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GES2240 - Geomorphology and Soils

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader: Dr Billy Kariaga


Not offered in 2007


This unit deals with the basic understanding of the landscape and soil forming processes with specific attention to the tropical environment. Topics include weathering, mass wasting, fluvial processes, soil constituents and characteristics; South African soil types and their formation, soil description classification and mapping, physical causes of land degradation and soil management issues. Practical and fieldwork provide opportunities for students to describe and classify soils in the field, and identify the nature and causes of land degradation.


Upon satisfactory completion of this subject, students will be:

  1. Able to understand various theories of landform evolution.
  2. Able to understand the major processes that shape the tropical landscape.
  3. Able to understand the processes involved in the formation of soils and problems associated with managing tropical soils.
  4. Able to synthesise and interpret relevant material and communicate ideas to others in a coherent manner, by either written or verbal means.
  5. Familiar and proficient in techniques for analysing landform processes and soils.


Written (3000 words): 40%
Examination (2 hours): 40%
Practical and fieldwork reports: 20%

Contact hours

One 2 hour lecture and a one-hour tutorial per week. One full day field trip.


First year Geography sequence