THE UNIVERSITY of EDINBURGH

DEGREE REGULATIONS & PROGRAMMES OF STUDY 2020/2021

Information in the Degree Programme Tables may still be subject to change in response to Covid-19

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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Geosciences : Earth Science

Undergraduate Course: Field Skills for Geology (EASC10105)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Geosciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course encompasses key field training provided for 3rd year Geology students through delivery of field courses, including:

1. 2 week field course to Inchnadamph in NW Scotland (prior to the start of S1) 10 credits

2. 2 week field course in Spain or an alternative location in the UK (during spring vacation) 10 credits

These trips teach a wide array of field skills, including mapping, structural analysis and reconstruction, quantitative field techniques, and methods of data collection and integration.
Course description Course Description
This course encompasses key field training provided for 3rd year Geology students through delivery of field courses, including:

1. A two-week field course to Inchnadamph in NW Scotland (late March to early April in 2021 for 2020-21 cohort) prefaced by a set of online presentations, exercises and experiences to be accessed by students from week 6 of Semester 1 and throughout Semester 2.
Alternatively, if the field course is precluded by Covid guidelines, a set of online presentations, exercises and experiences to be accessed by students from week 6 of Semester 1 and throughout Semester 2 followed by an online assessed exercise at the end of Semester 2. 10 credits

2. A two-week field course in Spain (during spring vacation).
Alternatively, if the field course is precluded by Covid guidelines, we will run either a residential UK field trip, or a set of Edinburgh-based day fieldtrips. 10 credits

These trips teach a wide array of field skills, including mapping, structural analysis and reconstruction, quantitative field techniques, and methods of data collection and integration.

The Inchnadamph (NW Scotland) Field Component

The Inchnadamph field trip aims to develop an understanding of the relationship between surface and subsurface and increases the ability of students to gather pertinent data from rock outcrops and surface features. If the full field trip goes ahead (March 20th to April 3rd) the mapping work will be undertaken on two areas, one approximately 1.5km2 in size, in week 1; and the other about 3 km2 in size, in week 2. Students spend 8 days on work directly related to these mapping exercises, complemented by 3 days of supporting field investigation. Two days are devoted to data analysis and report production.

Online learning modules that will precede (1, 2) or replace (3) the Inchnadamph field trip will include:
Online module 1 [OM1] (available from week 6, Semester 1):

a) Introduction to the areas to be investigated, overview of the geology, key sites;
b) Example exercises utilising the basic principles and methods (stratum contours on planar features, cross-sections)
c) Principles of the field notebook

Online module 2 [OM2] (available throughout Semester 2):

a) Principles of field maps and documenting information on them.
b) Construction of a geological map based on given information (Grid referenced locations of boundaries, dip and dip direction information, photos of localities, sparse outcrop data etc).
c) Producing a true-scale cross-section of the mapped area along a given azimuth.
d) Structural exercise elements of a fold, use of stereonets to represent the information, steronet interpretation, construction of a block diagram based on map and structural data.

Online Module 3 [OM3] (available late in Semester 2, in lieu of field course itself):
Assessed exercises comparable to those in OM2 b) and c), based on partial geological maps of the Ullapool River Valley complemented by locality descriptions, panoramas, fly-throughs, and rock unit images (including hand specimens, and thin section images).

Spain (or UK equivalent) Field Component

The second section of this course will probably involve a 2-week fieldtrip to Spain. The Spain field trip focuses on the development of Neogene and Quaternary sedimentary basins and associated magmatic and tectonic activity in the Betic Cordillera in SE Spain. The field course is skills-based, but students will also gain a broad and integrated knowledge and understanding of the Neogene and Quaternary evolution of SE Spain which will be gained through analysis of the tectonic, volcanic, and sedimentological history of the area.
If international travel is not possible, this will be replaced by either a residential UK field trip, or Edinburgh-based day fieldtrips which explore the geological evolution of the Midland Valley.

Further Information on the content of the Field Courses

The field trips will improve understanding of geological processes with an emphasis on interpreting rocks at the outcrop and regional scale. A wide range of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks will be studied, and training will be given in the field identification of rocks, and the interpretation of deformation, sedimentary sequences, and a range of igneous and metamorphic phenomena. All of the observations made in the field will be gathered together through the construction of maps, cross sections and, for Spain, a rock-relation diagram.
You will undertake geological mapping exercises that will integrate observations from multiple scales. You will be trained in various field techniques including digital mapping and model building as well as microstructural exercises on samples from the field area. The principal learning outcomes are the further development of key field skills. You will develop a good sense for uncertainty in geological field observations and develop skills in 4-dimensional model building. These skills are essential for students that undertake independent mapping project.

You will learn how to exercise the autonomy and initiative required to conduct independent field work and will practise drawing on a range of sources to assist with making judgements.
You will also be trained in personal presentation skills of your field observations and interpretations, as well as group and team-working, and professional practice.


***Field course locations may change for a variety of reasons, including security risks, increased costs or inability to access field locations. Any changes to the main destination of the field course will be announced as soon as possible.***
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites It is RECOMMENDED that students have passed Palaeontology and Sedimentology (EASC10106) AND Igneous, Metamorphic and Ore Processes (EASC10107) AND Structural Analysis of Rocks and Regions (SARR) (EASC09052)
Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2020/21, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  36
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 4, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 8, Fieldwork Hours 182, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 0 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Coursework 100%

Assessment will consist of:
Inchnadamph: 50% of course - 10 credits
Spain: 50% of course - 10 credits

Inchnadamph (if the field course runs):
Mapping Area 2 (Ullapool) project (70%)
Student Notebook (30%)

Inchnadamph (if only online delivery is possible):
Online Module 3: 100%


Spain (or alternatively, UK):
Field map and Notebook (50%; 25% each)
Rock relations diagram (50%)


Assessment deadlines
Assessments for Inchnadamph and Spain will be handed in during the respective fieldtrips.
Feedback During field trips, and with the group on marking of course material.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. 1. Develop a broad, integrated knowledge of the earth dynamics and geological evolution of selected areas, either in the UK, or in the UK and Spain.
  2. 2. Develop and enhance field skills required for the effective documentation and interpretation of rock outcrops and other forms of surface geological data.
  3. 3. Develop skills in visualising map and related field data in three dimensions using appropriate graphical techniques.
  4. 4. Develop an appreciation of the degree of uncertainty of the data collection methods and the relationship between surface and subsurface data.
  5. 5. Develop skills in synthesising the geology of an area through the integrated use of maps, cross-sections, diagrams and accompanying reports.
Reading List
n/a
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Additional Class Delivery Information For up to date information regarding the dates of field trips please see:

https://www.ed.ac.uk/geosciences/teaching-organisation/ug-students/ug-field-trips
KeywordsGeology,Field Skills,mapping
Contacts
Course organiserDr Florian Fusseis
Tel: (0131 6)50 6755
Email: florian.fusseis@ed.ac.uk
Course secretaryMs Katerina Sykioti
Tel: (0131 6)50 5430
Email: Katerina.Sykioti@ed.ac.uk
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