Independent Geological Mapping Dissertation EARTH4079P

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
  • Credits: 40
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Runs Throughout Semesters 1 and 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

An independent geological mapping dissertation. In the summer between 3rd and 4th year, students will undertake 24 days of independent geological mapping. Students will produce detailed geological maps, cross sections and field notebooks with a variety of data, and use this information to interpret the geological history of the area. A final dissertation with detailed descriptions and interpretations of the geology, a large format digitised geological map and poster, will be produced.


The course consists of an independent field geological mapping project (minimum 24 days) conducted pre-sessional, developed during Semester 1, and completed in early Semester 2.

Requirements of Entry

Normally completion of Level 3 Geology courses at a mean of D3.

Excluded Courses

EARTH4003 - Independent Geological Mapping


Dissertation, including field maps, sections, and notebook (80%)

Poster presentation and defence (20%) 

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses


Course Aims

The aims of this course are:

■ To plan, conduct and report on an independent piece of field-based geological mapping and interpretation.

■ To provide advanced experience in the production of geological maps.

■ To provide transferable presentation, integration and adaptability skills required by graduates for both postgraduate study and for the commercial and industrial environment.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ Collect, record and analyse data as part of an independent field-based geological dissertation and present findings by writing a scientific report

■ Identify and interpret rock specimens and integrate within a geological history

■ Construct advanced geological maps, cross sections and apply stratigraphic correlation and structural methods to interpret the 4D geological history and structure of an area.

■ Prepare digital spatial models to interpret the geology of an area

■ Critically assess a geological problem in their mapping area

■ Construct, present and discuss a scientific conference-style research poster

■ Prepare a risk assessment, and appraise health and safety issues in the field

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.