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Unit of study_

GEOS3008: Field Geology in the Digital Age

2024 unit information

Understanding the processes by which the Earth is shaped, rock systems evolve, and mineral resources are formed, is key to address the challenges of sustainable development (cf. UN Sustainable Goals 1, 2, 7, 8, 12). The geological record accessible at the Earth's surface provides detailed insights into Earth's processes and past geological crises that have punctuated the long Earth's history. GEOS3008 offers a unique experience through field-based immersive learning, and the opportunity to develop a flair for 3-dimensional geological thinking. In this unit of study, you will collect data in the field to understand not only the geology hidden underneath the Earth's surface, but also the geology that once was above it and now lost through erosion. You will learn to decode the temperature, pressure and strain history of metamorphic rocks. You will sharpen your problem-solving skills by combining and applying knowledge from various geoscience subdisciplines to decode rock systems (e.g., sedimentary, igneous, metamorphic). You will learn to identify and address in the field geological problems by designing and implementing a plan of field data collection, analysis and interpretation to test multiple hypotheses. Through exposure to field-based investigations, you will learn to integrate the uncertainties inherent in natural studies, and you will become confident in exploring complex Earth systems. Moving to the future of field geology, you will use digital technology to collect and analyse geological data, gaining appreciation of open data sharing and cybertechnology in Earth Sciences. You will learn to synthesize field observations into four-dimensional models that describe the geological evolution of an area.

Unit details and rules

Managing faculty or University school:

Geosciences Academic Operations

Code GEOS3008
Academic unit Geosciences Academic Operations
Credit points 6
GEOS2124 or GEOS2924
GEOL3103 or GEOS3908

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Develop an advanced knowledge of geological mapping and field analysis techniques, acquiring skills transferable to a wide range of geological systems.
  • LO2. Identify geological problems and develop problem-solving skills in the field environment: Address geological problems by designing and implementing a plan of data collection, analysis and interpretation that acknowledges assumptions, limitations, and uncertainty.
  • LO3. Use geological digital data systems to collect and analyse qualitative and quantitative geological information in the field.
  • LO4. Combine modern structural practice with understanding of rock systems (e.g., sedimentary, igneous, metamorphic).
  • LO5. Use field data and potentially synthesize with additional information (e.g., geophysical, geochronological, geochemical, petrological, microstructural data) to unravel complex geological and tectonic processes in space and time.
  • LO6. Present geological observations and interpretations in a professional manner in the form of succinct reports.
  • LO7. Develop and practice fieldwork, health, and safety protocols.
  • LO8. Develop an understanding and appreciation of diversity in problem-solving teams, to actively and effectively collaborate in racially, ethnically, culturally, and gender diverse groups.

Unit availability

This section lists the session, attendance modes and locations the unit is available in. There is a unit outline for each of the unit availabilities, which gives you information about the unit including assessment details and a schedule of weekly activities.

The outline is published 2 weeks before the first day of teaching. You can look at previous outlines for a guide to the details of a unit.

Session MoA ?  Location Outline ? 
Intensive July 2023
Block mode Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Session MoA ?  Location Outline ? 
Intensive July 2024
Block mode Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Outline unavailable
Session MoA ?  Location Outline ? 
Intensive September 2020
Block mode Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Intensive September 2021
Block mode Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Intensive September 2021
Block mode Remote
Intensive July 2022
Block mode Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Intensive July 2022
Block mode Remote

Modes of attendance (MoA)

This refers to the Mode of attendance (MoA) for the unit as it appears when you’re selecting your units in Sydney Student. Find more information about modes of attendance on our website.

Important enrolment information

Departmental permission requirements

If you see the ‘Departmental Permission’ tag below a session, it means you need faculty or school approval to enrol. This may be because it’s an advanced unit, clinical placement, offshore unit, internship or there are limited places available.

You will be prompted to apply for departmental permission when you select this unit in Sydney Student.

Read our information on departmental permission.

Additional advice

This unit includes an on-campus workshop component, during which you will build skills important for the fieldwork requirements, followed by a compulsory field school component, Extra costs apply. Details will be provided at the start of Semester 1. The BM-RE option is only available to students who are not able to participate to the fieldtrip for serious personal reasons