Faculty of Science

Monash University

Undergraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2015 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Science
Organisational UnitSchool of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment
OfferedClayton First semester 2015 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Ms Marion Anderson


The beginning and evolution of the Universe, our Solar System and Earth; planetary geology of our Solar System and other solar systems. The structure of the Earth, including: geological evolution of the Earth; plate tectonics and the structure of the Earth's crust; minerals and igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks and their formation processes; formation and evolution of life on Earth. Geohazards (earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, landslides and avalanches, and meteorite impacts) and modern day changes to the Earth's atmosphere and environment.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Discuss the birth, evolution and age of the universe, our solar system, and other solar systems;

  1. Describe the structure of the Earth and other planets in our solar system, their chemistry as well as some of the tools that have been used to discover them;

  1. Discuss the evolution of the Earth's crust over geological time;

  1. Describe geologic time in relative and absolute terms;

  1. Identify and describe common minerals and rocks, including some of their properties;

  1. Discuss some of the processes involved in sedimentation, volcanic and igneous activity and metamorphism;

  1. Describe theories on the origin and evolution of life:

  1. Describe the nature of Geohazards, global climate change, and the likelihood of their occurrence and impacts on humanity.


Examination (2 hours): 50%
Laboratory work, on-line assessments and quizzes, group poster assignment and field excursions: 50%

Workload requirements

Three 1-hour lectures per week; eight 3-hour practicals per semester; and two 1-day field excursions during the semester

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study