Earth Science & The Environment 1X:Planet Earth EARTH1001

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 1 (SCQF level 7)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: Yes

Short Description

An introduction to geoscience. Topics covered include the origin of the Earth and other planets, volcanoes and associated hazards, plate tectonics, erosion and depositional processes and the basic principles of geoscience using 3D and 4D visualisation.


Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday - 9.00 am; fortnightly laboratory; fortnightly tutorial; one day of fieldwork.

Requirements of Entry

There are no pre-requisites for entry to the course, although students normally have "A" or "B" passes in two or more Science subjects at SQA Higher or equivalent.

Excluded Courses



None, but students are strongly encouraged to co-enrol for EARTH1001 and EARTH1002.


One ninety-minute examination at the end of the teaching period 60%)

Poster preparation - 5% (Individual)

Group based poster (20%) with attendance at presentation of Poster (5%)

and fortnightly assessments (10%).

Main Assessment In: December

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade.


The in-class assessments cannot be retaken nor can the group Poster

Course Aims

The aims of this course are to:

■ Provide an introduction to the study of geosciences.

■ Synthesize information on the composition and structure of the Earth and use this information to understand Earth and environmental processes.

■ Identify rocks and minerals in hand specimen, thin section and in the field.

■ Develop skills in interpreting 3D geodata to reconstruct geological and environmental histories.

■ Develop problem solving, presentation and group working skills through logical scientific approach.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

At the end of this course, students should be able to:

■ Explain the formation and structure of the Earth and other planets and the supporting evidence behind the theory of plate tectonics,

■ Identify and deduce the origin of different varieties of rocks and their textures, and relate these to hazards,

■ Explain the principles and consequences of deformation of rocks in terms of faults, folds, and geological histories,

■ Analyse maps, cross sections and models in 3D to explain the structure and history of regions

■ Research geological and environmental topics using a variety of resources and present information concisely and effectively in a poster format.

■ Describe geological and environmental features in the field and use this information to interpret their formations

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Normally, attendance at field class as well as 75% completion of fortnightly assessments and 75% total submission of assessments.