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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Earth Science

Undergraduate Course: Topics in Global Environmental Change (EASC10022)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryNote to PT's: This is an option course.
Environmental Geosciences students taking this as compulsory course should enrol in EASC10050 Global Environmental Change

This is a student-seminar based course, discussing hot topics in Global Environmental Change. These topics will be introduced by the lecturer, read about by all students, using recent articles in the literature, then will form the basis for student seminars and general group discussion.

The first meeting will take place in Semester 2, Week 5, Wednesday between 11:10 to 12:00 hrs to introduce the course and to sign up students for presentation topics. Subsequently, the class will meet for a three-hour session, every Wednesday, 9:00-12:00 for six weeks during Semester 2 Block 4. Each week, a staff member will give a brief introduction to a topic, highlighting some of the key issues that remain to be fully resolved. They will provide a list of sub-topics, along with a reading list of papers for each. Students will then volunteer to present a 15-minute presentation on each of the sub-topics (one sub-topic each). Topics will be assigned to students on a first-come-first-serve basis during the first meeting and a limit will be imposed on the number of presentations every week so that an even distribution of student talks is achieved every week and all topics are covered sufficiently. The student seminars will act as the platform for a general class discussion. Students are expected to initiate discussion by asking questions and contribute to the discussion by what they understood by reading the papers. The staff members will fill in where and when necessary. At the end of the session, a staff member will introduce the following week's topic.
Course description Themes will vary with year, depending on what is topical. Examples of topics from past years are as follows.

1. Climate stability and climate change on geologic timescales.
2. Recent climate variability
3. What caused the glacial-interglacial changes in CO2?
4. Mechanisms of abrupt climate change.
5. Contemporary climate change and ongoing global warming.
6. Dangerous climate change and extreme weather
7. Future climate change predictions.
8. Stability of ice sheets.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None.
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  None
Course Start Block 3 (Sem 2)
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 30, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 68 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Written Exam: 0%, Course Work: 100 %, Practical Exam: 0%.

Course work marks are split as follows:
70% - 2500 Word Essay
30% - Student presentation and class discussion

Essay Deadline: 13th April 2018 at 12 noon
Feedback Feedback provided on student seminar presentations during the course and in addition students are encouraged to discuss essay topics they choose with lecturer who are experts in that area
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. To develop a critical understanding of the science underpinning Global Environmental Change, the principal agents and mechanisms that drive
  2. To help further develop the student's skills in critical assessment of scientific literature so that they are able to critically identify and analyse complex problems.
  3. To help develop a student's presentation skills and to practise making formal presentations about specialised topics to an informed audiences.
  4. The essay assessment will give students the opportunity to critically review and consolidate their understanding of a specialised topic and offer professional level insights.
Reading List
Provided through Learn
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Raja Ganeshram
Tel: (0131 6)50 7364
Course secretaryMiss Eilein Fraser
Tel: (0131 6)50 5430
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