EAE3521 - Earth and planetary petrology - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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



Organisational Unit

School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Andrew Tomkins


Dr Andrew Tomkins

Unit guides



  • First semester 2018 (On-campus)


EAE2511, ESC2122


ESC3211, ESC3212, ESC3421


This unit investigates the igneous and metamorphic petrology and geochemistry of the Earth's mantle and crust, and provides an introduction to the geology of meteorites and planets via these principles. Igneous petrology and geochemistry deals with the formation, migration, fractionation and emplacement of magmas in various settings in the Earth, asteroids and planets. Metamorphic petrology deals with the formation of metamorphic rocks, and the use of these rocks in investigating the tectonic evolution of the Earth's crust, and of the interior of asteroids.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Identify the various types of igneous and metamorphic rocks in hand specimen and in natural field outcrops;
  2. Evaluate the distinctive geochemical and petrographic features of igneous and metamorphic rocks, including meteorites;
  3. Evaluate and constrain the geochemical sources and evolution of magmas within the silicate earth and other planets, and identify their dominant controlling processes;
  4. Understand the processes that lead to the formation of metamorphic rocks in the Earth's crust, and within asteroids;
  5. Understand how isotopes are used in geosciences and apply them in interpreting magmatic and metamorphic processes;
  6. Understand the links between plate tectonics, magma genesis and regional metamorphism, and apply that understanding to interpret the evolution of different tectonic domains.


Examination (2 hours): 50% (Hurdle)

Practical component: 50%

Hurdle requirement: Students must pass the theory examination to achieve an overall pass grade. Students who do not pass the theory examination will receive a mark of 48% unless their aggregate mark is lower

Workload requirements

Two 1-hour lectures and one 3-hour practical class per week

See also Unit timetable information

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