EAE4061 - Geology and tectonics of New Zealand - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate, Postgraduate - 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)

Associate Professor Andy Tomkins


Associate Professor Andy Tomkins

Unit guides



  • Term 1 2019 (On-campus block of classes)


Enrolment in the Master of Science




The unit is offered in a non-standard teaching period.


This is an intensive 12-day field trip to New Zealand, one of the best natural laboratories in which to learn about geology. Apart from being dramatically different to Australia in terms of modern day geological activity, it is a ribbon continent with a complex assembly of allochthonous terranes, part of which was formerly part of Australia. It has hyperactive back arc volcanism, spectacular geothermal activity, very active seismicity and is one of the few countries in the world with glaciers at sea level. Some of the main concepts to be covered will be:

Arcs and back-arc architecture, seismicity and volcanism

Transpressional fault systems

Geothermal springs and geothermal power

The relationship of these to ore deposits

Glaciers as a record of Holocene climate change

Seismic hazards and engineering responses


On successful completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Explain the relationships between the ancient geological processes preserved in Australia and the young processes occurring in New Zealand.
  2. Use new skills in interpreting evidence of deformation and origin of a fault structure.
  3. Understand and interpret field evidence of the different mechanisms driving different types of metamorphism.
  4. Prepare a stratigraphic log.
  5. Understand and interpret field characteristics of geochemical processes.
  6. Present an overview of a complex geological topic to a educated geoscience audience.


Presentation: 50%

Essays: 50%

Workload requirements

  • 12 days fieldwork
  • 56 hours of independent study

See also Unit timetable information

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

Master of Science