EAE3311 - Physical environments - 2019

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 Ruth Reef
Associate Professor David Dunkerley (Associate)


Dr Ruth Reef
Associate Professor David Dunkerley (Associate)

Unit guides



  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)


ATS2774 or EAE2322 or one level 2 EAE or ESC unit


This unit examines the land surface features of the earth, and their geomorphic development. It explores the rates of continental denudation, and the geological, climatic, biogeographic, and geomorphic processes that influence denudation. The variations in geomorphic processes and denudation rates across climatic and biogeographic zones of the earth's surface will be explored. Particular attention will be paid to key geomorphic processes, such as riverine (fluvial geomorphic) processes, that are both critical to continental denudation and simultaneously pose significant management challenges for human societies.


On satisfactory completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Discuss the processes that underlie continental denudation, and some of the ways in which denudation rates are estimated.
  2. Discuss the ways in which past climates and biogeographic conditions may leave an imprint on the surface features of the continents.
  3. Discuss how weathering and denudation vary among climates (arid to wet tropical) and through time.
  4. Demonstrate a knowledge of fluvial geomorphic processes and their variation among physiographic and climatic environments of the continents.


Examination (2 hours): 40%

Laboratory class reports: 20%

Major essay or research project: 40%

Workload requirements

Three 1-hour lectures and one 2-hour practical class per week

See also Unit timetable information

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