Earth (ERTH10002)

Undergraduate level 1Points: 12.5On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2018
Subject levelUndergraduate Level 1
Subject codeERTH10002
Semester 2
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject will allow students to gain a deeper understanding of the processes governing the geological evolution of the Earth. This will be achieved via the lecture series, practical sessions and a four-day field trip, providing hands-on and theoretical investigations employing Victoria’s geology.

Initial topics covered in this subject include minerals, rocks and fossils.

The subject continues on to cover the topics of structural, metamorphic and economic aspects of our regional geology.

These studies are integrated with field case studies, during a four day field trip to collect fossils, rocks and minerals that are used to interpret the geological evolution of the region.

On completion of this subject, students should understand and be able to identify the basic components that make up planet Earth; comprehend the diversity of the rock-forming minerals, the processes by which rocks form and evolve; the use of structural geology in interpreting the relationships between rock units in time and space; the contribution of palæontology to the study of evolution; and climate change over geological time. Students should appreciate the contribution of geology to the interpretation of the history of planet Earth.

Intended learning outcomes

This subject builds upon the theoretical big picture approach of ERTH10001 The Global Environment. It provides greater depth to many of the topics introduced in ERTH10001 The Global Environment using geological studies to a gain an understanding of the evolution of the Melbourne and Victorian environment.

On completion of this subject students should appreciate how different types of data, samples and observations are integrated to interpret Earth processes. Students should also have begun to develop practical skills in the acquisition of data in the field and laboratory, essential to unravelling such processes.

Generic skills

On completion of this subject students should be able to apply their discipline knowledge to issues of public debate. These include the ozone hole, the greenhouse effect and sea level rise. The subject will provide experience in presenting technical topics in written form, a skill that is useful in later work. Students will also participate in some simple collaborative projects that will enable them to develop skills for the design and completion of technical experiments. Other generic skills acquired in this subject include learning how to sharpen observation skills and how to grapple with unravelling complex processes.

Last updated: 11 August 2018